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Trying a Handheld Sewing Machine

Well hi there! Recently I’ve had a couple of people ask me
to review and try out “handheld sewing machines”. So I didn’t actually know that handheld sewing
machines existed until some people told me about them. They supposedly have a lot of the functions
of just like a… standard, straight-stitch sewing machine, but they’re a lot smaller,
compact and a lot cheaper. So I found one on Ebay which was $16, I did
also find a $2 handheld sewing machine, but I was kinda… I was like, that’s not gunna, that’s can’t
be – that’s not going to work, right? So, if this works, I think it would be really
cool because it will make sewing more accessible to a lot more people, I’ve had a lot of you
message me saying that, you know, getting a sewing machine for one project, or if they’re
not sure about sewing as a hobby, it’s kinda a big investment! On the other hand, if it doesn’t work, I can
save you guys the time and money in buying one of these for yourself. SO my handheld sewing machine arrived today,
I am going to open it up on camera and give you my first impressions! Okay, apparently, I didn’t know this when
I was buying it but I’ve ended up with the “Handy Stitch”: As Seen On TV. Which makes me a little bit worried because
those as.. As Seen on TV things generally don’t work. Oh, cool. They even have typos on the box. Cool. I have such high hopes for this already. Well, it comes with a couple of pre-loaded
boddins – boddins?! Bobbins! A needle-threader… oh good, we have instructions. And here’s the machine! Da da da daaa! (Fanfare Noise) Um okay, it kinda looks like a stapler – Okay, so batteries are in, and this here is
the power switch. [Loud noise from machine]
Whoa. Ooh. It did something! I’m surprised it did something! ‘Kay, so it sews sideways, instead of back
and forth… Whoa. It seems to work! Maybe! So I’m going to try and do a simple project
with this, um, we’ll see how we go! Okay, so here’s a question: why is there grease
on everything? Ewww. There’s like, big globs of grease. So on this machine, here is the needle, um
this is like the plate that the fabric goes under, and there’s the feed-dogs under there,
that pull the fabric through. This controls the tension, this is the bobbin
for the thread… there only seems to be one place where thread goes through. I think. This is like a little wheel that raises the
needle up and down manually. And this is the power switch. So, you hold it… from here and… ooop!
[loud noise from machine] Whoa! [laughs] And it goes! [loud noise from machine] Let’s just figure out which way you go first. Okay. It sews this way. Okay, okay, ummm… the stitches came straight
out. Sooo… that’s cool. Not sure how we make that NOT happen. [Quietly]: Oh my god, what? Okay, I think I’ve got it mostly figured out. So I’m going to try and make a bow out of
this. Wish me luck! I wonder if this sews ’round corners. That would be a good thing. If it doesn’t sew around corners – pffflt. I give up on this. I’m so scared! Alright. … We got this. We can do it. Wait, I’m supposed to pull the thread to the
front… okay Take 2. Oh no, it’s skipping some stitches! [Machine makes loud noise that isn’t sewing
noise] Gasp! Come on, turn, please! So I’m trying to turn the fabric, and it’s
really getting bunched up and caught inside the machine… It’s not looking so good for you here – [Machine makes loud noise]
Ah! Oh! [laughs] Why am I so scared of this?! [Machine makes a small noise]
Stop! Okay. I managed to turn it, kinda – I should probably
be using pins to hold the fabric together. This is my bad. Oooh. All of the fabric is bunching up. Kay, now I’m going to try and do that “backstitching”. Needle, up. Pull out 3 inches of thread. Down, up… Pull fabric out… Oooh… Oh no, I’m pulling the stitches out! No no no no no! No no no no! Argh! Where’s – argh! All the stitches came out! Uhhhh! [Voiceover] Okay, so I gave this a real, honest try, and
I could just not get it to work. After about an hour of trying to get just
one single line of stitches sewn, I gave up. The main problem that I was having was that
I couldn’t figure out how to secure the stitches at the end of my line of stitches
– this is pretty important because that literally stops the thread from falling out right out
after you’ve sewn it in. The instructions were not much help either
– they were totally confusing, and even though I followed them to a tee, which involved
all this complicated tying of knots with your hands, it still didn’t work out. In addition, there was no apparent method
to holding the stitches into the fabric at the beginning of the stitch, either. Seriously how hard would it have been to put
in a backstitch function? This would save so much time and energy if
the machine had a simple backstitch to secure the stitches in place. And regardless of me not being able to secure
the stitches at the beginning and the end – it also skipped a significant number of
stitches while I was sewing. Now, it’s possible that I needed to fine-tune
the tension, but there weren’t really any instructions as to what the best tension even
looked like, and each tension that I used still ended up giving me skipped stitches. And so, this was the bow that I ended up with. Here’s my bow. I’ve been working on this for about an hour
at this point. None of these stitches have held up. They’ve all come unravelled under a small
amount of tension. The only place that the stitches have actually
held was the place that I hand-tied the stitches in. The rest of them have completely fallen out. Cool – so, my final remarks on my first impression
of using a handheld sewing machine… I hate it. I wasted about an hour of my life trying to
sew a simple couple of lines of stitches, and it didn’t work. Now, it’s possible that with enough time and
effort you could get good at using this, but the amount of time that you have to invest
into learning to use this is just SO much more than it is for a standard beginner’s
sewing machine. Like, an hour into it and I wasn’t even able
to figure out how to do a secure straight line of stitches. So it’s definitely not easier to use than
a standard sewing machine, definitely don’t buy it if you’re looking for an easy version
of sewing. Fun, Fast and Easy? M-more like, not fun, slow and… hard! YEAH. Take that Marybeth. Take that. So yeah, those are my initial thoughts on
the handheld sewing machine. I will give it another go, um if you guys
leave some helpful suggestions, maybe – ‘coz I think I’m doing something wrong! Let me know if you’ve ever used a handheld
sewing machine before and what brand you used, and if it worked for you – I’d really like
to know whether these are worth it at all, but from my first impressions – it is not. Thank you so much for watching this video
– OH! Did you see the jacket I was wearing in my
intro? Oh, you didn’t? Did you see those patches and you were just
like, I’m so envious of Annika’s cool patches, well GUESS WHAT! You can buy them at my merchandise store! The patches were designed by me and then made
by a WRAP certified factory in China, which means they were produced ethically, coz that
is super important to me. There’s even a Make Thrift Buy one! And all proceeds will go towards helping out
my channel, so you can yourself something cute, that shows off your love of sewing,
or Make Thrift Buy, and support my channel at the same time! Alright, I’m going now. Thank you for watching! Bye!

