This easy sewing hack tutorial on how to add a laser line to any sewing machine will give you one of the great features of one of those fancy sewing machines for a whole lot less money.
When I was at SNAP conference a few years back I had the pleasure of test driving a Babylock Destiny sewing machine.
Now, at home, I had just a basic Janome. Super basic sewing machine. It worked great, but it was nothing fancy. What can you expect for $100?
This Janome sewing machine is similar in features and price to my first machine, which they don’t make anymore. Plus it’s a pretty color.
So when I sat down at that beautiful Babylock machine I was super excited and intimidated too. But mostly I couldn’t wait to check out all the features.
My absolute favorite feature on that machine was the laser line. It has a red laser that shines a straight line onto your project so you can see where your stitches are going to go if you keep on that path.
This is an especially useful tool in making half square triangles for quilts and other projects. No marking necessary!! It would also help keep you on track when topstitching any project.
I loved that machine. And I tried to sit at it every chance I got. I think that year I spent more time in the sewing room than in actual conference classes.
But I about fell out of my chair when I heard the retail price of the machine. There was no way that was going to come home with me. However, if it is in your price range it is a really, really nice machine.
I did end up buying a new machine, a Juki TL2010q, a few years later. And while I still wanted to have that really sweet laser line it still was only on machines that were out of my price range.
So I decided to add my own. I mean DIY is awesome right?
Laser (This is similar to the one I bought)
3M Small Command Strips
I bought a laser cutting straight line attachment for a power saw. You can also find it at your local Harbor Freight about $7.
I bought mine at Harbor Freight, but I linked to something similar on Amazon for you in case you don’t have a Harbor Freight near you.
How to add a laser line to your sewing machine
Then I came home and attached it to my machine. To do so you simply find a spot above the needle of your machine that you can point the laser line down at the throat plate.
It does stick out from the machine a bit, but I wasn’t too concerned about that seeing as how there’s a big chunky tension knob coming off the front of my machine as well.
I tried with just the adhesive circle that came in the package. But the movement of my machine while stitching wiggled that right off.
The circle stayed stuck the machine great. But the laser wouldn’t stay stuck to the circle.
Next, I tried the small 3M command strips. Those appear to be working great. I’ve had no issues with it as of yet, but I will update this post if that changes.
There you have it. A super easy way to add laser guides to any sewing machine. Well, any sewing machine that has a spot above the needle for you to place a guide.
Will you be adding a laser to your machine? If you found this helpful I would love if you shared it with your friends.
If you love the cute cactus pin cushion you can find that post over here.
If you want more sewing posts be sure to check out my other projects.
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Hi Amber do you adjust the laser based on the seam allowance width (and if so, how?) or just keep it in the centre? Great idea!
Amber Simmons says
I just leave it in the center to know where my stitching will be. I like to use it for half square triangles.
This is genius! Gonna try it. Way better than masking tape!
Priscilla Ciochetto says
You are a sewing goddess! I loved this information and am heading to Harbor freight tomorrow. Buy one for each of my friends. Thank you Thank you
Amber Simmons says
You are sew welcome. Haha. Happy sewing!
Ive been considering this attachment for ages. It will help me with the tremor I have developed in my hands
Brilliant!!!! I ran right down to HF as soon as I saw this and purchased this for $5.99 plus tax today. It was located right by the electronic saws. The salesperson told me that she sells them mostly to QUILTERS!
Amber Simmons says
That’s amazing. Glad you got one.
Lisa Dawson says
This is a fantastic idea! I can’t wait to try it. Thanks ‘sew’ much!!
Lisa D. says
Going to HF today!
This is a great idea but it doesn’t work on my machine. My Janome machine has a slanted “face” and this laser doesn’t adjust for that. I will try with the gooseneck style laser.
I have one and each morning I found it had fallen off the machine. I’m so glad I found your advice about the Command Strips.
Thank you !
I tried to add one to my Babylock Aria. But it didn’t stick I ordered the command strips. Here’s hoping it works. Thanks for the idea