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UC Berkeley Library Makerspace: Fiber Arts

Fiber Arts

Fiber Arts

The Singer heavy duty sewing machine is a basic machine with 32 built in stitches. It is easy to thread, and easy to use.

Important tips: Go slow, and practice on a piece of scrap fabric first. If you’re unsure of the tension and stitch settings you need to use, practice on a piece of scrap fabric, or ask a makerspace staff person for help.

Threading the machine is simple. Run the thread through the numbered slots in order. You may need to turn the wheel on the right side of the machine to lift threading position number five into view.

Knitting needles in a variety of sizes are available for your use in the makerspace. You may check out knitting needles with makerspace staff. A free online knitting course can be found here.

Felting needles, foam blocks and roving wool are available for your use in the makerspace. Needle felting is the process of matting wool fibers together using a needle and foam backing. You can read an introduction to needle felting basic shapes with cookie cutters here.

Embroidery is the art of embellishing fabric with different color threads. Think of it as drawing with thread. Embroidery thread comes in six twisted strands, but you often only need one or two strands at a time for your design. There are a variety of embroidery stitches that you may use. Be sure to stretch fabric in an embroidery hoop before you begin, and please return thread and needles when you are finished. Draw your design on your fabric with an embroidery pen before you begin. You can take an introductory course to embroidery here.