Last Updated on May 21, 2016 by Kristi Linauer
Well, y’all. If you showed up today hoping to see my finished dining room draperies, I have bad news. They’re still not finished. And the reason (at least in part) is because I spent yesterday afternoon shopping for and selecting a new sewing machine…a good machine. A fancy machine. A sewing machine that will make sewing much more enjoyable for me, and that will make my projects much easier and faster to complete. Here’s what happened…
Yesterday, I headed to JoAnn Fabric to pick up a few items to finish my dining room draperies. I happened to walk by the Husqvarna Viking sewing machine section (which is kind of a store within a store) and the sales woman was creating a beautiful paisley design on an embroidery machine.
We talked for a bit, and as I stood there watching this amazing machine, I kept thinking of how much fun it would be to own something like that. And as she kept showing me more and more of the projects she created with it, like this gorgeous embroidered pillow…
…I became more convinced that I needed this machine!
I knew it would be expensive, so I reminded myself to keep calm, cool, and collected, and not to show any sign of shock on my face, as I asked her the price. I expected something like $4-$5,000. Ummmm…yeah. It was over $14,000!! There was no way to hide my shock. 😀
I could never in my life bring myself to pay something like that for a fancy sewing machine. Never. But for a very long time now, I’ve wanted a brand new, nice sewing machine.
Here’s the deal. I know I’ve said time and again that I don’t like sewing. Well, that’s just simply not the truth. I dread starting a sewing project, but every time I finally get started, I realize that I really do enjoy the process quite a bit. It’s relaxing. It’s easy. And it’s a great change of pace.
The part that I DON’T enjoy is wrestling with my machine to get it to do what I want it to do! And the reason it’s such an issue is because I’ve never sewn on a really nice machine.
Out of all of the types of DIY projects that I do, I’ve been sewing the longest. While I’m pretty much self-taught in just about everything else, I actually did receive hands-on teaching when it came to sewing. My mom taught me how to sew when I was quite young, and I remember making my very first piece of clothing (a dress that I was very proud of) when I was in fourth grade or so.
So I’ve been sewing for over 30 years, and while I love creating, and I love being able to save thousands of dollars by making my own lined draperies, pillows, etc., wrestling with the actual machine generally brings me to tears at least once during each project. And if you were to see the machines I sew on, you’d understand why.
My current machine (before last night) is this Necchi machine that used to be my grandmother’s.
To be quite honest, this thing is a workhorse. Out of all of the machines I’ve use, this one is the best. But you can see it only does 10 basic stitches and four button holes. I love that it’ll sew through many layers of fabric with no problem at all, but my main issue with this machine has always been how slowly it sews. I think it’s just because it’s old, but I can press the pedal all the way down, and it just kind of chugs along at a very slow pace. That makes my projects take way longer than they should to complete.
Before this one, I owned two different Kenmore machines from Sears, each of which cost about $120. They looked something like this…
In other words, these were very basic machine, only a step or two up from the machines made for kids. Those are fine for people who rarely sew, or just want to work on small projects (like making a pillow here and there), but it’s really not great for big projects. And my biggest complaint with one of them was that in order to use the blind hem stitch, the fabric had to be to the right side of the needle. That means that in order to blind hem a drapery panel, I had to feed the entire panel through that work space to the right of the needle. It was frustrating, and made me dread making draperies.
Each of those machines lasted for about two year before giving out.
And before that, for about two years, I sewed on a vintage 1940s or 1950s Singer machine that looked very similar to this one. Not kidding.
That was actually another workhorse, but it just didn’t have the functionality that I wanted or needed. I don’t think it did blind hem stitches at all, so it wasn’t really practical for making draperies…although somehow I did make it work for a couple of years.
So yesterday, after picking myself up off the floor from hearing the $14,000+ price tag for the sewing/embroidery machine, I asked the nice sales woman what type of machine would be good for someone like me. I explained what type of sewing I do, and she showed me two different machines. I don’t even remember what the other one was. It didn’t seem very user friendly, to be quite honest.
But when she showed me the Husqvarna Viking Sapphire 960Q, it seemed like exactly what I wanted. And the more she demonstrated it, the more I kept wondering how in the world I was going to get Matt on board with me buying a new not-so-cheap machine.
And once again, I reminded myself to be calm, cool, and collected, and not show any shock on my face, as I asked her the price. The regular price is $2800 (ugh…I didn’t think Matt would go for that), but this model just happens to be on clearance, making way for the new model, so the clearance price is $1999. And the beautiful thing is that even though it’s on clearance and this model won’t be made anymore, it still comes with a full warranty and the company guarantees that all of the parts for this machine will be available for at least 20 years. Wow!
I took all of the info and headed home, wondering on the way how I was going to convince Matt that I needed a $2000 sewing machine. Well, he didn’t need any convincing. I got home and told him about it, and he said, “Well, why don’t you go get it?” I said, “Really? Right now?!” He said, “Kristi, you need to learn to splurge sometimes.” 😀
So I’m now the proud owner of a brand new sewing machine. A great sewing machine. The kind that makes sewing an absolute joy. The kind that you don’t have to wrestle with and curse at and cry over in order to get a project finished!
It has a fancy touch screen with all of the stitch settings and options, and it does over 300 different stitches. THREE HUNDRED!
