Sewing Machine Interview with Alissa

on June 10 | in Interviews + Profiles | by | with 181 Comments

We’re compiling a fantastic list of sewing machine reviews thanks to your Sewing Machine Meme contributions! Keep them rolling in and we’ll all benefit when we look to purchase and/or upgrade; we’ll publish the entire list at the end of the month. We wanted more information about sewing machines for specialized sewing so we asked several trusted sewists for their opinions. Today we have an interview with Alissa from Handmade by Alissa focused on sewing machines for quilting (and man, can Alissa ever quilt!). We’ll be back tomorrow with an interview about machines for small business owners who sew their products.

Join in: Add your comments about quilting and sewing machines below, and answer the Sewing Machine Meme!

SMS: What brand and model of sewing machine do you have? Do you have more than one?
Alissa: I have a Euro Pro 9106 that was a gift from my mother-in-law for my bridal shower. Amazingly generous of her! I didn’t sew yet when she gave it to me, but knew I wanted to! It’s the only sewing machine I have and while I didn’t pick it out, and might have gone a different route if I had, it has worked out really well for me.

SMMIwAQ1.jpg title=

Alissa’s Machine

SMS: We know you make beautiful quilts, and that you sell some of your work in addition to creating custom quilts. What other types of sewing do you do and how much do you sew? Just how much wear and tear does your machine get?!
Alissa: Mostly it’s all quilting all the time. But there’s the occasional bag made too. The machine definitely gets lots and lots of use. I work freelance, so when I’m between jobs it’s being used for hours a day. I try to keep it nice and clean all the time so that it keeps running well for me!

SMS: Is this the first machine you’ve had? If you upgraded at some point why did you do it (or what would push you to consider doing it if you haven’t already?)?
Alissa: This is my first sewing machine. She’ll always have a special place in my heart!

SMS: What factors do you think are important to consider when looking for a new machine?
Alissa: Definitely what you think you’ll use it for. Do you need more than a straight stitch? Will you be sewing lots of layers? That sort of thing.

SMMIwAQ2.jpg title=

The feet & plastic table that came with Alissa’s machine.

SMS: What are some critical sewing machine features specifically related to quilting that are really important to you?
Alissa: The features that are on my machine that I really miss when I’m using a different one are:
1) A setting for the needle to stop in the down position. For quilting this is wonderful because it makes it so that I can stop and start without having to crank the needle down every time I stop.
2) The ability to adjust the speed I sew at. Again for quilting, I love putting the pedal to the floor but sometimes I can’t go full speed. If I lower my speed, I can still floor it and I know I’ll be sewing at an even speed.
3) The machine came with a walking foot, a darning foot, and one of those plastic table things. I use all three all the time when quilting so I lucked out that I didn’t need to buy them.
4) Lastly, the throat of the machine is not small, which is helpful when squeezing huge quilts through it.

SMS: Do you like/love/hate your machine? Are you ambivalent? Passionate? Does she have a name?
Alissa: I like my machine. I think that I would love it if it had an automatic thread cutter, a larger throat and could sew faster. I haven’t named her though – I should do that!!

SMS: Is there anything that drives you nuts about your machine?
Alissa: It does this weird thing where it will unthread in a specific spot. The machine will suddenly make a different sound so I’ve gotten good at catching it quickly and making the fix.

SMS: Would you recommend the machine to others? Why?
Alissa: Probably not. Mostly because it was only sold on the Home Shopping Network (I think?) and I don’t think you can get it anymore. I think that all of the features I like about it are easily available on brands that more well known and trusted. I don’t mean to talk down about the machine ’cause she’s treated me right, but I think people should go with a more trusted brand if they are buying a new machine.

SMMIwAQ3.jpg title=

The button for changing needle stop position and the slider to change machine’s speed.

SMS: Do you have a dream machine?
Alissa: I think that the Juki that Amanda Jean from Crazy Mom Quilt is always raving about is up there… or a Bernina…? But that’s an investment I’ll have to make in the future. Since I know I can’t afford to buy a new machine, and the one I have serves all my purposes, I haven’t done too much looking into different machines. I wouldn’t wanna test drive one, fall in love and resent the machine I currently have! Even more of a pipe dream?? A long arm quilting machine!! But that’s not likely to ever happen.

SMS: Do you have any other advice for people looking to buy a new sewing machine if their primary sewing interest is quilting?
Alissa: Definitely find a machine that has all of the features I listed above. I have found them all really helpful.

