Making a buttonhole is something that every person should learn who enjoys creating garments. It can be done by hand; however, many of today’s computerized sewing machines like the Janome MC14000 offer a quicker and easier way to create perfect buttonholes. The process is really simple, whether using Janome machines or any other brand that have a buttonhole feature. Regardless of how it is done, following are a few helpful tips about making these closures.

Perfect Sizing

Correct sizing is really important to avoid the frustrations that occur when the buttonhole is either too large or too small for the clasp being used. To avoid having to force buttons though holes that are too small, or having them pop open due to holes that are too large, use this simple procedure. Lay the fastener on the fabric where the slit is required, then mark it at the top and bottom with tailor’s chalk. Add â…› inch to the top and bottom for a total of 1/4 inch of extra space for the final measurement to sew. When the buttonhole has been sewn based on those measurements, cut the closure open.

By using this method, it is easy to create perfectly sized buttonholes with Janome machines or any units with specific buttonhole settings.


Besides correct size, it is also important that buttonholes are properly spaced, both horizontally and vertically against the fabric edge. This can be a little challenging to align the clasps correctly at first. Following is a simple way to ensure everything lines up and looks good before :

  • Horizontal Alignment - Use a piece of ribbon to mark the alignment that is the width of the distance that the fasteners should be spaced from the edge of the fabric. Pin the ribbon in place along the fabric edge and use as a guide to align buttonholes along the entire piece.
  • Vertical Alignment - Measure the length of the fabric that needs fasteners and divide that number by the number required on the garment. The determined number is the amount of space needed between the closures. Mark the first space with a pin, then measure from that point the distance between buttonholes and mark with another pin, and so on. The pin represents the center of the hole. When stitching the buttonhole, measure half its length and start the sewing that far from where the pin is placed.

Hand and Machine Stitching

Making a buttonhole, whether done by hand or by using the Janome MC14000 or any other unit involves the same basic process. The closure is sewn to support the fabric, then the fabric is cut open. When doing this by hand, the area is stitched around using a blanket stitch which creates a secure edge on the fabric. It is then carefully cut open with a sharp seam ripper. Machine sewn holes are done basically the same way, only using a special presser foot and the proper setting on the unit. Computerized, buttonholing machines are programmed to create a similar, binding blanket stitch, leaving a thin center line of fabric unsewn so it can then be opened using a seam ripper.

Regardless of the way a person chooses to create buttonholes, the correct size and positioning are important for a well-made garment. Whether these closures are made by hand or using machines like the Janome MC14000, careful measuring, sizing, and even positioning of buttonholes makes them perfect. Janome sewing machines make quick work of creating precise openings; however, every person can decide their own way of using these helpful tips!

Janome Memory Craft 14000 Sewing and Embroidery Machine w/Bundle

Sewing Machines