Once I finally got it home and unpacked last night, I didn’t really have much time to play around with it, but I did test out a few stitches that looked really interesting to me.
It’s going to take some time to get myself out of the habit of pulling the fabric through the machine. This one feeds itself very well, and pulling it messed up the stitches. I’m not used to a machine that actually feeds itself properly. 😀 I also think that using a thicker fabric or stabilizer on the back will make the decorative stitches come out better.
So I have a lot of learning to do, and I’m so excited! It came with 12 different feet, and to be quite honest, I don’t know what most of these do or how to use them. And that buttonhole foot (the big one at the top of this photo) looks very intimidating to me. I’ve never seen a buttonhole foot like that before.
And because I’m not a person who reads owners manuals, but I want to get everything out of this machine that I can, I actually signed up for classes. That should be fun…and interesting! I’ve been sewing for over 30 years, but I would imagine that I have a ton of stuff to learn when it comes to these fancy machines.
I can already tell that this machine is going to go a very long way in changing my attitude towards sewing. It’s actually fun and easy to use. Oh, and while it does come with a regular foot pedal, it’s actually not needed! In all of the sewing and testing I did last night, I didn’t use the pedal even once because it also has a convenient start/stop button right there on the front of the machine that you can use, along with two buttons that will increase and decrease the speed. Amazing! And the automatic needle-down option will be so nice to have, along with the button that you push to cut the threads. No more searching for a pair of scissors to cut the threads each time I finish sewing.
It was definitely a splurge, and I don’t like to splurge like this very often. But I think this is one of those purchases that I’ll look back on in a few years, and wonder how I sewed for so long on those other machines. I can actually see myself looking forward to sewing now!
Addicted 2 Decorating is where I share my DIY and decorating journey as I remodel and decorate the 1948 fixer upper that my husband, Matt, and I bought in 2013. Matt has M.S. and is unable to do physical work, so I do the majority of the work on the house by myself. You can learn more about me here.
I hope you’ll join me on my DIY and decorating journey! If you want to follow my projects and progress, you can subscribe below and have each new post delivered to your email inbox. That way you’ll never miss a thing!
DaleApril 29, 2016 at 9:50 am
I’m so excited for you! I am a small job sewer and have the basic machine so i feel your pain. There were many times it almost got tossed out of the window!! You deserve this machine and i can’t wait to see future projects!!
LillianApril 29, 2016 at 9:51 am
Oh Mai Gah girl!!! 🙂 I love it! Oh Lord, jealousy,jealousy, of the good kind though! ;)I have the exact same problem! My little cheapo gives me such headaches ugh!!! I want to sew, then I think about it and I change my mind! Enjoy Kristi, enjoy babe!
Bobbi Jo ThompsonApril 29, 2016 at 9:52 am
Kristi, I had to smile reading today’s post…because you were so excited about your new purchase not be cause it was expensive but because you really could see the way this new purchase would change your DIY lifestyle. I’m with Matt sometimes you have to move out of the safe zone and do something good for your decorating soul. I think you will make other purchases that are more expensive but some how I think this one will remind you that you are creative and inspiring but very thoughtful of you choices.
JamieApril 29, 2016 at 9:53 am
You will love it! I bought a Husqvarna Rose machine in the 90’s. It embroiders and has all the fancy stitches. I should have taken a class, maybe I still will. I’m sure I don’t use it to it’s full potential so that is a good idea.
HeatherBApril 29, 2016 at 9:55 am
This is “sew” cool! Please share some of the tips and tricks you learn as you take the classes for those of us who love to live vicariously through you.
So, does this mean that you can do your own embroidered monogram? That alone may go a long way toward defraying the cost of this new machine 🙂
KristiApril 29, 2016 at 10:10 am
No, this machine does do some beautiful satin stitches, but it’s not really an embroidery machine. They do have some much cheaper (i.e., much less than $14,000) sewing/embroidery machines, but I really don’t know that I’d use an embroidery machine that much. I mainly just wanted a very nice sewing machine.
NatashaApril 29, 2016 at 10:23 am
I’m so happy for you! I’ve really been enjoying reading about your dining room adventures. This morning, when your email popped into my inbox I actually said, “I’m so excited!” because I can’t wait to see what you’ve done next. I can’t wait to see what you do with your new machine!
AndreaApril 29, 2016 at 10:24 am
Awesome! Seriously just fabulous! I have a tendency to anguish over large purchases for myself. Then I don’t buy it and when I finally talk myself into it , the sale is over or they are out of stock. My hubby gets so frustrated with me…lol he tells me to just buy it when I see it. (Obviously super high dollar items are in it’s own category of discussion) But if it’s returnable, then I can at least sort it out at home and decide to keep it or not.
KimApril 29, 2016 at 10:28 am
Having a great machine makes ALL the difference in the world! I had three different basic machines before I saved up and bought my Pfaff embroidery machine. I bought it used on eBay from a woman who had owned it for two years and wanted to upgrade to their new machine. It has been a DREAM to sew on! You cannot even compare the sewing experiences of my earlier machines to this one; it would be like comparing apples and grapefruit 🙂 I do want to get a heavier duty machine for projects that require I be able to so through really thick layers (want to make a fully lined coat) but for what I do now, my Pfaff is perfect. Have lived in South America for almost 8 years (owned the machine for 9) and have only had to have it in once for maintenance. Love, love, love my Pfaff!
