What type of sewing machine should I get? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 8 Old 06-27-2003, 10:57 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm a beginner level sewer and I'd like to get a nice sewing machine but not too outrageous. I'm thinking about a Singer. I'd like to get a used one on ebay - do you think this is a good idea? Thanks!

"We shape the clay into a pot but it is the emptiness inside that holds whatever we want" Lao Tzu
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#2 of 8 Old 06-27-2003, 11:27 PM
 
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Hey, I'm from NC, too! Where are you? I'm in Durham.

I think if you're a beginner sewer it's nice if you can buy from a dealer than can also give you classes in using the machine. I went this route with the serger that I just bought and I'm very glad.

Often dealers will sell reconditioned models at good prices. I have a 1960's era reconditioned Singer that works great!
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#3 of 8 Old 06-30-2003, 11:43 AM
 
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I'm also a novice in sewing and got my machine 3 years ago. I bought mine at Costco and it was under $200. It has 18-20 stitches and I've only used 2 (straight stitch and the zigzag). I've made a couple of curtain panels and some outfits for dd. Some tell me the buttonhole stitch also comes in handy. My machine is a Brothers, but I had a Singer before and I like both of them. A friend of mine purchased a $1400 sewing machine. I tried it, and the thing is smooth. For the types of things I do, I think my machine is more than sufficient.
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#4 of 8 Old 06-30-2003, 12:20 PM
 
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I really would not suggest buying a new Singer. I bought one in 1999 and replaced it in 2000 with a different brand. The old Singers are great products, and if you can find one that's pre-1975 or so, then I say go for it. But the new ones aren't worth the money. The company is in the midst of filing for bankruptcy, from what I hear.

I would suggest, for a first time machine, a Janome. They are well made machines, you can buy them from a sewing shop (so you'll have free instrucitonal classes), and I know when I was looking for my new machine, the basic ones were very reasonably priced (under $250).

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#5 of 8 Old 06-30-2003, 01:31 PM
 
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I'm going to second the on the Singers. People think they're good machines because they USED to have a great reputation. Unfortunately, the Singer company has changed hands a few too many times over the past few years and the company really went to pot. I have a fairly new Singer that my mom bought me in 1998; the tension unit went out and the repair shop said that *it's not being made anymore*. That's pretty (no, REALLY) scary for a machine that's not even a decade old!

That said, there are many nice machines on the market. I have a Janome (New Home, actually ~ same company) serger and it's pretty nice for the small pricetage ($200). My sewing machine is an Elna and I it! Bernina is also a good brand. However, if you need to stay below $300 I really suggest a White. You can buy them at Joann's (sometimes on a decent sale) and they're good machines. My mom has a Jean's Machine and it's a regular workhorse.

HTH a little!
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#6 of 8 Old 07-03-2003, 12:00 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I've been looking at the Janome Jems. They are under $200 and seem pretty nice. What do you think??? I really don't know much about sewing so I don't even know what to look for! Help!

"We shape the clay into a pot but it is the emptiness inside that holds whatever we want" Lao Tzu
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#7 of 8 Old 07-03-2003, 01:41 AM
 
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janome has somthing called a jem gold which may be a good machine

i say may mostly because you dont choose the stitch length (how many stitches in the inch)

it has three straight stitches (it has more than three in total count of stitches) and you choose the one that is what you want

its an ok shortcut for someone who knows how to sew, i just dont know if i would suggest it for a newbie. then again, i believe in learning the long hard way before you take a shortcut

it is however a nice machien for under or close to $200

just used one today for the first time and was very surprised at its solid feel

i am not certain what's avail for various feet or accessories
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#8 of 8 Old 07-03-2003, 09:03 PM
 
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I just bought a new machine last week off ebay. I got a Kenmore new in box 16120 for $109. It has 43 stitches and it is really nice to use.

Someday I'm going to be able to go to a dealer and get a really nice bellsy-whistley machine but for now I'm going to be perfectly happy with this Kenmore.

I have also sewn with the $99 Brother (worked just fine for making HB-Homes, all I needed it to do at the time) and I have an old Singer circa 1983 that works really nice (but only has straight stitch and zig zag). I have also heard to run far far away from new Singers.
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