Gift help for sewing machine


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Old 12-16-23, 04:59 AM
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Gift help for sewing machine

Looking for some suggestions. Daughter has "mini-sewing machine" on her wish list. She's a teacher and talented crafter, and she and our SIL are expecting next summer.

I'm browsing "best beginner sewing machines" or "mini-sewing machines", but lots of choices. I'm guessing the "mini" ones will not be of terrific quality, but don't want to get her a monster either.

Wifey is going to ask a seamstress friend for advice as well (she made our daughter's wedding dress in 2019), but can use all the help I can get.

Thanks.
 
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Old 12-16-23, 05:18 AM
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In browsing numerous sites, I see the Singer Start 1304 mentioned and highly rated. Maybe a little pricey, I see some other similar Singer models for much less, but don't necessarily want to scrimp on value/usability. Singer 2277 I saw mentioned as maybe better and I see less expensive as well.
 

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Old 12-16-23, 05:56 AM
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That's a tough one. I'm a fan of old machines from the 50's and 60;s or brands from sewing machine stores.
However, first I'll tell you to stay away from mini's and Singer's. A mini will break within a month and today's Singers don't fare much better (they don't make em like they used to). You don't say how much you want to spend tops, but I would recommend a Brother or a Janome. They're both better machines, even the cheaper ones. Can I ask how much you're wanting to spend? I can list a couple Brother's, but they're closer to $200. I don't think $100 ones will do it. They'll break soon after they're used.
 
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Old 12-16-23, 06:23 AM
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I also do not like inexpensive machines as they can make even simple jobs frustrating. Sewing machines are surprisingly complex and quality does make a difference. The plastic internal parts of a cheap machine can stretch under load. When you sew heavier fabric the machine can get out of time causing jams.

I would avoid most review websites except for a very basic initial search. A site with a Amazon link next to each item is a clue that it's a review article created for profit, often just regurgitating the reviews found elsewhere online. I found this site that offers some good advice.

Since I'm often sewing heavier fabrics like hemming jeans or making an equipment cover out of canvas I tend to put my money towards a simple machine with all metal internal components. Instead of putting money towards a computerized machine that can do hundreds of fancy stitches I prefer a simple mechanical machine that puts it's money into the internal parts. So, I'd avoid machines offering a crazy amount of stitches.
 
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Old 12-16-23, 09:46 AM
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Thanks, folks. Also heard from wife's friend who also mentioned Brother and can be found locally at Wally World, so I stopped in. There were 2 models, one @ $88 and one @ $169. I went back and forth on pros/cons of going low end or high end and finally opted for the inexpensive one given this is a beginner, the more expensive one has bells and whistles I figured she didn't need while learning.
 
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Old 12-28-23, 09:24 AM
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How did your daughter like her new sewing machine?
 
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Old 12-28-23, 02:16 PM
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Hasn't tried it out yet, but liked it. She knows she's just a beginner and didn't need anything fancy. I'll post back when I get some feedback when she actually tries it out. Thanks for the help.
 
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Old 12-29-23, 01:55 PM
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As mentioned.... it's not about being fancy. I have a basic Brother machine that came from Walmart.
I use it all the time. The best way to learn... use scrap material and experiment.

My mom had an Elna (swiss). Many hours of use on that machine.
It's a shame.... Elna is no longer available. Perhaps one day she'll progress to a Janome.
 
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Old 12-29-23, 03:28 PM
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I didn't know you sewed, Pete. Learn something new every day.
 
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Old 12-29-23, 03:31 PM
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Mostly repairs, zippers, hems, collars.
(zippers a specialty)
No clothes from patterns.
 
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Old 12-29-23, 05:56 PM
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I'm impressed, my Mom was quite the seamstress, but she absolutely HATED zippers.
 
 

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