Sewing Machine Feet Guide

The range of sewing machine presser feet on the market today can be quite bewildering! However, understanding the capabilities can be incredibly eye opening for everyone from beginners to experienced sewists.

I've known people who have struggled with a particular sewing task for 40 years then discovered a presser foot that takes all the stress out of that particular technique. Less frown lines, surely that's a good thing?

Not only do presser feet solve sewing struggles, but they can also help you to really make a project your own by adding unique and imaginative details like never before. This may create smile lines, but we can live with those, right?!

We are passionate about helping people to make these discoveries so wrote this handy ultimate guide to sewing machine feet. As you can imagine this is a rather substantial article so we've also included a handy quick reference table to help you to jump around the article and find the bits you are interested in.

Foreword

Before we dive in we wanted to share a few words of advice when considering sewing machine feet:

  • We always advise customers to always buy sewing machine feet designed specifically for their machine by the manufacturer. These feet will give you the best possible stitch quality and results every time.
  • Each manufacturer has different categories of machine and, within that, specific feet designed for each category of machine. Always refer to the compatibility charts provided on our website to make sure feet are compatible with your machine.
  • Don't be afraid to get in touch if you can't find what you are looking for or need a little help! We may be able to source feet for you if you are unable to find them for your machine.
  • We are proud stockists of Brother, Janome, Pfaff and Husqvarna accessories.

We should also mention that for each type of foot there will often be further variations such as metal or plastic options, size and versions with markings. This article is designed to give you a general overview of the different types rather than list every product on the market. However, if you visit our sewing machine accessories pages for your particular brand of machine you will find many options listed.

Table of Contents

Below you can find a handy list of each of the feet in this article so you can click on the link and jump to the ones you are interested in. Here you will find detailed descriptions of what the foot is used for and an image.

Standard or zigzag foot
Straight stitch foot
Zipper foot
Adjustable zipper foot
Concealed or invisible zipper foot
Standard buttonhole foot
Sliding or adjustable buttonhole foot
One-step buttonhole foot
Button sewing foot
Overedge or overcasting foot
Walking foot or even feed foot or dual feed foot
Quarter inch piecing foot or quarter inch seam foot
Seam marker foot
Blind hem foot
Adjustable blind hem foot
Narrow hem foot
Shell rolled hem foot or picot foot
Edge guide foot
Stitch in the ditch foot
Bias binding foot
Flat felled foot
Pin tucking foot
Roller foot
Non stick or teflon foot
Ruffler or gathering foot
Free motion quilting or embroidery foot
Open toe foot
Piping foot
Applique foot
Spanish hemstitch foot
Cording foot
Couching foot
Fringe foot or looper foot
Ribbon or sequin foot
Beading foot
Gimping foot
Candlewicking foot

Standard or Zigzag FootStandard foot

It probably goes without saying, but the standard presser foot that's included with every sewing machine is the jack of all trades. It's used for standard and decorative stitches and will probably be the foot you use the most.

This foot is usually capable of basic fancy stitches, satin stitch, zig zag stitches and overcasting stitches in addition to a straight stitch.

You can complete lots of different sewing tasks with this foot, but you may run into difficulty with certain fabric types or techniques.

Straight Stitch FootStraight stitch foot

An example of fabrics that can be tricky with a standard or zig zag foot are fine fabrics such as chiffon. Sometimes a standard presser foot will pull the fabric under the needle plate due to the size of the gap in the foot itself.

A straight stitch foot can help to eradicate this issue. There is a smaller gap in the presser foot, therefore more of the foot is in contact with the needle plate. This applies more pressure to the feed dogs and helps the fabric to feed through rather than become chewed up under the needle plate.

You can only use this foot with a centre straight stitch, otherwise the needle will strike the foot.

You can buy straight stitch feet for your machine here:

Zipper Feet

Zipper FootZipper foot

Most machines include a zipper foot. It's pretty obvious what the zipper foot is for, but how does it work?

Most commonly a zipper foot has gaps either side of the foot. Depending on which side of the zip you are sewing you position the zip tape under the relevant side of the zipper foot. You stitch along one side of the zip then repeat for the other side.

