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FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

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This section contains general sewing questions & answers.


Q: Can I get the off the edge corded scallop with my Esante or Espire?
A: Yes. You would use 40 wt. Rayon or Cotton Embroidery Thread in both the needle and the bobbin. Press a 1" hem on the edge of your fabric then place a strip of water soluble stabilizer so it is 1" under the folded edge of the fabric and at lease I" outside the folded edge. Next, select CHARACTER/DECORATIVE STITCH, then the satin stitch symbol. Set the pattern length to 5mm. Select scallop stitch and set the length to 0.2mm. Place a piece of gimp cord under the foot and take a couple of stitches to anchor the cord into the stitch. Sew slowly, gently guiding the cord in front of the stitch. When finished, trim threads and cord from the ends. Wash off the water soluble stabilizer

Q: How can I hem or topstitch knits with a double needle on my Espire or Encore?
A: First, be sure you are using a stretch twin needle. Threading your machine as you would for sewing with a double needle, select the straight stitch in the middle position. Adjust the stitch length to 3.0-4.0 and sew your hem or topstitching. Your bobbin thread will form a zig‑zag which creates stretch in the stitch. For a stitch with more stretch, use wooly nylon in the bobbin. For more information look in the Esante Ese Workbook.

Q: I want to add a touch of holiday sparkle to my handmade holiday items but Santa hasn't brought my Esante yet. What can I do?
A: You can use a double needle in your regular sewing machine with metallic threads and either a straight or zig-zag stitch. If your machine has built in decorative stitches like the Espire and Encore you can use metallic thread when stitching those also. Be sure when using metallic threads to use a metallic needle and put your thread on the vertical spool pin.

Q: How do I prevent my holiday velvets and velveteens from sliding when sewing?
A: Use the walking foot when sewing velvets and velveteens. That will help prevent the sliding or crawling of the fabric.

Q: When using the large decorative quilting stitches  with monofilament thread in the needle and cotton thread  the bobbin my stitch is not balanced.  What should I do?
A: Since the thread you are using in the needle will be a slightly thinner and finer texture thread, you would need to tighten your upper tension to compensate the difference.

Q: What is the best way to stitch a buttonhole in polar fleece with my Baby Lock sewing machine?
A: Select a buttonhole where the stitch length is not extremely tight or dense. Then, be sure to stabilize the area you will be stitching your buttonhole to avoid any excessive stretching.

Q: Besides names, what are some of the other uses of the built in letters in the decorative stitches of the Encore, Espire, and Esante?
A: Type in "Merry Christmas" or "Happy Birthday". Repeat the phrase and stitch as a border. This would look great around a tablecloth or placemat.

Q: How do I know which techniques require the use of the foot pedal and which ones I can use the "Start/Stop" button?
A: If it is a technique such as stippling or free motion embroidery you will need your hands to guide the fabric, using the foot pedal is usually the best. When doing simple seaming, you do not have to guide the fabric as much, using the "Start/Stop" button is very convenient. When you need more control over your fabric using the foot pedal is always the best idea. Keep in mind, when using a machine with an embroidery unit attached, you will need to have the foot pedal disconnected.

Q: How do I get an appliqué or blanket stitch on my Esante'?
A: You can use the blind hem stitch, just shorten it That will give you a blanket' stitch.

Q: Can I use cotty thread in the needle of my Esante'? If so, how do I do this?
A: Yes, you can use cotty thread in the needle of your Esante'. Use a topstitch needle, lengthen your stitch, and loosen your tension. Remember, fabric combinations are different, so you may need to experiment a little with your settings.

Q: What is the best way to sew a small 1/4" seam as needed for miniatures and doll clothes?
A: Use the single hole Straight Stitch Foot (BLG-SS; ESG-SSL) available through your authorized Baby Lock Retailer.

Q: What is the best way to do stippling or free motion quilting on Baby Lock without a stitch regulator?
A: Increase your stitching speed, decrease your tension, and lengthen your stitch.  Experiment with the settings and speed until you get 'the hang of it' and the desired results.

