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Thread: Embroidery Machine?

  1. #1
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    Embroidery Machine?

    I have resisted buying an embroidery machine because I doubt that I would use it enough to justify the extra expense of a dedicated machine. But yesterday I made the "mistake" of watching a show on embroidery on plain tees. It looked so neat and of course easy, according to the teacher. Now I'm thinking, maybe? Either talk me down or ideas of a not too expensive easy machine please! I'm not very good at figuring out complicated computer concepts. Thanks.

  2. #2
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    if you are not very good at figuring out complicated computer concept, I recommend you pass at this hobby. Computer interfacing is a big part of the fun of this activity.

  3. #3
    Super Member GEMRM's Avatar
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    If you use the preloaded designs, and follow the owner's manual, it's easier. One step at a time.....I'm on the learning curve too, and I've done a few quilt labels and a couple of small tote bags.
    A husband is the perfect confidant to tell your secrets to - he can't reveal them to anyone else because he wasn't really listening when you told him!

  4. #4
    Senior Member crashnquilt's Avatar
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    Yes a dedicated embroidery machine is great! (at first) You think of tons of things too embroider. If you get a "single needle" machine, after a while you get fed up with having to do several thread color changes. Then you want to do an embroidery but you don't have the right stabilizer, so that project either gets put on the shelf or goes without embroidery. Then you think "I will embroider my quilts" Yep, wonderful idea, but then you realize that after the embroidery is done, you don't like how the back side looks.

    Please don't think I'm trying to rain on your parade. You just really need to give this A LOT of thought.

    If you go with single needle machine, are you prepared for lots of thread color changes.
    Do you have the extra space for everything, i.e. different stabilizers, extra thread, machine hoops, enough space for doing embroidery

    My experience is When I first got my embroidery machine I was thrilled beyond control, but the novelty soon wore off. I do enjoy embroidery but now I have to be in the mood to do it.
    Crashnquilt


    Wouldn't you like to live with my mind just for a moment? I wish you would, I think I need to get OUT OF IT!

  5. #5
    Power Poster ManiacQuilter2's Avatar
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    They are very complicated. I would suggest you pass. If you get an older machine, most run only on computers that are running XP.
    A Good Friend, like an old quilt, is both a Treasure and a Comfort

  6. #6
    Power Poster PaperPrincess's Avatar
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    As mentioned above, if you use purchased designs and do not want to alter them, the computer component is minimal. However, there is a learning curve to producing a quality result. Choosing the appropriate stabilizer and design for a particular project takes a bit of skill. I would advise purchasing from a dealer who will offer classes and ongoing support.
    "I do not understand how anyone can live without one small place of enchantment to turn to."
    Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings

  7. #7
    Super Member Dolphyngyrl's Avatar
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    Brother/Babylock machines are easiest to use right out of the box. I will tell you it is not a cheap hobby to invest in, you will easily add on hundreds to the cost when you buy threads, stabilizers, designs, software. It is addicting and fun and trust me you will use it. I have made so many gifts with my machine. I will also say don't go with the cheapest model because you will have hoop envy. Software and putting designs on the usb are the only computer component but it is not hard at all. You can wait awhile on the software until you know your needs for the projects you want to do. Embrilliance essentials is a good easy software to learn. I have a babylock version and love it for doing lettering and merging designs.
    Brother XL-3500i, SQ-9050, Dreamweaver XE6200D, Juki MO-2000QVP

  8. #8
    Super Member Onebyone's Avatar
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    I do know the machine is only part of the expense. The better your supplies the better the embroidery. The new machines are easy to use. The computer curve isn't hard, too many of the new embroiders at my guild are elderly and have no problem at all with the computer part.
    I love my life!

  9. #9
    Power Poster ckcowl's Avatar
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    We spent the extra for the embroidery unit for my Viking when I first bought it, it was great fun for about 6 months then the ( novelty) wore off. Still did an occasional embroidery couple times a year for a couple more years-- I haven't used it at all in the past 6-7 years.
    hiding away in my stash where i'm warm, safe and happy

  10. #10
    Super Member crafty pat's Avatar
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    I am so mad with myself. I thought I had to have one and DH bought me one for Christmas three years ago. I played with it a couple of days bought a lot of thread and everything I needed to go with it put it all away and have never touched it again. I loved the way it worked when I used it and need to pull it out and start working with it.

  11. #11
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    Thanks for your honest thoughts. I suspect I would have another expensive set of "stuff" which I rarely use. The thread changes alone would drive me nuts. Decided to not even look at these machines!

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    It's ironic how things come around full circle. I've got a machine to do just about any kind of sewing project and guess what sits out and gets used the most? My vintage Singer 301. Second most used, my H Class 220 S Viking Serger (a simple to use good serger). If you think an embroidery machine is a "must have", I would suggest a good used one preferably from a dealer who can provide a little warranty. This way, if the novelty wears off, you're not out a ton of money. My embroidery machine now sits and is quickly becoming obsolete. Used it maybe a dozen times cause it seems to be a production for me to just to take it out and set it up. By the way, I've seen some pretty nice free handed embroidery done with the old Singers when you drop the feed dogs.

  13. #13
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    I have the Brother 770D and I love it. I wanted one with Disney designs. It is easy to operate. There is a lot of expense involved but I get all mine off EBAY.

  14. #14
    Super Member deedum's Avatar
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    Investing in a embroidery machine takes some thought. I do enjoy it, although it does take patience. Sometimes a lot! I think it is like a serger,it has a learning curve. some people buy them and never use them, maybe even once or twice.
    There certainly is alot of expense with it too! I don't think they are for everyone. Yet, I just bought my second one so yea I am addicted to this hobby.