100 thoughts on “Trying a Handheld Sewing Machine

  1. GUYS: someone found a link to the original HandyStitch Infomercial. Oh, Marybeth, you have misled us all…

  2. I’m a 30yr old man. My sewing experience consists of a Home Economics class in 9th Grade. I bought one of these for $4 at an antique store. It worked perfectly right out of the box. I hemmed a pair of shorts with it on the first attempt. Obviously it is a pain to run a precise stitch since you only have one hand to guide the fabric, but for a quick fix, this does the trick. Not sure what you are doing wrong (if anything), but mine works just fine…

  3. Many years ago I bought one of these so my husband so he could try to make repairs to his clothes when he was at sea. It was such a disappointment. Oh well, you can always use needle and thread, and there are many used machines out there. Thanks for your cute channel.

  4. You should try this again! lol This is a knock off handy stitch actually lol. I know because I have this exact knock off one lol. The actual handy stitch looks very similar except it has a metal guide on the side instead of the plastic one and has "Handy Stitch" in red on the side of the machine. I've had my handy stitch for several years and its actually really easy to use but I understand the tension concern as I had that when I first got mine. You just have to go moderately slow and just tighten the turn wheel until the white plastic is even with the screw part if that makes sense? So just tight enough it won't come off. As for keeping the stitches from coming out you need to go about 4 stitches more than you want to then carefully remove the fabric, be careful not to pull the thread from the top of the fabric (Unless you over sewed then go ahead and remove some stitches). Turn it to the back of the fabric where you can see the chain stitch and pull the thread through the back from the last chain stitch. This secures the stitch. You can knot it if you wan't, but I've heard thats unnecessary (I still do it though).

