When using different fabrics for a sewing project, you may find that the sewing machine is not able to work with some of the materials, while it works well otherwise. The issue arises from the difference among different types of fabrics, which requires special attention. If you are going to work with one of the following types of fabric, you may need to use a different size of needle, type of thread and/or presser feet in order to operate the machine smoothly. Presser feet are good investment when you sew different types of fabrics and help utilize your sewing machine.
Thick fabrics, e.g. denim, fleece and knit, require steadier feeding to the sewing machine. A walking/even-feed foot is a must-have if you plan to quilt. It includes foot includes a upper feed dog to fix and make sure the fabric is evenly sewn when there are multiple layers of fabric or thick fabrics. Choose cotton or polyester thread when sewing. Also, while changing presser feet help sewing these bulky materials, a sewing machine with heavy duty metal frame would be a great purchase if you need to frequently work with these materials.
Walking/even-feed foot works well with thick fabrics.
Elastic fabrics and leather
Leather, elastic or laminated fabrics are sticky, which hinder the movement of the metal-made feed dog and hence the sewing process. If you need to work with materials like leather and vinyl, Teflon foot or walking/even-feed foot are a good investment. Made of plastic, Teflon foot feeds the sticky fabric smoothly and choose a needle of appropriate size and polyester thread accordingly.
Teflon foot or non-stick foot makes sewing elastic fabric and leather easier.
The surface of napped fabrics, e.g. velvet and corduroy may make normal feed dogs hard to feed them to the machine, leading to uneven stitches. A roller foot can tackle this issue with its built-in metal rollers, which can pass the uneven and heavy fabrics through the machine smoothly. You may also work with strong threads to get a better result.
When working with uneven or napped fabric, opt for a roller foot and thicker thread.
Delicate fabrics, for instance chiffon and silk, are lightweight and need to handle with care, especially in sewing. You may consider using a fine needle and thread to avoid bursting of weave threads. Also, work with a knit foot, a presser foot which is designed for delicate materials.
Knit foot and fine machine needle help protect delicate fabric from damage when sewing.