How To Use A Bernina Sewing Machine: Sewing & Setup

Know how to use a Bernina sewing machine with this tutorial about sewing a straight stitch. We’ll also discuss the proper way of setting this machine up. And, of course, we’ll share some tips along the way to get the most of Bernina. 

Speaking of using this brand, do you already know how to thread a Bernina sewing machine? Then, read our guide because errors with threading can also affect your sewing experience. 

how to use a bernina sewing machine


How Do You Use A Bernina Sewing Machine?

  1. Refer to the manual of the specific Bernina model you have; these steps are suitable for Bernina 435 when sewing a straight stitch
  2. Adjust the stitch length according to the fabric type, where heavy fabrics like denim use long stitches and finer fabric use short stitches
  3. Consider the thread size when deciding on the stitch length
  4. Attach the reverse pattern foot
  5. Select straight stitch after pressing the Practical stitches icon
  6. Press on the foot control and sew to reach the desired length
  7. Backstitch via the reverse button
  8. Allow the automatic securing program to secure the stitches for you


Connecting the foot control and regulating speed

  1. Unwind the foot control cable to the length you want and insert it into the foot control connection
  2. Insert the power cable into the power cord connection and switch the machine on
  3. Press the foot control lightly to start the machine, and press it harder to sew faster 
  4. Raise and lower the feed dog of the sewing machine according to the animation that’ll play after touching the icon for it 


Adjusting the presser foot

  1. Push the knee lifter to the right to raise the presser foot, lower the feed dog, and release the thread tension
  2. Release the knee lifter to lower the presser foot
  3. Reduce the presser foot pressure with loose knitted fabrics and increase the presser foot pressure when working on the firm materials
  4. Reduce the presser foot pressure for thick fabrics and alternatively, raise it with thin fabrics


Changing the needle

  1. Raise the needle and turn off the machine
  2. Remove the presser foot
  3. Loosen the needle fixing screw and pull the current needle down
  4. Insert the new needle as far as you can with its flat side to the back
  5. Tighten the screw
  6. Adjust the needle position via the dedicated button 


How Do You Set Up A Bernina Sewing Machine?

These instructions apply to the Bernina 435. 


Threading the upper thread

  1. Raise the needle and foot
  2. Turn off the sewing machine and put the foam pad on the spool pin
  3. Place the thread spool on the pin and check if it will unwind clockwise
  4. Add the correct spool disc 
  5. Have the thread through the guide at the rear and into the thread tension, following the arrows as you go
  6. Guide the thread down and around the take-up lever cover and up into the take-up lever
  7. Lead the thread down and into the guides above the foot
  8. Turn on the machine and press the threader lever while pulling the thread to the left under the threader hook
  9. Press the threader lever down and pull the thread left to right through the threader 
  10. After the thread hooks into the wire hook, pull it over the cutter and release the lever
  11. Pull the thread loop to the back and under the foot to cut


Winding and threading the bobbin

  1. Put the bobbin on the winding unit with the sensor surface down
  2. Have the thread into the rear thread guide and around the pretension clockwise
  3. Wind the thread twice around the bobbin and pull it over the cutter to cut
  4. Push the engaging lever towards the bobbin to wind and press it to the right to stop winding
  5. Start winding and after the bobbin is full, remove it and cut the thread 
  6. Press the bobbin case release to remove it
  7. Insert the wounded bobbin with its sensor facing the case’s back 
  8. Pull the thread into the slot from the left and to the right under the spring
  9. Have the thread under the two guides and up
  10. Insert the bobbin case into the machine, so the guide points upward and press in place
  11. Cut the thread and close the cover


Adjusting the thread tension

  1. Touch the Home icon, Setup Program, and Sewing setting. 
  2. Touch the Alter the upper thread tension icon and move the slide towards + or – accordingly


How Do You Clean And Oil A Bernina Sewing Machine?

  1. Turn off the sewing machine
  2. Clean the display with a soft and damp microfiber cloth
  3. Clean the feed dog with a brush
  4. Remove the debris under the stitch plate
  5. Clean the hook race with a soft brush
  6. Make a drop of Bernina oil into the depots in the hook race

Read this tutorial on how to oil a Bernina sewing machine for more detailed steps in lubricating your unit. Remember that proper cleaning and oiling are crucial to keeping the machine running smoothly. Consider cleaning your Bernina after every 8 hours of sewing, then check the manual with how often you must oil it.



Was this article helpful? We just discussed how to use a Bernina sewing machine, including sewing a straight stitch. You have also learned how to set it up and make standard adjustments according to your project.

Overall, the emphasis is necessary on following your model’s manual. And if any issue occurs, try cleaning, oiling, and inspecting your unit before bringing it to an authorized dealer for service.


Leave a Comment