How to Thread a Sewing Machine


howtothreadasewingmachineThreading a sewing machine the correct way can make all the difference with the result you get when sewing. If you’ve threaded your sewing machine incorrectly it can affect the tension and add frustration to your sewing experience. I’ve created a video showing you how to thread a sewing machine using my Janome DC4030. The thread paths on this machine are very similar to other Janome, Elna, Kenmore and Singer brands that I’ve seen around the place, so chances are, your machine will be similar too. Take a look at the video below to see how I thread my sewing machine and then apply it to your machine.

Or watch it here on YouTube

How to Thread a Sewing Machine Step-by-Step

Most machines need to be threaded with the presser foot in the up position or it will affect the tension of the top thread. Double check your sewing machine manual if you are unsure. Here we go:

These are the steps you will see in the video above

  • Place your thread onto the spool pin and secure with a spool pin cap (if needed)
  • guide your thread around the thread guide at the top of your sewing machine
  • Guide your thread down through the tension discs and under the next thread guide and to the left
  • Take your thread up to the take up level and ensure that the thread is going through and sitting nicely in the hole at the front of ┬áthe take up level
  • bring your thread back down the thread path and you may have a thread guide sitting at the bottom of the casing, if not, put your thread behind the thread guide at the top of the needle bar
  • Thread your needle using the automatic needle threader (if you’re lucky enough to have one) or thread your needle my hand

Great! Now you’re ready to load your bobbin and bring up the bobbin thread.

Leave a comment below if you have any other questions.

Happy Sewing!


Posted on

20 May, 2015


  1. Barbara Harris

    Hi Domenica,

    So I was given an older model singer sewing machine. I keep trying to thread my machine. I looked it up and I appear to be doing it correctly. However when I get going it seems my thread keeps breaking and I am using gutterman thread and tension appears to be set appropriately so what could be causing this problem? Any thoughts?

    Barbara Harris

    • Domenica Tootell

      Hi Barbara,

      Hmmm…I wonder if it is something to do with the tension disks. It may need to take a visit to your local sewing machine technician.


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