  15. #15
    Power Poster sewnsewer2's Avatar
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    You should be aware that although it's so much fun, rewarding, and amazing what you can do with an embroidery machine (I have 2) it is an expensive hobby. The stabilizers are not cheap, you need special threads, needles etc.
    Grandma of 5 beautiful grand kids, 4 crazy cats & 1 dog!

  16. #16
    Super Member juliea9967's Avatar
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    I have had an embroidery machine for over 20 years. I have never regretted buying the machines I have had. I started out with a 4 x 4 hoop, and now I have a machine that takes the largest hoop made for a home embroidery machine. I have loved all my machines. I have had Brothers, Berninas, Vikings and now have the Pfaff Creative Sensation which is a sewing and embroidery machine. I am currently using my embroidery machine to make stuffed animals and dolls. My grandmother started me sewing when I was 5 years old, and I have never stopped. My first embroidery machine which I bought at the age of 50 opened up a whole new world for me. I am so glad I made that decision. It was life changing for me and I have loved almost every minute of it. I have taught machine embroidery classes at some local quilt shops and have had students from 8 years old to 84 years old. My current machine will probably last me for the rest of my life, but if it doesn't I will immediately replace it. I love to machine embroider.

  17. #17
    Super Member callen's Avatar
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    The problem with your question is that you will get a ton of different answers. Yes, they can be expensive, yes they require lots of different coloured thread, lots of different stabilizers & I could go on & on. Just like quilting, some people like piecing only, some hate putting borders on, some hate binding quilts but everyone is different. Try, try & try several different machines BEFORE you commit to a purchase. I broke down & invested in Husqvarna's new EPIC machine & EPIC it is. Does everything but pay the bills. I'm a point in my life that, yes I can afford it & when I want to embroider it is certainly more than capable of doing a first class job. Think long & hard about what it is YOU want in a machine. Listen to all the comments & decide for yourself. Best of luck in your search.
    Dance like no one is watching

  18. #18
    Super Member sash's Avatar
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    My first emb. only machine was Janome 350e. Loved that machine and had fun with it. Gave it to my daughter and now have a 15000. Wow, what a machine. I love to embroidery and can't see why anyone wouldn't love it; so many designs to do. Yes, it can get a "little" expensive with all the threads and stabilizers and designs, but still love it. The 350e would be a great machine and with the 500e coming out there should be some good buys on the trade-ins. I should have kept my 350 and I could use it too.

  19. #19
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    I have had the Janomes for years. All you need are hoops that go on so easily. I watch for sales to get stabilizers and threads. There are a lot of free patterns and many sites to get patterns. Using goes in stages- some days I do and some days I don't. Embroidery Library has helpful videos and hints.

  20. #20
    Senior Member Michellesews's Avatar
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    Five years ago I purchased a six needle Brother embroidery machine. Embroidery is all it does, and does it well. It did not cost any more than a TOL combo machine at the time. Usually I can make six colors work for me. I'm a longarm quilter and I offer embroidered labels as a side to my quilting but it is not complicated to use. I have never regretted this purchase. Wish I could say the same thing about the hot tub we purchased ....
    Michelle Guadarrama

  21. #21
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    I bought my first embroidery machine about 10 years ago because I had always wanted one and I found a great deal. Then computers changed etc. and my machine could no longer talk to my computer. Now I have a brother which is big and heavy but I still enjoy it. When I hit a slump with the quilting I drag out my embroidery unit and create away. I think it is my anti-dementia medicine! It a different way to be creative and you can go as crazy as you want with it. Watch the sales and coupons at JoAnn's for the stabilizer, buy the freebie designs online to start. Join a class, take workshops and just don't buy everything they want to sell you.Be an informed consumer! Learn before you spend. Anyway, what are you saving your money for? So your kids can spend it on what they want? You only go around once! Enjoy yourself! Good luck!

  22. #22
    Senior Member Reba'squilts's Avatar
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    I am on my fourth embroidery machine. I love to embroider on quilt blocks and other crafty projects. I traded up each time. Love this new epic by Viking. Will probably not upgrade again. It is an expensive way to go...but so is quilting. I have had 3 Vikings and still have a Mickey Mouse brother that works great for the grand original price of 500 dollars.

  23. #23
    Super Member MaggieLou's Avatar
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    My suggestion if you decide to purchase a machine is the Brother PE770. It's a good intermediate machine. If you buy one that the largest hoop size is 4x4 you will quickly want something larger. The PE770 has a 5x7 hoop and is plenty large enough for most designs. As you get more skill you can then decide if you want a machine with more needles or a bigger hoop size. There is a learning curve but it's not that difficult.
    Margaret

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  24. #24
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    It is great for making gifts!

  25. #25
    Super Member tlpa's Avatar
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    I had a Bernina 170 that did embroidery. I only used the embroidery part for the lettering (which it did beautifully), but when it died I knew I wanted the option of embroidery even though I knew I would primarily sew/quilt with it. I wanted the option of lettering for initials & monograms for gifts etc. I purchased a 2nd hand Janome 12000 at an excellent price. I have had it a year now and have only done one embroidery project. For me, I haven't invested in the myriad of threads and stabilizers as I don't use the embroidery part enough to need all that. For the quilt I made with embroidery, I had one package of stabilizer on hand that I purchased for my old Bernina, and the embroidery was one color which I used a silk thread that I had on hand (although I think I will get a thin bobbin thread for the next project). I was happy with the embroidery, and the quilt was well loved by the recipient. Probably because I don't use the embroidery unit that often, when I go to use it I find it a little daunting and I need to refer to the manual and take some time to figure it all out again. But I still want to have the option.

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