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Thread: Do I need a Singer Featherweight?

  1. #1
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    Do I need a Singer Featherweight?

    Hi all,
    I'm not writing this to find enablers. LOL. I'm honestly looking for your opinions.

    The DH just gave me a few bucks for my birthday, and I'm thinking of buying a Singer Featherweight. My main machine is a Janome 6600, but I just love those little vintage beauties and I'm thinking of buying one to add to my sewing space.

    Here's the question: do I need it? If you use one as a secondary machine, what do you use it for? How often do you use it? I don't want it to collect dust in its case. If you don't think I'll use it much, feel free to speak up, too!

    By the way, I never go to retreats. I may take a sewing class or two this summer, but they have machines there I could use.

    Thanks for your help!
    Jenny in DC

  2. #2
    Super Member Caroline S's Avatar
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    Of course you need a Featherweight! I always have several projects in the works so I have several sewing machines set up. The Featherweight is a perfect machine for piecing and perfect to take to a sewing class.
    Sweet Caroline

  3. #3
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    That is totally up to you. I almost never use my featherweight - it is nice to take to classes since it is compact and not computerized. The only thing I have ever used mine for is piecing, it does have a really nice straight stitch.

  4. #4
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    I have a Janome 8900 which is in a cabinet and is great for FMQ ,but the FW is what I use for piecing. I take it in our RV,the GD love using it,it's very quiet so doesn't interfere with the DH all- important TV watching.
    Life may not be the party we planned for,but while we are here we should dance!

  5. #5
    Super Member LynnVT's Avatar
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    As with most things quilting, I don't think NEED is the right term, just WANT. I also have a Janome, mine's a MC9000 and it's pretty heavy to lug around. I have taken my Featherweight to classes, but if your classes have machines, maybe you don't need it for that. I also do projects with kids, like the pillowcase project and tote bags from old tee shirts we did at Sunday school. When kids come here to learn to sew, either grands or friends, I usually start them on the FW. If Jan should be out of sorts and need to see the machine doctor, it's good to have the FW as a backup. Mostly, I just love having her. So the decision is yours to make based on what your needs, or your WANTS might be. If you can, just do it and you'll find lots of needs for it. You can always sell it if you find you don't want it anymore. There is always a market for them.

  6. #6
    Super Member Candace's Avatar
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    Honestly, many people prefer the 301 over the FW and they're usually cheaper and easier to find...

  7. #7
    Super Member girliegirl's Avatar
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    HONESTLY? yes you should get one! a good ole singer is the best to use... they sew straight without any guidance... I love my babylock but it doesn't sew as well as the old ones.........

    Quote Originally Posted by Writergrrl View Post
    Hi all,
    I'm not writing this to find enablers. LOL. I'm honestly looking for your opinions.

    The DH just gave me a few bucks for my birthday, and I'm thinking of buying a Singer Featherweight. My main machine is a Janome 6600, but I just love those little vintage beauties and I'm thinking of buying one to add to my sewing space.

    Here's the question: do I need it? If you use one as a secondary machine, what do you use it for? How often do you use it? I don't want it to collect dust in its case. If you don't think I'll use it much, feel free to speak up, too!

    By the way, I never go to retreats. I may take a sewing class or two this summer, but they have machines there I could use.

    Thanks for your help!
    Squirrelly Shirley

  8. #8
    Super Member J Miller's Avatar
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    Writergrrl,

    Well, short answer = no.

    Here's why I say that. From the time I married my wife 30 years ago, she's a lifelong sewest, she said she wanted a Feather Weight. So for her birthday a year and a half ago I bought her one. To this day she has not used it once.

    I cleaned it, removed the thread jam from the bobbin, lubed it, put a new belt on it, and test sewed with it. Then later I made a Whacky Bag with it. It's a very good machine.

    My wife wanted one, but now that she's got it, she never uses it.

    So, if you want one, get one. Do you need it ..... no.

    Joe

  9. #9
    Senior Member Sideways's Avatar
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    I love my featherweight, I use it more than any other machine that I own. It sews like butter. I love looking at it too! Plus you can't beat how portable it is!! My answer would be yes - go and get a featherweight. You won't be sorry
    Never met a scrap of fabric or vintage sewing machine I didn't like!
    Many a lost and lonely vintage machine has found a home with me, 26 and------ uh oh lost count, who is counting anyway!

    Susan

  10. #10
    Senior Member haylillan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Caroline S View Post
    Of course you need a Featherweight! I always have several projects in the works so I have several sewing machines set up. The Featherweight is a perfect machine for piecing and perfect to take to a sewing class.
    yes you need it i have one plus a 301 love the way they sew
    esther

  11. #11
    Senior Member Vridar's Avatar
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    My rule is I need/want every model of vintage SM, especially Singer, but have yet to add a 221/222 to my collection of 2x 128, 3x 15-91, 99, 66, 2x 403, 201, and a Spartan. The right priced 221 would be hard to pass up, though. I'm sure the 221 is a great machine but I'm not convinced it has an advantage, other than size, which you indicate is not important, over any of the above.

    Ron

  12. #12
    Super Member JudyTheSewer's Avatar
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    I have about 20 machines. One is a featherweight that has sat in its case in the back of the closet since I bought it. I'm sure it is a fine machine, I just have 19 others I like to play with and so it never gets any use. Most of my machines are in cabinets and I prefer that. For some reason I wanted the featherweight so I have it, I don't use it, but I'm not getting rid of it! Do you want to buy something that might never get used? If so, go for it. Otherwise, my opinion is to not spend the money. I'll take my 301 on outings instead of the featherweight.