The gaps in the foot allow you to sew close to the zip teeth on either side of your zip. If your sewing machine is capable, you can also adjust the needle position to more precisely place your stitching.

You can also us the zipper foot to attach trimmings that have a tape, just like you do with a zip. Some people even use a zipper foot to apply piping, however, I have known even the most experienced sewist ditch the zipper foot for this task once they've tried a proper piping foot!

Adjustable Zipper FootAdjustable zipper foot

An adjustable zipper foot also has gaps either side of the foot, but you can actually move the entire foot closer or further away from the zip teeth.

Instead of the foot being attached to the machine's needle bar it is attached to it's own needle bar which you can manoeuvre closer or further away to give you more control over the position of your stitching. An example of where this might be useful is a  lapped zip.

Concealed or Invisible Zipper FootConcealed or invisible zipper foot

A concealed or invisible zipper foot makes sewing an invisible zip much, much easier than using a standard foot.

The foot has little grooves on the underside that sit neatly over the teeth of an invisible zip as you sew.

This allows you to get nice and close to the teeth, especially if your machine has needle positioning, for professional results and a truly invisible zip. If you are unable to get close enough to the teeth it can result in the teeth and possibly the zip tape being visible. Take care not to get too close though as you may struggle to close the zip!

It is also much easier to sew past the zip stop at the top of the zip so the zip is invisible all the way down the seam.

You can buy zipper feet for your machine here:

Buttonhole Feet

Standard Buttonhole FootStandard buttonhole foot

A standard buttonhole foot looks much like a standard presser foot. It has an opening wide enough to create the zig zag stitches necessary to sew a buttonhole. Some standard buttonhole feet will be even on both sides of the foot with an opening in the centre. Others such as these Husqvarna and Pfaff buttonhole feet may have an extended left side of the foot with markings to help you sew the correct sized buttonhole.

These feet are for creating manual or four step buttonholes. This means you have to measure and mark the button yourself and sew each side of the buttonhole individually following four steps. Some of the more basic machines only have the facility for this type of foot.

However, there are times when sewing a manual buttonhole is preferable even if your machine has the facility to sew a one step buttonhole. For example, if you are working with bulky fabrics or in a difficult areas such as a cuff or a collar. This is because the smaller standard buttonhole foot will give you much better manoeuvrability in these areas.

The standard buttonhole foot is also useful if you want to create longer buttonholes than the 1" most one buttonhole facilities will allow.

Sliding or Adjustable Buttonhole FootSliding or adjustable buttonhole foot

Sliding or adjustable buttonhole feet are longer than a standard presser foot and have markings along them.

You still sew the buttonhole in the same way as with the standard buttonhole foot, but you can use the markings on the foot to make sure you are sewing the right sized buttonhole. This foot also gives you full view of the buttonhole as you sew it so you can be more accurate. It is much easier to see exactly where to start and stop your stitching.

Hold your button next to the foot and identify which markings you need to follow to create the right length buttonhole. You may still also want to mark your fabric to be extra sure.

One Step Buttonhole FootOne-step buttonhole foot

If your sewing machine has the facility for a one step buttonhole you can use a one step buttonhole foot.

These look similar to the sliding and adjustable buttonhole feet, but they also have an area at the back of the foot where you can insert your button. You slide the foot until the button is fitting snugly in the gap then engage a lever or similar on your machine (instructions for this will feature in your manual). This allows the machine to measure the button and stitch out the correct sized buttonhole in one simple step.

Whenever sewing buttonholes it is also useful to remember that you may need to make your buttonhole slightly larger than the length of your button if the button is domed.

Button Sewing FootButton sewing foot

If you're not a lover of hand sewing this foot could be a very welcome addition to your sewing arsenal. These feet allow you to sew a 2 or 4 hole button, in a range of sizes, to your project.

Simply set the stitch width according to the gap between the holes and the machine does all the work. Some will even allow you to sew buttons with a thread shank. Winning at life.

