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Beginner needs advice!!

Andrea03 | Posted in General Discussion on

Hi, I’m a stay-at-home mom who’s discovered a joy for sewing!!!  Currently I am sewing a 5″ tall cloth doll by hand and can’t wait to start on another one!

Sewing by hand is relaxing but I’d like to purchase my first sewing machine.   There are so many out there and I don’t know which machines are best for beginners.

I’m looking for a machine that I hope will last beyond my beginner year(s).  I want to be able to sew cloth toys and quilts for my 14 month old son and for friends’ babies.   We’re currently on a budget, so can anyone suggest machines priced at or below $170???

Thank you in advance!!!

Replies

  1. carolfresia | | #1

    Hi, Andrea, and welcome to Gatherings. It's thrilling to meet a brand new sewer who's really caught the bug. For advice on buying  a machine, check out the Threads website, where there's a comparison chart of 31 basic machines. Now, the prices on most of them is higher than your stated budget, but don't let that discourage you. If you really want a machine that you won't outgrow in a few months, you might want to wait and save a little, and see if you can stretch your budget to $200-$300. In that range, you'll have a few more options for machines with features that will be helpful and enjoyable to use. And bear in mind that while there are lots of bells and whistles on higher-end machines, you don't need all of them. I sewed for years on a machine that cost me $250, and I still use it when I travel. It's not the fanciest model out there, but it's reliable, easy to carry, and kind of an old friend at this point.

    And remember that the "suggested retail price" that's listed is deceving in some cases. The higher-priced machines, in particular, can often be purchased for a discount of ten to twenty percent at a dealership. If you haven't sewn at all or much on a sewing machine, it's a good idea, if at all possible, to buy from a local dealer who will support you as you're learning how to use it. They'll also help you out with maintenance and repairs, if needed. You can get some very good deals online, but then you're on your own--if you're ready to go it alone, this is a way to save a few bucks, but decide first if it's worth it to you.

    Good luck!
    Carol

  2. SewTruTerry | | #2

    I agree with Carol, it is not just the machine but also the dealer that you will be doing business with.  I know that I found a really good dealer and was able to try all kinds of machines at one time. That will be half of your battle. The other suggestion is to call various repair shop and ask them about repair histories on various models and take a clue from that.  Also you may be able to get a bigger machine by buying used rather than new.  I know,I know,  but you don't always buy someone elses headaches perhaps they were ready to take that leap to a bigger model and let you have a bargain in the process.  But no matter what you go with if the dealer does not offer classes in the care and feeding and teaching the machine to do all of its tricks find a group in your area that can help you and challenge you to do wonderful things with whatever machine you end up purchasing.

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