All About Sergers

on June 29 | in Sewing Tutorials + Patterns | by | with 200 Comments

Meg from Fashioned by Meg did a ton of research for today’s article about sergers. Learn more about Meg in her bio, and look through her blog for some great sewing.

From Meg: Before I started sewing I knew what a sewing machine was, and although I was a little intimidated at first I was always confident that I would learn how to use it. I knew we would become friends and make beautiful things together. The serger, on the other hand, did not seem so friendly. With its multiple threads and fast speed, it brought intimidating to a whole new level. Fear not! The serger is a very helpful companion for your sewing machine that will help bring your sewing to a whole new level.


Brother 1034D Serger

Sergers produce nice clean seams like those found on most store bought clothes, help reduce puckering and stretching on more fiddly fabrics like knits, and create different decorative stitches. Instead of using a needle and bobbin like a sewing machine, the serger, also known as an overlock machine, makes stitches with needles and loopers while a knife cuts away the excess fabric. It does all this at a fast rate, which makes sewing a professional seam a quick and easy one-step process.


Side view of serger: differential feed adjustment lever,
stitch length adjustment dial, knife lever, and stitch width lever.

Common Stitches
In this section I am going to cover the stitches you will utilize on your serger most often. The most common serger stitch is the 3-thread overlock. This stitch uses one needle, which holds in place two looper threads. This stitch has a bit of stretch, which makes it a great stitch for knits.


3-thread Overlock (left) and 4-thread Overlock (right)

If you add another needle then you get the 4-thread overlock, which works well with wovens and makes a sturdy stitch that is good for clothing and home dec projects.


Rolled Hem

The rolled hem is probably the most common decorative stitch used on a serger, and can be made using two or three threads. It is a great way to finish napkins, ruffles, scarves, and other edges. You can even use decorative thread to give it that extra pizzazz.


Flatlock Stitch

A flatlock stitch is a variation of the 3-thread overlock. The flatlock stitch joins two separate pieces of fabric in a flat seam, leaving no bulk. You usually see the stitching made by a flatlock, so it is often used decoratively as well.

More expensive sergers also have the capability to do a 5-thread safety stitch and a coverstitch. The safety stitch is a very sturdy stitch that combines a chain stitch and a 3- thread overlock stitch. You often see the coverstitch on your t-shirts. No blade is used and the two needles sew two parallel lines on the top, while the loopers form a braided pattern on the underside. You can also purchase a separate coverstitch/chainstitch machine for making this stitch if your serger doesn’t have this function. Some people prefer owning a separate coverstitch machine because on a combination machine the knife has to be disengaged making it difficult to switch back and forth between the coverstitch and the other stitches.



Most sergers today also have differential feed, which can help with sewing knits and creating ruffles. The serger feeds the fabric from both the top and the bottom. So when you are sewing a regular woven edge you will usually keep the feed the same. However, with knits you can adjust the feed so that the fabric feeds through at a different rate so that your seams don’t stretch. You can also use the differential feed to create gathers, ruffles, and lettuce edges.

Things to Consider When Purchasing a Serger
1. Threading Ease: This is often the most common complaint about sergers. However, it doesn’t have to be if you do your homework. Make sure your dealer goes through threading the machine with you before purchasing. However, if you do not have a dealer, most sergers are color-coded to help you through the process and come with helpful manuals and videos. I have the basic Brother 1034D, and I have found it is very easy to thread. When I first got my serger it came all nicely threaded, but within minutes when my back was turned my three year old daughter pulled out every thread. I had to learn to thread it right away, and it turned out perfectly on the first try! If you are still worried that threading might be a hassle you can even find a serger like the Babylock Imagine that has air-jet threading that thread the loopers with the push of a button.
2. Tension Adjustment: Because there are 4 or 5 threads in a serger there are also just as many adjustments to make to the tension. Basic machines make you do this manually, but don’t worry: most come with a guide for adjusting the tension for different stitches and fabrics. More expensive sergers even adjust the tension automatically or have it preprogrammed.
3. How easy it is to convert to a rolled hem? Some machines require you to change the throat plate making it more difficult.
4. Does it have a free arm? A free arm helps sewing small areas like sleeves.
5. What kind of needles does it use? Some sergers require special needles while others can also use regular sewing machine needles.
6. What kind of attachments does it come with? There are several different types of feet for sergers that can help with different techniques like gathering, blind hems, piping, beading, and elastic and tape.

So, if you are looking for new sewing adventures consider looking into a serger! A serger doesn’t just have to be just for advanced sewers. It can be a very helpful tool for sewers at all levels. It can help speed up your sewing and give your projects a more professional look.

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200 Responses to All About Sergers

  1. June Ramsey says:

    Will a Serger sew a beaver or a fox hide to soft deer skin? Will this pelt be to much for the Serger to handle? Please e-mail be back.

