See and Sew with BERNINA Magnifying Lens Set

Sewing requires your full attention and the use of several senses to be successful. Listening to the familiar sounds of your sewing machine lets you know that all is running smoothly. Touching your fabric as you sew helps you keep it on track to sew exactly where you want. But one of the most important senses in sewing is your sight. Obviously, you need to see the needle and fabric as the machine sews it, especially when creating a project that requires precision sewing. In this post, I want to look at three ways to see better as you sew.

Light It Up

One thing that helps you see better is to have enough light. Ambient lighting in your sewing room is important as well as task lighting that spotlights the area you are focusing on as you sew. BERNINA machines have powerful U-shaped lights that brighten the needle area from three sides. These LED lights provide glare-free daylight that is shadow-free, which is useful for precision sewing and for situations where you are using monochromatic color schemes or dark thread on dark fabrics.

LED machine light

Slow It Down

Another way to see better is to sew more slowly. A fast-moving needle is hard to track visually so you can’t always tell if you are stitching accurately if you are speeding along. Set your speed control to medium or below and when you push the foot control all the way down, it will not go faster than the setting you have made. You have more control and you can see exactly what the needle is doing as you sew.

BERNINA Speed Control

Make It Bigger

BERNINA has a unique accessory that really helps you see your stitching as you work. The Magnifying Lens Set is designed to attach to the front of your machine just above the needle. It magnifies the needle area as you set up the machine and watch the needle sew. It is particularly useful for manually threading the needle and for sewing tiny stitches such as micro stippling. It also helps with specialty sewing techniques such as Heirloom sewing or attaching individual beads to fabric. Using the magnifying lens in conjunction with the LED lights helps to reduce eye fatigue. Click here to see how the magnifying lens work for quilters.

The set come with three lenses of different strengths. The three strengths of the lenses are D7 (1.75X), D6 (1.50X), and D5 (1.25X). Each lens is marked with a number to make it easy to identify the one you need. These magnifying lenses fit all current BERNINA sewing machine.

three strengths

A separate mounting bracket (not included with the lenses) holds the magnifier. This bracket should be attached to the machine by a trained technician and can remain on your machine even when it is not in use. You can then easily attach any of the lenses to the bracket by loosening the thumb screw, putting it in place, and then tightening it as needed. Click here to see a video on the magnifying lens set.

hand held magnifier

Click here to see a post on using the magnifier when stitching applique techniques.

BERNINA magnifier and applique

If you want to see more detail when sewing, resulting in more precision and accuracy in your stitching, use the BERNINA Magnifying Lens and it will all become clear.

BERNINA Magnifyer Lense
For more information about the BERINA Magnifiers, see The Big Book of Feet at your local BERNINA store.

The Big Book of Feet


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4 comments on “See and Sew with BERNINA Magnifying Lens Set”

  • I recently purchased the magnifying lens set, as my eyes are getting old and I have trouble seeing, especially doing tiny blanket stitch appliqué. Sadly, these lenses are nowhere near powerful enough. If I pair them with reading glasses, it’s better, but then a bit blurry. It would be nice if Bernina would introduce more lenses in the 2x-4x range.

    • I thought they sounded like a nice idea, but far too weak. I might manage the kind of magnification shown in the pictures with all three lenses, my reading glasses, and a jeweller’s visor.

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