Cover Hemming with the Ovation
Hello hello! We’re going to talk Cover Hem stitching today with the Baby Lock Ovation Serger (and you can follow this tutorial with the Baby Lock Evolution, as well)! It is super convenient to have the cover stitch available on your serger! I am going to show you how to set your machine up for the Cover/Chain stitch. It takes a little set up switching between the Overcasting and Cover/Chain settings, but, once you get it, it’s so fun and very professional looking! The more you do it, the faster you’ll become making the switch between the 2 machine settings! Set aside some time today and practice changing your machine back and forth between the 2 settings several times.
First, go ahead and move your needles to the C2 and C3 positions (we’re setting up for a Right-Narrow Cover Stitch). Place 3 spools of Madeira Aerolock Premium Serger Thread in the place designated for C2, C3, and Chain Looper.
Then, open up all 3 of your doors on your machine. The picture below shows the left side machine door (and then, open the 2 on the front of your machine).
Change your machine to Threading and turn your handwheel toward you until your looper tubes lock into place.
Because you have the Evolution or Ovation, you can thread in any order you’d like. We will start with the Chain/Cover Looper. Take your thread up through the antenna guide and then, down to the metal bar (shown below) on the right side of your machine. Thread that bar from right to left, then, let the thread fall to the back of that bar.
Then, loop it under the “bar” and up, around and over the Cover/Chain Stitch Tension wheel.
And, place in the hook before pulling it down toward the Chain/Cover looper tube.
Pull about 20 to 30 inches of thread slack down. Place about 1″ of thread into the looper and “Push to Thread.”
You’ll see the thread pop out in this little box (shown below) next to the feed dogs underneath the machine cover on the left. Just leave that thread tucked in that box.
Here is a close up of the little box, next to the feed dogs. (You may see extra threads by the feed dogs in my picture below, but, that is from the needle threads that we are about to thread…the pink arrow is just showing the feed dogs location and the box next to it where your Cover/Chain Looper thread should appear).
Let’s go ahead and thread your needles. You’ll run both threads up through the coordinating antenna guide and then hook each one into the appropriate guide in front of your thread spool, behind the “head” of your machine (shown below).
Run them each down their appropriate guide and up and around the metal piece (shown below) and then, down to it’s appropriate needle (this step is much like threading a sewing machine). Make sure to catch the hook above and before the needle to keep it in place.
Thread your needles.
Make sure to pull this door off and…
Replace it with the table door.
Turn the Upper Looper Selector knob (shown below) to the left for the “Down” position to disengage your upper looper.
Lock your blade down. Adjust your stitch length as desired (mine is about 2.5). Your stitch width is not applicable.
Make sure your Chain Looper Tension (that knob on the upper right of your machine where we ran thread through) is on Cover. Want to get a PDF version of this blog post? Click here!
Now, the fun part (not that the threading part wasn’t fun, right?)!! Cover Stitching!! Whenever I hem something, I double the amount that I need to take up and mark a line with that measurement around the entire hem allowance. So, if I am taking up a hem allowance of 1″, I mark 2″ and then, I press my raw edge up to that 2″ mark, creating my 1″ hem. Hopefully that makes sense, but, it’s an easy way to see where you are ironing up to. For a Cover Hem, I typically like to hem up an inch of fabric.
You’ll want to stitch on the top side (unless you are going for an “overcasting stitch” look on the outside) and you’ll want to start your first stitch into fabric (the Cover Stitch doesn’t chain off like the Overcasting Stitches).
When you go all the way around, back to your beginning stitch, overlap your stitching (trying to stitch right on top of your beginning stitches). When completed, turn your handwheel once completely towards you and then, once completely away from you to unlock your stitch. Lift your foot and gently pull your project out. To finish off the ends so they don’t come undone, you can either, pull all threads to the back and knot, fray check the overlapped stitching, or just run it through the sewing machine (just over the overlapped stitches) and backstitch over the stitches several times to lock all thread ends.
If necessary, trim away any major excess hem allowance. And, you’re done! The Cover Stitch is especially nice on knits because it allows for stretch!