Threaded Together: Finding the Perfect Sewing Machine
Hi Sewing Friends,
Happy Crafting Month! So you’re inspired and want to dive in to sewing? If you’re like many of us, you may be wondering which sewing machine will be the right fit for you ? Budget, features , ease of use, accessories……all these factors will ultimately determine your satisfaction years from now. Let’s face it, this choice can be overwhelming so let’s break it down and determine what to look for so you and your machine can live happily ever after!
FEATURES CHECK LIST:
- Needle Down–allows stopping/turning & continue to sew without skipping a stitch or losing your spot
- Twin Needle – allows twin needle sewing and prevents the twin needle from hitting the needle plate on a decorative stitch side-sweep
- Stitch Elongation– elongates certain decorative satin stitches up to 5X their pre-programmed length
- Single Image Locking Stitch–stitches one digit and then stops and anchors the thread
- Mirror Imaging–flips an asymmetrical stitch 180*, Can be vertical or horizontal or both
- Auto Pilot– sews on demand with the push of a button, no foot pedal needed!
- Speed Control–Slider bar limits or increases sewing speed to wherever you’re comfortable
- Push Button Reverse– Does it react immediately or is there a ‘few stitch’ delay?
- Bobbin– Is it a simple top, drop-in bobbin or a front oscillating that goes into a case and then into the machine? Are the bobbins metal or plastic? Are they readily available?
- Memory–”Working Memory”–Holds selected information until machine is turned off
Permanent Memory”– Hold selected information until deleted whether machine is on or off
Most machines can contain 1-8 separate pods of memory with 20-40 digits in each pod. Stitch sequencing and editing data within the pods varies between models and brands
- Auto Thread Cutter– This push button feature cuts both bobbin and top thread when the seam is completed.
- Needle Threader– Automatically sends the top thread through the eye of the needle
- Presser Foot Pressure Control– Can the amount of pressure exerted on the material be changed?
- Presser foot Lift– How high is the clearance when you’re shifting your work under the presser foot.
- Drop Feed– Can the feed dogs be lowered easily or do you need to use a separate cover plate when engaging in free-motion embroidery or button attachment?
- LCD Screen– There are variances in resolution which affects how you see the stitches on the screen . The higher the resolution, the more ‘actual’ the stitches look
- Lighting– How many light sources are there and is it equipped with new LED or incandescent bulbs that need to be replaced more frequently?
- Stitch Package– How many stitches are there overall and will they suit your needs?
- Accessory Package– How many extra feet or other goodies come with this model and will I likely celebrate having them in my arsenal?
It isn’t always easy to know if a feature is right for you if you haven’t tried it yet so rule of thumb is to purchase the best machine you can comfortably afford and be delighted as you peel away the layers of discovery. Thank you for stopping by. You’re invited to call in to the live shows and come back next month when we go for the ‘test drive.’