Alta CraigApril 29, 2016 at 10:32 am
Congratulations on your new equipment! There is usually a learning curve, but once you get the hang of it, oh, my, the sky’s the limit! Taking classes will greatly shorten that learning curve, and I too am looking forward to seeing what you come up with in future!
DonnaApril 29, 2016 at 10:33 am
My learning experience was from purchasing a Bernina over 30 years ago. Suddenly I didn’t have to be a sewing machine mechanic or someone who had to “un-sew” a lot because of skipped stitches or a sudden change in the pressure or tangled threads on the back of the fabric.
I could just create and sew all sorts of projects and have them turn out beautifully with a much shorter time investment. No more pulling my hair out or chewing my nails in frustration or even sitting in a pool of fabric sobbing.
Your best sewing days are ahead of you. Your only frustrations will be with designs or fabric selections not quite working out. It will be a relief. Have fun with the classes–you’ll learn quite a bit about your machine and pick up some sewing tips along the way.
designdreamerApril 29, 2016 at 10:34 am
Congrats Kristi!!! I learned to sew on a Necchi (my Mom’s) also, and the first machine I bought for myself (as a starving college student) was a Kenmore. I honestly can’t remember how much it cost, it’s all metal, and it was more years ago than I care to remember. I still own it, and got it out to use a few years back because I wanted to use a ruffler foot I had bought for it. OMG, what a disaster!!! My current machine(s) (Berninas – it’s a long story) look like they have very similar functions. I bought them approximately 25+ years ago, and paid close to what you paid for your machine. YES! it was a LOT of money back then. I remember when Embroidery machines started becoming popular. I think a Bernina model I looked at was $5K! I remember remarking to my hubby that I paid about that for my first car, and it was NEW!!! I didn’t realize they were up to $14K!! That’s just insane. Have fun with your new toy!
PS: And Heather, no, she won’t be able to do her own Monogram with that machine. Don’t we all wish!
Sujata SharmaApril 29, 2016 at 10:38 am
Thanks for the detailed comparison. We just moved to a new to us an older house, and along with a lot of other projects, I am also doing my own drapes, which I was dreading to do as well because of my sewing machine, which is an Kenmore brand basic model. It has served my well for the last 15 years and I have made few drapes too, but after every project I used to think, ‘Oh next time I am going to buy a better sewing machine’, which never happened. Anyway long story cut short, I did my research and not a whole lot of options are available here in Canada. I might get one online and get it shipped to our friends’ place in the USA. Can you please let me know, how much your machine weighs?
JILL NELSONApril 29, 2016 at 10:39 am
I’m happy for you! Having the right tool makes any DIY project a bit more fun and relaxing and a sewing machine is a necessary tool like a drill or saw… I’m not a sewer but my mom is and reading this post reminds me of her when she would get a new sewing machine!
DottieApril 29, 2016 at 10:40 am
Way to go, Matt! I got a similar machine about 25 years ago soon after my daughter was born, and the sticker shock was the same for me–oh, my God! But it was definitely worth it. You will LOVE LOVE LOVE the things you can do, quickly and professionally. My 25-year-old machine still sews like a dream and has many of the features yours does. I made curtains and bedspreads for my daughter, sewed and did fancy stitches on her clothes, made Halloween costumes, and just played and played and played with the embroidery stitches. I haven’t gotten it out in a while now, but your enthusiasm is infectious, and I may just have to dream up a project.
Stitch your little heart out. I can almost guarantee that you will look forward to your future sewing projects in the same way you now anticipate the carpentry, painting, etc. A class is good. I only took one, but the expert who knew the machine inside and out had so many little tips and shortcuts. (I hate reading manuals, too.). Plus, it was quite fun to be included in a group of giddy gals–and one guy–all so excited about their shiny new toys. Congratulations, Kristi!
DanielleApril 29, 2016 at 10:43 am
You’ll love it, my mom swears by Husqvarna’s (she’s a major quilter). Mom has a room in their house just for her quilting/sewing and has several machines that I’m not allowed to touch (I broke her Singer machine when I was in HS Home EC).
I LOVE the picture of that old Singer; it reminds me of the one my grandmother had in her dining room when we were growing up. It had originally belonged to her mother, so I can only imagine how old it was.
Pat FedericoApril 29, 2016 at 10:43 am
Sooo happy for you Kristi….. Yes the new machine is very well deserving….. But I think we have overlooked your most prized possessions….. Kudos go the Husband of the year, your Matt….. 👏🏻🎉❤️
GuerrinaApril 29, 2016 at 10:47 am
Congratulations! I officially have sewing machine envy! Can’t wait to see all you learn and create with this baby!
BethApril 29, 2016 at 10:48 am
You’ve made a great decision, Kristi. I had a succession of sewing machines in my life: learned to sew 65 years ago on my mom’s treadle machine, then various Singers and Kenmores until about 30 years ago when I finally got the courage to spring for a great machine, my Bernina. My husband convinced me it was the right thing to do when he pointed out that putting off the purchase until we ‘could afford it’ would just mean fewer good sewing years in my lifetime. I’ve never regretted it: through thick and thin that machine keeps on going and has never betrayed me…from making draperies and slip covers to altering her grandmother’s wedding gown for my daughter’s wedding.
Enjoy the classes, and look forward to sewing without dread…actually, just look forward to sewing!
