Have you been shopping online, or have been out window shopping, and discovered a beautiful blouse, or skirt, with multiple rows of parallel stitching? Have you wondered how they were stitched so evenly, so accurately? Pintucks are a traditional, heirloom sewing technique which are sew fun to make; made even easier and more accurately with the Janome Pintucking foot. In fact, for most Janome machines, there’s two sizes available; Wide Groove, N1 foot, and Narrow Groove, N2 foot.
The Janome Pintucking Foot is an optional snap-on presser foot, so be sure to check with your fabulous Janome Dealer, and our bilingual Janome Accessories Guide so you get the correct size foot for your machine, as there is a 5mm, 7mm and 9mm version available. There are grooves in the bottom of the foot; the Wide N1 foot has 7 grooves, while the Narrow N2 foot has 9 grooves, which allow the pintucks to form between two parallel rows of stitching. Learn all about these super-fun presser feet on the Janome HQ You Tube channel.
The secret to sewing two parallel rows of stitching is to use a Twin Needle; two needles on one shaft, so the distance between the two lines of stitching remains consistent. Many Janome machines come with a needle pack containing a Twin needle, so check your accessory box and instruction manual for the list of included accessories. These needle packs are also available in a blister pack from Janome and Elna Dealers.
Most of our Janome machines also come with either two spool pins attached to the back of the machine, such as with the Janome Continental M7, and Janome MC6700P, or, with a secondary spool pin which attaches to the top of the machine. This is great to use when winding a bobbin, so you don’t have to unthread the needle, or when using a Twin needle. Again, consult your accessory box and instruction manual which will show you exactly where to attach the secondary spool pin.
Some Janome Machines have a built-in Twin needle safety feature, as well, so be sure to select this function as it will automatically decrease the width of some stitches so you won’t hit the needle plate when using the Twin needle. As well, this safety feature will not allow you to select a stitch which is not compatible with the Twin needle, so it’s one less thing to worry about. Even with this safety feature in place, it’s a good idea to rotate the Balance Wheel by hand for those first couple of stitches, just to double-check the machine is set-up correctly and the needle won’t hit the needle plate. See your instruction manual for details, but also check out the video demonstrating Twin needle sewing on the Janome HQ You Tube channel.
Adjusting your machine is even easier if you have the Sewing Applications Menu, the little T-shirt icon. The below photo is from the Janome Continental M7 Instruction Manual, so your Janome MC15000 QuiltMaker and Janome Skyline S9 screen will look a little different. Select the Optional Presser Foot option within the Sewing Applications Menu, then select Pintucking, which will further give you the option of selecting either the Wide or Narrow groove foot. The machine will automatically be set-up for you. Insert your Twin needle, thread and away you go! The Sewing Applications Menu is such a time-saver! Speaking of threading, you can not use the automatic needle threaders with a Twin needle; you must thread by hand.
Threading a needle by hand is a great time to use the Janome AcuView Optic Magnifier, which come with some machines, and is available for others. The magnifier attaches to a small hole up inside the housing of the machine, usually around by the side thread cutter. Feel for it with your fingers, or gently tip the machine back, or use a mirror to see if your machine will be compatible.
Our fabulous Janome Canada educator, Celine, did a Facebook LIVE presentation full of tips and tricks on sewing with a Twin needle, which you may watch on the Janome HQ You Tube channel, and on Janome America’s Janome Sewing Machines Facebook page.
To add more dimension to pintucks, be sure to tighten the needle tension, which will make the pintucks stand tall between the two rows of stitching. To make those perfect pintucks even more perky, use the Janome Pintucking Cord Guides to add thin cords and yarns between the rows of stitching. This not only adds a cool 3D effect, it also ensures the pintucks will never be pressed flat, which is great for travel, or for clothes which go off to the dry cleaners. After removing the bobbin cover, the guide clips into the needle plate, and the yarn, or cord, will be held in place by the guide. It’s works sew well, as Celine demonstrates in her Facebook LIVE presentation. As always though, full instructions are on the back of the blister pack, as well.
Another terrific resource for more information is the Janome Presser Foot Workbook and Addendums, specifically the Specialty Presser Foot Addendum, which tells all about the Janome Pintucking presser feet and Pintucking Guides – and MORE!
To what fabulous creation will you add Pintucks? We’d love to see photos, so be sure to tag us #sharethejanomelove #janomecanada @janomecanada #janomehq @janomehq.