You can buy buttonhole and button sewing feet for your machine here:

Overedge, Edging or Overcasting FootOveredge or overcasting foot

These feet are designed to finish the raw edge of fabric using your sewing machine in the same way as an overlocker. There is a little bar in the centre of the foot that works to wrap thread around the edge of the fabric for a neat finish and to prevent fraying.

You have to select the correct stitch for use with this foot. There are usually a couple of options for overcasting stitches on most machines. You may need to play around with the length and width of the stitch to get the result you are looking for, as always, test on a scrap of fabric first.

Even though I have an overlocker I still sometimes use my overcasting foot. Firstly, if I can't be bothered to set my overlocker up and just need to sew a small section of a seam allowance for example. Lazy, I know. Secondly there are times when I think an overcasting stitch is more suitable or easier to control than an overlocker, for example, in small, hard to reach areas.

Walking Foot or Even Feed Foot or Dual Feed FootWalking foot or even feed foot or dual feed foot

A walking foot is one of the most useful investments I've ever made. Although they are often associated with patchwork and quilting, I have only ever used mine for dressmaking. Let me explain. A walking foot or even feed foot works with your machine to feed the layers through the machine, you guessed it, evenly.

There is a little bar that usually fits over the needle bar screw. The presser foot on top of the fabric then works to feed or walk the fabric through the machine in harmony with the feed dogs.

In patchwork and quilting this is particularly useful when working with multiple layers of fabric. For example, when sewing straight line quilting or sewing on a quilt binding. If using a standard machine foot the feed dogs may pull the lower layers of fabric through at a different rate to the top and middle layers throwing everything out and creating a bit of a shambles. The walking foot feeds them through at equal rates so they are joined at the correct point. Just like you planned it. Great.

In dressmaking these feet are particularly useful when working with stretch fabrics such as jersey or knits. Due to the stretch in the fabric the feed dogs can feed the layers of your fabric through at different rates when using a standard sewing machine foot. This can result in your lovely fabric stretching out of shape and spoiling your latest project. Boo! These feet will avoid this problem and let you happily sew your gorgeous garments without giving you nasty frown lines.

Walking Foot Options

For some makes and model of machine there are also variations of walking foot to choose from.

Some brands offer an open toe even feed foot for where more visibility as you sew is required. Closed toe even feed feet can be useful when working with thicker layers of fabric because there is more contact with the fabric.

Some walking feet come with a quilting guide. A quilting guide has a long metal bar you insert at the back of your walking foot and a metal bar that runs along your fabric.

If you are sewing multiple parallel stitching lines without a quilting guide you may need to draw all of the stitching lines on the fabric as a guide before sewing to get accurate results. With a quilting guide you only need to mark the first line of stitching.

For the next line of stitching you position the metal guide on the previous line of stitching and use this as a guide instead. You can slide the metal bar further in or out of the walking foot depending on how wide you would like your lines of parallel stitching to be.

You can buy a walking foot for your machine here:

Quarter Inch Piecing Foot or Quarter Inch Seam FootQuarter inch piecing foot or quarter inch seam foot

A quarter inch piecing or seam foot helps you to sew accurate 1/4" seams (and other seam allowances) much easier than by using your needle plate as a guide.

Accuracy is essential in patchwork and quilting for a neat, professional finish and to ensure the different blocks or patches of a quilt match up exactly. Bear in mind achieving accuracy also requires precise cutting out of your fabric.

Some machines can struggle with small pieces of fabric at the beginning and the end of stitching. A good tip here is to start stitching on a scrap of fabric first, butt it up to your actual fabric and continue stitching onto that. You just need to remember to backstitch on your actual fabric to secure the stitching.

Quarter Inch Foot Options

Guides

Some quarter inch feet have a guide along the side of the foot. You simply line the, usually metal, guide up with the edge of your fabric and it will stitch a perfect 1/4" seam.

Others will come without guide and you line the edge of the foot up with your fabric as a guide.

Some quarter inch feet come with a quilting guide, which usually slots into the needle shank. This can be used in the same way as a quilting guide on a walking foot. It is adjustable and can be positioned along a line of stitching as a guide to create parallel lines of stitching.