Cathy RApril 29, 2016 at 10:53 am
When I retire, I swear I’m going to learn to sew; all I can do now is a pokey straight hem ( well most of the time). When I took up oils I decided to get good brushes & paint and it paid off. Get the best equipment you can and you’ll be happier for it.
Congratulations on your splurge; Matt is right.
DCWJesApril 29, 2016 at 10:53 am
I am chuckling that this post happened today. I got my little sewing machine late last year and made curtain panels for my kitchen. Then, I made a ton of t-shirt bags for Christmas presents. About 2 months ago, my husband asked me if I could make him a knife bag. It is almost finished. Last night, late, I broke a needle. Now I need to read the manual on how to change it because nobody taught me how to sew. Wish me luck! lol
ArliApril 29, 2016 at 10:57 am
You earned this, girl! So go create and enjoy!
WendyApril 29, 2016 at 11:01 am
Good for you!! I bought a similar machine in features/cost (an Elna) several years ago and I absolutely love it! Like I just want to pet it kind of love. Enjoy that splurge!!
JoanieApril 29, 2016 at 11:09 am
Congrats on the new machine. What a great advertisement for Viking sewing machines, I don’t even need a new sewing macnine and you made me want one. Viking should have paid you to take it, instead of the other way around. Lol
KarenApril 29, 2016 at 11:11 am
This is a real push to get a new machine, because I, apparently like several other of your readers, have experienced exactly what you recount on the actual sewing process! I’ve had one of the very old machines as a teenager, too (my grandmother`s) which was not even electrical. so I’m still thinking my current machine (bought in the 1980ies) is an improvement, hah.
I will avidly follow your descriptions of what your new baby can do and guess I’ll seriously consider buying a new one in a short while, too 🙂 Have a great weekend (at the machine?!)!!
JennyApril 29, 2016 at 11:11 am
You will enjoy the new machine SO much! I have my fancy one and a 70’s Bernia that I use for leather and such. I would highly recommend getting the foot for doing double welting, it is awesome!!
bevApril 29, 2016 at 11:13 am
You got a GREAT machine! Goid for you! Enjoy the classes and also look for videos on you tube (I don’t like reading manuals 🙂 ) Stabilizers are the answer to unpuckered, smooth fancy stitching!
Your old Necchi is also a quality machine-you might think about getting it tuned up as a standby for really heavy fabrics to save the wear on your new machine. Some machines have a speed controller switch on the back or near the cord attachment….could that be why it runs slow?
Congratulations! Happy Sewing!
JannApril 29, 2016 at 11:15 am
I am SOOOOOO TICKLed for you. Think of all those hundreds and thousands of dollars you have saved doing DIY!!!!
KUDO’S to Matt for supporting this purchase…makes it that more grand and special when we can do this with our hubby’s appreciation!!!!! Good guy Matt!
I sew very little….mostly scrapbooking pages….with an OLD little Singer Featherweight……I love it but man would I love all,those stitches!!!!!
Have fun!!!! Just so tickled for you!
PatriciaApril 29, 2016 at 11:18 am
I’m happy for you ! Thanks for making me smile during the whole post . 😊
MicheleApril 29, 2016 at 11:23 am
So happy for you! A good machine makes all the difference. I have a Husqvarna Viking Emma machine – a basic mechanical model that I still adore and sews beautifully after about 10 years. HV machines are awesome, and while there will be a learning curve, you will pick it up quickly I’m sure. Of course I have several machines now since I’ve expanded my sewing interests to quilting – your Sapphire is a great quilting machine too. You will be so pleased once you start sewing a few projects to familiarize yourself with what your machine can do. Random thoughts – change your needles frequently (many ignore this rule and it’s not good to do that) and use the HV branded bobbins exactly like the ones your machine came with.
MareApril 29, 2016 at 11:23 am
Wow, had no idea sewing machines could cost that much. I know embroidery machines are expensive and are usually out of Asian countries. For years I went to Atlanta with my husband to the Bobbin Show. It was a huge show with everything from buttons to machines that embroidered fabric at full with all at once. Truly amazing if you had a use for it in your business. His company was a vendor and a lot of retailers as well as wholesale suppliers showed their goods. I enjoyed the night life. There were always parties and dinners to go to, and you got to see folks that you only saw three or four times a year. My first machine was a Necchi. They were considered the best at that time for home sewers. Berninia and Paff were also good machines. I have had three in my lifetime but I could not tell you what my current one is. We have great friends who are suppliers to factories. They buy and sell new and used equipment. The business is in Phillly, Arch Sewing, they have been there pretty much since WWII. We just lost the company patriarch last year at the age of 91. There is a great history of needle trades from this country, however, thanks to NAFTA and CAFTA (mr Clinton) factories had to close at enormous rates. Mom’s who went to work at blouse and shirt factories all over the mid atlantic and were home in time for their kids, lost their jobs. It is a shame that our government sold out to lobbiest, who represented foreign companies. Now everything comes from China, and the clothing is made like rags. I hope you have lots of fun with your expensive toy. Do you know where it was manufactured?
