It's Sewing Machine Month over at Sew, Mama, Sew! so I thought I'd answer their questions and show you all what equipment I use to create all my bags! This is my *awesome* machine!
Now for the questions...
What brand and model do you have?
A Kenmore Model 50, according to the manual. It even has a zigzag stitch! I also use a Singer Confidence 7463 sometimes, but I prefer my trusty old Kenmore.
How long have you had it?
It has been in my possession since June 2007. Before that it was my grandmother's and my great-grandmother's before that! I've had my Singer since January 2009.
How much does that machine cost (approximately)?
I have no idea...maybe $35 back in the day? Who knows. The Singer was $199.99 (on sale!)
What types of things do you sew (i.e. quilting, clothing, handbags, home dec projects, etc.)?
Mostly I sew handbags for london purple (duh). When I get a chance, I like to make clothes for myself, which often end up in the scrap bin, and little things for around the house. This summer I intend to make a lap quilt (eek! a quilt!) and some wedding gifts for a friend. I know this machine has created some beautiful heirloom quilts and clothing when it belonged to my grandmother, including some Princess Jasmine Halloween costumes for me and my sister!
How much do you sew? How much wear and tear does the machine get?
I sew just about every day. Sometimes my machine and I need a break! I am getting nervous, my tension has been wonky lately and I sincerely hope it's not about to wear out, I can't imagine using anything else! I try to keep it oiled and lint-free as often as I can.
Do you like/love/hate your machine? Are you ambivalent? Passionate? Does she have a name?
Hmm it doesn't have a name, maybe I'll ask my grandma if she ever named it! I love my machine more than words can express. I started crying one day when my needle got stuck in the bobbin and I couldn't move it either way, I thought it was done for! Sobbing, I called my grandma and she talked me through it...that was a day I hope to never repeat! It's so much more than a great sewing machine, it's like a family heirloom to me. Now the Singer, I hate. It does not sew well. I would be devastated if I had to use it as my #1 machine.
What features does your machine have that work well for you?
It can sew through 80 billion layers of fabric with no problems! There is so much raw power there. It's also simple to use, and I know it so well I can work very quickly. I like that reverse is a lever instead of a button. I can drop my feed dogs and the presser foot tension adjuster is amazing. The one thing I like about the Singer is the automatic buttonholer. That's why I bought it, really. The stitch functions are nice but I never use them...and I guess the bobbin winder is pretty speedy. And it's purple...
Is there anything that drives you nuts about your machine?
I think most of my frustration is with a machine that's aging pretty quickly due to lots of use. Sometimes my thread pops out of the bobbin for no reason...which causes lots of unpicking because I don't notice when it happens! The Singer drives me nuts because it can't sew through more than a couple layers of fabric without freaking out!
Do you have a great story to share about your machine (i.e., Found it under the Christmas tree? Dropped it on the kitchen floor? Sewed your fingernail to your zipper?, Got it from your Great Grandma?, etc.!)? We want to hear it!
My great story would be where it came from I guess! It's amazing that it has created so many wonderful things and it's still going strong.
Would you recommend the machine to others? Why?
I would definitely recommend it, but I doubt there are many around anymore!
What factors do you think are important to consider when looking for a new machine?
I think you have to make sure it can handle the types of projects you do (i.e. they make special machines for quilters, industrial machines are great for heavy duty fabrics, etc.). Otherwise you won't be happy with it at all.
Do you have a dream machine?
This is my dream machine! Let's hope it lasts forever *crosses fingers*!