Sewing Patterns, Pattern Review, Sewing Classes, Sewing Machines and Sewing Machine Reviews!
Platinum Sponsor: Stylish Fabric
Over 20,000 of high quality reorderable fabric

[SIGNUP - FREE Membership & 1 FREE Sewing Lesson ]
[Sewing Classes|Shopping Bag Your Shopping Bag|Login|Help]
Sewing Review and Pattern Reviews Sewing Knowledge Base Sewing Patterns Sewing Classes & Sewing Lessons Sewing Machine & Embroidery Machinery Sewing Message Boards Sewing merchants Blog Help/FAQ About Pattern Review
Enter your e-mail address:




Advanced Search
Tags
New to PR?
Sewing Machines
Compare Sewing Machines
Sewing Machine & Serger Reviews
Embroidery Machines
Sewing Reviews
Sewing Patterns
Review Gallery
Sewing Books
Sewing Supplies
Sewing Websites
Sewing Stores
Sewing Class Reviews
Sewing Expo Reviews
Sewing Tips & Techniques
Sewing Podcasts
NEW!Fabric Glossary
Sewing Review Requests Add a Review Request
Your Account
Edit Profile
My Page
Favorites
Wish List
Pattern Catalog
Notifications
Friends of PR
Join Friends of PR
Find a member
Deal Corner
Photo Album
Calendar
Chat Room
Chat Schedule
Chat Transcripts
Sewing Classifieds
Add a Classified
Sewing Contests
enter contest
contest report
contest gallery
Favorite Links
reviews with comments
merchant gallery
article archive
newsletter archive
Craft Resources
contact info
shipping rates
returns & refunds
testimonials

Platinum Sponsor - Stylish Fabric
Stylish Fabric
You are not logged in. Login here.



Message Board > NEW to PatternReview? > Looking to buy a sewing machine and need suggestions ( Moderated by Lynnelle)

Please LOGIN or Join PatternReview
Go to Page:
Looking to buy a sewing machine and need suggestions
Remi1328
Remi1328
Beginner
CA USA
Member since 2/25/13
Posts: 7
Login to reply to this post

thumbsup 1 member likes this.
Date: 2/28/13 1:43 PM

Hi!
I've just joined PR after stumbling on this site while researching on which sewing machine to buy. I am a returning sewing enthusiast having not sewed anythingnfor more than 20 years!

I've been looking at the Janome 2013 and Magnolia when a dealer showed me the Brother Innovis 40 and 80. I was skeptical at first after hearing negative things about Brother machines (breaks down often, plastic parts etc.). However, after the dealer explained that these models are made differently and showed me the machine, I must admit that I am swaying towards the Brother Innovis 80. The Janome 2013 was my initial choice after reading many good reviews online. Only thing that was missing was the start stop button (allows for sewing without footpedal) that has made me look at the Brother Innovis 80.

I have not pulled the trigger yet because of the price. I was given a list price of $749 and a discounted price of $649 for the Innovis 80 and this is definitely a lot highernthan the $499 i was willing to pay for the Janome. I guess in my mind the Janome is still a far more superior brand than the Brother and i can't bring myself to part with another $200 for a less credible brand.

If anyone of you has used either machine, will appreciate any advice you can give me to help me make a decision on which machine to get. Thanks much in advance!

Marie367
Marie367  Friend of PR
Intermediate
OH USA
Member since 5/28/11
Posts: 2219
Login to reply to this post

In reply to Remi1328 <<


Date: 2/28/13 6:19 PM

Hi Remi and welcome to PR. Have you checked reviews here for those machines? I am partial to the Janomes and have two of them myself. I have also owned a Brother 420 PC. I looked at the Innovis 40 and 80 and if I remember right those two do not have adjustable foot pressure. That was a deal breaker for me as I primarily sew garments. I don't know anything about the Janome 2013 but I have heard that the Magnolias are nice machines.
HTH

Remi1328
Remi1328
Beginner
CA USA
Member since 2/25/13
Posts: 7
Login to reply to this post

