GLAD YOU ASKED THAT: WHAT DO ALL THE MARKINGS ON JANOME NEEDLE PLATES MEAN?

Janome’s needle plates are patented and are designed with etched guides to simplify your sewing.   Do you know how to use the etched markings on your needle plate? Let us show you how these markings can help you sew perfect seams.

Starting Needle Position

The horizontal line that runs across the needle plate indicates where the needle will drop. When you start sewing, simply place the edge of the fabric along this line for a neat start.

5/8” is most often the standard seam allowance for commercial patterns.

  • When the needle is in the center position, line up the edge of the fabric with this mark to sew a consistent 5/8” seam.
  • To make a perfect 5/8” pivot, stop sewing when the end of the fabric reaches the mark below. Lift the foot, rotate the fabric lining up the edge with the 5/8” seam mark and sew!

Many craft patterns as well as quilters will use a 1/4” seam allowance.

  • When the needle is in the center position, line up the edge of the fabric with this mark.

  • To start a 1/4” in from the edge, place the fabric at this mark.

  • To stop a 1/4” from the end, stop at this mark. Also use this mark to pivot.

Diagonal Placement Lines

Quilters often use diagonal pieces, the angles used in quilting are 45°, 60°, 90° and 120°.

Machines with a maximum width of 7mm have solid diagonal lines.

Machines with a maximum width of 9mm will have solid and dotted diagonal lines.

Solid lines are used with a center needle position. Dotted lines are used with the 1/4” stitch found on all 9mm machines.

  • Attach 1/4” Foot “O”.
  • Line up the angled edge with the angle on the needle plate.

  • Line up the opposite edge with the guide on the foot. The needle will automatically drop a 1/4” in from the edge.
  • Use the guide on the foot to stop a 1/4” from the end.

Other Seam Allowances

There are times you may choose to use a different seam allowance or hem width.

  • Simply look at the needle plate to find the desired width.
  • Your machine came with a quilt guide. Simply insert it in the foot holder and adjust it to the desired width. The maximum width of this guide right of the needle is 2 1/2”.
  • The optional Long Quilting Bar Set is (202025003) designed to fit all 9mm machines. You can use these guides for seams up to 4 1/4” on either side of the needle.

About lizafrica

I am the National Education Manager for Janome & Elna Canada (including Artistic Creative products) and I LOVE to sew! I have been employed full time in the sewing and quilting industry for almost 30 years so I bring a wealth of sewing knowledge & expertise to this blog. I enjoy all forms of sewing from quilting to sewing garments to machine embroidery and software. Pretty much everything in my life is seen through the eyes of a passionate sewer! I am constantly on the look out for fun, innovative and inspiring ideas to share with you all on this blog. I also love to sew, read, knit , crochet, travel and spend time with my family and friends.
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19 Responses to GLAD YOU ASKED THAT: WHAT DO ALL THE MARKINGS ON JANOME NEEDLE PLATES MEAN?

  1. Jette says:

    Hi. I just bought a Janome 9450 two weeks ago – a nice machine – but I have problems with the markings on the needle plates. How do I use the markings when calculating in millimeters and centimeters? It is also problematic to set the cloth guide.
    Jette

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    • lizafrica says:

      Hi Jette,
      Not sure where you purchased your MC9450 but your dealer is really the best place to contact for your learning process.

      I’m not quite sure what you mean by mm and cm. But if you look at the needle plate, the 20/30/40/50 are mm underneath the markings at the top of the plate >>> 1/2; 5/8; 3/4 etc So, I’m sure both metric and imperial should be on the plate.
      Here is a link to information about the needle plate markings: https://janomelife.wordpress.com/2019/08/12/glad-you-asked-that-what-do-all-the-markings-on-the-needle-plate-mean/ We did a blog post on this last year in August.

      Why is the cloth guide problematic? I need to know more if you want me to assist. Did you read the manual about how to set it on the screen of the machine? There is an icon to press to set it up. And you can choose metric or Imperial in the set menu before you go to the Cloth Guide icon.

      Liz
      JANOME CANADA

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      • Jette says:

        Thank you very much for your response – it has helped me a lot. I bought my sewing machine here in Denmark, but since the whole country is closed down due to corona virus it is not possible right now to get training from the dealer. However, I think it is mostly going well with a good instruction book and the new Workbook.
        Jette

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      • lizafrica says:

        Hi Jette,

        OK I wondered where you are. Please stay well and safe. My son and his family live in London, England – not too far from you. Im in Vancouver, BC.
        Super pleased you have the Workbook. Is it the same one we have here in North America? See this link https://janomelife.wordpress.com/2020/01/17/the-janome-mc9450-workbook-is-here/
        Glad you are managing. Let us know if you have further queries. We are happy to help.

        Liz
        JANOME CANADA

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      • Jette says:

        Hi ! I am working my way through the instruction book and workbook. It’s been a big help. However, there are some things I have had trouble getting through. These are acufeed and HP. To help myself, I’ve made a small outline. If you have the opportunity to look into it, I will be grateful for the corrections and additions. Unfortunately, it now turns out that I can’t attach any files. Is there another way I can send you my little overview.
        Jette

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      • lizafrica says:

        Hi Jeete,

        Hope my email answered your queries. Keep well over there in Denmark.

        Liz
        JANOME CANADA

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  2. Vickie Dent says:

    This is really helpful to me since I have a new Janome.

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  3. Gerri Bell says:

    great post on the markings on the face plate – dealers should share these at sale

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  4. Denise Dobek says:

    Great Info. Never realized what some of the markings were. Thanks

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  5. Nancy Cawood says:

    I am still figuring out what all those marks are so appreciate this information.

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  6. Julia says:

    I am having a problem making a bobbin on my Janome Skyline 5 machine. I am wondering if you can show in detail (using coloured diagrams) how to do the threading to click in scoring to the manual. Also, when I finally get the thread to click in the bobbin is very loose. What am I doing wrong. Is there an easier way to make a bobbin? Thanks for your help.

    Julia

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    • lizafrica says:

      Hi Julia,

      Perhaps we can do a post on this in an upcoming Janomelife post. I will add it to the list. However, we are not able to address queries with this level of detail in a comment forum. Your local Janome Dealer remains the best place to get this sort of operating information: please contact your dealer and have them show you how to successfully wind a bobbin. I am sure you are just missing one or more steps.

      Liz
      JANOME CANADA

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    • Monica says:

      I looked up a you tube video to help me with this. Just type in what you want. I have found alot on troubleshooting as well…very helpful.

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  7. Julia says:

    Thank you for this information. Very informative.

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  8. Thank you for this post! I never knew what most of these markings meant 🙂

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  9. Betty says:

    I have a 6600. It would have been nice to have this explained in the manual.

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  10. Brilliant! I knew most of this but not all of it, and I’ve used a Janome since 2003! I forwarded the email to my DIL who is new to sewing and is learning how to use her M7200. I am printing this out and putting it with my manual, in the drawer next to my machine. Thanks so much!

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  11. Ann says:

    So much great info here. I’ve been using my machine for 2+ yrs and I’m ebrrasses by what I didn’t know 🤷🏼‍♀️. I did NOT get a Quilting guide with my machine. I’ve been using the one from my old machine and I have to tape it as it’s too thin to fit securely in the proper a slot. How can I get a quilting guide?

    Cheers Ann

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