The Hover Feature – a feature you ought to consider when purchasing a new sewing machine

In the world of sewing, precision is key. Your sewing machine itself requires an incredible amount of mechanical precision in order to make a stitch. Your needle must be a precise shape and size in order to successfully sew on a specific types of fabric. Then, perhaps most important of all, the construction of any quilt or garment requires precision on the part of the creator.
Companies like Janome, Bernina, Baby Lock and Brother pour a lot of resources into their research and development teams. These R&D teams are tasked with the job of discovering the needs of their customer base, then engineering a product that fulfills those needs. Fortunately for all of us, the sewist’s need for precision has not been neglected. In the past 20 years, these companies have developed special features that help the sewist improve the precision of their sewing. One of these features is the electric presser foot lift, or, as we call it more casually, the hover feature.

So, what is the hover feature?

The hover feature essentially acts as automatic knee lift.
A traditional knee lift is a mechanism that attaches to your machine that allows you to raise/lower the presser foot with your knee, rather than raising/lowering the presser foot with your hand. This allows the sewist to keep their hands on the fabric at all times, which can be helpful when sewing a quilt or garment where both hands are needed.

The hover feature is helpful for the same reason. With the hover feature, when you take your foot off the foot pedal and stop sewing, the machine will stop with the needle in the down position. At the same time, the presser foot will raise automatically and hover above the fabric, and will do so until you choose to start sewing again. To see the hover feature in action, take a look at the video below:
Hover Feature in Action
For those of us who aim for a precise seam, the hover feature is a dream. Because the presser foot raises immediately at our whim, we can quickly check to visually see our seam whenever we want. If the seam is on target and looking good, then we can keep on sewing. However, if it is off target, we can make any minor adjustments needed. Because we don’t have to lift the presser foot lever manually, we can keep our hands on the fabric, which makes re-adjusting and re-aligning fabric easier than ever before. Also, if we are piecing the top of a quilt, you can use the hover feature to quickly pivot at corners of the quilt block.

From our experience, whether you are sewing a garment or piecing a quilt top, the hover feature is really nice to have. It’s one of those little features that just makes sewing easier, which, in my opinion, makes sewing more fun.

Less fussing = more fun.

Now, not all modern machines are equipped with the hover feature. In order for a machine to hover, it needs to be designed with electric presser foot lift. For any of you curious about machines with this capability, I have listed a few of my favorites below:
Call us at (925)937-7575 for more information.
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Sewing Machine Shop
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Walnut Creek, CA 94596
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