“The hunt is on!” Give-away

The hunt is on for a new sewing machine!

Let’s not beat around the bush here – I need help. I need your help.

This morning I went to have a look around and… – sweet baby Moses, buying a new sewing machine is more difficult than buying a new house.

My trusty Singer was/is 11 years old, and seeing as it was a gift there was no way for me to influence the buy. Even if I could have, what the devil did I know about quilting and sewing back then?

Seeing as I can pick and choose this time round, I want a machine with all the bells and whistles on. The two that caught my eye today was a Janome 3160QDC, and a Singer Quantum Stylist 9960. (These caught my eye fleetingly as  I turned tail and fled in horror after seeing the multitude of choices and realizing that I was out of my depth!)

How can you help? Easy – please tell me what machine you have (old or new), what you like about it, and what you would look for in a new machine. That sounds like work, right? Right. It is.

In return for your input and advice, I will give away a US$25 gift voucher to either amazon or a fabric shop to one lucky person. You choose between the two, and I choose the shop.  (Why do I get to choose the shop? Because if you live in, oh say Australia, you may want a voucher for a shop closer to home. Same goes for amazon.)

Blue

One entry per person.  The give-away ends at midnight (GMT) on Sunday 9 December, and I will announce the winner on Monday 10 December.

Till next time,

Miss Thimble

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6 Comments

Filed under Giveaway, Uncategorized

6 responses to ““The hunt is on!” Give-away

  1. Deb

    Ok, Thimble Cat made me LOL… I have a Pfaff Quiltstyle that I bought in 2002 after taking a beginning quilting class. My 18 year old Elna was giving me fits trying for a 1/4 seam. I bought the Pfaff on recommendation from an aunt who did a ton of sewing/quilting because of the IDF (basically a built in walking foot) and I had a local dealer in the next town. I love everything about it to this day except for the tiny harp. I quilted a 48×72″ quilt last month and it literally got stuck. I’m pretty certain that I’m going to buy a Juki 2010q after lots of reading/research but I’m going to go to a dealer first (2 hours away) and try it out along with a few of the Janomes. The Juki is straight stitch only, but I’m OK with that because I’ll keep my Pfaff. Important features for me in this search are large harp space, needle down, thread cutter and I’m curious to try a knee lift. MAYBE one day I’ll add a Grace quilting frame to it. There you have it!

  2. My primary machine is a Janome MC Pro6500. Many people u/graded to the 6600 as soon as it came out but I didn’t for two very good reasons: ALL the feet [that come with the machine, btw, and in a nice box] that go with the 6500 also fit the Janome Gem720 that I carry to Retreats and Workshops. I like the *foot print* of the 6500 and it fits well in a miriad of cabinets. There are lots of available stitches [some are great for Crazy work by machine], a wonderful Blanket Stitch [machine applique], Needle Threader!, works with all thread I’ve put in it so far… that’sa lot, even metallic, separate motor for winding bobbin… no need to unthread machine to wind a bobbin, and the bobbin winds smoothly!. Parts and extras are reasonably priced and easy to come by. This machine has a large throat and is good for FMQ. Tensions are easy to adjust for special techniques. Pressure foot adjustment, too. Has a memory function that is easy to use and very convenient. Has a couple of built in alphabets, although the letters are somewhat smallish, but work ok for making labels. One of the things I like best is the needle down function. The 6500 also has a built-in thread cutter, although I seldom use it. There is an active Janome Yahoo group where all sorts of support from *real* quilters and sewists is available – they’ll tell ya Nifty tricks n stuff that are not in the manual! There are so many more wonderful things about this machine… I could write a book [I nearly have, here! sorry]. I do LOVE this machine. I hope it never wears out.
    If you live anywhere near S. California, I would enthusiastically recommend Mr’s Martin’s store: Sewing Machines Plus, located in San Marcos, CA. He gives TOTAL after-sale support and is a wonderful person to do business with.
    I hope this helps. Good luck finding your new baby! Do let us know how it goes and what you decide.
    Hugs,
    Cyn; -)
    ps: as an extra *bonus*, b/c this machine originally debuted a few years ago, you can probably pick one up for a song!