ZovestaApril 29, 2016 at 3:46 pm
Yup… don’t mean to start a political debate here, but it’s true. The real loss of American jobs here isn’t from the immigrants, it’s from shipping every job possible overseas to save money. =/
MareApril 29, 2016 at 7:34 pm
That is so true. There were no immigrants other that the original Irish, Polish and Italian women working in the blouse and shirt factories in the Coal Regions of PA. However the jobs that went overseas were because of the unions here in America. They thought they could not be broken, I am not talking about the people who paid their dues. I am referring to big wigs who stole from everyone. Jack Schenkman was the head of the ILGW from the early 70’s to sometime in the 80’s. He came to the bargaining tables in limos paid for with dues. He owned multiple homes and not only ran the union as a conglomerate, he also ran the individual unions combined. He ran the bank the collected the dues and took home a salary of about 14 million dollars a year for all those years. I know this stuff pretty much first hand because my husband was and still is an executive in the garment industry. This was just the tiny needle trades. Now think about the steel industry. I live in Bethlehem, Pa that saw Beth Steel fold up and leave because PA was not a right to work state. They went South where people were willing to work for 20 bucks an hour instead of 50 and outrageous benefits. We also lost Mack Truck in the same way. None of this had anything to do with the managers or owners of the private companies, or the publicly traded companies. It was the unions the busted the companies. Once the Gov stepped in with NAFTA and CAFTA all bets were off. Everyone headed to Canada, or Central America. Now those countries cannot match the pay scale of China, which is a comi country. People in China are brought in from the interior, and put to work in sweatshops. They make one dollar a day. They live in government housing. This is why we have to change the this country works. We have to bring it back to the industrial age and start making our own products and buying them at reasonable prices. Do you realize that Walmart, the single biggest retailer in our nation does not sell one piece of clothing made in America. Yet 90 percent of Americans shop there. That is what we have to fix. I won’t shop in Walmart or Target. I check country of origin on everything I buy, including food. We all need to do this to make America strong. Sorry for the tirade, I just get very frustrated when most Americans don’t really know what goes on and how things work.
ZovestaApril 29, 2016 at 3:49 pm
I agree with Jann! Think of all the money you’ve saved over the years by doing everything yourself, don’t begrudge a pricey indulgence, especially if it’s going to make you happy. That’s what this entire project is about, right? =D The sewing machine is soo droolworthy, so happy for you!! It makes me want to get going on my sewing project. I’m just about to burst with joy for you, that’s so cool! Enjoy your new toy!!
ZovestaApril 29, 2016 at 3:50 pm
Whoops, why did it comment up here? It was supposed to be a new comment. =x Oops!
JenniferApril 29, 2016 at 11:25 am
OMG!!! I’m so happy for you! I’ve always wanted one of those..I use a hand-me-down Singer. I can’t wait to see what you will do with this machine!
Kay McApril 29, 2016 at 11:28 am
So very excited for you, and I might mention a little jealous!! 🙂 You are such a hard worker and it’s nice to see you splurge. You deserve it! I was looking up your machine to see what kind of goodies you got and saw this video I thought you might be interested in. It’s an hour long and I only watched the first little bit of it but it looked very informative. HAVE FUN playing!!
LillianApril 29, 2016 at 12:56 pm
MarciaApril 29, 2016 at 11:31 am
lessons for a new machine critical –
Kristine BrownApril 29, 2016 at 11:32 am
Your story sounds like my story exactly. I learned to make custom slipcovers, and started sewing for others, but stopped because of my sewing machine(s). I actually have the old black Singer you showed above. I am also considering another sewing project for extra income. I am needing to do the same thing that you did to continue sewing. Very happy for you, and I am very glad you signed up for the sewing class. I think you will be glad you took that extra step. God bless, and have fun!!
PattyMay 2, 2016 at 1:47 pm
For heavy duty sewing (like slipcovers), I can highly recommend the Sailrite machines – you can get one for under $1000, and they sew through layers of canvas, upholstery fabric, and even leather like a dream! They don’t have any fancy stitches (straight only), but are worth their weight in gold for the stitching they can do! They also hold their value pretty well if you decided to sell it.
Marianne in Mo.April 29, 2016 at 11:53 am
I’m a bit jealous – I got a new machine last year for christmas (don’t recall what brand and it’s packed away at my daughters house right now.) but I found out it won’t sew through heavier fabric or thick seams. So I still have to use my old Kenmore cheapy for those tasks. Wish I had asked “Santa” for a Bernina or Husqvarna, they are so awesome!
For sure you should take the classes, you will probably not use a lot of what you learn, but it will help to navigate thru what you do use.
Good job, Matt! wish my hubby thought like you!
sewduckyApril 29, 2016 at 11:55 am
Wow congrats on the new machine!
I got my first machine (a nechi machine) two years ago, and have been self teaching myself a little at a time. So fixing stitches isn’t standard? I still haven’t mastered how to get the tension right and how to not sew more than 1′ without the churning out an odd knot on the “bad” side. I’ll be getting some pointers soon from MIL on an upholstery project in a few months though.
Happy sewing! .
FrancyApril 29, 2016 at 11:59 am
When I recently bought a new sewing machine I searched YouTube and found oodles of tutorials on all the functions of my specific machine. Without YouTube I wouldn’t know 99% of the things my machine does!! Check it out 😀
ZovestaApril 29, 2016 at 3:51 pm
So true! YouTube is great for anything sewing! I always read the manuals front to back, but dang, is it nice to just sit and watch someone make anything from a shirt to a pillow using my exact make and model and explain as they go – better than classes, because I can do it while lazing in bed, hah.