  2. Lynn says:

    Love my serger but wonder if someone can tell me where I can find a blog that will help me troubleshoot. My 4 thread safety overlocks produce a loose seam that can be pulled a little apart regardless of tension settings.

  3. Jan H. says:

    Had my Bernina 1150 MDA on lay-a-way for 9 months, but worth the wait! My first serger and I’ve been sewing over 30 years! Thought I would never need one. If you find a dealer who does lay-a-way you can get a better serger if you just have the patience to wait out the lay-a-way. I hear cheaper sergers are harder to thread. Also, you can pick up soft cover books that have lots of serger projects and will help educate/train you on your serger. My dealer offers classes, but they are expensive so I’m going with these books. I love my serger!

  4. kim baxley says:

    I have the same brother serger shown in your article. Can you do the flat lock stitch with it? If so how do you do it?

  5. Vandana says:

    I have been sewing for a year and now am really interested in getting a serger, but had no clue what to look for. This really helps and thanks for explaining the stitches and how they work.

  6. DebbieKL says:

    I was just looking into sergers. I don’t think I’ll use it a ton so the brother serger sounds right up my alley. Thanks!

  7. Mary Ann says:

    I am trying to decide if the Bernina 1300 or the Babylock Evolution is the best for me. Any thoughts?

  8. Mollie says:

    Oh thank you for the information! I bought a serger a couple weeks ago, but was too terrified to even take it out of the box. You’ve given me some confidence to get it out and give it a go:o)

  9. Michelle says:

    Mamas, stick with it and get to know those sergers! I have been using my Simplicity serger for almost nine years, I love it, and I don’t know how much money it has saved me! A couple of times a year I do a batch or two of clothes for my daughter (capri pants, soft pants, t-shirts, etc.) and since I buy fabrics when they are on clearance at JoAnn’s, the total per-garment cost ends up being a couple of dollars at the most. I just copy a garment that fits well (making it bigger if needed) and cut out the pieces four or five fabrics at a time (the rotary cutter and kitchen-table-sized mat come in handy here).
    As for thread, I avoid the cheapest bargain bin threads, but I did break down and buy most of the colors at JoAnn’s when they were 50% off. It is really, really nice to have multiple color options, and the threading process does get easier and easier, I promise! My instruction manual actually gave instructions for the “tying-on method,” and after the first few years I figured out how to hold the threads just so to get the chain going again.
    Good luck everyone!

  10. yvette says:

    I have a serger but am getting a new Brother 1034d in a couple days. Thanks for this review. I have a lot to learn also.

  11. Angela C. says:

    I have been thinking about buying a serger for a while. Now I just may have to do it. Thanks for the information.

  12. Shana says:

    Thanks for the great info on sergers! I really want to get one soon, but I have been really intimidated about the whole process. Your knowledge has really helped me narrow down what I need before I go shopping!

  13. Desiree says:

    Oh man, I would love a serger – the posibilities look endless. … maybe someday 🙂

  14. Tan says:

    Thanks so much for the tips! I have a serger but call it an overlocker and always thought a serger was different machine altogether! 🙂

  15. Mary on Lake Pulaski says:

    I love my serger. I ‘ve had it for a long time, but can always learn more.

  16. Jennifer says:

    Great article! I just bought a Pfaff Hobbylock and am in love! I have always feared sergers (something about two moving blades), but quickly learned with mine… setting it up, re-threading it and sewing a pair of pajama pants the next day. I was determined not to be one of those people who leave it sitting in the box for years… and I’m glad I didn’t. Tackle your fears people – get out there and do it!

  17. janet says:

    i love my serger! thank you for reminding me of all the stitches its capable of doing. right now I only finish edges with it. One day I’ll try the rolled hem and flat lock stitch.

  18. HPENNIE says:

    All of my sewing apparatus is circa 1974-1984, or thereabouts……(and I was born in 1974 so it’s not that I just can’t get rid of my old stuff…haha). I am enjoying reading about all the up-to-date features on the new sewing machines and sergers via your blog. Huh – who woulda thunk. I now feel like an antique collector….you should see MY buttonholer – it’s the size of a small car! And my serger? I can barely find any replacement parts and it elicits raised eyebrows when people see it….( I just know that they are thinking…”gee, I didn’t know that they HAS sergers of that vintage”). However, they have withstood the test of time, that’s for sure.

    I must say, I am itching to try something made from within the last decade – as I kinda feel sometimes like I am driving the “model T” of of sewing equipment!

    Keep up the great work – it’s keeping me in touch with modern times! 🙂

  19. Judea says:

    Sergers scare me too but still would be fun to have one.

  20. Georgia says:

    Oh!! How I would love one of these!! 🙂

  21. MARIA ISABEL says:

    Good information, thanks you.

  22. Danielle says:

    I have been trying to figure out the differences in sergers for a while now! Thanks for helping clear things up and give ideas of things I need to look for in one ! This is great information!!! 🙂

  23. Leanna says:

    Thanks for the info…is there a good price point to look for a good basic serger?