Join us for Sewing Machine Month! Enter to win this week’s prize package from our Sewing Machine Month sponsor: Husqvarna/Viking. Comment on any post this week for your chance to win the Quilting Package (over $150 retail value), or you might win one of four $20 gift certificates to Sew,Mama,Sew!.
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181 Responses to Sewing Machine Interview with Alissa

  1. happy girl says:

    I have an “okay for now” machine. Though my Mom has always sewn and did teach me the basics while I was growing up I have just came into my own as far as sewing is concerned. Inspired by the many blogs that I read I have begun to make quilts of my own design. I hope to have a nicer machine one day…. in the meantime I like listening to what others say about theirs. I make mental notes for that one day when I get to upgrade.

  2. stephanie says:

    i read her blog and always thought she had the fanciest machine in the world. Now I have no excuse not to step up my game:)

  3. Nani says:

    love this interview. I liked all the tips on what to look for in a quilting machine…will come in handy for sure!

  4. Betty says:

    That was an interesting interview. I am very happy with my Pfaff. I don’t think I’ll upgrade from the 2030, because it is a workhorse!

  5. angel says:

    It’s very encouraging to read about other work and the sewing machines they use. I have a nice, relatively inexpensive Singer (given to my by my mother) that I’ve figured out how to make more than I imagined on. It’s great to see the beautiful and creative projects done on similar machines.

  6. Julia in MI says:

    Thanks for all the machine info. Very Helpful!

  7. Jan B says:

    I love hearing other peoples experiences with different machines. It is also nice to see that great quilting can be done with all kinds of machines!

  8. Helz says:

    The Sewing Machine Meme has been such a Great Idea… thoroughly enjoying all the different reviews… so many different Must Have Features I would never have considered !

  9. Allison S says:

    Thanks so much for these interviews! This info will really come in handy when it’s time for me to upgrade.

  10. Elena says:

    Lovely quilts Alissa!! Thanks for sharing us all this interesting information. :)

  11. Missie says:

    I’m so jealous. I would LOVE to have a machine that I could quilt with. My little Singer didn’t come with a walking foot & the one I bought for it doesn’t work as well I wish it would.

  12. Valerie says:

    I have seen Euro-Pro machines at, believe it or not, Costco!

  13. Christina says:

    I didn’t even know there were machines where you could adjust them to stop in the needle down position, how cool!

  14. kern says:

    It’s interesting to read what people use and how they aquired their machines. I actually sew on my husband’s Kenmore.

  15. Kristin says:

    I definitely agree with the wide throat being a big plus – it was the primary consideration in the machine I bought two years ago and I LOVE it!!

  16. Jean says:

    Wow! Alissa’s quilts are amazing! Thanks for sharing about quilting, Alissa! I can’t wait to try it myself some day :)

  17. Ananda says:

    My dream machine would have the option for the needle to stop in the down position. I sew alot of elastic in diapers and I have to stop and readjust the elastic a few times. I haven’t shopped around much for a machine (mine was a gift too) but I’m always thinking, “Wouldn’t it be nice if my needle always stopped down.” I didn’t even know if it was a real option. It’s great to know that some machines have that feature.

    Great interview. Thanks.

  18. Malisha says:

    This is really great! because I love to quilt and my sewing machine might be really good, but it’s 10 years old! It’s good to know all this about a quilting sewing machine!!

  19. Carla Melton says:

    Great interview, As a fellow quilter (but just starting out) you had some sound advice. Thanks :)

  20. Julie GM says:

    My husband bought my first as a gift. He did all the endless research a few yrs back. End result? A Bernina! =)

  21. jackie says:

    i love your blog and your quilts!

  22. Page says:

    Wow SMS! The manufacturer’s should all be paying you for this valuable market research you are doing. This a very helpful series. Thank you (: ~Page

  23. Jessica T says:

    The table that came with the machine looks SO handy! What an interesting interview!

  24. Pamela Orra says:

    I have always owned a Singer like my mom. My Singer is around 25 years old. (I love her.) My husband wants me to look at Husqvarnas because he just loves his Husqvaran lawn mower. I just might. Love your blog Alissa.

  25. Kimberly Fennie says:

    How neat that your machine was a bridal gift! Love it!

  26. Serena says:

    I would love a machine with a larger throat as well. Some day, right? ;-)

  27. Karen says:

    I’ve just made my quilt top and realize already where my current machine is not super-well suited for quilting, so it’s interesting to read about a quilter’s machine!

  28. Monica Gee says:

    I have four machines and three are Berninas – I love them that much!