Markings

Some quarter inch feet will come with lines or markings along the side of the foot, which are useful for working with different seam allowances and turning corners. Instead of trying to do it by eye or marking your fabric you stop and pivot when you reach the relevant mark with the edge of your fabric. Some of the markings can also be useful for tasks such as top stitching.

As with many feet metal and clear quarter inch feet are available depending on your personal preference.

You can buy a quarter inch pieceing foot or quarter inch seam foot for your machine here:

Seam Marker FootSeam marker foot

Let me tell you, I could not live without my seam marker foot! I use it on every. single. project. This is the key to sewing beautifully accurate and even seams and is particularly helpful when turning corners and sewing round curves.

It is a relatively wide presser foot with little markings usually at 1/8" 1/4" 1/2" and 5/8". Instead of using your needle plate as a guide for your seam allowance, you line the edge of your fabric up with the relevant marking and use the marking on the foot as your guide. It is so, so much easier than trying to use the markings on the needle plate, which let's face it, aren't exactly obvious.

When it comes to sewing a corner, put your needle down, raise your foot and pivot to check the next edge of the fabric is level with the correct marking.

When sewing curves it is easy to keep the curve level with the edge of the foot as you sew.

Blind Hem FootBlind hem foot

If you want your hem to be barely visible but don't have the time or the inclination to hand sew it a blind hem foot is a great investment.

The foot has a gap down the centre and the right side of the foot is wider than the left side. The left side is also slightly raised compared to the right side because once the fabric is folded correctly there will be three layers of fabric to fit under the left side of the foot (two layers of the garment fabric itself plus the hem allowance), but only one on the right side (just the hem allowance).

Once the hem is pressed under you fold it back onto the right side of the garment.

Select the blind hem stitch on your machine and position the foot with the right side of the foot snugly against the fold in the fabric. The right side of the foot will act as a guide as you sew making it easy to sew accurately and ensure the stitches are falling correctly.

As you sew the stitches will just catch the main garment fabric as it joins it to the hem allowance. You may need to play with the needle position to get your stitches in the correct place.

You will see a minimal amount of stitching from the right side so this foot works particularly well on coarse woven fabrics such as wool and linen since the fibres of the fabric help to camouflage the stitches. On more tightly woven fabrics the stitches will be better hidden if there is a print/patterned design.

Adjustable Blind Hem FootAdjustable hem foot

An adjustable blind hem foot works in exactly the same way as the blind hem foot, however, you can adjust the width of the foot to suit your hem. This is particularly useful if your machine doesn't have a needle positioning facility.

You can buy blind hem feet for your machine here:

Narrow Hem FootNarrow hem foot

Once mastered this foot will help you to create narrow hems quickly and easily, especially useful when working with delicate and sheer fabrics such as chiffon.

The foot has two sides. The left side has a curved area protruding the flat part of the foot and this is used to roll the hem over so it can be stitched in place.

First you press the relevant width of narrow hem up then sew a few stitches along it before stopping and manoeuvring the narrow hem over the curved part of the foot. The fabric is folded over as you sew to create the narrow hem.

Shell Rolled Hem Foot or Picot FootShell rolled hem foot or picot foot

This foot works in the same way as the narrow hem foot, however, you sew with an overcasting stitch or zig zag or similar to create a pretty scalloped edge. It is great for evening wear, lingerie and scarves.

You can buy narrow hem and picot feet for your machine here:

Edge Guide FootEdge guide foot

Edge guide feet are your friend if you want to achieve super neat top stitching. Let's face it, who doesn't?! I mean if you're going to topstitch it has to be perfect doesn't it?!

This handy little foot usually has an adjustable arm that you can position along the edge of your fabric or the seam you would like to stitch around. It also has a range of markings along the foot to help you choose exactly where you would like to position your stitching and achieve the same spacing again in other areas if required.

Create perfect, evenly spaced stitches every time, no sweat, no fuss. Yes please!

