How to use a walking foot

A walking foot is a big ol’ clunker of a presser foot that comes in really handy for feeding layers evenly. Sometimes when you have multiple layers, one of them shifts while sewing and bunches up into a fold at some point, or perhaps one fabric will stretch a bit with a regular presser foot that’s pushing down as it sews.

A walking foot hops along as you sew, helping to eliminate that pressure on the fabric.

The process

Here is an example of what I was talking about above. I used a regular presser foot and the fabric ended up feeding unevenly and making a little tuck at the end of the seam.

A walking foot can really help avoid that.

Feel free to click the photos for bigger versions.

This is how the walking foot works with my Kenmore. First, take off the other presser foot. In this case, the walking foot attaches via the screw, so rather than just popping one off and the other on, I have to remove this whole piece by turning the screw.

Now I’m going to attach this walking foot. Notice the little lever I am holding.
That little lever is going to rest on top of that black thing sticking out toward my hand (it’s the thing I turn to loosen or tighten the needle).
The foot hooks around and I reinsert the screw. As I do this, I have to make sure that lever is resting on top of the black knob.

In the picture at left, the needle is in the upmost position. At right, it’s at the lower position, so you can see how the lever has moved down along with it.

As you sew and the needle moves up and down, so does the lever, and that makes the foot “walk” along instead of pressing down consistently.

I initially made a video, but I had the following problems:

1. It was blurry
2. It was poorly lit
3. I forgot how to access the youtube account
4. WordPress wouldn’t let me upload it because it was too big.

I guess it wasn’t meant to be, folks. But give it a try. The piece at left was one where the lower layer had a bunch of layers basted on and the top layer was just one piece of fabric. I knew it wouldn’t feed nicely, so I used my walking foot and got nice results. (This project is the knitting needle roll.)