  29. Susan says:

    Amazing what you can do with a machine that doesn’t have all the bells and whistles. Makes me realize I should get to know my machine better. I, too, would love a long-arm, but am trying to make my way on my home machine.
    Susan

  30. Teresa says:

    I’m currently researching to buy a new sewing machine and the information of the functions to have is very useful. Thank you

  31. Samantha says:

    Very helpful for us quilters- thank!

  32. Stacy says:

    Thanks for all of the information! It will help in choosing a new machine!

  33. Yay Alissa! Proof that talent and skill go way beyond a fancy machine. But a fancy machine sure is nice ; )

  34. Leanna says:

    Thanks for sharing and great advice!

  35. Becky says:

    Great interview. Thanks for the helpful tips!

  36. Mary E. Hubbard (retirednana2008) says:

    Great info related to selecting a machine, especially for quilting. I’ve invested in a Juki & just love it. Amanda Jean and others were very helpful when I was ‘in the market’. Alissa is a very talented quilter & could do a great job using only a needle & thread!!

  37. Tonya says:

    Thank you for your insights. You do such beautiful work that I was surprised it is your first machine and you didn’t know how to sew before you had it. It makes me, as a brand new quilter, feel like there is hope for my quilting.

  38. Tricia L. says:

    Never heard of Euro Pro until now. I’m using an old Kenmore and I love it. I think about upgrading all the time, but if it’s not broke, I can’t see replacing it. But I also dream of owning a bernina!

  39. Kara says:

    I sew a lot, but have never quilted. It is interesting to me to read about all of the different features that are important to quilters. Quilting is an unknown world to me, but I think I’d like to try it some day.

  40. Kim K. says:

    Thanks for the great info! I’m looking for a machine and this has been really helpful!

  41. Debra says:

    Great info on what to look for in a new machine someday. I love Alissa’s work–simply beautiful!

  42. Elizabeth says:

    Love this info! Am sharing it with a friend in the market for a new machine for her daughter

  43. candy says:

    thanks for the awesome interviews- they really help the beginning sewer/quilter like me!! Please keep up all the informative posts- great help!!

  44. Staci says:

    This is wonderful. Although I am happy with my machine now it is great to be able to learn about other machines for future upgrades. :)

  45. michele m says:

    what a wonderfully generous mother in law.

  46. tara boos says:

    I agreed with your advice too, my machine is lacking in similar features but I love it at the same time. Hooray for the needle down position invention!

  47. Sherrille Mackeigan says:

    Great interview, love your blocks the colours are great.

  48. Mary says:

    I like reading all these machine reviews. It has definately gotten me started on thinking about upgrading (that could be a good or bad thing!).

  49. Lori says:

    I love hearing about others relationships to their machines. Thank you for the post.

  50. craftytammie says:

    What a great gift! I love these peeks into how others work. Thanks for sharing!

  51. Jamie Z says:

    Thanks for all the advice. I’ve started looking at new machines with the plan to purchase one in 2-3 months. Its really nice to hear real world experience on all these different machines.

  52. pat says:

    I had to chuckle when I read your interview. I have a very very old Brother that I got for Christmas when I just ten. In rural Maine 4-H was a really big thing, and girls were expected to be part of the sewing group. My old Brother machine took me on to win the State 4-H Dress Review several years later. I still have that machine 40 years later and it is making the most wonderful projects with me. It was simple and dependable with a great stitch..I love my upgraded machine, but when I need a bit of the tried and true I sit at my old Brother machine…

  53. Tanya says:

    Interesting comments about this machine which I had not heard of before. Obviously Alissa’s love of making quilts shines through in her creations. They are wonderful.

  54. Kim Beladi says:

    Great information. Thank you for the peices on sewing machines.

  55. Amy says:

    My first machine machine was a mechanical Euro-Pro! It treated me well, but I’ve since inherited a Viking, which I love. I feel a bit guilty for not using her as much as I’d like to, and yet still crave a new machine to play with.

  56. Emily says:

    I’ve enjoyed all the sewing machine memes I’ve seen in blogland–except now I want a new machine! Thanks for the great tips, ideas, and information.

  57. Denean says:

    Great advice for features to look for in a sewing machine! Thanks!

  58. Sara L. says:

    Interesting article. She does amazing work with a machine she probably wouldn’t have picked, which just goes to show, if you want to do it, you can. Thanks for the information!

  59. Kristi R says:

    Beautiful work. Thanks for your insight!

  60. Julianne says:

    What a great machine! I can’t believe it’s your first one ever. I’ve worked my way through a few hand me down machines over the last 10 years.

  61. Debbie P says:

    This is so helpful – I am in the market for a new machine – hoping Santa will be good to me this year!