It can also be useful for creating decorative trims or hems using the same principles, helping you to apply them evenly.

You can buy edge guide feet for your machine here:

Stitch in the Ditch FootStitch in the ditch foot

There are many occasions in dressmaking and patchwork and quilting where you need to stitch in the ditch. In other words you need to sew accurately in the little channel where a seam is joined.

For example, if you want to avoid creating additional bulk on a waistband and decide to overlock the raw edge of the inside rather than pressing it under you can stitch in the ditch to secure the waistband in place. When sewing a quilt binding you may want to stitch in the ditch to secure it.

It is possible to do this by eye using a standard presser foot, however, a stitch in the ditch foot makes the job much easier. There is nothing worse than trying to do it by eye then realising you've gone off course and have visible stitching where you don't want it.

A stitch in the ditch foot has a little guide which you line up with the channel you want to stitch inside. All you have to do is keep the guide running along that channel and your stitches will be perfectly positioned. It is much easier to keep the guide in the correct position than your needle, which is constantly moving up and down. Let's face it, easier means quicker and that means more time for sewing.

You can buy a stitch in the ditch foot for your machine here:

Bias Binding FootBias binding foot

A bias binding foot is designed to help you quickly and easily attach bias binding to your garment or project. You can even create Hong Kong seams with this little fella!

The presser foot has a guide on the front of the foot to feed the binding through. It can be helpful to snip the end of the binding diagonally and use a pin or tweezers to pull it through.

Pull the binding through the guide and under the foot then attach the foot to your sewing machine. The side of the binding where the two raw edges meet in the middle should be entering the left side of the guide and be visible to you.

Next feed the fabric through the gap in the middle of the guide and start to sew. Take care not to stretch the binding as you sew. Make sure the stitches are catching the fabric and the binding is being attached evenly as you sew.

You can buy a bias binding foot for your machine here:

Flat Felled FootFlat felled foot

Flat felling feet are designed to make sewing accurate, even flat felled seams easy. When you do it manually there is always the chance you could go off course, whereas this foot works to keep you perfectly on the straight and narrow. It has a little groove or channel underneath, which allows you to feed the flat felled seam through evenly as you sew.

Flat felled feet come in a range of sizes, such as 4mm. The size tells you the width of the flat felled seam you will create using the foot.

To use the foot you pin your fabric right sides together lining up the raw edges. You then trim one of your seam allowances according to the size of flat felled seam you wish to create.

Fold the wider seam allowance over the narrower one and press it in place. Sew a few stitches about 1/8" from the raw edge of the fabric then stop with your needle down and make sure the edges of the fabric are feeding through the channel or groove underneath the foot. This attaches the two pieces of fabric.

Press the seam flat - all raw edges are now encased. Use the same technique again with the foot to sew the parallel row of stitches to secure the seam.

You can buy a flat felled foot for your sewing machine here:

Pin Tucking FootPin tucking foot

This is such an awesome foot for adding pretty details to your sewing projects. Trying to create pin tucks manually can be time consuming and inaccurate, but this foot makes it a breeze.

You use a twin needle with a pin tuck foot and the parallel stitching lines create the pin tucks. You may need to adjust the needle tension slightly to pull the fabric in and create the pin tuck. A 1.6mm - 2mm twin needle is usually about right and it is always best to test the results on scraps of fabric first.

Once the first pin tuck is sewn you position it in one of the grooves on the underside of the pin tuck foot. When you start to stitch the next pin tuck it will follow the line of the original pin tuck and create perfectly parallel pin tucks. Beautiful!

Five groove, seven groove and even nine groove pin tuck feet are available. The larger the number of grooves the greater the number of parallel pin tucks you are able to create in one go.

You can buy a pin tucking foot for your sewing machine here:

Roller FootRoller foot

A roller foot has rollers at the front and the back of the foot which give you traction to feed fabrics with uneven levels, leathers, velvet and fabrics with nap or loops through your machine easily.

You can usually use straight stitch, zig zag stitches, standard forward motion stitches and decorative stitches with this foot.