ChristineApril 29, 2016 at 12:05 pm
That is awesome Kristi. You will find sewing now a pleasure and your creative side will shine once again. Can hardly see what you do. I am still using my mothers machine..Elna with all the attachments over 50 years old..the one I learned how to see on back in the 60’s! I also had others but just never lived up to my Elna! But, Oh, I am so jealous (in a good way!)
And yes, looking forward to your finished drapes…loving them
SelenaApril 29, 2016 at 12:17 pm
So excited to see what you create with your new machine. I am an avid seamstress. I have a workroom in my home where I sew for myself as well as a few paying customers. I have a Bernina domestic sewing machine, Bernina serger and a Consew Industrial Walking Foot machine. The industrial machine is overkill for most of what I sew, except for slipcovers and anything using heavy fabrics. I use my Bernina most of the time and the thing that has made all the difference for me in sewing window treatments, etc., where long seams are involved, is a Bernina Walking Foot presser foot. This foot cost me over $100 but has paid for itself many times over. I do not like to do taut sewing and with the walking foot presser foot, I don’t have to. If your machine did not come with one of these, I highly recommend buying one if you’re going to be sewing long seams. Have fun playing with your new toy!
Mrs MikeApril 29, 2016 at 12:21 pm
I sewed on my grandmother’s Kenmore for years before I discovered Husqvarna. I absolutely ADORE my machine 15 years later, it was one of the best investments I ever made. At the time it was the Freesia, but I believe it was the Sapphire that replaced it. Good luck, you will absolutely love it. And the classes to better understand the features are the best!
SueApril 29, 2016 at 12:22 pm
Looks like a great machine and I’m sure you will enjoy the lessons. Have found!
Michele WApril 29, 2016 at 12:28 pm
So glad for you! I actually slobbered over this machine at Joann’s myself, but decided not to purchase it. Would love for you to do a review on it once you’ve used it for a while.
Sharon DApril 29, 2016 at 12:34 pm
So Very Happy For You! Think of all the new window treatments you can make for your home! How many windows is that? I understand that you need to rationalize spending that much money for a machine…it will pay for itself quickly! Just imagine how much you would pay for custom drapes for your dining room alone! Such a great purchase, but more important, it will make sewing so much more enjoyable! Love seeing your happy posts!
Cyndi LongestApril 29, 2016 at 12:44 pm
Good for you! You deserve it!
JulietteApril 29, 2016 at 1:03 pm
I have been sewing for about 50 years and the machine I have now I just love. Would never want anything else. It’s a singer machine I bought just before I got married 37 years ago. Nothing fancy, but works beautifully. Only had it serviced once. Never a problem. I’ve made clothes and quits and draperies… Don’t sew as much now as it bothers my neck. Sad to say. I miss it. When I was in high school, I’d go uptown in the morning, buy a pattern and fabric, come home, make it, and wear it that night.
Connie BApril 29, 2016 at 1:13 pm
Congrats on your new machine! I am an avid quilter and sewer and presently sew on a Bernina 170, but before that it was a Viking Husqvarna from 1974 and before that I learned to sew on a Singer Featherweight from 1936 (my Mom’s). I still own and use all of these machines! A little advice to frustrated sewers and their machines-have yearly maintenance and cleaning done to keep your machine sewing well. You wouldn’t believe the gunk that you can’t see! I think that could help the sluggishness of your Necchi. Also, change your needle after 6-8 hours of sewing-don’t wait for it to break! Constant use wears down the eye of the needle and it will feed the thread thru a little differently and burrs are quite common. Also, if you are having trouble with skipped stitches or broken thread, rethread your needle. Sometimes constant and heavy use will cause the thread to jump out from between the tension discs. Also, most machines are factory set for 50 wt. thread, so if you use a different weight thread the tension will be need to be adjusted. Simple fixes that can help make sewing easier and fun! And do take the time to read the manual-saves time and frustration in the long run! Happy Sewing!
laurieApril 29, 2016 at 1:23 pm
Congrats on your need and exciting machine! I spent 20 years using a basic Singer that frustrated me to no end with its temperamental tension adjustment. I finally trashed it this year and bought a computerized Brother with about 100 fancy stitch options. I love it, but I too had to get used the machine feeding itself rather than me pulling the fabric through.
Have a blast sewing fun projects.
Judy JApril 29, 2016 at 1:32 pm
Congratulations on your purchase! When you use it, you will wonder why you ever waited to get one!
And thanks for the memories! My Mom used a Necchi too, back in the day. She made most of our clothes and I learned to sew on it.
Julie MandellApril 29, 2016 at 1:34 pm
Congrats on the new machine! While I am extremely frugal and try never to waste money I do have more than one machine. I only bought one of them new however – my Singer XL-1000 combination sewing/embroidery machine which set me back more than $1k when I bought it back in 1993! I also have a Bernina 1630 that I bought used a few years after the singer.
Having both allows me to embroider on the Singer without having to swap out the embroidery head and foot very time I want to switch from embroidering to sewing. My third machine is a vintage1970 era Pfaff 1471 that I bought specifically for the time I spend in Florida each winter. I found it used on craigslist last year for $250.
