Sunday, January 8, 2012

You Are Not the Boss of Me

I have had my present Viking 936 serger for seven years. Until this month, my serger was the boss of me. I was intimidated by it. So intimidated that I only did three thread overlock and three thread rolled hem since those two stitches did not require that I change any needles and I could tie off threads to change thread colors. It was a loooooooong sewing session when I broke a thread and had to rethread it from the directions. Coverstitch was out of the question, way too complicated.

Before Christmas I spent an hour in a one on one session with the local Viking dealer and she showed me a few tricks that gave me the confidence to thread the machine and change the needle position. She even went over the coverstitch with me, but I was going to need a lot more practice.

This past Friday a Baby Lock dealer in my area was offering an all day intermediate serger class, and I went, even though I knew I would not get a lot of support for my Viking machine.  Enter Kate , another class participant and a free lance Viking teacher with a machine just like mine. She sat right beside me and interpreted all the Baby Lock instructions for me in the Viking language. She loaned me her specialty feet and was truly a blessing to me and the other Viking owner participating in the class. She had lots of tips and recommendations for additional resources.

We did a lot of things in the workshop, inserting a zipper. making and inserting piping, pin tucks, and of course the dreaded coverstitch.

Here’s my zipper sample, and yes, I know it’s not centered, but I learned how to do it, and it’s a breeze.


Piping and insertion was quick and easy too, Kate showed me how to turn a corner.


Did the Baby Lock dealer want me to spend $3,000 on a new machine? Yes. Was I willing to do that? No. I spent several hours this weekend threading and re-threading my Viking machine, changing from overlock to coverstitch and back again, and my confidence has improved to the point, I can tell my serger, “You are not the boss of me!”

I do want to say that if I were buying a new serger today I would likely buy a Baby Lock. My machine is great, but the Baby Lock has it beat as far as ease of use.


  1. Good to make use of your tools, I am glad you are learning new things still.

  2. Do you have a coverstitch machine, or an overlock machine? If you have an overlock (serger) how do you do a coverstitch?

    I watched a series of videos from Nancy Zieman from her website, and I ordered her workbook. Some of the instructions and some of the 'assignments' won't work for my serger, since it doesn't have some of the features of the Babylock machine. I think I also need a few more feet in order to do some of the 'assignments'. The workbook is centered around the high end Babylock machine. Hmmmm...wonder why? =)

    Have a great weekend!

  3. Good for you! I'm still in avoidance mode for sergers.