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Forum > Sewing Machines > Your Dream Sewing Machine ( Moderated by Sharon1952, EleanorSews)

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Your Dream Sewing Machine
recommendations on an unlimited budget dress-makers sewing machine
zenn
zenn
Advanced Beginner
CO USA
Member since 6/13/12
Posts: 20
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Date: 9/7/13 5:46 PM

I have outgrown my Singer Curvy 8763 and am looking for a dream machine. Currently, there is no limit on budget, however, that may change with new information.

I am looking for a dress-makers dream machine - self threading, cutting, adjusting, tension, needle lift, variable feed dog systems, and excellent lighting, a good-sized base, capable of sewing, embroidery (limited) and possibly quilting.

My hand dexterity is decreasing so I need a machine that can do a lot for me. Since I am so annoyed by clunkiness, it must be a smooth and silent operation.

The machine will be used for a variety of projects...knits, wovens and thicker fleece, denim, canvas. However it will be used primarily for dress-making. It will be paired with a new babylock serger. Currently, the serger is used much more than the sewing machine especially with knits. I have no problem continuing to sew knits primarily on the serger if that makes any difference.

I would love to hear what your dream machine would be and why. Thanks PR community!
-- Edited on 9/7/13 5:52 PM --
-- Edited on 9/7/13 5:57 PM --

Maia B
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Maia B  Friend of PR
Advanced Beginner
IL USA
Member since 10/27/10
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Date: 9/7/13 6:34 PM

I would recommend my Bernina 820 except that it's not silent. It makes robotic noises with cutting, etc. which don't bother me at all, but exclude it from being considered quiet. And it's HEAVY, not easily portable at all. Other than that, it's been a dream machine.

I'm mostly a quilter, but I've done more clothes recently. One of the first things I sewed on the 820 was a woven skirt with knit yoke. And denim-no problem hemming jeans, I do A LOT of that.

There are several 830 owners on PR who primarily sew garments and a few other 820 owners who do. The 830 does embroidery and costs more than the 820.

I got my 820 in a bundled with the Bernina quilt frame, but I think the machine alone runs around $6000-$6500. You did say no budget limit, lol.

Other high-end, non-embroidery machines I'd consider if I were shopping today are the Janome 8900 and the Pfaff Performance 5.0. But I've had my 820 for over two years, and it's been trouble-free and fabulous.

------
🌸 Plenty of machines, mostly Berninas 🌸

Seams2Sew
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Seams2Sew
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Date: 9/7/13 6:57 PM

Go to all the dealers in your area with the fabrics you sew and try out the machines. Then choose the machine that YOU love.

rebe
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rebe  Friend of PR
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FL USA
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Date: 9/7/13 7:01 PM

I Like my Elna 740 which is a Janome 7700.
Others love the Janome 6600. I have not had any issues with mine. It has the acufeed system which is similar to the IDT for pfaff. So you may want to look at Pfaff also.

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

PattiAnnJ
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PattiAnnJ
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OH USA
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Date: 9/7/13 7:03 PM

I already have my "dream machine". Babylock Ellegante.

Test drive before you buy.

------
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

AminaHijabi
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AminaHijabi
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Date: 9/7/13 9:13 PM

my dream machines are the Janome 7700/8200/8900, Babylock Symphony (or maybe their new Aria) and a Viking Saphire 875q (now which will be replaced by a Saphire 960 in October) they have so many beautiful decorative stitches for dresses, hover or knee lifts (or both) space for large projects, a bajillion feet... just everything I could want since I'm not into embroidery. Of the machines listed I have test-driven the Viking. The others I've seen demonstrated and read the specs online.