  13. #13
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    I have 2 FW's - had three but gave one to my sister. They are great little machines and do take it with me when we go on vacation if we drive to one place and stay. I haven't taken a class in a very long time but hope to get back into going to my guild in the near future. So they don't get used a lot at this time, but one does not know what the future will bring and I am ready for it.

  14. #14
    Super Member ArizonaKAT's Avatar
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    I have three FWs. I bought the first one because it was little and light and I could lug it anywhere I wanted to go. The second went to my GD and the third one is going to my DD.

    I also have two FW tables, which I think makes a world of difference if you are going to use the FW alot. The machine sits in the tiny space of my pantry away from everything. Always open. She's quick and convenient for last minute jobs and tiny enough to fit in tiny spaces. I also piece on her . . . and another thing, she can sew through just about anything you give her.

    I need my FW.

  15. #15
    Super Member quiltsRfun's Avatar
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    I got mine because I wanted it but didn't think I really needed it. Didn't think I'd use mine much since I don't got to retreats or do classes. But it's come in mighty handy. I have a sewing space in the basement where I can work while doing laundry, etc. and the FW can be taken downstairs easily. Also, when my Viking is set up for FMQ I can piece on the FW. Back upstairs with no problem. Once a month, sometimes more, I help with my elderly parents who live out of town. Along comes the FW. It's surprising what you can get done by sewing a few seams in between cooking, cleaning, etc. I've finished three quilt tops and have two more in progress that I've worked on mainly during these visits.

    So I'd say, yes, go ahead and get the FW. If for no other reason, they're just so gosh darn cute!

  16. #16
    Super Member amyjo's Avatar
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    I agree--not need, but WANT. They are so cute and they do sew a lovely seam. Am teaching my grands to sew usiing the FW. I can take it in the car, has all the necessary tools needed to cut with, sew with in the box, just need to take my cutting mat and go. Amy

  17. #17
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    I use mine for classes - which I do not do often; traveling; and as a back up. I've also used it as a second machine when I had something going on the main machine or needed to do a small mending job where I couldn't manage to work in the repair on the larger machine or it was busy. Lots of uses for them! And I did piece a baby quilt on mine for the person who found it for me and sold it to me for a ridiculously low price.

  18. #18
    Power Poster miriam's Avatar
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    I have seen people buy the older Japanese machines for the price of less than one service bill for their electronic machines.
    NEVER let a sewing machine know you are in a hurry.
    good mothers let you lick the beaters - great mothers turn it off first

  19. #19
    Super Member nygal's Avatar
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    I say if you want one get one!!
    When it seems like the world is falling to pieces remember that the pieces are falling into place. We are nearing closer to the End Times.

  20. #20
    Super Member Jeanette Frantz's Avatar
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    The weight of a machine can make a big difference if you have to move it! My Singer 328K is heavy and is also installed in a 5' X 4' cabinet which mh DH made for me more than 50 years ago. I love having the Featherweight available when I've got my 328 tied up with another project. Since I've gotten so doggoone old, I don't see as well and I have a hard time threading the needles. It's far more convenient to go to the Featherweight than to pull the thread and/or change the setup on my other machine! Just a thought. I'm sure we can all survive without a Featherweight, but I got one at a bargain price, so I don't have to do without it! It's your call! Enjoy!

    Jeanette Frantz

  21. #21
    Super Member BarbaraSue's Avatar
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    I'll agree with many here--- need isn't the right word. Want/desire is. I finally found my Feather Weight and I do love how it sews. I took it to a workshop right off, and the 8 lbs. is a plus. It also gave me more room in my rolling case for the supplies I needed for the class, so I only needed the one bag! Even my 301 would take up more room and I'd need another bag. But for piecing or any other straight stitching, 301 and FW's are worth it. My 15-91 is great too, along with the 66's I have, but they are too heavy.
    So if you want one-- go for it.
    To make lots of quilts, is to have lots of scraps, and I do, and I do.
    BarbaraSue

  22. #22
    Super Member valleyquiltermo's Avatar
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    I have several and I'm so glad I do, I have the 222 and the 221 I also have some 301s I love them. I have several 222s as I'm giving one to each grand nieces and grand daughters. They are perfect lil machines and will sew through most anything including leather. You just can't beat them for a perfect straight stitch. Hence why all the lil gals in my family is getting one. If you use it you wont regret getting it for sure.
    http://www.skillpages.com/DonnaValleyquiltermo
    Sweet Dreams come from under Cozy Quilts made with love.
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    and do what you can for others.

  23. #23
    Super Member redquilter's Avatar
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    I thought a "needed" one also a few years back after listening to everyone else here tout theirs. It is a workhorse and really cute and does sew straight lines, BUT - "need" it? No. I just really wanted it and honestly I hardly ever use it. I don't have a place to set it up so it sits in the case and gets dusted once a week and that's about it. You "need" to determine if you "need" it or just plain "want" it and take it from there.

  24. #24
    Super Member jlm5419's Avatar
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    I firmly believe that every sewist needs a backup machine, for times when your main machine is at the shop. A fearherweight is small enough to tuck out of the way when not needed, and is much easier to carry back and forth to classes or retreats or other group sewins.

  25. #25
    Super Member quiltjoey's Avatar
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    Have one, love it but hardly ever use it. Wanted it more than needed it. Have bought a ZZ foot for it so I could use it for sewing, not quilting. It also has all the other accessories but don't know how to use all of them. It is so cute and easy to carry...
    Want or need???

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