Nov 5, 2010
I can't take it anymore!
Yes, you all with the mad skillz that I envy so much - you know who you are!
I am doing some research on which machines I should be looking at! Here is my current jalopy, I call it "the Yugo":
I bought this new from Montgomery Ward (remember them?) back in 1992 brand new for probably about $99.00. I don't know how to sew other than simple hemming, and believe it or not I actually know the "right way" to hem jeans to save the factory hem, didn't think I would, did 'ya? I am hell on wheels with this thing, and the only thing I have ever sewn on this machine on a regular basis, meaning a couple times a year, is jeans and sewing patches on my hubby's heavy canvas type military camo uniforms. To be fair to my old machine, now that I am becoming educated on such things, I am realizing that these starter machines are NOT designed to stand up to this abuse! So no wonder I have crazy tension issues now and am always breaking needles.
I am ready to start contemplating a new machine that will suit those needs as well as learning to sew useful things around the house such as organizers, bags, dog beds, that type of thing. I will say that quilting sounds pretty far fetched to me right now, but then again knitting did just 18 months ago!
Here's the kicker: I have a serious budget! I want a machine that will handle the jeans and uniforms and have a few little conveniences that I may not know that I need right now, but it has to happen for under $300, and preferably under $250!
I have been doing some research, and apparently Singer has gone the way of W@lmart junk in the past couple of years, is that your opinion or am I not reading enough reviews? To the unschooled like me, that was of course the name I gravitated towards at first. Now I am reading that Janome is fantastic. I saw a Bernina beginners machine that I liked simply because of how heavy and sturdy it was, but everything I am reading on reviews say overwhelmingly don't buy it because it has tension problems and is harder to find accessories.
Here's a couple I was looking at, and the sale prices I've found.
I really liked the look and heft of this one, but I've read overwhelming bad reviews on it? It is the only Bernina made at a lower price point, so maybe that's why.
Janome 5812 Sewing Machine (149.99)
I think this may be the lowest priced Janome out there aside from the mini machine, It does not have a 1-step buttonhole function
I think this one is ugly as all get out, but it appears to have all the necessary functions and gets good reviews LOL
Next step up is the computerized machine, this one is marked down from 379 so I would definitely need to purchase this on sale, although most of these seem to go on sale every other week or so.
My questions for you:
1. Do I want/need computerized? Is it better for beginners or a repair nightmare? It seems like more stuff to break, but if it helps me out a lot for recommending settings, feet, etc it might be worth it to a beginner?
2. Do I want the 1-step buttonhole function? (this seems intriguing, although I don't know what that means LOL)
3. What brands are your favorite?
4. Buying: I can get a machine cheaper with the sales at a place like Hancock Fabrics, but what is really the advantage to buying at an actual sewing machine shop if they don't offer free sewing classes? (ours here does NOT)
5. Is there a particular machine you know of that will serve me from beginner through "intermediate" type sewing? I do NOT want to upgrade all the time, especially since my mom sewed on the same old machine since the early 70's and created great stuff!
OMG I just realized how many hits I will probably get on this post from internet searches from newbie sewers - just think of all the spam I'm going to have to delete! Thank you in advance to those that can help me out at all! This is a ton of money to me and I want to make sure I don't go into this purchase without considering the advice of those that are in the know!
By the way, I did already clean and oil my machine hoping a little TLC would fix the issue, but nah... I'm about to finish it off today by hemming 4 pairs of great jeans I scored at the thrift shop!
Maybe I should consider making some dog toys while I'm at it...