  62. Deb V says:

    What a great interview. Thanks for telling us about your sewing machine. I checked out the items in your shop. They are very cute.

  63. jennifer says:

    dear sms,
    thank you so much for doing interviews with such talented ladies as alissa! i love exploring their blogs and getting inspired. oye, so many projects, so little time!

  64. Taylor says:

    Thanks for the info! So interesting to read about people’s sewing machines. I bought the Juki TL98Q (per AmandaJean’s recommendation) and it really is an amazing sewing machine. Highly recommended! Thanks again!

  65. Stacy says:

    Thanks for the review. I’m always interested to hear what quilters like to see in a machine.

  66. suzanne says:

    My singer is older than me (I inhertieted it) and it does all that I need. Dad even scrounged a vintage sewing table for it to fit into! Mine is big and heavy and can really sew. But since I have never used another one….I don’t know what I am missing!?!

  67. Mrs. JP says:

    Very nice. Also, Alissa’s blog has a really cute girl baby quilt that I think I’ll copy….I was gonna do another kind but I like her’s….I’ll have to think about my options now…

  68. itsystitch says:

    Thanks for sharing! I have yet to makean actual quilt, I’m so intimidated by it!

  69. Sarah E. says:

    I agree with another commenter… these interviews make me “need” a new machine!!!

  70. Krista says:

    Thanks for another great interview! Don’t be swayed by the big name brands girls…I’ve loved my 30+ year old Pfaff 1212 that I inherited from my late mother-in-law and used it for piecing even when I owned a new Bernina. I’ve since sold the Bernina and recently gone to the new Pfaff Quilt Expression 4.0 with 10″ of quilting space, dual light, 9mm stitches…the list goes on. And guess what? I still love piecing on my trusty old gal! My advice for new quilters is to look for a good, solid old metal machine (think grade 9 home-ec class). They are the true workhorses.

  71. Holee says:

    I also have a Euro Pro, not as fancy as yours, but I got it for all the feet and the fact that it is still made out of metal. It’s a great addition to have at a good price.

  72. donnag says:

    I love the machine review idea. My old Bernina 802 Sport is a dear friend. I would like it if it had the needle-up/needle-down even more!

  73. Joanna says:

    There are a lot of things I’d change on my machine, but as I can’t afford a different one, I am going to settle for getting a few new feet for it. DEFINITELY a walking foot. I won’t attempt another quilt without one!

  74. Aleisha says:

    I also have a “no name brand” sewing machine and it has served me well, but when I read these interviews about the different machines people are using and the features they have that I don’t it makes me feel like I “need” to buy a new one. :o) Of course, I’m already on a rampage about an embroidery machine and my husband is tired of hearing about it. He’ll be ready to throw me out if I were to ask for a new sewing machine too. LOL

  75. Angel says:

    Thanks for the Interview–nice to see people with the type of machine like I have still doing great things with it. I drool at the idea of a new machine….someday….someday…….= )

  76. Erica says:

    Thanks for these reviews!

  77. LadySnow says:

    That is a very nice wedding shower gift!

  78. Helena says:

    Great interview. I can’t wait to hear other input on their machines.

  79. Paul says:

    Thanks for all the info.

  80. Bear says:

    I agree – a large throated machine would be so helpful with quilts…

  81. Allison says:

    it’s so neat to see what everyone else out there is using…. and no matter what machine you end up with, you can make beautiful things!

  82. Kim says:

    I am looking into a new machine as I inherited mine. This post was super helpful as my goal is to one day (once all 4 of my kiddos are all in school) learn to make beautiful quilts.

  83. Tiffany says:

    It’s crazy what beautiful quilting people can do with a “regular” machine. I’m just too intimidatd to try quilting on my own machine. Which means I have alot of quilt TOPS, but only a few tied or tacked stitched ones!

  84. That was a really great interview. I have a Viking Designer SE and I really love my machine. My other half bought it for me. It has so many great features. The list is long. It is very expensive but, well worth the money

  85. Great Interview thanks for all the info and tips

  86. Linnea says:

    It’s great to hear what others like or dislike about their machines. It makes me appreciate my machine more while also giving me some good tidbits about what features I should be taking more advantage of. Thanks Alissa!

  87. Alissa does such beautiful quilts and had great information about her machine. Thanks Alissa.

  88. Bobbi says:

    Awesome review. :)

  89. Autumn says:

    Thank you, Alissa, for the info. I love hearing everyone’s sewing machine makes and features. It’ll be useful when making another purchase. ;o)

  90. susan says:

    I think it is encouraging to see what equipment people are using to produce beautiful work. I am new to sewing and when you first start out you see other people’s work and just assume they have to latest and greatest equipment. You almost feel like you can have to make a huge investment to get great work. It makes me feel great and inspired that you can make almost any machine do what you need!

