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Sewing machine help/recommendations

(9 Posts)
KitKats28 Wed 25-Jan-17 08:06:05

I have a Toyota fairly basic machine that I've had about 25 years. It has decided it hates me, which coincides nicely with having some Christmas money from my parents to spend (possibly) on a new machine.

My current one comes unthreaded about every five stitches, backfires, snaps the shuttle thread and is a general pain in the arse. I've had it serviced periodically, and looked after it with oil and stuff. Getting it fixed would be a pain in the arse, as there is nowhere locally to get it done, since the man who used to do it retired. Can anyone say if there is something specific wrong with it that causes these problems?

Alternatively, can anyone recommend a new one to me. My requirements are fairly minimal. The main one is, it must be heavy and solid feeling. I can't stand lightweight flimsy stuff. I mostly sew things in straight lines, like curtains and cushion covers, and I like to be able to use it to mend things (like my daughter's bag which has been waiting weeks) as I can't hand sew anymore. I would like it to be able to cope with heavyweight fabrics. My hands don't work very well, so some sort of needle threading helper would be good.

I have a maximum of £200 to spend, less if possible. Help me sewing people!

KitKats28 Wed 25-Jan-17 08:13:20

Forgot to say, the two I have looked at are the Brother LS14 and the Viking Husqvarna E20.

yaela123 Fri 27-Jan-17 16:51:28


clairethewitch70 Fri 27-Jan-17 17:01:58

I have a Janome which I love. Do you have a local sewing machine shop that you could got to for advice and they usually let you try before you buy instore. Our local one is a Brother store with about 20 models on display, all threaded up to be tested.

clairethewitch70 Fri 27-Jan-17 17:03:00

Your current machine - the tension may be too tight. Try reducing the tension dial down a notch or two.

JoffreyBaratheon Wed 01-Feb-17 15:39:02

For sewing in a straight line nothing beats a SInger vintage machine.

If you want electrical, I'd recommend the pretty Singer 221K - it looks like a toy but sews like a beast. Often come up on eBay. If you get it cheap enough - and it should be considerably cheaper than a modern bells n whistles machine - you can get it serviced and the electrics checked for £30 or so (if it doesn't come to you serviced already).

Thing about old machines is they sew a perfect straight stitch unlike any contemporary machine - because that's all they were designed to do. The stitch they sew is immaculate.

I have picked up some stunningly pretty (and fully funstional) Jones and Singer hand-cranks at things like car boots for £10-£15 as well. (Do them up for fun and pass them on to friends and family who want a machine).

They are absolutely solid and probably have another 100 years in them! Plus, although not worth a lot, a vintage machine should hold its re-sale value.

languagelearner Thu 02-Feb-17 16:47:35

I also have a Janome, which I bought after doing some research on which was the "best" machine (for me, that is).

ILoveDolly Thu 02-Feb-17 16:51:49

I have a Brother which I use to death and has been a bit of a workhorse, never goes wrong. A Janome is a nice sturdy machine too

ToastieRoastie Thu 02-Feb-17 19:13:55

John Lewis does the Janome 7025 for just over 200 - have had it a few years and would recommend.

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