I got my sewing machine approximately 4 years ago as a present for Christmas. A lovely Brother XL-5130, it featured 15 different stitches, and 3 knobs that I had no idea how to work. Even more frustrating was the fact that the "manual" it came with left a whole lot to be desired in the "how to use this machine and all its cool features" department. Seriously, it was like 5 pages long and half of those pages were the French and Spanish translations.
Since I knew very little about how to use a sewing machine from making pillows in Junior High Home-Ec classes and messing with my mom's machine every once in a while (to make even more pillows...yeah, I guess I liked pillows) I got by with the miniscule amount of knowledge that I had.
After working on a few projects lately, I was getting frustrated because my bobbin was being all funky and my projects were taking twice as long because I kept having to fix it. Being human, I of course blamed the machine. I called it cheap. I called it stupid. I hurt its feelings and verbally abused it. I bought a book about learning how to sew, which told me that I was a fool and needed to read up on my machine. I got online, and googled my sewing machine along with the word manual. Eureeka! A pdf of a 69 page user's manual for my machine! Oh what a glorious day!
I am in the process of printing out my handy dandy manual as I type this, and once it's printed I am going to use it to learn how to oil my machine in the appropriate places. That's right, I am giving my poor Brother XL-5130 some much needed T.L.C. (and I will be giving it compliments about its beauty and intelligence the whole time). I might even make it a handy little cover, so it doesn't get all dusty...although after I read my manual, it won't be sitting around collecting dust anymore!