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Message Board > Sewing Machines > Which to buy????? ( Moderated by Sharon1952, EleanorSews)

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Which to buy?????
buying my first machine
justmarried
justmarried
Beginner
AL USA
Member since 11/17/06
Posts: 1
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Date: 11/17/06 12:50 PM

Hi!
I was really hoping someone could give me a little guidance. I have never used a sewing machine. I am looking to buy one, but I dont know anything about what to look for or which are better than others. I want to buy a good machine that is easy to use, but one I will not have to replace very quickly as I learn to do more. I am wanting to possibly (depending on how easily I learn) make and embelish outfits for my daughter, I also would love to be able to fix things, and make decorative items for my house, comforters, etc!
I appericiate any assistance you all can lend!



Member since 12/31/69
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In reply to justmarried


Date: 11/17/06 2:00 PM

You will need to figure out how much you want to spend. Sewing machines can be very expensive. Decide on a budget and get the best machine you can within your budget.

Second you should decide if you want to buy from or dealer or not. When I was looking for my first machine - I bought it from a dealer because of the get to know machine class. I found that very helpful and it's nice to have a place to go when I have questions about the machine.

Also, sewing machines are a lot like buying a car. Everyone has their own style and what they want in a machine. You may want to try the sewing machine wizard on this site and then go to some dealers and try out the machines you are interested in. Get the machine that best suits your style and needs.

Happy Sewing

Kanjelab
Kanjelab
Intermediate
PA
Member since 4/20/06
Posts: 142
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Date: 11/17/06 7:48 PM

Since you have never used a sewing machine, and are not be sure if you'll enjoy sewing, I would try to find someone who has an extra machine that they'd be willing to lend you. Or maybe find one at a yard sale--but ideally, it's best if you can get one from a friend or aunt or someone, because they can show you how to use it.

Once you've done a little sewing and if you find you enjoy it you'll also get an idea of what features you'll want in your own machine.

Then, check out this forum again (and you'll be sucked right in like the rest of us!

nancy2001
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nancy2001  Friend of PR
Advanced
AL USA
Member since 12/3/05
Posts: 6429
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Date: 11/17/06 8:04 PM

I agree with Keepmeinstitches. Think about how much you'd be willing to spend and visit a few dealers in your area.

But realize that you'll probably want to trade up as your skills develop. (I learned to sew last December and am now on my third machine).

The advantage to buying your machine from a dealer is that they offer free classes and will often let you trade up within a certain time period.

I also agree with Jemml that participating on this message board is a great way to learn about sewing and to interact with people who love this hobby.

And don't forget your public library. They probably have a shelf full of recent and helpful books on all aspects of sewing.

Good luck.

------
No sewing project is ever a complete success nor a total failure.

tlmck3
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tlmck3
Advanced Beginner
IL USA
Member since 7/11/05
Posts: 3753
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Date: 11/17/06 8:55 PM


Since you are brand new it might be a good idea to ask around family, neighbors, work, etc. Especially if money is tight. You'd be suprised how many wonderful sewing machines from the 1940s- early 1970s are moldering, unused in closets and attics that are still perfectly usable. Almost every house had a machine until the mid-70s at least. Lots of them are also turning up at thrift stores and garage sales for dirt cheap. The old mechanical (not computerized) all metal machines are easy to use, easy to learn how to clean and oil and even do minor repairs yourself on. I have 5 machines and none of them are younger than 40. I've spent anywhere from $10.00 to $40.00--usually around $20.00 but I'm in Chicago, and thrift stores tend to charge MORE here for machines than in other places in the Midwest and South.

------
I am going for a level of perfection that is only mine... Most of the pleasure is in getting that last little piece perfect...Inspiration is for amateurs. The rest of us just keep showing up and doing the work.

Chuck Close, painter, printmaker, photographer

Hope has two lovely daughters: Anger and Courage

St. Augustine



Member since 12/31/69
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In reply to justmarried


Date: 11/17/06 9:20 PM

I think starting with a used machine is a great idea, but it is important to get one that is in good working order.

I have purchased many sewing machines at yard sales, thrift stores, etc... From my experience, the majority of them needed some type of attention to be 100% functional. Often it is something simple, but it is also not uncommon for them to require more in-depth repairs.

So, if you want to concentrate on learning to sew rather than learning to service, I suggest you confine your search to machines that are KNOWN to be 100% functional. For some people, the definition of a working sewing machine is "the stabber thing goes up and down". Sorry to say, but there is a bit more to it than that.

Many sewing machine dealers have a nice selection of fully service used machines. There is one in my area that has serviced machines starting at $39, just as an example.

If a year or two down the road you decide to move up the sewing machine ladder, you will have gotten your money's worth out of the machine, and it would make a great "spare" or you could donate it or trade it in or sell it out right.

Really, I wouldn't worry about getting a sewing machine that is going to meet your needs for years to come. I would look for one that isn't too pricey or complicated and will get you started.

JennyG

Kath
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Kath  Friend of PR
Intermediate
WA USA
Member since 7/18/04
Posts: 4
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Date: 11/17/06 10:17 PM

i would aviod any school model sales. Getting a simple good mechanical or electronic, Janome. Viking (Husky), Bernina( Bernette, would all be good. A dealer will give you some lessons on the machine. You can check out the American Sewing guild in your cityMy Webpage American Sewing Guildm many members would be gladd to be your mentor.

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