HOW STUFF WORKS
QUIZZES

FOLLOW US
The Ultimate Sewing Machine Quiz
by Staff
The invention of the sewing machine revolutionized both the textile industry and home sewing. By significantly speeding up the process the sewing machine reduced labor costs, which in turn reduced the cost of clothing. The result was that clothes once considered luxurious were now available to most people around the world. Take our quiz to test what you know about this brilliant invention.

Which of these would you call the heart of the sewing machine?

  • the foot pedal
  • the needle clamp
  • the looping mechanism

Which of these best describes the traditional hand-sewing method?

  • through one side and then the other
  • through the same side each time
  • through the cloth once and that's it

How does the method employed by machines differ from the standard approach?

  • It requires a special thread.
  • You have to use a unique cut of cloth.
  • The machine loops the thread back onto itself.

Rather than using a new method why weren't sewing machines designed to imitate the hand stitch?

  • The standard method was patented.
  • Mechanizing the method would be too difficult.
  • The designer wanted the challenge.

Where is the eye of a sewing machine needle located?

  • near the tip
  • it has no eye
  • near the end

What is the purpose of the needle bar?

  • to protect your fingers
  • to keep the cloth flat
  • to hold the needle

Which of the following would you call the simplest looping stitch?

  • the lock stitch
  • the chain stitch
  • the lilo and stitch

What is the purpose of a presser foot?

  • to run the motor
  • to keep the needle in place
  • to keep the cloth flat

Which of these best describes the function of a feed dog?

  • to tie knots in the cloth
  • to keep the cloth moving forward
  • to provide energy to the motor

Which of these really just a spool of thread?

  • the bobbin
  • the freeze latch
  • the crank

How many threads do you need for a lock stitch?

  • only 1
  • at least 2
  • 3 or more

Which of these components grabs the loop of a chain stitch?

  • the looping crank
  • the looping striker
  • the looping hook

How does the shuttle hook help a sewing machine perform a chain stitch?

  • by catching one of the threads
  • by keeping the cloth from slipping
  • by keeping the threads apart

Which of these pulls the needle up and down?

  • the foot pedal
  • the crank
  • the gears

What does the tension disc assembly allow you to do?

  • adjust the tension of the thread
  • control the direction of the needle
  • save energy

What basic rule can you follow when setting the tension of the thread?

  • tighter thread for thinner fabrics
  • tighter thread for thicker fabrics
  • the tighter the thread the better

What component do you use to control the motor of the sewing machine?

  • the cam shaft
  • the drive wheel
  • the foot pedal

How do you achieve a zigzag pattern when sewing on a conventional machine?

  • by using a special foot pedal
  • by moving the mechanism from side to side
  • by adding a zigzag feed dog to the machine

High-end sewing machines have which of the following components?

  • a second foot pedal
  • a link switch
  • a built-in computer

Certain advanced sewing machines have the ability to perform which of these special techniques?

  • embroidery
  • weaving
  • dying