  24. Diana says:

    Thanks Meg! This is really helpful, I want to purchase a serger eventually so I will refer to this when I have the funds!

  25. Deborah Ocasio says:

    Thank you for the visuals . I can use them as a guide of what each one is supposed to look like. It also helps for when you are shopping for a Serger to know what to look for. Thank you again. Great blog by the way. I bookmarked it!!! Thank you for taking the time to do this piece

  26. Kurt says:

    Way to go Meg!

  27. molly says:

    this has been very helpful thank you!

  28. Rebecca says:

    Thanks for all the info! I hope I can get a serger someday!!

  29. Debbie says:

    Thanks for sharing this info! I’ve been looking into buying my first serger but didn’t really have a CLUE as to what I needed to be looking for! This is great! Thanks again.

  30. amy says:

    I have wanted a serger for a long time. My mom gave me her old one but I can’t get it to work! So I’ve been thinking about getting myself a new one!!

  31. girlsmama says:

    Great information! Thank you.

  32. jackie says:

    i have been keeping my eyes peeled for the perfect serger. thanks for the advice!

  33. melissa p. says:

    i dream of a serger….one day….thanks for the info!

  34. mjb says:

    I definitely need help moving past the basic edge-finishing to use my serger more! Just getting it threaded and the tension adjusted is still so much of a struggle. It hadn’t occurred to me that maybe I should switch to a three thread stitch for knits.

  35. Rochelle says:

    I’m going to have to study this closely. I think a serger is a necessity in the near future! 🙂

  36. Rachel says:

    I LOVE LOVE LOVE my sergers! I bought one on craigslist (Juki) and then a neighbor gave me one (Brother). I keep one threaded with white and the other in black. I love looking at the finished seams of my garments ! If you are thinking about getting one – go for it – you will use it more than you think! 🙂

  37. phyllis says:

    lots of great info Thanks

  38. I have a Serger that I don’t use very often – I’m kind of scared to use it. I really need to work on that. Thanks for the information!

  39. Tammy says:

    Great article!
    Thank you so much!

  40. Cira says:

    Thanks for this info! I’ve been shopping for a serger for a while, so this is helpful. 🙂

  41. kern says:

    Sergers are wonderful. I got mine for Christmas last year ( I bought it myself at the Houston Quilt Festival) and it has already paid for itself. I would love to take a class to learn more about its uses.

  42. knofje says:

    Thanks for sharing this information. Would love to have that kind of machine..

  43. Darlene says:

    Very cool info. I have thought about purchasing one.

  44. MaryAnn says:

    I have a top of the line Husqvarna and have never regretted spending the extra $$. It handles whatever type of fabric that I use and does a lovely cover stitch too.
    Thanks for your review.

  45. Lola Jo says:

    Ah, the serger! I love mine and would recommend one to anyone who likes to make garments of any kind.

  46. Great information. I am looking to purchase a serger and this helps tremendously!

  47. naomig says:

    What a great informative article… I dream of having a serger some day. 🙂 My kenmore has a serge stitch, which is helpful, but oh, to have a serger. I’m glad you pointed all these things out though, because I’m a pretty accomplished seamstress, but I would have been slightly overwhelmed when I started looking without all this concise info.

  48. Jenny says:

    Thanks for the info. In general, sergers scare me, so this was informative!

  49. Its_Lily says:

    This is extremely helpful. I’ve been considering a serger, but honestly, I had no idea what to look for and they’re a bit pricey to be buying one and then not liking it. Thank you.

  50. Ananda says:

    Thanks for the information. I am eyeing sergers, hopefully for a Christmas present. I really didn’t know munch information on how to choose a good one. This was much needed.

  51. Jan B says:

    This answers many questions I have had about sergers. Thanks! Great information.

  52. Taya says:

    Great info I am really wanting to get a Serger and you brought up stuff I wouldn;t have thought to ask about.

  53. Meredith says:

    This article was very helpful as I’m just getting to be more adventurous with the stitches I will use with my serger.

  54. Erin says:

    I want a serger!!! Mainly because I think it would cut sewing time down considerably. I spend a lot of time finishing those seams and they don’t end up looking that great. Sigh.

    Thanks for the info!

  55. May says:

    I have that Brother serger and am still trying to learn how to do more with it. This is an invaluable resource!!

  56. Jennifer says:

    Love the Serger info! A new tool to add to the wish list. Your quilt is beautiful.

  57. brittany says:

    great information! i have been thinking about sergers a lot lately and now i feel like i know so much more!

  58. Laurie McIntosh says:

    Great information. I loved your first quilt great colors.

  59. Heather McG says:

    Oh what great timing!! I am currently looking into getting a serger and this will greatly help me with my decision!!

  60. gina says:

    thanks for the info! i’m a beginner sewer and am just starting to get used to my straight seam machine… but am now tempted to try a serger 🙂 just saw one in my local thrift mart…

  61. Felicia says:

    I’m thinking about getting a serger for Christmas. Thanks for the info.

