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New Serger Advice

Jean_ | Posted in The Archives on

I will be in the market for a new serger soon. Any advice from you experienced sewers as to features needed, best brands, models, etc.?? I will be doing a lot of sewing on cotton knits for the grandkiddies and also will be sewing garments from machine knit “blanks”. (I have 2 knitting machines and will be using them to knit “fabric”.) I will occasionally want to do rolled hems, too.


  1. Darlene_ | | #1

    I broke down today and ordered a new Bernina 2500DCE, as my old Bernette 334D is almost 12 years old. I really wanted a machine that does the coverstich and chain stitch as I do lots of activewear (polarfleece/t-shirts/sweats) and this would make my work look more professional. I guess I am brand loyal as my 2 sewing machines and serger are all Bernina (the oldest 1973 model) and I have had wonderful luck with them all. I know this is a pricey machine but over a lifetime it is worth it to me. Good luck in your choice - look for what you want from the machine not just what the machine does.

    1. Nancy_Wertzberger | | #2

      *Darlene, Did you know there's a new Bernina serger coming out? It's called the 2500 DCET, and does what they call a "complete cover stitch" which has loops on both sides. It still does the regular cover stitch. Also you don't need to change the stitch plate on this model. I think it's coming out in September. My dealer saw it at Bernina University. Don't know the price. Did your dealer mention any of this to you? You might want to check it out. Nancy

      1. Darlene_ | | #3

        *I saw the specs for the new one and it only offers that one extra feature - on both models you don't have to change the coverplate, a real plus. I guess the deciding factor was the difference in price, as when a new model comes out they discount the last model so the savings was quite substantial. Hopefully it is what I want :)

        1. jonesie | | #4

          *The main thing that folks want in a serger anymore is the cover stitch. You can hem with it, whereas with a basic 4 seamer it's awkward if not impossible. If a good brand machine, maybe simply because you've used it before, has the cover stitch you'll be just fine, rolled hems are stock nowadays on the higher end machines. It will help if you're making clothes for children and you want them to be able to play hard in them...the cover stitch will enable you do put an item together quickly, efficiently and sturdily. Viking has a decent machine with a large work space. But, Bernina's I've heard are all metal inside....don't know for sure, I thought Viking was too. Byt the way, I do have a Baby Lock for sale, Eclipse 4 thread...does NOT have the cover stitch but does a rolled hem. Let me know if you're interested...I've had it for nine months, but would like a newer sewing machine so plan to go for one higher up machine rather than both a serger and sewer for now.

          1. Irene_Lumley | | #5

            *Hi I have the Elna 925--the cover stitch is great and the auto tension is to die for--very easy to switch from one stitch to another

          2. romans | | #6

            *I have to agree with the bernina users. I Have 2 of them. the newest 2000dce and 700d...i would not sew on anything else.....they are having a great sale right now and over labor day...good luck

          3. Tanusa_ | | #7

            *Hello... This may sound like a silly question but... Other than the cover stitch option from a serger, how does it differ from a regular sewing machine? Could I do "regular" sewing (zigzags, straight stitch, buttonholes, etc.) with a serger or would I need to keep my good ol' Kenmore? I make children's clothing and currently do encased seams for a finished look, but would LOVE the option of a cover stitch. (I'm assuming the cover stitch is what you typically find in ready-to-wear. Am I right?) I live in a NYC apartment (you can imagine how SMALL!) so space is a big issue. Keeping two machines out would be difficult. Any information about sergers would be extremely helpful!Thank you and happy sewing!

          4. Ginna | | #8

            *Tanusa - I originally thought that a sewing machine would be the main machine and a serger would be an extra. I have both but they are over 10 years old. I was talking to a lovely saleswoman over the weekend and she said that if she could only have 1 machine it would be a serger. The only thing new sergers can't do according to her are buttonholes. Now, one caution I'm pretty sure she was speaking about a top of the line serger. In my situation with an older serger that does not do "everything" I would definitely keep my sewing machine.Have I confused you enough? HTH

          5. Jean_ | | #9

            *Think of your serger as the microwave of the sewing room. It's a great short cut/time saver for a lot of things but you still need the stove top and oven now and then.

          6. lin_hendrix | | #10

            *Hi Tanusa, Some basics on sergers:> Have a sharp blade that (optionally) trims the seam allowance at the same time it sews the overlock stitch. > Sews much faster than your home sewing machine.> Have a range of overlock/hemming/rolled type stitches that make your projects' very clean and professionally finished.> Can be difficult to thread. There are from three to five different cones of thread used, each has it's own separate path and needle.> Can be tedious to thread. Consider owning four spools of each color and changing all four when you begin a new project. Most folks that own sergers will sew several projects in the same color to avoid changing the thread.> Can be tedious to adjust tension. Each fabric type requires a new adjustment (typically).>The profile of most sergers is smaller; In order to maximize your space management you may consider buying a small rolling serger table that you can move about and put away in toto.If you've got very limited space you may consider just buying a newer, more top-of-the-line sewing machine. Many of the newer machines can sew an overcast stitch that's very good, albeit slower.If you can stand moving your machines around, I'd suggest buying a serger but only after considerable testing in the stores. All sergers are not created equal! --lin

          7. Tanusa_ | | #11

            *Thank you all so much for your thoughts on sergers. Wow! There is a lot more to it than I realized. I think I really do need one. Guess I'll just have to get rid of the couch to make room... :)Thanks again and happy sewing!

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