  5. There are tons of options for anyone who wants to get into sewing but can't afford a machine or aren't sure about buying one. Hand stitching is always an option, especially for small projects, and I think anyone who wants to start sewing should start with hand stitching anyway personally. If you must use a machine or simply want to learn how, schools that offer schools, community centers and hobby/ craft stores will often offer sewing classes. Even if you don't want to or can't afford to take a class, they're often willing to let you use their machines, you just have to ask.

  6. With some machines with no back stitch you can sew about 1/2 inch then holding the thread and fabric pull out enough thread to start at the first stitch again and sew over those stitches at least one time to anchor. Some commercial machines are like that, and are waaay scarier than that little one.

  7. Will a run-of-the-mill handheld sewing machine work on making robust canvas tents, haversacks, etc?

  8. i would take your word for it. even tho someone figured out how to lock the stitch

  9. I found this about 2 weeks after buying one for $5 US … I went through the same experience you did. However, I found a source somewhere online that mentions because this is a single thread machine it is more like crochet. The chain stitch suddenly made sense. It said that you have to pull the thread through to the bottom carefully and push it through the last loop. It ties off like crochet. However, it still skipped a lot and the lack of control (full tilt speed) means I may limit (or may not use at all) use to small projects like card making. Thanks for post!

  10. The two dollar sewing machine works, it’s just for small tears and stitches so you don’t have to bring out your sewing machine for every rip and tear, I recommend it

  11. I actiually sewed a circle skirt using a handheld sewing machine! I used the manual kind the one that was reaaaally cheap it was hard to get a hang of but once you figure it out its really easy.

  12. I got one of these as a gift for Christmas or a birthday, and I found it acceptable if I wanted to just do something in my bedroom instead of isolating myself in my sewing room, the reason the stitches come out is because it’s only one thread, and it goes down, through the loop of the previous stitch and back up, creating a new loop. In order to secure it, I would hold the end firmly, thread a hand needle, bring the thread to the back, pull it through the loop of the last stitch and tie it off. The sad demise of my handy stitch handheld sewing machine came when it hit a pin and the entire top arm snapped off

  13. Hey Victoria! Its just need little adjustment it works needle needs to be adjusted its hole must facing left if you are holding it watching circular node and bobbin

    Then, try to stitch if that works great otherwise write here

  14. Many sewing machine shops will offer refurbished machines at a more affordable cost! The one I work at does many time your basically paying for the cost of a tune up where the machine is cleaned and stitched out and greased and oiled to make sure it’s in good working order @annika Victoria I’d love to see you do a video of your machines

  15. Someone figured out how to lock the stich: by pulling the thread through the last loop. Curious if that works for anyone else:

  16. Yes I WANT to share that I too have bought the exact same thing and faced the exact same problems and have stopped using it since ages😂….They make many ads look sooo easy on TV as if even a 5 year old or a chimpanzee can do it even. .. My mind flashes back to that day when I was in 9th grade when my teacher said "advertisements can be misleading"😠😂

  17. Haha I came across your videos by accident so I checked one out lmaoo loved it ! Your a doll tks so much for the hand held seeing machine information I've had one in my sewing box for years that I don't even remember where or who I got it from .I didn't even know how it worked haha now I do ,it's crap ☺ Thanks for sharringg your a sweet heart God bless 💜

  18. Perhaps spend a little time practising how to use it first. Generally from the video I would say that you are not a crafty or practical person. Very poor presentation and tuition.