  62. Vanessa M. says:

    Thanks for the info! My mom has a serger… time to see if she wants me to take it off of her hands 🙂

  63. Unity says:

    Thank you for thwsw comments on sergers. My mom recently gave me her old serger. Intimidating it putting it mildly. I have been trying to use it though in my sewing.

  64. Serena says:

    Perfect timing! I received a serger two weeks ago and have conquered the threading… the rest? Notsomuch. 🙂

  65. Danielle says:

    I dont have a serger yet but would love to get one. I use my friends from time to time and it always amazes me how easy the peices go together.

  66. Margie says:

    I have the Brother 1034D too. I love it & the ease of it all! I need to use the rolled hom. I’m embarassed to say that I have not even tried it yet & I’ve had my serger for more than 18 months!

  67. Lauren says:

    Wow! Those hem stitches are perfect! I need a serger!

  68. Ellen Ban says:

    Thanks for the introduction to sergers…now I’m curious to go try one out!

  69. Analia says:

    It would be so nice to have one of these sergers! I had never heard of such a machine…..I am a beginner. I love to sew and this machine sounds like it can make magic. Thank you for the information.

  70. kelly says:

    This is so helpful. I’m also getting ready to look at sergers and hadn’t a clue where to start.

  71. Mandy says:

    Yay! Such good information on sergers. While I’m not quite ready to invest in one (yet), it’s nice to get a little more information, esp. with things I wouldn ‘t have considered when shopping for one.

  72. Beth says:

    Wow, thanks for this post. I would like to see serging in action, too – I have always wondered what this is!

  73. Susan says:

    Lots of great advice. I am still a little intimidated about re-threading my serger, and I would love to start using some different threads. Just need to find some time to practice, practice, practice!

  74. Penguin Treats says:

    I second your advice on needles. I’m using an older model (hand me down) Singer serger and in the end, I’ve had to start ordering its needles off the internet.

    The next serger I acquire will definitely use standard needles!

  75. Gail says:

    I have a Bernette 0004 Serger that I bought in the mid 90’s. I don’t use it often, but when I do, I’m so glad that I have it. I use only white thread in it because I have such trouble threading it. So I buy the largest cone of white thread about every 5 years. I just recently had to un-thread and re-thread, re-adjust and re-everything. So while I was at it, I bought 4 large cones of thread and changed even though I wasn’t out of thread. 🙂 One thing that I will tell you is that keep your manual handy. I have mine somewhere but couldn’t put my hands on it for when I was doing my re-adjusting. I went on the internet, manuals for older machines can be purchased but for a large fee, something like $30. I did without. When I do find the manual for my Bernette, I’m going to have it scanned and put in the computer. I have an idea, I think techology savvy sewers, which your readers are, should unite and scan their manuals. Then if other sewers need them, they can get the use of them while theirs is missing. ok, I’m rambling…

    Good topic, Sew Mama Sew..

  76. Raheli says:

    Thank you for this post — I am fairly new to sewing, so I have been wondering about sergers and what they add to a project. This is just was I was looking for. All I knew before is that every time a blogger gets a serger, she dissapears for a week or two, and then posts a bazillion projects!

  77. Shawna says:

    Thanks for this! I am lost when it comes to sergers, but they look wonderful! Maybe for my birthday…

  78. Zarina says:

    Just the right timing. At the moment, I am considering on purchasing a serger (a few months down the road) to help me with sewing children’s clothes.

  79. Niki Marusich says:

    Oooh! I need one of these! Guess I had better start saving 🙂
    Thank you for a wonderful post Meg!

  80. Jen says:

    I dont have a serger yet but because i rarely sew, i think its not cost effective for me to owe a serger even though I do wish I have one….. however, it is easy for me to find a place for them to help me complete my sewing with sergers.

    anyway i think i really one of a kind. I am so lazy to use rulers n markers etc that I just cut and sew *JUST LIKE THAT*

    So far i managed to create rather straight lines. n if they are not, i will sew further in to correct the sewing. LAZY FELLOW!!!

  81. This is exactly what i need to know all about sergers. I dont have a serger yet but its on my list thank you ever so much for this.

  82. Lindsey says:

    I have been given a serger and never dared use it so all this info has been really useful. It is the threading that is a worry but I’ll certainly give it a go now. Many thanks for a great tut.

  83. Jasmine says:

    One day I will buy an overlocker but if you want quality they can cost quite a bit. 🙁
    One Day.

  84. Baggaroos says:

    Great intro to sergers. Thanks Meg. Yes, your serger is your friend. I use it more and more and find that there are several tricks to threading that make it much easier. Seams are wonderful, and serging is so quick. I have the same little Brother serger and it works quite nicely, even on denim fabrics. Just remember to put in heavier needles, and you should have no problem. The rolled hem on this little Brother is one of the best I’ve seen. If you haven’t tried your serger, get out the manual and go through it page by page. Once you get familiar with it, you’ll wonder how you ever got along without it.

