This little machine is actually pretty cute and it can sew. Crazy! Below is a video giving you an overview of the features you will find on the Elna Mini (in Australia), which is also known as the Janome Sew Mini (in the US).
The Features of the Elna Mini and Janome Sew Mini
- Stitch Selection Dial – There are 12 stitches to choose from on this machine ranging from various straight stitch lengths to a few different width choices for a zigzag stitch. This is great for a child or a beginning sewer in general, as it can be very overwhelming to be using a machine with a huge range of stitches to choose from.
- Tension Dial – The tension dial can be adjusted depending on the type of fabric you are using or if your top thread needs to be loosened or tightened. The neutral sewing position for this machine is 4. So if the machine has been threaded properly and you are using a normal cotton type fabric, this is what you would have the tension dial on.
- Hand Wheel – This wheel enables you to manually make the needle go up or down. You always turn the hand wheel towards yourself. If the hand wheel is turned in the opposite direction it could affect the mechanism inside the machine as you would be making it work backwards (which is different to using the reverse stitch lever on the machine).
- Spool Pin and Thread Guides – These are all handy to know about as it’s important to capture every thread guide to get the best results for tension of your sewing. I’ve create videos for how to thread the machine and put thread onto the bobbin and load it into the sewing machine to help you make sure it is done correctly. There are a few little tricks and tips with this machine that you may find helpful.
- Needle – This machine comes with a needle already in the machine and one spare one and these are a 14(90) universal needle. This is the largest needle that you would want to use with this machine, as it wouldn’t handle bigger needles for thicker fabrics. You can definitely put smaller needles in this machine for finer and thinner fabrics.
- Presser Foot – The presser foot is the standard Janome ‘A’ foot and it can not be changed on this machine. It is clear so it’s easy to see what you are sewing. Also, the presser foot needs to be lowered down (with a lever towards the back and behind the needle bar) when sewing to get a good stitch result.
- Top Loading Bobbin – A top loading bobbin is easier to load than a front loading bobbin and it is very easy to check how much thread is left on the bobbin. Definitely a great feature for a beginning sewer.
- Reverse Lever – The reverse lever enables the sewing machine to sew backwards. Especially helpful for securing your stitches at the beginning and end of your sewing to stop it from unravelling.
- Foot Pedal – This machine comes with a tiny foot pedal and this is placed on the floor so you can operate your machine with your foot. The foot pedal is also the on/off for the machine as well. There is no other switch to turn it on so once it’s plugged into the wall and switched on it’s good to go.
- Power Pack – It’s good to know that this machine is not operated by batteries. This definitely makes the machine a good choice over other battery operated toy sewing machines.
You also get an instruction manual and some extra accessories with this machine, which include a couple of extra bobbins and a needle threader. You will need to have your own flat head screw driver to change the needle when you come to that bit. Overall this machine does all the things a more expensive sewing machine can do. It probably won’t be as durable and long lasting as more expensive machines, but it will get your child to the stage of realising if they actually like sewing or not.
If you missed it, here is my previous post recommending this machine as a great starter sewing machine for kids.