  19. Lol…you are a terrible seamstress……good laugh though.

    Ive used this things for years and they have saved me from more than a handful embarrassing moments. Yeah…….it gets quirky and in the way sometimes……but it delivers. Its never missing in my wardrobe and in my travel luggage (insert french man pronunciation).

    I wonder though why any aspiring seamstress would get one of these. This is more like an emergency tool if you ask me. For its intended purpose I think this machine works pretty well. Fabrics and threads getting caught up is a normal thing even with a standard machine.

    If anybody wishes to go sewing as a hobby, they should go get a standard machine. This wont wont complete a single project besides correcting a few emergency wardrobe malfunctions.

  20. Those hand sewing machines take me back to the late 90's. My mom used to have one but I never saw her actually use it 😅

  21. its weird because my grandma used to own a huuuge sewing kit, including a hand-sewing machine in the '70s. it was really pushed to learn knit, crochet and sew that time and she really ejoyed making stuff with it. I wanted to try it, but my mom told me it was gone years ago. or they got angry on it and threw out xD

  22. so it doesn't have a lower thread? how can it sew without a lower thread? of course the stitches won't stay. better do it by hand. Glad I didn't decide to buy it.

  23. I found a 1940's singer 15 clone still in it's cabinet on the side of the road, little oil and 20 bucks worth of parts I have a machine that will outlast me and is perfect for most projects. Most folks are better off starting with a vintage machine then dropping $200 on a disposable starter that will wear out in a few years.

  24. I bought one of these for my mum back in the 70's because she suffered from arthritis in her hands from years of hand sewing from being a milliner and seamstress and I thought it would enable her to do a bit of mending. It was a complete waste of money and didn't work well at all. They're still the same crappy design now and I still occasionally see them being sold on infomercials.

  25. There's grease on it cause you buy a used broken one that can't stitch straight they don't come with battery's and that's why it went off right away cause it's used

  26. Also you have to sew left to right otherwise it will jam and not work properly and to tie you turn it over and pull the last stitch out and cut it or tie it it

  27. 3:10 My rating exactly "the stitches came straight out".

    It's not the fabric or the thread. It's the process that is here called "sewing".

    Using this (even multiple times of the same region or varying the needle drpth won't hold)

    Better off investing in a pocket set of threads and needle.

    Sewn by hand is durable enough…

  28. Another person capable of using a handheld sewing machine.

  29. As a man I purchased this device and made myself three suits,eight pairs of jeans,twelve shirts,six pairs of curtains and all followed by twelve new sofa cushions…..So beat that lady,

  30. I don't know if anyone ever brought it up, but a lady named Peg Baker did a series of 'how to' videos on the Handy Stitch. It's…. still not a good machine even with comprehensive instructions like hers, but if you absolutely want to make it work, it's possible.

  31. My mother just bought me one of these a few days ago. I'm scared to take it out of the box now. Should I ask her to return it?

  32. Watching the video I can only see one thread coming out of the machine? I thought sewing machines had a thread on top of the work and one under. The machine pushes the thread through the cloth and something underneath loops a second thread through the forest locking it in place. I’m not criticising but I think you might not have the machine set up properly. Apologies if I’m wrong.

  33. You may not understand the instructions so you cannot use them, because I have the same type and it is very easy to use.
    Si mpok mah dasarnya kgak bisa gunain,,

  34. As a tailor this was hilarious to watch, but I honestly thought it would work xD

  35. The number of people here who are completely missing the point of what this little machine is supposed to be used for, and the type of person who uses it, is astounding. I mean, are you all really that stupid?

  36. You Brits! Always entertaining as ever! But what's that weird thing you're doing with your lips in the thumbnail!

    This Colonel, Military Pilot/ Airline Pilot will sit here at my Amazing beach property here on the sugary white sand beaches of Pensacola Beach Florida and allow you to serve me with your entertainment.

    Anyway, what's with all the elderly "Brit" couples here roaming the beaches over the last few months? Your weather must be hideous over there!

