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Thread: Help for a Newbie

  1. #21
    Super Member Deborahlees's Avatar
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    I know that the Brother is at the top of your budget, first of all what additonal accessories do you feel that you need ???

    In all my years of sewing I do not think I have ever changed out my needle plate !!!
    Yes that is a real picture of my hometown Temecula, California. We feature premiere Wineries, World Class Golf Courses, Pechanga Indian Casino and Hot Air Balloons

  2. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Deborahlees View Post
    I know that the Brother is at the top of your budget, first of all what additonal accessories do you feel that you need ???

    In all my years of sewing I do not think I have ever changed out my needle plate !!!
    I don't think that the Brother comes with a 1/4" foot or a seam guide. I know a lot of people may not need the seam guide, but I think being a beginner I'll need the extra help.

  3. #23
    Super Member Deborahlees's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pinkyrue01 View Post
    I don't think that the Brother comes with a 1/4" foot or a seam guide. I know a lot of people may not need the seam guide, but I think being a beginner I'll need the extra help.
    OK...you can pick up a 1/4" foot if you feel you need it at Walmart for less than $10, just had one in my hand the other day. You really don't need a seam guide it gets more in the way than helps, the best suggestion I have heard for a good seam guide has been here on the board, measure from your needle over 1/4" and stitch down either a 1/2" stack of the tiny post-its or lay down a strip of command tape. soooooooooooooo much better
    Yes that is a real picture of my hometown Temecula, California. We feature premiere Wineries, World Class Golf Courses, Pechanga Indian Casino and Hot Air Balloons

  4. #24
    Super Member Prism99's Avatar
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    I make my own seam guides from moleskin. Even better is the Dritz Adhesive Guide Refills (don't use their red ruler as it will make the seam too large). I'm also going to try the 3M Command large mounting strips. All of these provide a physical guide against which you can butt your seams. Makes my sewing much faster and more accurate than if I just eyeballed using a 1/4" foot.

    I can't be sure from the Amazon descriptions, but I think the Janome may not have adjustable stitch length and stitch width capability. It only mentions built-in stitches. In my opinion, you *really* want to have variable stitch length and stitch width alter on for machine applique options (and it also creates more variations in decorative stitch options, as you can alter the look of a single decorative stitch by varying stitch length and width).

    My Bernina has the straight stitch plate, but I ***rarely*** use it. Broke too many needles with it from mindlessly changing to a zigzag stitch without remembering to change the plate. Not all machines draw fabric into the zigzag hole, plus it's fairly simple to avoid this by using leaders and enders (small pieces of scrap fabric used to start and end stitching lines, sometimes used to create scrappy quilts too).

    Personally, I would opt for the Brother. You can add in accessories slowly over time, as you need them. Generic feet are inexpensive and usually do a good job. The one exception might be a walking foot, as sometimes these work better if you buy the walking foot made expressly for your machine. But that's not something you need right away.

  5. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Prism99 View Post
    I make my own seam guides from moleskin. Even better is the Dritz Adhesive Guide Refills (don't use their red ruler as it will make the seam too large). I'm also going to try the 3M Command large mounting strips. All of these provide a physical guide against which you can butt your seams. Makes my sewing much faster and more accurate than if I just eyeballed using a 1/4" foot.

    I can't be sure from the Amazon descriptions, but I think the Janome may not have adjustable stitch length and stitch width capability. It only mentions built-in stitches. In my opinion, you *really* want to have variable stitch length and stitch width alter on for machine applique options (and it also creates more variations in decorative stitch options, as you can alter the look of a single decorative stitch by varying stitch length and width).

    My Bernina has the straight stitch plate, but I ***rarely*** use it. Broke too many needles with it from mindlessly changing to a zigzag stitch without remembering to change the plate. Not all machines draw fabric into the zigzag hole, plus it's fairly simple to avoid this by using leaders and enders (small pieces of scrap fabric used to start and end stitching lines, sometimes used to create scrappy quilts too).

    Personally, I would opt for the Brother. You can add in accessories slowly over time, as you need them. Generic feet are inexpensive and usually do a good job. The one exception might be a walking foot, as sometimes these work better if you buy the walking foot made expressly for your machine. But that's not something you need right away.
    The Janome HD1000 has dials that allows you to change the stitch length and width.

  6. #26
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    I'm leaning towards the Brother. It has a lot of features. I just need to be sure I have the extra money AND a good reason to tell the DH.

  7. #27
    Senior Member Patti25314's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pinkyrue01 View Post
    They do have a new machine that is under $400... a Bernette 15. Does anyone know anything about it?
    I currently do sew-ins on new machines coming into our shop, and I did a Bernette 12 the other day. It is a doll of a machine. I was impressed with the quality for the $. I'm not sure I've seen a 15, but it is probably like a 12 with a few more stitches. I think I'd invest money into servicing your current machine by a Singer expert. Then save up for a Bernina. It really is great to have a back-up machine.

  8. #28
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    I have a Mennonite store a half hour away. They do ALL kinds of sewing machines. He sells Bernina, but repairs anything, including treadle machines, and is very reasonable. (About $35 to service my Bernina) Ask around for Mennonite or Amish communities. If they are there, they will have their own store.

  9. #29
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    I'd say keep looking for a used machine. You can't beat the Singer 401A or a 301. They are all metal, sew like crazy, and the 401 A has many bells and whistles and loads of pretty stitches. It is easy to set and will give you good service. I did have to replace my foot pedal as I wore the original out. It works better than my Viking computerized machine.

  10. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by Deborahlees View Post
    OK...you can pick up a 1/4" foot if you feel you need it at Walmart for less than $10, just had one in my hand the other day. You really don't need a seam guide it gets more in the way than helps, the best suggestion I have heard for a good seam guide has been here on the board, measure from your needle over 1/4" and stitch down either a 1/2" stack of the tiny post-its or lay down a strip of command tape. soooooooooooooo much better
    Love the Command tape idea. Tried it last week and it is the best thing so far to me!!!

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