I went years and years and years without knowing how to baste the easy way with a sewing machine. I was taught, oh so many years ago, to just put the stitch length on the longest stitch - this would be a 6 on all my old Singers. But then when it came time to pull the stitches out they often didn't pull out easily but had to be undone with a seam ripper -- so tedious and time consuming! All because I was missing a simple step...a step that is even mentioned in the old manuals but I wasn't taught it and didn't see it for the longest time...loosen the upper tension.
The tension on my Singer 15-91 is normally set on about 6 1/2. (Those numbers are relative - yours may be set on a higher or lower number).
For basting loosen the upper thread tension. For this I turn the knob down to about 3 on my machine. (Remember to lower the presser foot to change the tension -- another thing I wasn't taught and took a few years to find out!)
This is the top after I'm done.
On the bottom the top thread has come through all loopy -- which makes it easier to...
...pull competely out. Without all that seam ripping! Ok, I might have to rip a few stitches but not as many as I used to. (And interesting how this one fabric came out in different colors in the photos).
I always baste my side seams to try on a garment to make adjustments. Why couldn't someone have told me about this years ago!?