  37. You Brit (Aussie) women, so nauseating! Always chasing after me! Help! Anyway, since you're so infatuated with me now. I'll share something with you! This is a comment I made on a Katy Perry video, tell me if it's too "holier than thou" or what! Women get extremely possessive of me once they lay eyes on me, so I'll say this from a distance. And after my comment, I'll show you the Airbnb I'll stay at (me and my harem) in New Orleans. I was based there for years as an Airline Pilot and really miss the excitement on Bourbon Street! Yay! Anyway, the video was from a carrot top girlfriend who stayed at this Airbnb and she looks like she was teleported from 1906. From Ireland! LOL!

    And you're still not getting a kiss from me so don't get any ideas!

    LOL! Typical PK (Preacher's Kid), yes, KP is a PK! And as with so many in the entertainment industry, she is experiencing that momentary few seconds of fame that Satan is thrilled to give out to deceived and aspiring Yo-Yo's, suckers, and puppets who are weak enough and narcissistic enough to "sell themselves" for it. So sad. Her father is really grieved with this disaster that her life has turned into.

    Trust me folks, this old Colonel, Military Pilot/ Airline Pilot has looked people in the eyes who have had NDEs and what they describe of Hell was not a bad dream or a hallucination. It forever changed their lives. So a man with an experience is never at the mercy of someone with an argument. But I'll still receive "hate and run" comments from people who Satan has hoodwinked and suckered. I don't follow the young kids of today but look at Beyonce, she admitted to selling herself and being possessed of something prior to going out on stage! And that "something" is anxiously awaiting her last breath to depart from her body to drag her to the eternal fires and torments of Hell. They have no clue that Satan will promise you the Rainbow but he will only bring the rain and misery. That's proven over and over again. And for a confirmation on that, you might want to check with Elvis, Marilyn, Michael, Robin, Bruce, Selena, Whitney, John Lennon, and the list goes on! I'll include a true story of Marilyn Monroe and where she resides today.

    If Katy or whatever her name is doesn't repent and return to Christ she will be the poster child of this famous quote:

    "Sin will take you farther than you ever wanted to go, keep you longer than you ever wanted to stay and cost you more than you ever wanted to pay."

    So let's all pray God that she doesn't find out the hard way. One young kid that I do know about is Lauren Daigle. And Satan has started whispering in her ear also. As I noticed that she was starting to question if homosexuality was wrong?! Say what! Lauren, baby, all you have to do is open your Bible, honey and you will find out exactly what the "Boss" says on homosexuality loud and clear, over and over again. It's a no-brainer, my darling!

    Marilyn's story:

    So let's quickly look at Marilyn Monroe. This woman was used by the Satanic elite to spread seduction, lust, and sensuality to levels that had never been seen before by TV and movie audiences. And it was the catalyst for many to leave the pathway of Righteousness and the protection of God as they sought to emulate her sinful and seductive behavior. At the apex of her fame in Hollywood, Billy Graham was moved by God to go and speak to her about her life and to tell her of God's love and the Saving power of Jesus Christ. He mentioned that he felt an "urgency" concerning her. When he finally sat down to speak with her, she laughed at him and said, "I don't need your Jesus!" She had no clue that death would end up surprising her only a few days later. And NDE after NDE confirms the fact that she is currently screaming and burning in the fires of Hell. Many have said the demons take sheer delight in mutilating her and throwing spears through her and throwing her into the fire. They said that her screams were unbearable to listen to. And it was very, very real. And none were telling a lie.

    Anyway, from here at my Amazing beach property on the sugary white sand beaches of Pensacola Beach Florida, it's bedtime so I'll open the sliding glass door and let the sound of the crashing waves sing me to sleep! Yay!

    But before I go, I must tell you that Jesus Christ loves you and He died on an old rugged cross for your sins. He is the only way to escape from the fires of Hell. Millions screaming in the fires and torture of Hell today (famous celebrities, included) would give all their treasures or riches they ever had on earth for one opportunity to come back and pray the sinner's prayer and accept Christ into their heart. You have an opportunity, they don't.

