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How to Use a Walking Foot Attachment on a Sewing Machine

Learn how to use a walking foot attachment on a sewing machine from designer Jennifer Wiese in this Howcast tutorial.


Hi, I'm Jennifer from Workroom Social, and I'm going to show you how to use a walking foot on your sewing machine.

This is a walking foot, and a walking foot has feed dogs, these little teeth, that move up and down with the feed dogs that are on your sewing machine. You'll see the feed dogs right here on the sewing machine, and this is what pulls the fabric through the machine.

Now when you're doing regular sewing with any other regular foot, there are no feed dogs on top, but sometimes you want something pulling that top fabric along with your bottom fabric. It's really great for quilting when you're sewing lots of layers of thick fabric, and it's also good if you're sewing thick, slippery materials like vinyl or leather.

To install the walking foot on my machine, I'm just going to make sure that the pressure shank here is up, and then I'm going to unscrew the screw. We saw that this shank fell off, that's fine, put that aside. With the walking foot, you want to make sure that your needle is a little bit low. Your screw here that attaches, that holds your needle in this area corresponds with this lever that's on the walking foot. So when you install this, you're going to make sure this lever is on the right, but you want it to sit on top of this screw, that holds your needle in.

So I'm going to put that in, and this is resting on there. Then you can take your screw and put your screw in to hold the foot, and just tighten it so everything is secure. If you have a screwdriver, you can use a screwdriver just to hand-tighten it. Now you can rotate the wheel to bring the needle back up. You can see as the needle comes up and down, this lever is resting on this piece and moving with the needle, and so that's what controls these upper feed dogs.

Once you have your walking foot installed, let's go ahead and try it. I have two pieces of fabric right here. I'm just going to align my raw edges and put the fabric into the machine underneath the presser foot. My thread tails are to the back, and I'm going to line up the raw edge with my seam guide at 5/8ths of an inch. I'm going to lower the presser feet and I'm just going to sew. Now you can see as I'm sewing, the feed dogs on top are pulling the top layer with the bottom. And that's how you use a walking foot.

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