In reply to Marie367 <<


Date: 3/1/13 0:19 AM

Thanks for your input Marie. I do not really know what the adjustable foot pressure does. I also intend to use my machine for sewing garments. As for the Janome DC2013, it is the same model as the DC2011 and DC2012. I was told that Janome releases a new one each year which has the same features (i.e. 50 stitches etc) but in a different color. I like the Janome magnolia 7330 because i was impressed by the start stop feature but it only offers 30 stitches. Altho i may not use all of the stitches, i wanted to be able to have the option of more choices if you know what I mean. The DC would have been a great choice but it does not have the start stop,which i like....and hence my dilemma. Guess you can't have all the features. I'm just going to have to pick the one that has most of what i think is important to me....

SandiMacD
star
SandiMacD  Friend of PR
Intermediate
FL USA
Member since 2/8/09
Posts: 2216
Login to reply to this post

thumbsup 1 member likes this.
Date: 3/1/13 4:52 AM

I returned after 20 yrs off. I had no clue about todays computerized machines but have learned a lot in the past 5 years.
Welcome to PR!

If you are going to be sewing on knits you will greatly appreciate the adjustible foot pressure. It eases the pressure on lightweight fabrics so they flow smoothly across the needle plate. That prevents knits from puckering or catching. Adjustible pressure also helps on bulky layers like sewing totes or home dec.

Garment sewers generally prefer a 5-7 mm feed dog for fabric control while quilters generally prefer 7-9 mm for decorative stitch width.

I read tons of reviews and asked questions about what the features were- what they did and why I might want them.

Here's a few:
Adjustible needle- it moves it to the right or left in increments. It makes it land exactly where you want it. Good for catching zippers and piping and other edges when you don't want to or can't reposition the fabric. Some machines have 3 set needle poistions, some have 5 and some let you self adjust along a range.

Snap on feet- you dont need a screwdriver!

Self needle threader- you push down on a bar and it threads the needle. Some you push a button. Not all work well and some get bent or out of whack and need adjustment. Others work perfectly for years. None work with a small needle eye, say less than 8/70.

Needle up/needle down- Berninas have a foot controller that works with a heel tap to lower or raise the needle up or down and NOT sew a stitch. Some machines have a button that will do this. It is nice to control the fabric when pivoting and you need to raise the presser foot. Some also let you set a preference so that your machine will always stop with the needle in either the up or down position.

Auto thread cutter- usually this is a button to push. Some machines only cut the bobbin thread others cut both. Quilter seem to love this- I think for piecing. Some machines can be set to always cut when you stop. I garment sew and its noy a feature I have grown used to yet. I like puling out a length and cutting it as I may tie off a dart or need a length of thread to control a fine fabric. But I love it for embroidery on my combo machine.

Pivot- some machines can be set to automatically raise the presser foot when you stop. Others provide a bar that reaches your knee so you can move the bar and the presser foot raises up. This lets you pivot to turn a corner or control around a curve. Some knee lifter bars are not shaped well or are not long enough to work well with the table, counter, desk or cabinet that you use. TOL macines combine this with a needle down feature.

Hoover- some machines let you adjust how close the needle will hover above the fabric before you start sewing. This helps to identify exactly where the needle will land without using the fly wheel to check.

Bobbin thread sensor- tells you when your bobbin is low. Some do so early and you can keep sewing quite a while. Some warn you when you are really close- just a few feet left.

Top thread sensor- some machines will not sew if there is no thread in the thread path. You will have to turn the fly wheel to make the needle go up or down or thread everything but the needle.

I am sure you will find many more and hear from others about how they use computerized features and why they like or dont like them.
HTH, Sandi
-- Edited on 3/1/13 5:05 AM --

------
sewing brings joy and meaning to my life...