  85. Melissa says:

    A friend gave me her surger and I’ve been scared to even try it. I guess I need to go ahead and dust if off and give it a try. Sounds like, if I can get it working that I will love using it…We’ll see.

  86. Jennifer says:

    Very helpful! I’m new to all of this and have been wondering about serger’s. This article was very helpful.

  87. Nicole Kirk says:

    YAY! I really need help in this department. I do not currently own a serger but I’m looking to make the big purchase! I need all the help I can get. Thank you for doing the research!

  88. Carol says:

    Wow! This immensely helpful. I’ve often wondered about sergers, but I had no idea what questions to ask. This is a great intro. I really want one now!

  89. Michelle says:

    Thanks for the info. It was great to learn that an inexpensive machine will do just great.

  90. dangermom says:

    Oooh, I’ve been thinking about a serger for some time and now I really want one! Maybe someday…

  91. Tina Mackey says:

    Thanks for all the great information! Sergers scare me because all I’ve ever experienced is difficulties with them. Maybe some day I’ll take the plunge!

  92. Alana says:

    Great information. Thank-you for showing the stitch comparison!

  93. Kim B. says:

    You took the mystery out of the serger for me 🙂 Thank you!

  94. Sheila says:

    I agree with everything you said about owning a serger. They are a great compliment to a regular sewing machine. I also agree that a separate coverstitch machine is easier than switching between the two operations on a combo machine. If you sew a lot of knits, a coverstitch is the way to go for hemming or binding the necklines!

  95. louise says:

    great post- thanks! i recently bought a serger and love it!

  96. Andi says:

    Thanks so much for another informative article. My Mother-in-Law and I keep looking at sergers in our local sewing store (and have even talked about buying one to share!). Maybe this will help us make up our minds? 🙂

  97. Diane says:

    Thanks for this post! My mom gave me her old serger about a year ago, and sad to say it’s still in the box. I haven’t even looked at it. Though last week I started thinking about it and decided to find out how to use it and What to use it for. This is very helpful! Thanks! 🙂

  98. alli forsyth says:

    Thanks for the post on sergers…I have one that my Grandma gave me and I find it very intimidating. I have a hard time using it because I didn’t really know all that it could do. Your post was really helpful. Thanks again..


  99. lina says:

    I’ve never imagined a serger could be this fun and adventurous. thanks a lot for the review!

  100. april says:

    Great article! I’ll bookmark it for later. Right now? I’m still afraid of sergers.

  101. all8garden says:

    Now that we have more room, I need to breakout my serger (Bernette) and get sewing clothes for the kiddos. And maybe, just maybe for me too. I wonder if I can still find the manual. (That might help, well, along with your great tut.) Thanks from the heart.

  102. Megan says:

    Great article! My mom bought a serger on eBay a while back and hasn’t figured out how to use it, so I will pass along this info. (or maybe just borrow it and figure it out myself!)

  103. Dodi says:

    Thanks! I’ve been dithering about getting a serger for a while now. This article pushed me over the edge and my machine should arrive next week.

    Question: How much do you think thread quality varies with cost and is it enough to make a difference? I was just at the store and the brand I usually buy for my sewing machine is $5.99 a cone. There was also a generic brand for $1.99. One commenter above says the cones last a while, so is it worth it to invest in higher cost thread from the beginning?

  104. Kristin says:

    I have to admit I knew nothing about sergers except that they looked intimidating. Thank you for the wonderful information. I just might have to try one out.

  105. Page says:

    I really, really want a serger. Everytime I turn around, I have a project or mending that needs a serger. Thank you again for offering such great and useful – full of use – articles! ~Page

  106. Meg says:

    I’ve wanted a serger for MONTHS now… But I don’t think its going to fit into my budget anytime soon!

  107. Nancy Mc says:

    Great information, very informative. Thank you.

  108. Suzanne says:

    I too am just looking for my first serger so this is great info and good timing!

  109. Beth says:

    Thanks for the info on sergers… I’ve been going back and forth about getting one, may be this will send me over the edge!!

  110. Kristin says:

    Thank you, maybe now I will get over my fear of the serger and start using mine.

  111. Jena says:

    I would love to have a serger, but I just wasn’t sure that I would use it that much. Also, I didn’t know what I needed to look for in a serger. Thanks so much for all your help.

  112. Cheryl says:

    A great article on sergers! I have one, but I haven’t really done much with it. This might be what I need to get going! Thank you!

  113. Kimberly says:

    Great reference! My daughter & I want to get one for Christmas…I”ll have to save this for the ‘Santa’ in our lives! Until then…we will dream!

  114. Jeni says:

    They still look a little intimidating to me, but none the less I would love to play around on one!!

