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Thread: favorite sewing machines

  1. #1
    Super Member butterflywing's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    currently central new jersey
    (i couldn't get this to come up in color because it was followed by text already there. weird!)

    Readers Respond: What features make a sewing machine an excellent tool?
    Responses: 42
    By Janet Wickell, About.com
    Readers Respond: What features make a sewing machine an excellent tool?
    Responses: 42
    Share Your Favorites
    From the article: "Best" Sewing Machines for Quilters3
    Do you have a favorite sewing machine? What makes it your favorite? Is it all the bells and whistles, like fancy stitches and embroidery, or is it more important for the machine to sew a perfect stitch? Share your opinions with the online quilting community. Share Your Favorites
    Sewing Machines
    I have a Husqvarna and it is the best for everything! It is old now, but the Designer 1 is still mine, and it does everything.
    —Guest June HUghes
    BabyLock for me
    I really need the needle-down feature and the automatic thread cutter. I loved my Elna until it died, now the Babylock is for me.
    Needle up/down, 1/4" foot
    I love my Janome Memory Craft 9500. It also embroiders. My favorite foot is the F foot which has a little triangle just ahead of the needle. When doing stitch in the ditch, I keep the triangle on the seam line, and don't look at the needle. I also have a Janome Gem Gold, which I use for toting to sew days. It's lightweight and a work horse. I purchased a Singer in a cabinet for use in our RV, but haven't had it serviced and tuned up yet. I'd love to have a treadle machine for when we're camping in the woods without electricity.
    So many features I did not know about
    The knee lift sounds great, also the needle up and down. I have Kenmores, Singers (1948 and 1980) an old Singer Spartan from England, a New Home and Brother machines. I mostly use just straight and zigzag. Rarely use embroidery stitches. I prefer a drop-in bobbin to a bobbin that goes in a bobbin holder. The bobbin holder usually works well, but if you really snag thread in it, it can cause a mess. I had to pull the whole thing apart to get the thread out, and lost a tiny screw out of it. Had a nice elderly mechanic fix it, and it worked, but is not quite right. Had to pull it apart again and finally fixed it. I pick a lot of machines up at yard sales, some for other people. I think some of the old iron machines were the best. I also love a machine that runs quietly, and a light that is set so you can see easily to thread the machine. Freemanor
    Wonderful machine
    I wanted a new machine that would do quilting and also fancy stitches and went to the fabric store, where I saw a Brother-BC1000. I paid $159.00, bought a walking foot for about $50, and I love it!
    —Guest Ruth Ann
    Love my Janome
    I love the needle up and down feature, also the ability to move the needle to the left or right by small increments. The speed control lever is great when you want to sew slowly, but with full power on the needle shaft. Would love to have a machine with a larger harp area, though. You need to buy a machine from a good dealer who is close by.
    I Love my Bernina
    I have a Bernina 1260 and I love it. Any Bernina from that line is great. Knee lift, needle down/up, metal parts, a WORKHORSE if i have ever had one. I also have a Bernina 165 with the embroidery unit, but I don't like it as much for piecing and quilting. Tension is way better on the older Berninas.
    —Guest quiltingmama
    Reasonably priced machine wanted
    I am frustrated! The cheap ones - under three hundred dollars - are junk and the ones that have all feet needed to quilt are $2500 and up in price!
    Girl seeks quality and affordability
    I've been searching online and at shops for a reasonably priced yet quality sewing machine. I've made mistakes in the past buying cheap sewing machines to quilt with and ended up tossing them out. I am still searching for a quality, quilt friendly machine - in the quilting stores they have quality machines but at a starting price of 4,500 (which is the price of a used car). I have yet to find "the one."
    —Guest [email protected]
    Brother Innovis 600
    The brother innovis 600 is a brilliant machine. Automatic needle threader, needle up/down, knee lifter, quiet, different sewing speeds, thread cutter etc.
    —Guest Janet
    Sewing Machine Features
    When I first started quilting in 2004, not knowing much about it, I purchased my first sewing machine, a Brother CS8072, at WalMart. 150 quilts later, the wonder machine simply stopped working last year (probably from exhaustion). I then purchased the Babylock Espire, which has been fantastic too. I especially appreciate the automatic thread cutter, excellent lighting, separate bobbin winder, hundreds of regular and decorative stitches, large computer screen with trouble-shooting info and easy updates from the Babylock website. It does have the knee lift thing which I don't use, and an additional table attachment if needed. It's a marvelous machine with a very smooth operation and a number of useful features and functions. It might even do dishes if I asked nicely. Overall, I would emphasize getting a certified or qualified technician to service any sewing machine. Mine put the wrong oil or lubricant in the machine, so I am reluctant to trust them again.
    —Guest LilyBee in SC
    my favorite feature...
    I sew on a Janome P6500, which has many great features at a reasonable price. My favorite feature though has been the needle threader! ...once I learned how to use it that is. lol I do wish tho I had a speed regulator and the AccuFeed features. Guess that's something I need on my next machine!
    —Guest Buttercup_ca
    Burnetta Kratky
    My favorite is the trustie Featherweight. It is light and easy to carry to classes. Granted it doesen't zigzag but when our mothers sewed quilts they just did a straight stitch. This way you can stay stitch to secure your end seams.
    —Guest Burnie
    Gretchen my Pfaff has a light that comes on and buzzes to let you know the bobbin thread is low. It stays on until you put a new one in. I cannot do without the open toe foot and the 1/4" foot on my Pfaff, either.
    —Guest Sue Martin
    I am making my quilts on a 3 year old Singer machine that was advertised as made for high school home ec classes. It is a GREAT machine, all gear driven with no electronics. BUT, if I could afford my dream machine it would have ALL of the features the other posters have noted. It just seems that the "CONS" of most of the dream machines is the PRICE. I do wish that a good machine manufacturer would look at the general quilting public and manufacture a machine geared to them that does not cost many thousands of dollars. Example is the new Bernina, with a list price of $12,000. How nuts is that?? My husband and I still, even with the devastated economy, make a really good living, but I could no more buy a 12K sewing machine, or even a 5K sewing machine, than I could spend 10K on a tummy tuck. All manufacturers MUST bring their prices down to reasonable levels.
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    Share Your Favorites
    What features make a sewing machine an excellent tool?

    did this actually interest anyone?

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Benson, AZ
    I actually enjoyed your post and thought it was very informative. Thanks for taking the time to share info.

  3. #3
    Super Member sewcrafty's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    New Hampshire
    Very informative!!!

  4. #4
    Junior Member jeanau's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Pittsburgh - Florida
    What a great and informative post. Thanks

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