We have a great and Bonus Sew at Home OnDemand (pre-recorded) class just that subject and is called "Free Motion Quilting with your Baby Lock?" Click here for a link to the Sew at Home OnDemand website and order this FREE video class today! Note you will need to set-up an account on this website, even if you have a Baby Lock website profile, they are different.

Q: My daughter would like me to teach her how to sew. What would be the best machine to get?
A: The BL 6700 would be the best machine. It has several great features that make it both a good "learning" machine and a addition to your sewing room.

Q: What do I need to do if I have stored my machine for a long period of time and want to take it out and sew with it?
A: If you prepared your machine properly for storage by oiling it well to keep rust from attacking it, there are a couple of things you will want to do before using it on your project. First, remove the bobbin, race, and ring. Wipe all the parts with a dry cloth. Replace the bobbin parts and bobbin. Then sew, on a scrap of fabric first. When you think you machine should be oiled, oil the bobbin area. Run your machine with outout thread a minute, and wipe out excess oil. That should keep the oil from soiling the thread and fabric you are sewing.

Q: I have seen the Candlewicking stitch by sewing machine. How do I do this?
A: Any sewing machine with the "Button Stitch" to sew on buttons can do this easily.

  • Machine Setting:Button Stitch
  • Stitch Width: 2.5
  • Stitch Length: 0 (or as low as it will go)
  • Foot: Pearl Foot
  • Lower Feed Dogs
Stitch the "Button Stitch" three times in place. This will create a nice knot that resembles Candlewicking. Move to next knot location. By using the Button Stitch, the knot is "tied off" automatically.

Q: I have read where I can use metal bobbins in my Espree and Esante machines. I have plastic bobbins that came with the machines. Is it ok to use metal bobbins?
A: No, it is not good to use metal bobbins with the Espree and Esante machines. The bobbin case is magnetic. With metal bobbins the magnet will prevent the thread from flowing smoothly from the bobbin while sewing or embroidering. Please use only genuine Baby Lock Ese bobbins for the Espree and Esante. The part # is 136492101. Your Baby Lock dealer can sell you the correct bobbins for your machine.

Q: I would like to use 5000 yard cones of embroidery thread on my embroidery machine. How do I thread the machine correctly, as it will not fit on the spool pin holder?
A: Place the cone of thread on your right, at the back of the machine. Bring the thread up and behind the bobbin winder spindle. (where the bobbin sits) Place the largest spool cap on the empty horizontal spool pin and take the thread through the hole of the spool cap. From this point thread the machine normally.

Q: Do you have a list of the accessory feet that come with my sewing machine?
A: We now have accessory list for the Esante Ese, Espire, Encore listed on the web site. Go to the machine page and scroll down to the bottom of the first page. Click on "Machine Accessory List". A complete list of accessories will appear. These can be printed out for your reference.

Q: I am having difficulty making buttonholes in Polar Fleece fabric. The fabric does not want to feed through. HELP!
A: Put a tear away stabilizer under the area where you want the buttonhole. This prevents the feed dogs from sinking into the fabric and not feeding correctly. Place a layer of water soluble stabilizer on top of the fabric where the button hole is to be made. Select a stretch buttonhole setting if you have it on your machine.

Click here to check out the Baby Lock stabilizers.

Alternative closures: Snaps (comes in many styles), Velcro, bound buttonholes made from Ultrasuede™

Q: I want to use low shank screw on accessory feet for my Ese. Is it possible to use them?
A: We now have a special low shank adapter that will allow you to use low shank screw on presser feet. Please contact your dealer to purchase the adapter.

Q: I own a Baby Lock Ese and would like to use screw on low shank presser feet for decorative sewing. Do you have an adapter to use with the feet?
A: Yes we now have a new adapter that will allow you to use low shank screw on feet.
Please contact your Baby Lock dealer to purchase the adapter.