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embroidery machines
looking for a 1st embroidery machine
Grammabb
Grammabb
Member since 5/27/12
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Date: 5/27/12 6:28 PM

I am looking for my 1st embroidery machine. I am thinking of a Bernina since that is the closest dealer to me. Since this is my 1st, I don't want the price to be outrageous. Any suggestions?

rebe
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rebe  Friend of PR
Intermediate
Florida USA
Member since 2/28/05
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Date: 5/27/12 6:31 PM

brother or babylock make very nice embroidery machines that are easy to use.

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Rebecca Pitts
Bernina 430
Singer xl-6000
Singer 9960
Babylock Imagine
Elna 740 Excellence
Ellisimo

Grammabb
Grammabb
Member since 5/27/12
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Date: 5/27/12 6:40 PM

Thanks! Are these regular sewing machines as well? Do they need a laptop? I forgot to mention these! I would like it to be a combination and I don't have a laptop to use with it. I'm also new to this forum, so bear with me!

1975Jumby
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1975Jumby
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California USA
Member since 8/19/08
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In reply to Grammabb <<
thumbsup 1 member likes this.


Date: 5/27/12 6:49 PM

I just went through this purchase myself over the last two weeks...what started as just wanting an embroidery machine turned into something bigger!!!

Babylock and Brother make great machines and are VERY EASY to understand and learn. Even the manuals are extrememly well written. In my area, I only had one Brother dealer and I didn't care for him at all. But there were quite a few Babylock dealers and so it made shopping around much easier.

I'm not sure what your pricepoint is, but Babylock has combo machines ranging from $1500 to over $6500 for their top of the line model. I purchased the Esante and just picked it up Friday. I couldn't be more than happy with it so far. You will need a computer to download designs and, depending on your embroidery machine, you can connect the computer to the machine or use a USB flash drive to download your design to the embroidery machine. But embroidery machines usually come with a nice array of built in designs and you can also purchase embroidery cards that have designs on them, so you don't have to have a computer or laptop to embroider.

Do you know what type of embroidering you'd like to do and is this a new hobby for you? Are you more of a sewer than an embrodierer?

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Babylock Ellisimo Gold
Babylock Enlighten
Kenmore 1914
Kenmore 1814

heathergwo
heathergwo
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California USA
Member since 11/14/11
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Date: 5/27/12 9:00 PM

For a combo machine, there are quite a few to choose from.

What is your budget?

I just recently picked up the Brother Innovis 1250D which is basically the same machine as the Babylock Ellure Plus.

It's a great combo machine under $2k... around $1400 here in SF Bay Area.

Hope that helps!

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Brother Innovis 1250D
Babylock Enlighten
Singer Curvy 8763
Brother 1034D
Janome 385.19606
Brother 2340CV

speattle
speattle
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Member since 2/10/11
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In reply to Grammabb <<


Date: 5/28/12 2:18 AM

By your screen name I assume you have grandkids. If there is a chance you will be embroidering and sewing for them, then take a look at the Brother Innovis-D line. Especially with kids, it is fun to be able to embellish with Disney designs and the brother D machines are the only ones with Disney.

I have the same machine as Heathergwo, the Brother Innovis 1250D. It has fabulous sewing features (more than I will probably ever use and this machine is only a midline machine) and embroidery capability up to 5 x 7.

I am discovering lots of websites that offer inexpensive or free designs and a LOT of in the hoop projects that work for a 5 x 7.

Consider the 1250D. I don't have laptop either. I do have a desktop and am able to transfer online projects and designs with a USB thumb drive. The 1500D is a little more machine, but transfers with it are only done directly with direct computer connection. Not as practical, in my opinion.

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Elna Lotus TSP, Singer 503a-Rocketeer, Brother Innovis 1250D, Pfaff Passport 2.0, Kenmore 10-Stitch, Centennial Singer Featherweight from 1950

PattiAnnJ
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PattiAnnJ
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In reply to Grammabb <<
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Date: 5/28/12 12:16 PM

No to Bernina. Too expensive and proprietary.

Brother would be my first choice if I wanted to do Disney, Nickelodeon or Warner Brother designs. You can find which models accept the format for these designs by clicking here.

