Can you advise me on buying a sewing machine?

(15 Posts)
lborgia Fri 13-Jan-17 02:56:38

I need something very basic, but reliable I suppose. Would like to show my boys how to use it too. I tend to hand do hems etc, but want to make a few pillow cases, stitching in the heading tape on curtains absolutely not for making guinea pig playtunnels out of fleece, and maybe expand from there.

I did a lot of sewing as a child and hope it all comes back to me, but the machine I've had for years has never worked properly. . It was a gift which is lovely, but it just sits staring at me. Both DM and MIL have tried it out and agree.

I've seen am Elna Elina 20 , looks like the sort of thing. .. but then some of these are half price? !

What would be on your checklist?

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lborgia Fri 13-Jan-17 09:31:04


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Katymac Fri 13-Jan-17 10:01:28

What machine do you have? is it worth getting it serviced?

lborgia Fri 13-Jan-17 10:37:45

It's an Elna 2003, they're now discontinued. I had it serviced which cost alot and didn't really make much difference. I'm loathed to spend any more on it tbh.

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lborgia Fri 13-Jan-17 10:43:26

I've just found this review which mentions all the things that are wrong with mine! [Even though it's about another model]]

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lborgia Fri 13-Jan-17 10:44:09


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WheresTheCoffee Fri 13-Jan-17 10:51:12

I have this machine, it's reliable, has all the functions I've needed for the last few years and has been a great machine to learn on.

The spec is similar to the one you linked to, except on this machine you can drop the feed dogs (useful if you want to darn or have a go at free motion embroidery).
As the pp said, it may be worth having your current machine serviced or repaired?

lborgia Fri 13-Jan-17 10:59:18

Thanks for that - I'm guessing "drop the feed dogs is a typo"? I'm agog grin

It's alot more expensive here in Oz, but I'll look around. .

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buzzlightyearsdinosaur Fri 13-Jan-17 11:40:08

How much are Husqvarna sewing machines in Oz? mine is 20 years old and has never missed a beat. They do a good entry level one that our local shop recommends for school use. you might want something fairly decent if you want to put heading tape on...mine will happily do heading tape+fabric+lining +interlining.

lborgia Fri 13-Jan-17 12:07:28

They're pretty expensive but I've just seen one on ebay that looks like a steal... I'll do a bit of research. .

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AshesandDust Fri 13-Jan-17 12:07:51

I'd recommend a Janome, my 6 year old one (D3050) has been trouble free even though I use it at least for 4 or 5 days every week. Janome do lots of models depending on how involved in embroidery or quilting you want to get. Another
plus is there are lots of cheap generic extras you can buy such as gathering foot, daring/free motion foot etc.
I used to have a Husqvarna in the past and found it to be a good work horse but not so easy to find the generic extras for.
As for Pfaff, pfft, I found my expensive quilt machine to be a bloody nightmare.

lborgia Fri 13-Jan-17 12:22:32

Thank you! Janome are reasonably priced here. ..

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bruffin Fri 13-Jan-17 12:23:36

john lewis own brand are made by janome as well

lborgia Fri 13-Jan-17 12:48:13

OK, well thanks all, I've found a decent shop nearby, so I will go in and talk to them too. .they have a sale and they do classes too.

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WobblyLondoner Fri 13-Jan-17 12:55:29

Some good advice here.

The only thing I'd add is to think carefully about what sort of sewing you might do and buy accordingly, perhaps veering on the side of caution (a slightly better spec than you might need).

I bought a new machine a few years ago - it was a basic model (as I wasn't sure how much use it would get), but since then I've made a lot of furnishing things (curtains, quilt, cushions) which all use heavy fabrics - and my machine can't really cope. I'll probably have to get another one just 5 or so years later. I wish I'd spent a little bit more and got something more suited to sewing heavier fabrics.

I got a Singer but next time I'll probably go for a Janome.

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