what features do you use on your machine - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 7 Old 07-30-2009, 08:31 AM - Thread Starter
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I'm in the market for a new sewing machine but I'm not sure what to get. I don't want to spend a fortune on features I won't use but I don't want to skimp and find I miss things.

So other than the basic straight and zig zag stiched what do you use?

Is a 1 step button hole a lot simpler than a 4 step? (I hate my current machines button hole making)

Do you use the fancy stiches?
Is it worth the extra for a computerized machine? It sounds fun to be able to add finishing touches but would I actually do it.

FWIW I tend to make toys/clothing for the kids and household stuff like curtains. I've not done any quilting but would like to in the future.
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#2 of 7 Old 07-30-2009, 02:00 PM
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auto thread cutter and needle up/down stop. I love those two features. Speed control is nice too, but you can sort of do that with your foot pedal anyway.

My machine does some crazy amount of decor stitches, but I never use them. I do like the auto buttonhole feature though so I guess that would be something I'd want to have in a new machine.

Sabrina , mom to 4 fab kids!

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#3 of 7 Old 07-30-2009, 03:40 PM
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The stitch I used most is the tinyest zigzag. It is just barely perceptable but gives the seam a tiny bit of flexibility. I was surprised when a friend's machine only had full zigzags with only varying density.

If you think you'll be sewing anything heavy just make sure the machine has metal gears or high marks for durability.
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#4 of 7 Old 07-30-2009, 07:16 PM
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My MIL just ordered this machine off of Amazon. Perhaps it would cover what you're looking for? Plus it's an incredible price!!

SAHM to DD (6/07) and DS (10/09); happily married to DH since 2/04 .
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#5 of 7 Old 07-30-2009, 08:03 PM
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Mine has oodles of stiches and I love playing with them on toys and such. Also like the needle threader. And digital readout with adjustable stich len. And width. It's a Kenmore 660 I think
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#6 of 7 Old 07-31-2009, 02:17 AM
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Besides the straight stitch and the zigzag, I use the 3-step zigzag. I bought the optional buttonhole attachment to my machine because it does rounded ended buttonholes. I hate the bartack ones that are built into the machine. I use the blind hem stitch for appliques not hemming. Occasionally, I've used the overlock stitch because I was too lazy to pull the serger over for a small mending job. So out of 33 stitchs, I use maybe 5. I have a Kenmore ($330 when bought new6-7 years ago, now discontinued).

For the sake of full disclosure, I own and use 2 sewing machines (the other one is a 19050-51 Singer Featherweight. It only does straight stitch), 2 sergers, and a blind hem machine.

Chris--extended breastfeeding, cloth diapering, babywearing, co-sleeping, APing, CLW, homeschooling before any of this was a trend mom to Joy (1/78), Erica (8/80), Angela (9/84), Dylan (2/98)
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#7 of 7 Old 08-01-2009, 04:21 PM
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I use the straight stitch and zig-zag. One of these days I'll pull out the manual and learn how to use the buttonhole. I grew up with machines that didn't sew buttonholes for you so my tendency is to just use the zig-zag to make them.
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