Working with these fabric types using a standard presser foot can cause a multitude of problems. The fabrics can become 'bunched up' under the foot causing poor stitch quality and even damaging your precious fabric and we can't have that can we?!

You can buy a roller foot for your sewing machine here:

Non-Stick / Teflon FootNon-stick or teflon foot

A non stick or Teflon foot is also ideal for feeding tricky and sticky fabrics through your machine easily thanks to the non stick plastic coating on it's underside.

It is ideal for fabrics such as vinyl, leather, plastic, foil, suede and laminate, which can be very difficult to work with using a standard presser foot. You may find they are constantly sticking to the foot causing messy and irregular stitches to the point that it is impossible to complete your project. A roller foot will solve all of these woes and help the fabrics to glide through the machine like a hot knife through butter!

This foot is particularly useful for bag making and home dec projects or more adventurous dressmaking projects. Time for that leather skirt or jacket you've always dreamed of?!

You can buy a non-stick or Teflon foot for your sewing machine here:

Ruffler or Gathering FootRuffler or gathering foot

If, like me, you hate fiddling around with two lines of gathering stitches to create ruffles this foot is a God send.

Simply place your fabric under the foot, adjust the stitch length to create the fullness of gathers you require and sew to create lovely, neat, even gathers.

Even better than this you can use this foot to sew gathers into one piece of fabric whilst attaching it to a flat piece of ungathered fabric. Excellent for jobs such as attached a gathered skirt to a non gathered bodice for example.

You simply place the fabric you wish to be gathered under the foot then feed the fabric you wish to remain ungathered through the gap in the foot and sew. How awesome is that?

You can buy a ruffler or gathering foot for your machine here:

Free Motion Quilting or Embroidery FootFree motion quilting or embroidery foot

Free motion feet can be used for free motion quilting or embroidery and are sometimes also referred to as a darning or stippling foot. These feet are a lot of fun and allow you to get super creative with your sewing. You can sew in all directions with these feet effectively drawing with your sewing machine and thread. What fun!

Before attaching one of these feet to your machine you drop the feed dogs or cover them. Your manual will usually tell you how.

Much like the walking foot there is a long metal bar which needs to be positioned over your needle bar. There is also a little claw that hooks around the main bar before screwing it into place.

Free Motion Quilting Foot

A free motion foot can be used to create a lovely textured effect on quilting projects, sometimes referred to as stippling.

In essence you stitch wiggly lines into the fabric, usually through two layers of fabric and a layer of wadding. The stitches sink into the layers of fabric and wadding creating an embossed effect.

You can choose to add this effect over the entire surface of the fabric or you might want to stitch in the plain gaps between a printed design to accentuate and highlight that design. Alternatively you could stitch round the outline of a design or add your own design or text to your quilt. You can be as creative as you like.

Free Motion Embroidery Foot

If using your free motion foot for embroidery some useful tips include using an embroidery hoop to prevent puckering of the fabric and marking your design out on the fabric first as a guide.

Start with your needle at the desired point then turn the hand wheel until the needle passes through the fabric and pulls up the bobbin thread. Move the threads to one side and start stitching out your design guiding the fabric with your hands.

If you want to jump to another area of the design you simply stop stitching, raise the needle and presser foot, move the fabric to the correct position and continue sewing. It is best to cut off the loose threads on the wrong side after the first few stitches to prevent them getting tangled. The top threads can be trimmed once you've finished sewing.

You can also sew appliqué with a free motion foot much more easily than with a standard presser foot.

There are a huge range of threads you can play around with too - metallics, variegated and embroidery thread can be used to great effect.

Free Motion Foot Options

You may find a number of options to consider for a free motion foot with your machine. For example there are different sizes of foot. A larger foot area provides more stability when you are sewing thick layers, but a smaller foot area will allow you to get closer to the edges if working in a hoop.

Like an even feed foot there are also sometimes options for an open toe or closed toe free motion foot. An open toe gives you better visibility, but a closed toe is less likely to catch on the edges of your fabric for example when sewing an appliqué.