Marie367
Marie367  Friend of PR
Intermediate
OH USA
Member since 5/28/11
Posts: 2219
Login to reply to this post

In reply to Remi1328 <<


Date: 3/1/13 8:47 PM

The adjustable foot pressure allows you to lessen the pressure from the foot and the feed dogs so that the fabric feeds differently-lighter for light fabrics; harder for thicker fabric. I adjust it all the time to match the fabric. Most of us have a lot more stitches than we use-I use a straight stitch, zigzag, buttonhole, and blindhem on a regular basis. I have 160+ stitches available but I seldom use any others. You can certainly get by with less stitches although it is nice to have more. I would go with the features that are most important to you and that you like the best. You can always save up for a machine with more features. My budget changed as I kept looking at machines because I wanted certain features. It is so hard to make a decision when there are so many choices!

Remi1328
Remi1328
Beginner
CA USA
Member since 2/25/13
Posts: 7
Login to reply to this post

In reply to SandiMacD <<


Date: 3/2/13 0:01 AM

You're awesome Sandi! Thanks for all the helpful explanations!
There are so many features that I never knew were available on sewing machines. I will really have to read the specs of the machines I am looking at and figure out what are the most important things for me. It's hard to really know now as I am just returning to sewing. I'm sure my needs and wants will change as I start sewing a lot more, which is why I think I shouldn't get something fully loaded now. The dealer I spoke to was willing to give me a one year period to upgrade to a better model should I feel the need and this will be give me some wiggle room to start with a basic machine first. Actually compared to the vintage Singer machine that I learnt to sew on, nothing out there now is really all that basic.....

Remi1328
Remi1328
Beginner
CA USA
Member since 2/25/13
Posts: 7
Login to reply to this post

In reply to Marie367 <<


Date: 3/2/13 0:08 AM

Thanks Marie! I'm not sure that the machine I was considering has an adjustable foot pressure. The specs says something about 'Extra High Presser Foot Lift for Extra Clearance" Is this close to adjustable?

Will you mind taking a look at the two Janome model specs for me and advise me?
Here are the links:
http://content.janome.com/index.cfm/Machines/Sewing-Quilting/Magnolia_7330
http://content.janome.com/index.cfm/Machines/Sewing-Quilting/DC2013

Thanks much!

HDWen
star
HDWen  Friend of PR
Advanced Beginner
AZ USA
Member since 12/26/11
Posts: 2144
Login to reply to this post

Date: 3/2/13 9:39 AM

Just my nickle worth :-)

I have a sewing machine that has the Start/Stop button -- used it ONCE it scared the crude out of me - you have to set the "speed" so it sews by itself as you just move the fabric -- NOT something I know I'll be using often

The pivot, hover features are great -- I think you'll be amazed at either machine coming back from a long break!

Think about what you are going to sew -- Clothing? Test the buttonholes on both, the blind hem etc..

Quilts? Totally different, you want the pivot and hover features and the biggest harp space you can afford (distance between needle and inside machine).

I have 6 sewing machines and have never used all the stitches on ANY of them!! LOL

Another thought -- You WILL eventually want 2 machines for when your "main" machine goes into the shop for yearly maintenance (I rotate mine through). Once you get started sewing again, I hope you find your LOVE for it again - So get what you can Afford now, knowing that after you are back in the swing you can always get that second one

Great advice on here as always!

:-Debbie

------
I have a great enthusium for sewing, but lack talent to be great.

2013

Marie367
Marie367  Friend of PR
Intermediate
OH USA
Member since 5/28/11
Posts: 2219
Login to reply to this post

In reply to Remi1328 <<


Date: 3/3/13 11:58 AM

Remi, the Extra High Presser Foot Lift means you can stuff extra fabric under the foot for sewing-good feature if you are sewing things like quilts that need that extra space. The foot pressure is a release that lightens the pressure between the foot and the feed dogs. I know there are some people on here that say you don't need it but I use it all the time when sewing knits or light weight fabric. It keeps the fabric from puckering. Neither of these machines have it. The Magnolia looks very nice! What kind of sewing are you hoping to do? If it is primarily garment sewing, then you might want adjustable foot pressure. I don't know why Janome (and the other manufacturers) do not put that on every machine. Janome puts it on their mechanicals but you have to go up to mid-range to get it on the computerized. Someone else might know the models that have the adjustable. You can always take some fabric with you and see how the machine does with it. HTH

PattiAnnJ
star
PattiAnnJ
Advanced
OH USA
Member since 12/3/06
Posts: 6858
Login to reply to this post

In reply to Remi1328 <<
thumbsup 2 members like this.