    Pray this prayer:

    Dear Lord God, I realize that I am a sinner and that I'm in need of a savior. Please forgive me, I'm sorry for my sins. I believe that Jesus died on the cross in my place paying the penalty for my sins. Right now I confess with my mouth that Jesus is Lord and Savior of my life and I accept You now Lord Jesus. Lord God, I believe in my heart that you raised Jesus from the dead on the third day. According to the Bible, I'm now saved, and Born Again. Show me how to live the rest of my life for you, in Jesus Name, Amen.

    Love in Christ

  38. Sweetheart! I come on a bit strong but I do care! For a tease, like me! I only now noticed the video on the disability. Have you ever tried combining DMSO (dimethyl sulfoxide) and iodine? The two work synergistically and the DMSO serves as the carrier. Anyway, research if it would be safe with what you are taking. Another thing to try would be ginger tea with turmeric, cardamom, clove, fenugreek, and peppercorns. The last ingredient makes the others 1000x more absorbable.

    Anyway, Jesus can also heal you, my dear! I will give you the Bible verses to focus on if you want them.

  39. Annika~ to end the stitch you have to pull the loop out from the bottom and tie a knot there if not it won’t stay together <3

  40. I have one of these machines, (singer brand, with the red arm) I find it relatively easy to use, and with a few helpful YouTube videos I learned how to secure my stitches effectively! I haven’t been able to afford a full sized sewing machine for myself, but I feel like it’s a big time saver when sewing larger plushies. I even use it to sew minky and some short pile fur!

  41. Thanks heaps for this. I am a non sewer and can’t find anyone to sew me some van curtains.. Must be a dying art over here. I was going to buy this to try my luck but will save myself the money. Very helpful. I appreciate your hour. 🙏🏻

  42. you pulled the stitches out and blame the machine? YO, there's only ONE thread so you need to secure it…maybe you did later. I can't watch anymore. Sorry, I usually enjoy your video's but for the price of this thing, you surely must have expected it not to work like a standard machine…I found it easy and great for quick sewing repairs. maybe you could've used it before you filmed instead of showing us your initial frustration right out of the box…just takes a little patience.

  43. If it makes you feel any better, I’ve been playing with mine for over an hour and it still doesn’t stitch at all.

  44. Mmmm should have watched this before spending $27 at spotlight on this for my daughter! I can’t get the stitches to hold either!!! Sooo feel like piffing it in the bin!! 😡😡😡

  45. i just had to come back and find this video because my grandpa just gave me this exact thing. now i know i don't even have to open it!

  46. What are these words: "tanshun", "invast", "thut"? I recognise "fabric". If you can say"fabric" in standard Strine, then you can say "that" as well. It shows in occasional moments that you've got a nice Aussie voice and heaps of confidence- and thanks for saving me from buying one of those things… so please just speak naturally (not "nutrallaa") and give the pretentious flattened vowels a big rest. best wishes

  47. I have one of these. They are confusing. Hard to work with, work half the time , and getting the stitches to stay is hard to figure out but possible just don't follow the instructions lol. ( I basically crochet the last stitch with the tail and knot). Mine works but you have to go super slow and only likes some fabrics lol. Definitely worth saving the extra 20$ and buying a "portable" or the extra 50$ and getting a larger sewing machine.

  48. I watched your video and when I was scrolling down to see comments, I’ve noticed another video 🤔 This one has all the troubleshooting and how to make that sewing machine work.

    I don’t know this guy or his channel

  49. And this video shows a different way to secure it.

    So maybe you could give it another try?

  50. I have played around with the singer hand held and the way you secure it Is by a pulling the thread from the bottom and making a loop

  51. With only "one" thread out the front you appear to be missing the bobbin thread … or the spool thread. Like any sewing machine you probably need "two" threads to make a good stitch.

  52. I had one too, same as you gave up on it and gave it away to someone who must hate me for the frustration it would have given them lol.

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