I had brought fabric down with me to create a long cushion for a loveseat I was reupholstering. I hunted down the Pfaff because of the dual feed feature (which they called IDT) pioneered by the company. This is sooo helpful for sewing long seams without the top layer of fabric creeping ahead of the bottom. Instead of using a billion pins for the loveseat cushion seams I only used a handful and everything lined up. What a difference when making and inserting long lengths of piping! I thought about just buying an inexpensive new model to keep in Florida and adding a walking foot but that wouldn’t have helped with the piping since I’d be using a zipper foot. The dual feed is like a built in walking foot so can be used with a variety of feet.
I learned something helpful about the touch screen on my old Singer embroidery machine last year. The screen had somehow become off center years before and I had been stuck with workarounds when I needed to access the far right side of the screen. A man I bought a Horn sewing cabinet from on craigslist was a real tinkerer and hunted down the REPAIR manual online. There was nothing about calibrating the screen in the owner’s manual of course. They want you to take your machine in for service for something like that and my local dealer had closed many years before that. The repair manual detailed a series of buttons to push in a particular sequence that allowed me to enter service mode and move the display back to its normal position. Just in case this happens to your screen – or one belonging to anyone else bored enough to read this far – something to keep in mind. I am so grateful that the service manual was online!
PhyllisApril 29, 2016 at 2:06 pm
Good for you! For years I denied myself a good sewing machine because I did not want to spend the money. It was my husband who insisted I buy a new machine. So I got a Janome that had a small embroidery hoop and did small designs. I thought I would never do the embroidery and that it was just an added plus, but I LOVE doing embroidery, so I HAD to have an embroidery machine with a larger hoop that did larger designs, so I bought a Brother and I LOVE it for embroidery. So, my Janome is for sewing and Brother is for embroidery and I am in heaven! Until I got my new sewing machine, I did not realize how wonderful theses new expensive, computerized machine are. They are so easy to sew on it is restful and peaceful to sew on them instead of having to fight with an old machine!
MaryApril 29, 2016 at 2:16 pm
Very happy for you. Now all you need is a work table so you don’t have to make your drapes on the floor.
My husband made me a table & it was a game changer.
KristenApril 29, 2016 at 2:27 pm
Awesome sewing machine! I sew and I was very happy when I got a better machine. I was sewing on a compact cheap kenmore several hrs a day and getting a regular sized Janome was heaven! I would love to hea more about your machine in the future as you get projects done. I know you don’t like reading the manual, but it is a great reminder, it is hard to remember which stitch or foot is which! I taught myself to sew by reading the manual for my machines. I keep it right by my machine for quick reference if needed.
DonnaApril 29, 2016 at 2:51 pm
Good for you! You deserve to splurge on yourself. I bought a very similar machine for my daughter last Mother’s Day and she absolutely loves it. (I tend to save my splurge purchases for my daughter and her children instead of splurging on myself- hubby thinks I need to work on changing that.) I have a pretty basic electronic Singer that cost me about $400 several years ago and it does a decent job for me. It was a huge upgrade from the Signature brand sewing machine my mother got at Montgomery Ward in the 1960s that I had been sewing on since I learned to sew in the third grade. That thing was a nightmare to use, especially near the end. I know you’ll enjoy your new machine and hope you share some of the things you learn in your classes.
Lisa JohnsonApril 29, 2016 at 2:53 pm
Oh you lucky lady!!!! Enjoy it!!!! 🙂
ElaineApril 29, 2016 at 4:11 pm
YAY!!! You EARNED the right to ‘splurge’ on this! I’m thrilled for you!!! Thank you for being a true inspiration. You are my CREATIVE HERO! Go forth and CREATE beauty (just remember to share it so I can continue to live vicariously thru you 😉
BeccaApril 29, 2016 at 4:48 pm
My mum actually still uses a Singer machine – only with hers there is no foot pedal…you have to turn a handle the whole time!! She taught me some very basic garment making on it and she still makes all her own draperies and pillows.
I’ve been tempted to buy my own (without a handle, ha ha!) as I’ve been restricted to ‘no-sew’ or hand sewing projects up til now…you may have inspired me!
Susan L.April 29, 2016 at 5:16 pm
Can’t think of anyone who will get more use out of it. Enjoy!!
Seattle SueApril 29, 2016 at 8:12 pm
Oh have you brought back memories for so many of us. My mom splurged on a $900 Viking back in the early ’70’s and while I sewed everything I wore except jeans, she made a custom bedspread and curtains that were as beautiful when she sold the house 30 years later as the day she hung them. When I went off to college, I bought a used cast iron Japanese version of a singer that weighed a TON and hauled it home in a bus from the downtown to my college dorm on the east side. It followed me for years. Don’t know where it ended up but about ten years ago I purchased a $100 basic Brother machine recommended by a saleswoman at Calico Corners as bei sturdy and reliable. It has been, but your and everyone’s story of the ire first “real” sewing machine brought back great memories of mom’s joy bring home that expensive new Viking machine. Sew on, sisters, sew on!
CindyApril 29, 2016 at 8:55 pm
When I read that you had to feed your draperies through the RIGHT SIDE of your old machine, I actually gasped out loud. No wonder you dreaded it! That alone is worth a new machine. Enjoy!!
MelonyApril 30, 2016 at 7:12 am
I think that was a very smart move to sign up for classes! I don’t do so well with reading manuals either and three hundred different stitches would completely overwhelm me. You’ll be on your way in no time with the classes however! Can’t wait to see what you create next!