If you think you would not be interested in these designs, then my first choice would be Baby Lock.

It will be worth the trip (my BL dealer is over 50 miles away and in a different state) to see all that is available.

Ideally, you want a embroidery area larger than the standard 4 x 4, USB connectivity (there are two types; flash drive/stick and cable that connects to a PC) and, if you want a back-up sewing machine, a combo instead of an embroidery only machine.

The USB connectivity is for sending design files to the embroidery machine and the PC does not have to be hooked up to the embroidery machine after the design has been stored in the machine. In other words, the embroidery machine does not have to be connected to a PC in order to operate.

Most dealers will demo, let you try and offer lessons for learning to use the machine. An embroidery machine is not difficult to use - it does all the work....well maybe 95%.

Sometimes a brand will be having a promotion where they will include a bit of software. The most important being a catalog program so you can view the designs on your computer.

For tutorials, the best site I have found is Embroidery Library. Click here and save as a favorite.

Take your time, visit as many shops as you can, take notes and then buy from the dealer who was the most helpful during your visit.

Now, after all that, I bought my first embroidery only machine at WalMart out of curiosity. It was a 4 x 4 maximum stitching area and it "forced" me to learn to use software for design splitting. Design splitting is where you have a design larger than the hoop and have to split it into two or more sections. Time consuming with the realignment and re-hooping. Now there is a "step hoop" that allows you to reposition the hoop instead of re-hooping the project.

Review all of our suggestions and make a check-off list to see what it will take to make you happy.

Last note. Machine embroidery software requires a Windows operating system, and this is the reason for the PC references. However, Mac users can use the software with the addition of a program to their computers to operate Windows, or they can purchase programs such as Embrilliance which can be used with either a PC or Mac.


Edited for type-os
-- Edited on 5/28/12 12:21 PM --

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"Improvise, adapt and overcome." - Clint Eastwood/Heartbreak Ridge

StitchBuddy
StitchBuddy
Beginner
GERMANY
Member since 5/10/09
Posts: 178
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In reply to PattiAnnJ <<


Date: 5/28/12 4:48 PM

Quote: PattiAnnJ
No to Bernina. Too expensive and proprietary.
[...]

Last note. Machine embroidery software requires a Windows operating system, and this is the reason for the PC references. However, Mac users can use the software with the addition of a program to their computers to operate Windows, or they can purchase programs such as Embrilliance which can be used with either a PC or Mac.

100% agree with the Bernina statement, but ...

... most embroidery machines supporting USB sticks (e. g. from Janome, Brother, Babylock) can be used with Macs without any additional software for purchased / downloaded designs. Unfortunately that's not mentioned in most owner manuals, so a trial at the vendor is a must. For editing existing designs a few options are running on Macs as well.

Only when it comes to digitizing there aren't affordable Mac solutions, but you don't need additional software to run Windows on a Mac: It's possible to partition the Mac's hard drive and boot into a Windows installation. Only for using Windows in parallel with the Mac OS some virtualization software is needed.

Mattes

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StitchBuddy - Embroidery on Macs, iPhones and iPads

LindaBee58
LindaBee58
ITALY
Member since 7/10/09
Posts: 373
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Date: 5/30/12 12:24 PM

I would say the new Pfaff Performance where you can choose from 2 sizes of embroidery units, small or large.
The performance is a sewing machine too and has beautiful deco stitches and also a good size coloured screen.

lowcalorie2000
lowcalorie2000  Friend of PR
Intermediate
Member since 9/11/09
Posts: 19
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In reply to speattle <<


Date: 6/6/12 1:10 PM

When I was researching Brother embroidery machines I was pleased to learn that I didn't have to buy a Brother "D" model to use Disney designs. You can buy Disney designs for most of the Brother Embroidery machines on the Brother ibroidery.com web site. I have a PE 770 (embroidery only) and I have purchased and successfully used Disney and other licensed designs from that web site on my "non-D" machine. My local Brother dealer told me that no Disney designs would work on my machine. An email to Brother confirmed that this was NOT true. What will not work on the "non-D" models is the Disney design memory cards. Since I have no problems downloading and using USB sticks, it was way more cost effective to purchase the "non-D" model and buy the Disney designs that I wanted from the Brother web site.

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