Marie367
Marie367  Friend of PR
Intermediate
OH USA
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In reply to zenn <<


Date: 9/7/13 9:28 PM

I love the Janomes. I have a 6600 but if money were no object I might get the 8900; it is a very impressive machine. I like the Pfaff's too; someday a Pfaff will be in my sewing room (for the IDT). It just depends on what you want to spend. Babylock and Bernina (the 820 is perfect for garments) are great as well. When I was looking, I went to see every brand. I settled on the Janome and I am very happy. Some people have said that their machine just "sings" to them. I feel that way about the Janome. It was the best choice for me at the time and my budget. The only way you will know what is best for you is to go look.

SandiMacD
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SandiMacD  Friend of PR
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FL
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Date: 9/8/13 6:21 AM

Whatever you buy new and computerized think of it as a complement to, not a replacement for, a sound mechanical.

I liked much about my Bernina 430 except for the lack of a garment sewing foot, loss of stitch memory when turned off and so-so needle threader. The specialty feet for stitches and techniques are superb but they do not make anything that comes close to the Babylock J foot or the Pfaff 0/1 foot. And buttonholes were disapointing- too small and impossible to sew on waistband edges. The Bernina stitch quality was impeccable on this machine and it ran smoothly.

My Babylock Ellisimo handles the most delicate and intricate of garments. They feed through painlesslessly. The J foot controls all parts of the fabric while offering complete visibility on 3 way intersections (think gussets) or mending intersecting seams (think pleats and bodice areas). Unlike quilters who focus on precise 1/4 seams, I need to be able to see and sew markings that may not have anything to do with the outer fabric edge. It also has a basting stitch that can be set up to 20 mm. I like the look of the buttonholes better than the Bernina. The embroidery and character stitches offer a personal touch and the switch over is a breeze. The embroidery is trouble free, no headaches and no need for precision hooping with the snowman. The automatic needle threader is amazing- never fails! This is a fun machine to use - it makes me smile.

The Pfaff also offers feet that allow complete visibility and control of fabric. I have a mechanical 6152 with IDT that often astounds even me when hemming jeans. Just last week I hemmed 5 pairs of school jeans for my grandson. I cut off the hem and double turned it under. I now had my side felled seams that were tripled. The IDT did not blink an eye! Set at a 4mm stitch length, it pulled the fabric hump evenly and the stitches were just as measured as the rest of the hem. The Pfaff also has an uneven right and left jeans hem foot. The manual buttonhole can be made any length and is full looking because I control the width of that satin stitch. It has a mechanical needle threader that works quite well. This machine is my portable friend- perfect for workshops.

And my BL Evolution serger rounds things out nicely. The jet air threaders and needle threader do-hicky works every time.

I have often considered my dream machine but then I though about DH in the kitchen. There is not one appliance that is perfect for everything. Over time I have narrowed it down to the machines that work best for what I do.

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

Scrappy Gram
Scrappy Gram
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NY USA
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Date: 9/8/13 8:12 AM

Pfaff Performance 5.0 - IDT is much easier to use than on the Janome 6600. No need for a screwdriver to change from regular feet to Accufeed foot.

Sold my Janome and absolutely love my 5.0.

Pfaff girl now!

JanyceR

JanyceR  Friend of PR
CO USA
Member since 2/3/07
Posts: 1598
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Date: 9/8/13 8:44 AM

My Bernina 780 is very quiet and very smooth. It sews beautifully and I have not had the problems that some others have had. I really like the way this machine feels, sews, and sounds. I also own a Bernina 820 that I love but as Maia said, it does have some clunky noises. I love using the 820 for both garments and quilts, but it has no embroidery. The 830 is the model with embroidery. I previously owned a Pfaff Creative Performance and now own a Performance 5.0. They are great garment sewing machines, and the CP was wonderful for embroidery. However, I find them both very noisy when stitching anything other than a straight stitch. Its not a clunky noise, it's just noisy. But I do like my Pfaff very much and won't give it up.

Good luck with your search, try all the machines and find the one that sings to you. You will know it when you sew on it

------
Pfaff Creative Sensation Pro, Bernina 780,
B350SE,other Berninas, Pfaff Performance 5, several vintage - multiple manufacturers.
Love all my machines!

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