  115. Chicory says:

    Very nice article. I have an Elna L4. I really like it. The only thing that I have found with it that is a “flaw” is the spool thread arm is not as well supported as I think it should be. I have had to replace it once. But otherwise it sews very well.

  116. Nicole says:

    Wow Im really thinking about buying one now! Im new to sewing and was always wondering what machine made clothing so professional looking! -Thanks for the blog Beth

  117. A serger is on my wish list – I would love to be able to produce those professional looking seams.

  118. Holee says:

    I agree that a serger adds something wonderful to your sewing. I have an older Simplicity easy lock that has never given me any problems. It’s sewn miles of fabic into wonderful things.

  119. susan says:

    I wish I had all this information before I bought a serger! Thanks for the info!

  120. Carol says:

    thanks for all the information. i always enjoy reading.

  121. Okle Miller says:

    My wonderful mother-in-law just gave me her Elna L4, I’m excited to try it after seeing the different stitches in this article. I’m new to sewing so learning my serger is just one more thing to learn, might as well do it all at once!

  122. sarah says:

    Thank you for this! I especially love the rolled hem. I’m wondering about cost ranges for sergers?

  123. Christina says:

    Thank you for making sergers less intimidating! I’ve been wanting to try out one that my grandmother gave my mom (she’s never tried using it) but it’s just seemed so complicated with all of it’s threads. Now I think I feel better about trying it out. Thank you!

  124. Betsy says:

    Thanks for the quick overview… I inherited my mom’s serger and had a bad first experience with it but am dying to try it again! I just know a serger is just what I need on some of my projects. Reading your post has got me motivated to pull it out and try it again. Thanks!

  125. Kim K. says:

    fantastic info – love the close ups of the stitches!

  126. Lisa says:

    Thanks for the buying tips, a serger is the next on my buying list!

  127. Collette says:

    This is a really great overview, thank you! I’m a little intimidated by sergers even while I lust for one.

  128. Rebecca says:

    Thanks for explaining the differences between stitches! I recently got a Bernina 2000 serger from a thrift store. Thankfully it had the manual, which has taught me enough to kinda get it going, but I didn’t know when to use what stitch or why. Thank you!

  129. Dana says:

    I’ve inherited a serger from my aunt and haven’t have the guts to try it out. This may be exactly the inspiration I need. Thanks!

  130. Liz says:

    i so want a serger! oh, the fun and fast sewing i could do. maybe when i have more than 700 sq ft… 🙂 i’ll have to bookmark this one too.

  131. Deb says:

    Ooh, I have just brought a Serger and am awaiting for it to arrive on Thursday this week! Your guide has been very helpful as I currently know nothing about a Serger, except that I can’t wait to be able to sew knit fabrics with ease! Do you have any advice on a good book about sergers? Thanks for the tips.

  132. angel says:

    One day, one day…
    Still dreaming of that day.

  133. Heather says:

    Good, good information! I don’t have a serger but would love to some day. Thanks! 🙂

  134. Karen/twinmom says:

    good post – my serger is one of the best things I ever bought. it helped give me confidence in my sewing & took it to another level so that I could sew professionally. it has paid for itself over & over – I highly recommend one if you sew seriously!

  135. Amy says:

    Thanks for this! I was looking to get a serger and had no idea what to look for.

  136. Katie says:

    Oooh. I just got a serger this spring. I still haven’t had to thread it. I hemstitched some napkins for my mother-in-law but I’m thinking the rolled hem probably would’ve been better. I did use the hemstitch to finish the edge of 2 one-sided flannel blankets. The summers here in Denver are a little too hot for a double-sided receiving blanket!

    I’m so glad I have a serger. When I found out I was having a baby girl, I told my husband that I NEEDED a serger so I wouldn’t have to do french seams to finish up the edges on the clothing I make for her. It’s made things A LOT easier and quicker!

    I’m excited to try out a couple more stitches! Thanks!

  137. Lindsey says:

    i desperately want to learn how to use a serger, thanks for posting about this and that it’s not as excruciating as I believed before!!

  138. Monica says:

    I grew up with a Serger, but when I got married i didn’t have one. My aunt let me “borrow” hers and I am so thankful. I don’t know what to do without a Serger. I didn’t know it was possible to finish off a garment without a Serger 🙂

  139. Lisa says:

    Where were you six years ago when I bought my serger! This is excellent information and I hope it stays archived for a very long time so I can refer back to it when I need to buy a new serger. Thanks you for sharing your knowledge.

  140. Mary says:

    ooh! just looking at all those dials gives me the shivers! maybe one day I’ll work up the gumption to try a serger…

  141. Megan says:

    Thanks so much! I’m looking for a serger right now and that’s great advice.

  142. scubagoose says:

    I wish i had seen this before i told my hubby i wanted a serger as a gift, and said there’s one over there for 200! Live and learn i guess. Thanks for all this info!

