The Janome Hello Kitty is a cute 3/4 size machine with a surprising amount of features. $114 at Target. http://content.janome.com/index.cfm/...ng/Hello_Kitty
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The negative about piecing on a different machine while you're away is that you'll find your 1/4" will vary by machine and manufacturer. I tend to keep all my piecing projects on one machine only so that there isn't this variance in the final product. So, I guess what I'm saying is that if you work on one project on a small, travel machine you should probably keep that project for that machine only. I travel with my Janome 9000. Not a light machine but much lighter than my Bernina 830. That being said, I only use my travel machine for projects that won't be affected by the different 1/4" seam. Everyone I know, loves the travel Janomes like the Gems.
The Activas-210, 220, 230, 240 are being discontinued. They are/were less expensive than the 3series. The cheapest I've seen the 210 fir us $649, pricey for a travel/occasional use machine, IMO. I'd second a Brother machine for this purpose, if you don't want an actual Singer Featherweight. Brother CS6000i is around $160 and has many fans. Comes with a lots of goodies for quilters.
I was telling my Bernina dealer, also a friend, that I was looking for a Featherweight a while back and she showed be one she had there that I think was made by Bernina and was basically a copy of the Featherwieght. It was cute, but I told her I wanted the real thing.
After getting mine and sewing on it, I don't know why anyone would want anythng else. I have had other smaller machines, Singer and other brands and I always end up giving them away. Once you have sewn on a good machine, the other feel like a toy to me. They are noisy and some bounce all over the table. I have never had that problem with my FW. She is little, but feels like a big machine when you are sewing.
Check out the Singer 301. They are slightly heavier than the FW (without the case), sew like a FW, are gear driven not belt driven, dogs drop for free motion quilting and have a handle built in, but aren't as expensive as a FW. Great machine!
The issue with a FW for a transported machine is that you are limited to a straight stitch only! Now, that may be o.k for those of you who only do piecing, but I need applique stitches, zig zag etc. and the ability to quilt. And FW are not meant to do quilting as the speed of quilting and constant use can burn out the motors. Plus the harp size is um, small:> So...as cute as they are, they'd never fit my needs. Something to consider before buying is the use. If piecing is all fine, but I wouldn't want to limit what I could do.
Sears Kenmore has the same machine from Janome minus the blue color and the Kitty emblem for a lot less money. Check it out online, it is a 3/4 size and lightweight.Originally Posted by irishrose
Those with the bigger machines have been getting the mini-Janome one ... I think it's 3/4 size, weighs 12 lbs, and does a a lot more than straight stitchings.
While they can take their big computer machines, these are a lot more convenient to move around ... and a lot less risk in damaging it as they move it around.
Wow, I bought my 2nd generation JemGold around 11 years ago(?) for $249 including case and extra feet. It's a great little machine, but unlike the FW, I don't anticipate it being around in 50 years. ;-)Originally Posted by Quilter7x
I must be looking at the wrong Janome Jems. There are several on eBay listed as Janome Jem Gold 660, brand new and their price is in the $200 range. Diane you're saying Platinum, so maybe it's the wrong model I'm seeing?Originally Posted by MTS
I've considered an actual Featherweight, I'm just iffy on buying a vintage machine. I have several vintage Singers but haven't used them, haven't learned to oil them or do anything else for them. I'm just more comfortable with newer machines.
I really don't need anything other than a straight stitch machine though. If I need a fancy stitch or need to do applique work, I'll use my 820.
Maybe I just need to start a Grandmother's Flower Garden and have a hand project to take on the go. :)