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Which sewing machine?

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  • Which sewing machine?

    My sewing maching has recently gone kaput so I'm using my mil's 25 year old one for the time being.

    I'm about to inherit a small sum of money and I would like to put some of it towards buying a new all-singing, all-dancing sewing machine.

    Does anybody have any recommendations?

    I would like to be able to :

    - applique
    - buttons and button holes
    - blanket stitch (can you do this on a machine?)
    - sew through quite thick layers such as folded denim

    and I would ideally like it to be computerised.

    Is there such a thing as a machine that's not for domestic use but isn't an industrial one either? It would have to be quite robust.

    Any suggestions would be very useful.
    Blog Website Flickr

  • #2
    Rock solid would be a Bernina, but we've got two Janomes and a Janome overlocker, so I reckon Janomes are OK!


    • #3
      I'm a Janome lover! We used them at uni and I always brought them for school use.

      This is a fab little machine (and a great website to buy from as they have great offers and quick delivery)... - Fabric buttons, button supplies and handmade accessories


      • #4
        re:janome for me

        i just bought a new janome, it is excellent the women in john lewis was great i explained my old machine thread kept snapping and she explained it was because the bobbin was low down and i needed a top loading one, she was right it's a delight, price was good as well.


        • #5
          Originally posted by incywincy View Post
          I'm a Janome lover! We used them at uni and I always brought them for school use.

          This is a fab little machine (and a great website to buy from as they have great offers and quick delivery)...

          I've bought 2 machines from that very website now - my overlocker 3 years ago and the sewing machine that went kaput.

          Long story short ... the original sewing machine broke within 2 months so they replaced it immediately. Then the replacement broke, again within 2 months. They refused to replace it, just repair it. I got into a big argument with them about how the goods were not fit for purpose etc, and then in my naievety I told them I had a business to run. At which point he said, "aha! You've just invalidated your warranty as this is a domestic machine" When I pointed out that I had only purchased that model because that's what they had recommended to me after a lengthy phone call, he just got a funny and a bit rude. I've spoken to Trading Standards, and they said it would be so much hassle to persue it because business to business sales don't have as many rights as business to public sales. So I've had to put it down to experience (note to self : NEVER tell anybody you're using it for business use!) and so I've shot myself in the foot about being able to buy from them again.

          A couple of people have recommend a Janome to me so I'll have to look. Ideally I'd like to try before I buy this time as I want to spend my money wisely this time!

          I'm interested to hear about experience with top-loading bobbins. The machine that went kaput was a top-loader and I found when it was getting to the point where it had nearly run out of thread, it would jam up and sometimes chew the thread.
          Blog Website Flickr


          • #6
            I've never had a problem with my top loader, but this is my first.

            As idwals mentioned, John Lewis is best for Janomes and they will let you test drive them I went to JL to test before buying from the linked site.
            Know what you mean about wanting to test a few first. It's like buying a car in a way!
   - Fabric buttons, button supplies and handmade accessories


            • #7
              Thanks for the info guys .... we've got a JL in Bristol so I might check some out in January when everything's quiet!

              Do they do January sales for sewing machines????

              PS - incy, I've just PM'd you about something completely different
              Blog Website Flickr


              • #8
                I bought a Janome from Coopers too. It arrived the next day and I'm really pleased with it.

                Total warmth and comfort for your baby and toddler up to 3 years


                • #9
                  What Not To Buy!

                  Just thought I'd add a bit about the bad experience I had with a Brother machine (Super Galaxie 2100). I have had nothing but trouble with it - the tension has never been right since it was new. I have never been able to easily do free machine embroidery with it. After numerous calls to their 'Help' line ("try a different sized needle...") and a visit from an engineer that still failed to fix it, I more or less gave up using it.

                  I finally started to use it again years later (for straight stitiching - that's all it can do now!) and even sent it back to Brother to get a quote for repair - £246.57! Needless to say I didn't pay it and will keep to my straight stitching for now.

                  My next machine will be a Berninia or Janome as they seem to get the best reviews. Rant over! I feel much better after that .
                  Fire xxx
                  Fire Horse Textiles
                  Love Buttons On Etsy
                  Love Buttons On MISI
                  Love Buttons On Folksy


                  • #10
                    I have a Janome

                    I have a Janome. I got it about five years ago and it's still going strong. At college the Janome's and Bernina's never let anybody down. But the Brother one's seem to have something wrong with them on a regular basis. The new Babylock seemed to do ok too. Don't know that model no but it's the one that you don't need a foot pedal for. My friend bought one for home and swears by it. She bought it to replace her Brother one that she was always having problems with.
                    UPDATED 11th November



                    • #11
                      Ikle, I sent a message to you which should have gone to the lady who started this thread...sorry, had a senior moment.

                      I am a dedicated Janome fan. My first 'grown up' machine was a Bernina bought for my 21st by my mother.

                      In 1981 I went to work for Newhome as Janome was known then. I was fortunate enough to buy the first of the computerised machines they produced and swapped it in 1995 for an 8000e, that was a superb machine, not only did it do all the sewing stitches you needed but also embroidered using cards which slotted into the side of the machine. By this time I had left Newhome and trained as a chef, moving to Scotland in 1990. I had the 8000e until a couple of years ago when I bought a 6500, I missed the embroidery and sold it, bought a 4800 and a 300e, I have just been fortunate and picked up the new 11000 second hand, its a fantastic machine..............I love itI still have the 4800, sold the 300e to a friend who loves it, the kids are embroidered if they stand still

                      In the shop I worked in we also had Singer and Brother machines. Brother bought out their Super Galaxie just before Janome brought out the first computerised machine, I tried the Galaxie, it was awful.......a lady bought one, a couple of days later she was back with it, it would not sew the fabric she was working on.....she wanted to work button holes on a coat, I asked her to bring the coat in, I did the buttonholes on the Janome no probs, she swappped machines and I never saw her again.........

                      Janome make machines for Bernina under licience now as well as for a few other manufacturers, I believe they have just taken over Elnas machines as well.

                      To be honest I don't think you will go far wrong if you buy a Janome machine............but at the end of the day the choice is yours.


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by toots View Post
                        Ikle, I sent a message to you which should have gone to the lady who started this thread...sorry, had a senior moment.
                        That's OK.
                        UPDATED 11th November



                        • #13
                          I`m a Husqvarna-Viking gal.

                          I`ve got 2 machines and an overlocker.

                          Dealer backup is fantastic and the range of accessories is amazing.


                          • #14
                            Hi there, I have just bought a Toyota from the same website, following recommendation from a friend. It is yet to arrive tomorrow. Now, I am not that experienced with either sewing or machines in the UK. Genuinely worried. Anyone here, having had experiences with Toyota? Will much appreciate information. This is the one I have asked for
                            Toyota 21 DES

                            Last edited by dk14; 07-01-2008, 12:33 AM.


                            • #15
                              I had a Toyota overlocker before I went to a Husqvarna.

                              The Toyota was fine and I did have any problems with it.

                              Unfortunetly I don`t have any experience with their machines though.