  143. How timely for me. I’ve been mulling over getting a Brother serger for the last few months and have been rather intimidated by them. So I’ve been putting it off. After your information I’m sure I’ll be making my purchase soon.
    Thanks so much

  144. Nichole says:

    Great information here! Thanks for sharing.

  145. Mary P says:

    Thanks for the article. This is really helpful. I was always a little intimidated by sergers!

  146. Sara says:

    Thanks so much for that tutorial! I’m fairly new to sewing and sergers just scare the living daylights out of me. Now, they don’t seem so bad. Thanks again!!

  147. Alice says:

    This is great! As a fairly new sewist I hadn’t really figured the serger out; this was so helpful!

  148. AmyLi says:

    Thank you for the information. It is great to learn what serger can add to the finish product. I love sewing clothing and would consider a serger on my wish list.

  149. Hannah says:

    Thanks for all the helpful information. I have never had anyone explain how a serger works before. It doesn’t seem nearly as intimidating now.

  150. Kendall says:

    I’m on a mission to “get to know” my serger. I’ve done the basic 4 stitch, but I’ve always felt that I could do so much more with my machine if I took a little time to learn more about it. Thanks for the motivation!

  151. Southern Gal says:

    I’ve always been afraid of a serger for some reason. Thanks for this article. It makes it look not so daunting.

  152. Courtney says:

    Thank you for posting. I’m really trying to find the right serger.

  153. Deb V says:

    This was a very informative article. I have never owned a serger so I wasn’t very familiar with them. Thanks.

  154. Sarah E. says:

    thanks for all the info!!!

  155. By LuLu says:

    That’s MY serger!! It’s so nice to see something I already own in the same exact brand to keep me from coveting more stuff! However, I only know how to do the 3 and 4 thread stitches. I want to learn how to do the rolled hem – to help with my addiction the to 5min Skirt by the angry Chicken!
    Thanks for sharing information about sergers! You deffinately said it right though they aren’t just for professionals or advanced sewers – I’m a novice and I can’t Imagine life with out mine!!

  156. Christina says:

    Thank you! I’d never known what a serger was used for before. Thanks for the information!

  157. carmel says:

    thanks! that is very helpfull!!

  158. susan says:

    This is very helpful information. One more thing to add to my wish list!

  159. Lauranie says:

    Great pictures and good information! I’ve had one of these since December and I LOVE IT!!!

  160. alisha says:

    I’d love to get a serger, but I’m also a little intimidated by them. However, I look forward to overcoming my fears sometime in the future when I have room and money for a serger.

  161. Cheryl says:

    Great article! I was intimidated for years by sergers. I think I was afraid of the blades…what if I make a mistake and cut my project irrepairably after so much work!?? I’m so glad I took the plunge! Now, I have a moderately priced Singer model and it does just enough for me. I use it primarily for finishing seams…and my clothes just look and fit better now with nicely finished seams! I, too, learned early on to thread my machine. I freaked out a bit after a mishap, but downloaded a great pdf with big color-coded lines where the threads go. Perfect after only the first try. (It also helped me realize the machine parts are color-coded for a reason!) Also, before I bought the machine, I cringed at the price of the big cones of thread…but I’m still on my first set of four white cones. I hope your article will inspire others to invest in a serger. It really helped me step up my sewing game!

  162. I have had my serger for years, but have only used it for basic seams and once to do a rolled hem. I really need to play with it more. Great article. I also got lots of different feet to go with it, never used them.

  163. Beth says:

    This comes at a perfect time. I just bought a Brother 1034D serger and it is sitting upstairs in its box waiting for me to take it out and try it.

  164. Kathleen says:

    Thank you SO much for this helpful post about sergers. It is really unfamiliar territory for me as a novice sewer, but I’m hopeful that I’ll have one in the future! I’m fantasizing about having rolled hems on some summer linen skirts…

  165. Leisel says:

    Oh! I love sergers! I would love one that had a flatlock seam and one that I didn’t have to change the throat plate for a rolled hem. . . which of course is one of my favorite stitches for little girl’s clothes! Thanks for the good info.

  166. Tricia L. says:

    I have the Brother 1034D, and it’s been in the box since Christmas. After reading this, I may have to pull it out and learn how to use it! The threading looks kinda scary though.

  167. KatieV says:

    Thanks for all the tips. I’ve definitely been intimidated by sergers but love the finished look they create.

  168. Great intro to Sergers. I thought for years about buying one, I looked at them as intimidating monsters. I now own the Brother that you have pictured and i am in love. Boy does it open up a whole new world of sewing, especially apparel items. I love knits, but found them to be a real pain in the backside to sew on a regular machine. Now with the serger, I can whip clothes up in no time. In fact, the longest part of the process is cutting the pieces out, the construction is a breeze. Thanks for your very useful article.

  169. Veronica says:

    Thanks for the great article and for helping to demystify sergers. It makes it seems less intimidating to use one.

  170. Mary says:

    I think I need to see one in action to have a better idea of how it works. They still seem scary!