NancyApril 30, 2016 at 7:36 am
I am so happy for you and your new sewing machine. Such joy! You will love it. I have been using my Bernina many years, also my sister has one and my Mom had one. Anyone who has sewn for many years can all tell a similar story of creaky machines that don’t work with any precision:)
Enjoy. Congratulations! You deserve it.
Ellen W.April 30, 2016 at 10:31 am
Congratulations! Investment in a good tool is always a wise expenditure. I think my old machine (1980s) is a JC Penney house brand – very similar in threading mechanism to my mom’s old Singer that I learned on. It will sew seams, but … sigh. I can’t do anything involving any kind of thickness.
Sharon HApril 30, 2016 at 1:09 pm
Congratulations! You will definitely want to take advantage of all the classes you can get with that machine. Don’t hesitate to retake one, either, because you can’t possibly learn or remember everything in one class. These machines are awesome and really can do some amazing things.
I have a Baby Lock Elissimo, which will do everything yours will do, plus it’s an embroidery machine too. baby Lock’s are one of the most user-friendly machines you can get. My only regret is that I didn’t get a six or a ten needle stand alone embroidery unit instead. I could’ve done a lot more with one of those, on the embroidery side of it, like hats, shoes etc., but with mine I have made many, many items and have sold a lot of my things too. Just you wait and see how much easier your life will be from now on!
Audrey in IowaApril 30, 2016 at 4:56 pm
Congrats on your new machine!!! You will have so much fun and enjoyment working with it. Can’t wait to see what you will create. I wanted to leave a tip for ladies who have older machines you need to oil. My Elna SP which I purchased in 1974 was running slow. I researched oils and many sewing repair men recommend Tri-Flow oil. They said it would ungum old oil that may be causing a machine to run slow. I purchased some and put it in my machine the last few times I used it. My machine is flying now! It really works. So for $5 it was well worth a try. Also you should take the bottom off if you can and clean it out periodically. I have only had my machine serviced once since 1974. Sadly, Elnas are no longer made in Switzerland like mine was. I love my old little machine and it only weighs 13 lbs. I hope to buy my daughter one off eBay as she learned to sew on this one and I’m not ready to pass mine on. Treasure these old machines that are all metal as they don’t wear out and are workhorses. Happy sewing!!!
DebbieApril 30, 2016 at 10:11 pm
Congrats! on your new sewing machine. Thank you Matt. I am sewer but still very simple. How awesome! enjoy! You’ll love it!
ConnieKMay 2, 2016 at 5:49 am
Kristi, this was NOT a splurge, it was investing in a tool that will get the job and let you enjoy the process. When you make cabinets or furniture do you still use a hand saw and drill? I didn’t think so. This is an investment (albeit a fun one) in your career. First, your ability to create just increased 100 fold. The time you will need to invest to make your drapes, or anything else you may decide to do, will be much less so you are gaining in productivity. Also, you won’t procrastinate on projects that require you to sew which will help you to finish projects more quickly. Now, how’s that for justification!
I’m glad you can take the classes. Even for people who already know how to sew, taking classes when you purchase a complicated machine such as yours helps you to get comfortable with the machine and to learn a lot of the functions more quickly. Its faster than just experimenting on your own. And, as others pointed out, being able to see videos on YouTube when you want to try something new is absolutely fantastic.
Last, but not least, please at least read the “what not to do” in your User Manuals. At least skim through it because they do list things to avoid within the instructions that can save, not only time, but damage to your equipment which may not be covered by the warranty if it was used incorrectly. Same goes for any equipment or device. Now, go have fun and I can’t wait to see all of your new creations. Think of the things you will no longer have to send elsewhere to have embroidered!
MonikaMay 2, 2016 at 9:29 am
Good for you! Every skilled craftsman (craft woman?? craft person?) needs the right tools. It makes crafting that much better and much more fun and pleasant. You never write about the new shoes or new designer bag you bought so, yeah, treat yourself to a new sewing machine! I have a Husqvarna made in 1986 and I love it! I upgraded to this one 6 years ago and wondered how I’d been sewing with my old one for 20 years! Congrats; I’m a little envious but excited to see your projects and the machine’s capabilities.
paigeMay 2, 2016 at 10:02 am
Congratulations! I hope you thoroughly enjoy your new machine. As a quilter and someone who loves to cook, I know that having the right tools makes all the difference in the world. As an avid DIYer, you should know that too! 😉
LaurieMay 5, 2016 at 12:51 pm
That buttonhole foot is wonderful. If you ever do need to sew buttonholes, have the Viking staff at JoAnn’s teach you how to use it. It’s not difficult, but live instruction will be better than figuring it out from the manual. It does make the most consistent buttonholes you could ever ask for.
Patricia BennettNovember 11, 2018 at 8:45 am
I too have that exact machine after researching a lot of different brands and of course I went wth the Viking Sapphire 960q! Both my mother and my sister own Vikings and they’re very happy with their machines. I absolutely LOVE this machine and I know you will too! Happy Sewing😊
Carole SpicerSeptember 23, 2022 at 12:19 am
Hi. Have you tried sewing leather with it?. Husqvarna don’t say you can but I just wondered if it feels strong enough with a walking foot maybe?
Kristi LinauerSeptember 23, 2022 at 1:58 am
I haven’t tried it, but it seems like it would work with the right needle.