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Raise your hand if you made some classic New Year’s resolutions – exercising, getting lots of rest, drinking more water. All these intentions are worthy, but let’s look beyond the standard list to some Sewing Self Improvement Goals.

We’re excited to join a new series from Janome: Sew Smarter. Whether you’re a beginner or a pro, you’ll gain access to proven tips, techniques and some clever tricks for brilliant results, from learning brand new information and ideas to refreshing existing knowledge with a new spin.

If you love to get expert tips, especially in bite size nuggets of information, the Sew Smarter series is for you. Each week more projects and tutorials will be added from a variety of Janome friends, educators, and experts. The information is aimed at helping you up your sewing game and make the most of your machine and all those accessories.

What’s Online

Week 9: Zipper Feet Options

With Danielle Amato from Janome America

Janome Educator, Danielle Amato is back with another in-depth Sew Smarter tutorial. What’s the trick to a perfect zipper? Using the right presser foot and the correct stitch set-up! Danielle explains things clearly and completely – from which zipper foot to use to calling up the Janome Sewing Applications screens to little tips on pinning, how to maneuver around the zipper tab, and more. You’ll be zipping around in no time. For this and all the other great tutorials, go directly to the Sew Smarter page at Janome America. 

 

Week 8: A Step-by-Step Guide to Ruler Work

With Kate Quinn from Janome America

Ruler Work is part of the the free motion quilting family, using templates/rulers to guide your stitching. Janome National Educator, Kate Quinn is passionate about this technique, and you can tell it from her tutorial! There’s a full video as well as a handy PDF set of instructions with extra detail about high and low shank requirements, tension settings, hand position, and more. This is definitely something that will get you hooked; it’s fun – and much easier than you might think. Take a look at this and all the Sew Smarter installments. Click to go directly to the Sew Smarter page at Janome America.

 

Week 7: Introduction to Dual Feed

With Miriam Coffey from Janome America

Keep things moving smoothly. That’s the goal of pretty much everything in life, but it’s particularly important when quilting, when sewing thick layers or when working with difficult substrates. Janome Education Specialist, Miriam Coffey has a great overview of “Dual Feed.” It’s the technology behind a standard Even Feed/Walking foot as well as Janome’s excellent AcuFeed™ Flex built-in fabric feeding system. Learn how it works to keep fabric moving evenly, when to use it, and more. Take a look at this tutorial and all the Sew Smarter tips and techniques. Click to go directly to the Sew Smarter page at Janome America.

 

Week 6: Intro to Free Motion Basics

With Kate Quinn from Janome America

The freedom to use free motion! If you’re brand new to this technique, it can seem intimidating to even think about giving it a try. Janome Educator, Kate Quinn has a wonderful tutorial that demystifies how to get started: from installing the foot to bringing up the bobbing thread to setting stitch length and thread tension. Kate clearly describes the overall basics as well as special tips that make everything easier. To see this entire tutorial as well as all the other info, click to go directly to the Sew Smarter site.

 

Week 5: Using the Piping Foot

With JP Alfano from Janome America

At S4H, we love adding piping to bags, pillows, and more. It’s not only a beautiful finish to an edge, it outlines and emphasizes a shape and adds structure. In this tutorial, JP Alfano shows how to use the specialty Piping Foot for both making custom piping tape, as well as attaching that tape to your project. The snap-on foot has two channel grooves to make it easy and precise. See the full tutorial and more when you click directly to the Janome Sew Smarter site.

 

Week 4: Embellishing with Yarn Couching

With Christina Dolinger from Janome America

There are some fun embellishment possibilities hiding in your knitting basket. Yarn Couching can add beautiful, dimensional texture to your projects. Janome Educator, Christina Dolinar shows the easy steps, using the Janome Free Motion Couching Foot Set. Two different, quick to attach, feet accommodate different yarn weights. You’ll actually be couching with a tiny zig zag. To find out more about this technique and others, click directly to the Sew Smarter site.

Week 3: Machine Binding 101

With Miriam Coffey from Janome America

Quilt bindings got you in a bind?! Join Janome Education Specialist, Miriam Coffey as she breaks down the Janome accessories that can help you finish your bindings more easily, efficiently, and precisely. Using 2½” strips, she goes into detail about how to handle corners as well as showing a super easy way to sew together your binding ends. For all the details on this and other top tips, click directly to the Sew Smarter site.

 

Week 2: Exploring the Janome Bi-Level Foot

With Danielle Amato from Janome America

As the name implies, the base of this unique presser foot is designed so it is slightly higher on the left side of the foot than the right. By placing the foot along a seam, this split level guides the foot along the seam, creating a consistent line of edgestitching or topstitching. The foot is also perfect for finishing non-seamed edges, such as around the top of a tote. along the edges of a patch pocket or when attaching straps to a bag. It’s available for Janome 5mm, 7mm and 9mm machines. Click to find all the details.

Week 1: Big Beautiful Box Corners

With Liz Johnson from Sew4Home

You’ll learn three different methods for creating the perfect box corners. There’s a full PDF to download with all the step-by-step instructions, including some of our favorite tips – look for the Sew Smarter lightbulb emblem – and links to fun, free S4H projects featuring box corners so you can practice all your new skills. You can also download a free summary handout with formulas to use going forward to calculate sizes for your own box corner projects. Click to find all the details.

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Debra
Debra
1 month ago

I am thrilled to see this Sew Smarter with Janome! Looking forward to more learning on my machine. You always put out the very best information that all of us sewers can use, no matter what machine we have. My sewing has gotten much better, my understanding of my machine has been a joy to use and I appreciate your attention to detail to make us all better sewers.

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