  171. Monica Gee says:

    I just purchased my first serger and have been afraid to do much with it. Thanks for the helpful tips – I want to go try it out now!

  172. maryanne says:

    Thanks for this post! I just got my first serger (actually a Brother 1034D like in the picture for this post) so this was post was well timed for me. I’m loving my new serger, no idea how I survived so long without one!

  173. alison says:

    Thanks for the serger tips! I just got a serger for Christmas and love it.

  174. Elizabeth says:

    I would love to have a serger…

  175. Helena says:

    Thanks for the info, I was running the other way when I thought about getting one. You gave us some great info.

  176. Amber says:

    I have that same serger and love it. It’s a great little machine! Thanks for all the info on the different stitches!

  177. Very informative, thanks!

  178. Alexis says:

    Great information! Something else I think is smart to consider is what kind of material is your serger mean to serge. I bought that exact machine 6 months ago and thought it would meet all my needs. But I sew with a lot of denim or a lot of layers and I’ve already had to get the machine tuned twice! It’s really not meant to use with heavier material. So I think that’s something I wish I would have considered when buying. My machine was only $200, but I’ve payed $200 to service it already. Wish I would have gotten a nicer one right off the bat considering how often I use it.

  179. Katie B says:

    Thanks for the tips! This is very helpful info.

  180. Carissa says:

    Looks great, except that the 3-thread overlock and 4-thread overlock stitches are labeled incorrectly, they should be reversed. 🙂

  181. sondra peterson says:

    Thanks sew much for this info. I’ve had a serger for over 10 yrs but never had an interest until now. I think I’m gonna enjoy learning how to use and operate it.

  182. Grace says:

    I’m pretty new to sewing, so I didn’t really have a clear understanding of what exactly a serger does until this article- thanks for clearing up another sewing mystery.

  183. Tina says:

    Thanks for your insight! I’m getting ready to branch into getting a serger. I’m looking forward to a new toy! Hopefully, I won’t be frustrated by it.

  184. very helpful! i have the brother 1034D too and i really like it. how, oh how, did i ever manage with a SERGER?!

  185. Sara says:

    thanks for this overview! It’s always nice to see what different features any type of machine might have.

    I have a serger that I bought secondhand a few years ago. It worked great for a long time, but now the stitches are looking kind of wonky and it doesn’t seem to cut the fabric as well as it might. I think I need to get it serviced, but that’s frustrating because I use it very little. I spent a couple of hours the other night trying different settings and combinations to get it working, but nothing really seems to be setting it right.

    Sergers have so many knobs, adjusters and fiddly bits, and it can be annoying and time-consuming to mess around with them. I don’t think every sewer needs one, though if you have access to an inexpensive one or can try one out at a Sewing Lounge or store event, you can get a better sense of whether you’d like one too. If I can get mine working properly again, I’ll be pleased!

  186. Becky says:

    Oh wow. I’ve always been intimidated by a serger and I think my fear might be worse now than before! Yikes!

  187. I did a review for my serger earlier this month:

  188. Bethany says:

    Great information! I just got a serger for Christmas and I’m looking forward to using it even more!

  189. Trudy Callan says:

    I just recently discovered the joys of serging as well. We are so fortunate that there are sergers available with easy threading capabilities. I have a White serger, and I love it. Thanks for the informative article.

  190. Andi says:

    I have to say that I love my segers. Yep, I own two! They are so nice for a variety of uses and they complement a straight stitch machine so well. Thanks for showing the different ways they can be used. I hope more mamas get to use sergers, they are awesome!

  191. Sarah S says:

    Thanks, Meg! I have a Singer Quantumlock and I would highly recommend it. Although it is not intuitive to thread, it is also not hard and you start to get the hang of it after awhile. Thanks for all the helpful information!

  192. meri says:

    Perhaps one day I would have a serger… so this is a post to keep. Thanks!

  193. Hyein says:

    This is the one I’ve been waiting for. Just what I needed.
    Thank you so much Meg.

  194. Kris says:

    What great information! Thanks!!

  195. Grace says:

    Thanks. I’ve never really understood what a serger is. This is great. Wish I could afford one!

  196. georgia says:

    You should definitely do a serger meme as well, because I ADORE my serger and they are so difficult to shop for! And I absolutely recommend buying from a dealer so you can take the free classes they provide to get you started:)

  197. Leslie says:

    Great information, I’m looking for my first serger now and this was very helpful!

  198. Myra says:

    I have a serger and still have a lot to learn about it, but love what it has done. I have a Janome Juno I bought rebuilt on ebay.

  199. Thank you so much! When I first started sewing, everyone at the sewing store kept talking about sergers/overlockers and when I finally asked what one was they all stared at me in disbelief…then promptly showed me how one worked and told me how much I needed one 🙂 lol

  200. Stephanie Wehrman says:

    I was just looking at a few sergers on craigslist and wondering what to look for, thanks for this timely advice!

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