Date: 3/3/13 1:04 PM

Every major brand has excellent sewing machines.

The lower end models may not be as sturdy as you would like if you are going to do a lot of sewing.

I have a lower end Singer 1507 that provides basic stitches identical to my higher end machines: Bernina, Babylock and Elna.

The higher end machines may have a few more features. Electronic models have a certain amount of memory and mechanical models do not.

Make a list of the items you know or would like to sew. Add budget and then start visiting the dealers.

"Buy the dealer" is a new phrase you may read from time to time. This is why I switched from Bernina to Babylock. I went to the dealer I liked (purchased Bernina and Elna from him) when I was looking for a new embroidery machine. He had switched to BL (sewing, embroidery, and sergers) because he thought Bernina was too expensive...and they are.

The choice is yours and the options plentiful.


------
I dont give them Hell, I just tell the truth about them and they think its Hell. Harry Truman

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

Go to Page:
Please LOGIN or Join PatternReview
printable version Printable Version

* Advertising and soliciting is strictly prohibited on PatternReview.com. If you find a post which is not in agreement with our Terms and Conditions, please click on the Report Post button to report it. NEW to PatternReview? >> Looking to buy a sewing machine and need suggestions

Merchants on PR
So Vintage Patterns
Thank You for Joining!
Deals!
Fitz Like a Glove Ironing Board Cover
Made In Australia
Deals!
SewBaby
Unique Sewing Patterns
Deals!
Budo Bear Designs
Asian Designs
Web site
Patterns from the Past
vintage sewing patterns
Deals!

Copyright © 2014 PatternReview.com® , OSATech, Inc. All rights reserved.
Conditions of Use | Posting Guidelines | Privacy Policy | Contact Us
Online Sewing Classes
Sewing with Slippery & Drapey Fabrics
Fee: $19.99
(Regular $49.00)
Sewing with Slippery & Drapey Fabrics

Online Sewing Classes
The Contemporary Couture Jacket
Fee: $49.00
(Regular $49.00)
The Contemporary Couture Jacket

Drafted from RTW 000002
photo
Review by Ms. McCall on 9/14/12
Read Review

Vogue 1324 Pattern ( Size 4-6-8-10-12 )
Vogue 1324 Pattern ( Size 4-6-8-10-12 )

Details
Price: $32.00
Add to Bag Add to Bag

Burda 7131 Pattern
Burda 7131 Pattern

Details
Price: $11.95
Add to Bag Add to Bag

No Pattern Used No pattern Used Maxi Skirt
photo
Review by Luvable on 5/7/12
Read Review

Cake Patterns Tiramisu Knit Dress Digital Pattern
Cake Patterns Tiramisu Knit Dress Digital Pattern

Details
Price: $13.00
Add to Bag Add to Bag

Oliver + S Garden Party Dress (6M-4) Digital Pattern
Oliver + S Garden Party Dress (6M-4) Digital Pattern

Details
Price: $16.95
Add to Bag Add to Bag

Favorite Things Sweet Es-Cape Pattern
Favorite Things Sweet Es-Cape Pattern

Details
Price: $14.00
Add to Bag Add to Bag

Paradiso Designs Xine Basket Bag Pattern
Paradiso Designs Xine Basket Bag Pattern

Details
Price: $13.00
Add to Bag Add to Bag

Subscribe to PR Message Board Feed Subscribe to the PR Message Board Feed Add to My Yahoo! Subscribe at NewsGator Online Subscribe at Bloglines Add to MyMSN