Thursday, September 20, 2012

Sewing machine musings

So, as people who have heard me talk about sewing machines know, I would like a new one. My sewing machine is very simple, which is ok, but I would like more features. Mine can go backwards and forwards and that's it. I don't need a lot of bells and whistles, but I would like the capability to do buttonholes and zigzag stitches! (I don't think there's anything else that's I forgetting something?)

My first thought was to get the Bernina 1008. This is the machine we have in the costume shop, so I know how it works. It's also reliable and sturdy, since it withstands the abuse that novice sewers pour on it every day. Sounds great. Except for the price tag. $1400 MSRP. Ouch, and I mean OUCH. That's a ton of money. I have read that you can get it for about $800 if you shop around, but that's still a pretty hefty sum.

So. I was looking around on Amazon for something else, and the Janome HD1000 popped up at the edge of my screen. That seems more reasonable--$300 selling price, with a list price of $600. Janome is the brand of my first sewing machine, Marianne. (I gave her to a friend last month, by the way, in an effort to declutter.) So I have pretty good experiences with them--yes, Marianne developed what I think were some timing issues, but that was after I shoved her in a trunk and drove her 1200 miles. So I will cheerfully accept responsibility for that!

Does anyone have any comments on either of these machines, or a suggestion as to another brand or specific machine to look at? I don't have a specific price range in mind, but all other things being equal cheaper is better. I don't want to pay more than I need to, but I don't want garbage. I want a machine that will last, and last well.

Suggestions? Thoughts? What machine do you have? What are its pros and cons?


K2 said...

If you want a machine that will last for years and with heavy use, you might want to look into buying a vintage machine. My 1962 Singer 401A still runs perfectly even after 50 years. You can buy a refurbished Singer on Ebay for less than $200.

Sophie Miriam said...

Hmm...that's an interesting idea! I have to admit I'm a little nervous of buying a used machine, especially when there's no way to test it out before buying it.