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6 basic steps to create awesome bobbin work using THE Dream Machine 2!


Yesterday on QUILTsocial we got THE Dream Machine 2 all set up in preparation for doing bobbin work embroidery. Now we start stitching!


THE Dream Machine 2
THE Dream Machine 2


Step 1 – adjust tension

First, press the “Cut/Tension” key to open up the edit tension menu on THE Dream Machine 2.


Press "Cut/Tension" key
Press “Cut/Tension” key


THE Dream Machine 2 manual recommends adjusting the tension of the top thread until it is between 6 and 8 when doing bobbin work. Do this by pressing the “+” and “-” buttons.


Adjust tension
Adjust tension


Step 2 – bring up bobbin thread

Next, press the “forward/back” button on THE Dream Machine 2 to advance the machine to the beginning of the bobbin work embroidery design.


Press "forward/back" button
Press “forward/back” button


Press the “+1” button on THE Dream Machine 2 to move the machine one stitch ahead in the embroidery design.


Press "+1" button
Press “+1” button


Press the “Presser foot/Needle exchange key” on THE Dream Machine 2 to lock all keys and buttons.


Press "Presser foot/Needle exchange key"
Press “Presser foot/Needle exchange key”


The red color indicates that all keys and buttons on THE Dream Machine 2 are locked.


All keys and buttons are locked
All keys and buttons are locked


Using the presser foot lever, raise the presser foot. Rotate the handwheel counterclockwise while holding the upper thread. Pull the upper thread slightly to the left to pull the bobbin thread up through the fabric.


Pull up the bobbin thread
Pull up the bobbin thread


Press the “Presser foot/Needle exchange key” to unlock all of the keys and button and then press the “OK” button on THE Dream Machine 2‘s touch screen.


Press "OK" button
Press “OK” button


Step 3 – start stitching

While holding both the upper thread and bobbin thread, press the “Go” button (or use the foot pedal) to sew a section of the pattern. Stop the machine and then tie the upper thread and bobbin thread together to secure the ends. Start sewing again to finish the pattern.


Tie thread ends together
Tie thread ends together


The finished embroidery pop-up shows when each of the bobbin work designs have been stitched by THE Dream Machine 2.

Raise the needle and presser foot, remove the embroidery frame, and then cut the upper thread and bobbin thread. Make sure that you leave at least 3″ of threads so that they can be tied.


The finished embroidery pop-up
The finished embroidery pop-up


Step 4 – secure the thread ends

Using a hand sewing needle, pull the bobbin thread to the wrong side of the fabric. Tie the ends of the bobbin thread and top thread together to secure the ends. If there’s a gap between the start and end of the embroidery, use the needle to hand sew some stitches to connect the starting and ending points.


Pull bobbin thread to top
Pull bobbin thread to top


Step 5 – check tension

Remove the hoop from the machine and check the front of the embroidery. When doing bobbin work and too much of the top thread shows on the front of the embroidery (looks like eyelashes when a curve is sewn), the top tension needs to be increased. Make any necessary adjustments and then try sewing the pattern again.


Low top tension
Low top tension


Step 6 – check bobbin and repeat steps 1 through 5

Always check the bobbin thread before stitching each bobbin work design to make sure there’s adequate bobbin thread for the pattern. It’s a much more complicated process to change bobbin thread part way through a bobbin work design, so save yourself the hassle and just make sure that you have enough thread before you start stitching each design.

I’m going to keep stitching my four bobbin work designs and tomorrow we trim up everything and use some strips of batik fabric to make these bobbin work designs into setting triangles for our table runner – see you then!


This is part 3 of 5 in this series.
Go back to part 2: Preparing THE Dream Machine 2 for bobbin work machine embroidery

Go to part 4: How to make crazy quilted setting triangles for a table runner


I have been designing and publishing quilt patterns for the last 16 years under the business name Fairfield Road Designs. My patterns range from fusible applique and piecing to felted wool applique and punchneedle. You can see all of patterns on my website

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