  3. I just have an inexpensive Brother machine. I got it before I got back into quilting, so I was only doing mending and such when I got it. Now that I’m quilting again, I’d love to have one with a machine blanket stitch on it, and maybe one with the needle down feature, so when you stop the machine it automatically stops with the needle down. Other than that I’m not sure. I really do like a simple sewing machine. Hope that helps, and thanks for the giveaway! :0)

  4. I have a Bernina 430 and I love it. Not sure I would buy the same machine again if I were starting from scratch though. When I started looking I had a Kenmore machine that would not do free motion quilting and maintain decent tension at the same time. I was doing all of my quilting on a domestic machine at that time and wanted good free motion capability. When I was shopping they told me that the machines with drop in bobbins tended not to work for free motion while those with front loading bobbins did better. I never did get the stitch regulator, but I did a lot of quilting. I still like the needle down feature and use it all of the time. I use a few of the decorative stitches and alphabets from time to time. I never adjusted to the knee lift, though people say it is a real time saver. It does not have an automatic thread cutter, in fact, if you don’t hold the threads, to start, they tend to make thread bunnies on the back. I have become a fan of Bonnie Hunter’s Leaders and Enders though, which solves that problem. Good luck finding the right machine for you. So fun to start from scratch.

  5. I’m going through the same search now. I own a Bernina 330. I returned to sewing after about a 25 year break only to find that SO much had changed. When I bought the 330 I couldn’t imagine needing any more features than it has. After all, I sewed on so much less years ago. But after a few years I realized that I really wished the decorative stitches were reversable and I begain to lust after a stitch regulator. I tried out the Bernina stitch regulator recently and while it does help with free motion quilting there is still a learning curve to getting the look you want. I think that it just seems to shorten the learning curve. I have no complains about my machine, only that I would like it do do more. I also wanted a bit more space to the right of the needle. I’ve checked out the new Berninas and I really think they’ve come out with some nice features on the 700 series. But the machines are new and the costs are very high. Also, for me, although I have a local dealer, I’m not too pleased with them and my next closest dealer is an hour away. I have a local Baby Lock dealer and I’ve been considering one of their machines. I’m being tempted by the embroidery functions on both brands (something I’ve never considered before but really looks cool.) as well as the directional sewing and the ability to do very wide decorative stitches with the fabric moving horizontally as well as vertically through the machine. I can see that being nice for edge to edge quilting. The Baby Locks are lower in cost (only an arm instead of an arm and a leg). I haven’t made my finall decision but as of this moment I’m leaning toward the Baby Lock, either the Esante or the Elegante model (personally, I think their names are silly). So……….not sure how helpful that was to you! Happy hunting….I share your pain and your excitement.

  6. Sue

    As a former Quilt Shop Owner and Janome Dealer, I highly recommend a Janome. I do all my pieceing and small quilt machine quilting on a Janome 6500. There are newer models since I bought mine, and I would upgrade to one of them if my 6500 were to go kaput. However, with proper care and maintenance it will probably last forever…it’s that good of a machine.

    One of my favorite features is the Built In Walking Foot or Even Feed Foot and the additional Feet that you can purchase like the Even Feed Quarter Inch Foot. What a boon for sewing on Binding! Plus all of the Snap on Feet are interchangeable with other Janome machines like the Gems…which are soooo fantastic for classes.

    I also have the Janome 11000 Embroidery Machine and several others….which have sewn many miles and still going strong. I am a LongArm Quilter and have a Gammill…which I also recommend.

    You are very wise to research and find out about as many Sewing Machines from others as you can. My advice is to buy the best machine you can afford and don’t discount a used machine that has been re-serviced by a dealer or one that you can have serviced. I bought a 1950 Century Edition Featherweight at a Pawn Shop….it’s a JEWEL and sews PERFECTLY!!! So there ya go, Miss Thimble…good luck and happy sewing!

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