Some will also come with a spring which creates more movement and is useful for sewing thick layers of wadding under your fabric.

You can buy free motion feet for your machine here:

Brother

Open Toe FootOpen toe foot

An open toe foot has a wide opening at the front so you can see more of the stitching area. This is especially useful for tasks such as appliqué, decorative stitching, embellishment and sewing around curves. You can see exactly where you are stitching and have a wider area to work within.

They usually also have a tunnel underneath the foot which helps dense stitches or ribbons and trims glide through more easily as you stitch.

A useful tip is to use a marker pen or pencil to draw a line where you want to create the stitches to help you keep them nice and straight.

You can buy an open toe foot for your machine here:

Piping FootPiping foot

A piping foot is used to create, you guessed it, piping! Piping is a great way to add some decorative detail to the seams of a garment or home dec projects such as cushions.

Whilst piping can be created using a zipper foot a piping foot makes life sooooo much easier and will help you to achieve much better results. A friend of mine who is a professional seamstress of 40 years recently tried a piping foot and couldn't believe how wonderful it was compared to using a zipper foot!

A piping foot has a little groove to feed the piping through accurately and evenly. You don't have to worry about whether the binding or piping are sliding out of position like when you use a zipper foot for this task.

To use a piping foot, position your cord inside your bias binding in the usual way. You can then choose whether to sew it straight into the seam or stitch the cord inside the binding first then sew it into the seam.

We recommend stitching the cord inside the binding first with your needle about 1/8" away from the raw edge of the binding and the cord positioned in the little groove on the piping foot. This is close enough to hold the piping cord in the correct position, but won't be visible once sewn into the relevant seam.

You can then use the piping foot to sew the piping into the seam in the same way positioning your needle for the seam allowance you require this time. Simples!

You can buy a piping foot for your machine here:

Appliqué FootApplique foot

An appliqué foot is shorter in length than most presser feet, which makes manoeuvring curves and angles easier.

The front of the foot sits on the fabric to maintain the required pressure, however the back of the foot is raised to allow stitches and fabric to feed through easily.

Simply attach the foot to your machine, select an appliqué stitch and sew around your chosen design quickly and easily.

You can buy an applique foot for your machine here:

Spanish Hemstitch FootSpanish hemstitch foot

A Spanish hemstitch foot is a great way to create an unusual decorative effect on garments or home dec projects. It enables you to bridge a gap between two pieces of fabric with fancy stitches. Seriously pretty guys.

There are two parts to the foot. The presser foot which attaches to the machine in the normal way and a small metal bar which you attach to the needle plate. The metal bar acts as a guide to keep the two pieces of fabric evenly spaced as you sew across the gap.

Depending on the stitch you choose you may need to alter the width of your stitches. As always test on scraps of fabric first to make sure you are happy with the end result. We would also recommend using embroidery threads for this technique for best results and a wide range of fun options.

You can buy a Spanish hemstitch foot for your machine here:

Cording FootCording foot

You can have so much fun with a cording foot! You can sew cords, elastic thread and even wool to create decorative effects on your projects quickly and neatly.

The cording foot most commonly comes in two sizes - a three hole and a five hole.

A three hole cording foot will often have three grooves on the top of the foot with a lever across the top of them plus three grooves on the back of the foot.

A five hole cording foot will often have an enclosed hole at the front of the foot and room underneath the foot for the cords to feed through.

In both cases you feed the cord through the foot before attaching it to your machine.

Next you select a zig zag stitch to sew the cords/wool/elastic thread in place. If you are working with a single cord you would normally use a single zig zag stitch, but if working with multiple cords you will need to select a two or three step zig zag stitch to catch all of the cords. You can also try different stitch widths and lengths for different results.

You can also play around with top stitching thread, metallic threads and even monofilament (invisible thread) for different effects. If working with elastic thread, pull the thread gently as you sew to create a gathered effect.

All in all a fun foot with lots of opportunities to add some interesting detail to your projects.

You can buy a cording foot for your machine here:

Couching FootCouching foot

A couching foot is similar to the cording foot in principle in that it allows you to feed wool through the foot to attach to your project. However, a couching foot allows you to be that little bit more creative and use it with free motion sewing and embroidery.

