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sewing machines for children
wildwinowoman
wildwinowoman  Friend of PR
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Kentucky USA
Member since 7/29/13
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Date: 8/6/13 8:06 AM

I want to buy an inexpensive sm for a young child to use (rather than let them use my machine). One child is 9, one is 11. Both are inquisitive, interested and capable (but not THAT capable). Any suggestions???

Jannerie

Jannerie
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Ohio USA
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Date: 8/6/13 8:55 AM

My 10 year old DGD is my sewing buddy. When she was 8 we started with pot holders on my Singer featherweight. Then we moved up to a full size vintage straight stitch machine.

This year she showed interest in my computerized Bernina 630. She does fine with it. I even let her use my Pfaff CS and she is fascinated with the thread snips.

My point is that I don't think the machine really matters as long as it is a good dependable machine. Kids are so comfortable with computerized electronics that I don't worry about her curiosity with the different menus and stitches on my good machines.

The only thing I would worry about is getting a machine that does not sew well and therefore cause frustration.

I am glad that you are sharing your talent with the children.

------
Pfaff creative Sensation,
Singer 15-91,237,221,328K,301,301a,401,403,404,500,503
Bernina 630, 125jubilae
Viking 6020

Melinda In Tulsa
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Melinda In Tulsa  Friend of PR
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Date: 8/6/13 9:33 AM

My DGD is 6 but hasn't shown any interest in sewing yet, although she loves what Gramma makes her. I thought when she was ready, I'd start her out with my Featherweight as it would be more her size.

------
Melinda

We had to get rid of the kids, the dogs are allergic

Babylock Unity, Symphony, Serenade, Imagine Wave, BL Coverstitch, BL Emore, BL Embellisher, Juki TL2010Q, Pfaff 7570, Kenmore 385.1915, Kenmore 158.1914, Kenmore 158.1430, Brother PE 150, 1938 Singer Featherweight, 1896 Singer 27 Treadle...Member of SMAD

jilly cooper
jilly cooper
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International AUSTRALIA
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In reply to wildwinowoman <<


Date: 8/6/13 9:58 AM

If inexpensive is your main concern (as mine was) I let my daughters use mechanical Janomes, vintage singers and old Berninas to begin with - they were consistent in giving a great stitch. In the beginning my daughters were mastering straight stitching. All these machines were low cost for me.
I do have a featherweight and a computerised Bernina but these were not used for "teaching to sew". Once they mastered straight stitching then they used the Bernina if they needed zig zag at the push of a button.

ETA: I would love to let my children use the 222k to learn to sew but I am too scared that I will be annoyed if they hurt it, and I don't want them to feel that bad about sewing.

My aim was for a machine to give consistent results (no stress) and have machines which they couldn't break and I wouldn't worry if they were damaged.

Mind you, my daughters wanted to use a machine that not only gave instant gratification but they cared about how they looked. So they didn't want to keep sewing on the "old machines".

Good luck with the sewing
-- Edited on 8/6/13 10:06 AM --

lisalu
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lisalu
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Date: 8/6/13 10:44 AM

At first glance it does seem like a Featherweight would be the perfect child's sewing machine. It is "child-sized" to begin with, and therefore a little less intimidating than a full sized machine. It is extremely easy to use because it is simple and mechanical. Like many vintage mechanicals it is somewhat forgiving of minor user error which reduces frustration. (i.e. it is not overly finicky about tension on the easy cotton fabrics most beginners use.)

On the other hand, most adult seamstresses regard them as valued collector's items and would cringe to see them scratched or dinged by careless young hands. (I'd keep an eye out for a bargain priced model that isn't cosmetically perfect to alleviate that concern.) But also, most youngsters today are familiar with electronics and would probably expect that in any machine they use. They would most likely regard a Featherweight era machine with the same horror we would have had for a treadle machine when we were growing up! LOL

If I had a child who could appreciate the idea of going vintage - or "retro", might be a better word - then by all means I'd start them out on a Featherweight (keeping a close eye on the white hot lightbulb poised to sear little hands!)

------
Jim (Singer 301), Margaret (Singer 201-2), Betty (Singer 15-91), Bud (Singer 503), Kathy (Singer 221), Liz (Singer 221 Centennial Edition)
http://runningstitches-mkb.blogspot.com/

Marie367
Marie367  Friend of PR
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In reply to wildwinowoman <<
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Date: 8/6/13 10:58 AM

I like the Elnas and Janome mechanicals. They have a variety of stitches and are rock solid. My dealer pushes the Elna 3210 for new sewers. She has me wanting one as a back up. She sells them for about $400. There are a few models that are less than that. I have a mechanical Janome/Kenmore that is just fine so I don't know why I want another machine...

ilesliemy
ilesliemy  Friend of PR
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Date: 8/6/13 11:08 AM

Just don't go to Walmart and buy a really cheap machine, just because it is new. Look on Craig's list for a mechanical machine about 8 years old. Viking made some awfully nice ones back then. Also a newer Emerald might be a good choice. A machine that eats thread and jams is super frustrating for children.
Leslie

------
Bernina Gal

Sew Nanny
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Date: 8/6/13 11:12 AM

I was shopping for a similar sewing machine a few years ago. My dealer sells Bernina and Brother and recommended a Brother Project Runway Innov-is 40. I paid less than $400 for it and it was a really nice machine. My granddaughter didn't show any interest and I eventually gave it to my daughter-in-law.
-- Edited on 8/6/13 11:13 AM --

------
Patricia
Bernina B780E ~ Bernina B380 ~ Juki MO-735
Bernina DesignerPlus 7

"It is better to light a candle than curse the darkness." Eleanor Roosevelt

Speech girl
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Speech girl  Friend of PR
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In reply to wildwinowoman <<


Date: 8/6/13 11:16 AM

I have been teaching my boys on a vintage Kenmore 52 that I got free but had to buy parts for it. I thought they would like the all metal toughness of it (then they saw my computerized machine and asked why couldn't they have used that one. I guess I forgot that we are in the electronic age).
My dd wanted her own small machine so I got her the Kenmore ultra mini. It is a decent machine for the money, but appears not to be made anymore, which I know is no help to you! Here's a thread about the Janome sew mini--that may be a good option
Sew mini discussion

------
Kim
formerly mikkim
http://girlwithatimemachine.wordpress.com/

MartiP
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Date: 8/6/13 11:28 AM

I found a great , sturdy, all mechanical machine for my grandaughter's seventh birthday gift.( She was is the only one who has showed an interest in sewing).
It has 37 stitches, is quiet and sews a perfect stitch.
It is the Brother BB370. As an added plus for a little girl's machine, it has a pretty butterfly motif on the front.
I looked at some other childrn's theme machines but they were $200 or more, and I didn't want to spend that much.
The price for this one bounced around between $99 and $129 at Walmart.com, and finally at $79!! That's went I grabbed it! Very happy with this great little machine. The only thing it doesn't have is drop feed, just a cover for the feed dogs. Excellent value, though.

-- Edited on 8/6/13 11:29 AM --
-- Edited on 8/6/13 11:30 AM --

------
MartiP

Ruckertt's Law; There is nothing so small that it can't be blown out of proportion.

Bernina 1230 Bernette 007D
Brother CS6000i Brother 2340 CV
New Home L372
Singer 221K (off white)
U.S Blindstitch, Model SL 718/2D
Simplicity SE2
Brother 700II

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