Why is My Embroidery Machine Skipping Stitches? 7 Fixes

Hey there! It’s Luna, your favorite fashion designer. While crafting a stunning embroidered quilt recently, I faced an annoying hiccup with my Brother embroidery machine: it kept missing stitches! If you’ve been pulling your hair out over a similar problem, don’t fret! Let’s unravel the mystery together. Here’s my tried-and-true method to resolve those pesky skipped stitches.

Embroidery Woes: 7 Fixes for Skipped Stitches in Your Machine

Understanding the Stitch Formation

Embroidery stitches come to life when the upper thread and the bobbin thread unite. If they fail to meet perfectly, no stitch is formed. This can happen due to issues with either the top or the bobbin thread. Sometimes, the machine may not catch the bobbin thread right at the start, leading to what’s known as a false start. In other instances, the machine might miss stitches sporadically, which I personally find trickier to diagnose. If these mishaps occur often enough, not only can your thread fray, but your needle might also snap. Imagine completing an intricate design and spotting long loose threads instead of the desired stitches!

Fixing Skipped Stitches: Step-by-Step Guide

  1. Inspect the Needle
    The smallest component can sometimes cause the most significant problems. Before anything else, take a good look at your needle. Bent, dull, or damaged needles can mess with the synchronization of your threads. Even if the needle seems alright, consider replacing it if it has seen prior action. Always make sure you’re using the right type and size of needle for your fabric and thread. For example, metallic threads work best with needles that have a larger eye. And remember, using a dedicated embroidery needle makes all the difference for embroidery tasks.
  2. Examine the Upper Thread
    Clean the path of the upper thread and thread your machine afresh. Always do this with the presser foot raised. Cleaning the thread guides and tension discs can make a huge difference, ensuring smooth sailing for your embroidery tasks.
  3. Peek at the Bobbin and its Case
    Trust me, you’ll be amazed at the amount of lint and thread remnants lurking beneath your needle plate. It’s essential to clean this area regularly. A brush or a tiny vacuum can be your best friends here. Additionally, check all parts for any minor damages. Sometimes, simply replacing a worn-out component can do the trick!
  4. Assess Your Supplies
    • Thread: Consider switching thread brands. Some threads, like metallic ones, need a gentler touch and more care. Plus, certain machines have their preferences!
    • Stabilizer: Ensure your stabilizer complements your fabric and embroidery design. Sometimes, the issue isn’t with the machine but with the stabilizer itself.
  5. Adjust the Thread Cutter ✂️
    If the problem arises at the start of new thread colors, your cutter might be trimming the thread too short. Extending the top thread a bit more before initiating a new color often solves this issue.
  6. Tension Adjustment
    Examine your embroidery’s back. If the top thread isn’t showing as it should, adjust the top tension accordingly.

If you’ve ticked all these boxes and the problem persists, it might be time for some professional help. Maintenance can be pricey, but certain issues are best left to experts. And if you’ve missed only a few stitches, many machines, including Brother, offer a feature to backtrack and re-embroider the missed portions.

I genuinely hope my guide aids you in resolving any skipped stitches. If you’ve discovered other solutions, do share! Let’s help our fellow embroidery enthusiasts out. ❤️

Key Takeaways

Steps Details
1. Needle Check for damages; replace if used before; ensure right type and size.
2. Upper Thread Clean its path; rethread the machine; check thread guides and tension discs.
3. Bobbin & Case Clean under the needle plate; inspect all parts for damages.
4. Supplies Consider changing thread brands; ensure the stabilizer matches the fabric and design.
5. Thread Cutter Adjust if it cuts the thread too short.
6. Tension Adjust according to the appearance of the embroidery’s back.


Complement the information with the following video:



Hello! I'm Monica, the creative mind behind sewing-beginners.com. On my blog, I delve into the world of sewing, sharing my passion and knowledge with a community of both novice and seasoned sewers. From foundational techniques and comprehensive tutorials to innovative projects and expert tips, I cover a wide array of topics to assist you on your sewing journey.

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