This means you can create free hand designs such as curves and swirls with your embellishment whereas the cording foot only allows you to embellish in a straight line.

You can buy a couching foot for your machine here:

Fringe Foot or Looper FootFringe foot or looper foot

A fringe or looper foot is another fun foot you can get really creative with. As you can probably guess this foot is used to create loops of thread or fringing.

The foot has a bar that runs down the middle of the foot, which is used to create the 3D loops of thread. You simply select a wide stitch width and short stitch length (making sure the needle won't hit the bar), lower the needle tension and sew.

Sometimes you may also need to push the metal bar on the foot down slightly to create a gap between the bar and the needle shank so that the thread can pass through.

You can play around with different stitch widths and lengths to create different effects, but always make sure the needle won't hit the bar on the foot.

This simple loop effect is great for 'drawing' a design in thread by following a marker pen/pencil outline for example. Always remember to backstitch at the start and leave long threads at the end to tie and secure the stitching.

To create a fringe effect with this foot sew a straight line of short stitches or a lightening stitch down the centre of the thread loops. You can then cut the loops on one side of the stitching to create a fringe.

This foot also has some very practical uses. It is great for creating tailor tacks or tacking/basting. Adjust the stitch length to a medium width and keep a relatively short length (slightly longer than the one you used to create the loops). The stitches are very easy to remove - just pull the bobbin thread then the needle thread to remove.

You can buy a fringe or looper foot for your machine here:

Ribbon / Sequin / Braiding / Decorative Trim FootRibbon or sequin foot

The ribbon or sequin foot makes it easy for you to sew ribbons, sequins or trims onto your sewing project.

You simply feed the ribbon/sequins through the guide on the foot and past the end of the presser foot at the back. Next position the fabric under the foot and sew to attach your chosen embellishment.

Some feet will allow you to choose a zig zag or straight stitch to attach your chosen embellishments. If sewing sequins, for example, you may choose a wide zig zag stitch so you don't pierce the sequins as you sew.

You can also use to these feet to attach elastic to projects. Gently pull the elastic as you sew and it will create a neat gathered effect.

A useful tip when using ribbon with this foot is to cut the end of the ribbon diagonally. This helps with feeding the ribbon through the guide on the foot. It is also useful to know you can use these feet to sew a curved design onto your fabric by guiding the fabric round as you sew.

You can buy a ribbon or sequin foot for your machine here:

Beading / Embellishment / Pearl Sequence FootBeading foot

The beading foot works in a similar way to the ribbon or sequin foot. However, rather than feeding the beads through a guide they are usually positioned under the foot in a little channel.

This foot is commonly used for bridal, evening wear and crafting projects where you are looking for some real 'wow' factor. In the past sewing these embellishments onto projects was a time consuming and arduous task, but this foot makes it so much quicker and easier.

Beading feet may come in a range of sizes to allow you to work with different width beads so always check the one you have chosen is suitable for your chosen beads.

You can buy a beading foot for your sewing machine here:

Gimping FootGimping foot

A gimping foot allows you to create beautiful decorative embellishments free hand. The foot is used with a twin needle and works to create 3D satin stitches.

There are two thread guides on the presser foot and a bar with two thread guides, which you attach to the needle bar in the same way as a quilting guide.

As you stitch the guides on the foot and the thread guides feed the thread through evenly allowing you to create your gorgeous designs neatly.

You can buy a gimping foot for your sewing machine here:

Candlewicking FootCandlewicking foot

A candlewicking foot has a groove on the underside of the foot to help it feed over 3D stitches such as a French knot or other heirloom stitches available on your machine.

You can buy a candlewicking foot for your machine here:

As you can imagine this article took a long time to write so I really hope it has been useful to you and don't forget you can find all of the feet mentioned on our website here. If you can't find what you are looking for don't hesitate to ask by emailing us or calling us and we will be happy to help. Now I'm going for a lie down!

Have fun sewing!

Lucy

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