  91. Bethany says:

    What a great interview! Lots of useful information! And how generous of Alissa’s mother-in-law…lucky girl!

  92. shannon says:

    great info!

  93. Karen says:

    Great interview! What a wonderful gift from you mother in law. It’s looks like you have gotten a lot of use out of this machine.

  94. ann says:

    This is very helpful. Thanks for posting!

  95. By LuLu says:

    all these interviews are making me “need” a new machine… LOL now to convince my dear husband!

  96. Carolyn says:

    Thanks for the great review! I like your pictures, too. Very artistic! I just bought a new Brother machine, but I’m still enjoying reading about everyone’s machines. I don’t have buyer’s remorse, but I am planning my next machine! Probably in my next life :)

  97. Jocelyn says:

    All this sewing machine talk is really making me want a new one! I got a super basic (and I mean SUPER basic) one about 5 years ago, and I have always “thought” I liked it… but now I’m seeing tons of cool features that I’m missing out on that would make my sewing SOOOOO much easier! Time to start saving up for a new one I guess!

  98. Mare says:

    I am loving all this information!

  99. Beatriz Feio says:

    Great interview. I found it very helpfull, since I’m starting to sew and on the market for my first sewing machine (just getting to know all the features and possibilities out there. Thank you!

  100. Karen S. says:

    Great interview! Love your quilts, too. I recently adopted a used Bernina and just love it. I’ve been lusting after one for decades and got an opportunity to get one and jumped on it…I’m not getting any younger. I’ve been doing dress construction on it and it’s the best machine I’ve ever used. Each stitch is so precise and you can slow the stitching way down to a crawl if you need. It has a knee lift too, so I’ve done some really tight corners and circles with little trouble. Who knew how great tedious sewing could be! When you decide to get one, you won’t be sorry. The new 800 line has many of the features you’re looking for while quilting. It’s pricey, but you might want to test drive one just for kicks and giggles.

  101. Margie says:

    Beautiful quilts & your machine looks wonderful. That was a great gift from your mil! Thanks for all the tips. I hope to begin quilting very soon.

  102. Kate Bessey says:

    I’m not a quilter, but this machine looks cool!

  103. Rachel says:

    Beautiful quilts! I love being able to look at all the different sewing blogs from this site!

  104. Jane says:

    Interesting comments about this machine. It is a new brand to me. Thank you.

  105. Debbie says:

    Very helpful suggestions.Thank You. I have a Brother that I bought 33 years ago. It still works great so even though I’d love a new machine I can’t justify buying one.

  106. Ellen says:

    Thanks for the info! I love the Meme’s!!!!

  107. Elise says:

    I have been wishing and hoping for a Bernina for years!

  108. molly says:

    what an amazing bridal shower gift!

  109. Kim says:

    I’m learning that a higher end machine is nice, but talent, passion, and experience are way more important (as with any pasttime that uses some piece of equipment!)

  110. Alana says:

    I fall in love with how even all of Alissa’s quilting stitches look on her quilts and now I know it’s from her speed adjuster! I’ll have to make sure my next machine comes equipped with that, too!

  111. Mary says:

    I’m fascinated by that plastic table! And I never thought how useful a “needle down” setting would be–I never remember to crank the thing down myself!

  112. Kathy Marsh says:

    I’m thinking of getting a straight stitch machine to use just for quilting. I have my eye on a Brother that sews 1500 stitches a minute. I just have the feeling that I’m working my regular machine too hard. A knee lift lever is nice to have, too.

  113. Sariah says:

    I love reading about other people’s experiences with their machines. My first machine was a Singer from WalMart. I wore it out in about 5 years. I got a lot of good projects – including furniture slipcovers, out of it, but I never fell in love with it. Then one Christmas, my mom and grandma went in together on a used Bernina that had been refurbished. I LOVE it!! It is from the 70′s and it still runs like a champ. I think that is the best present I’ve ever received. I can’t imagine ever wanting to switch from the Bernina brand because they are so reliable and smooth- true quality!

  114. Carin Vogelzang says:

    I wish my machine had one of those extended plastic tables for when I am quilting….thanks for the info.
    Carin

  115. Anne says:

    I really like all the posts about machine as I am hoping to buy a new machine.

  116. britt says:

    Seems like similar feelings I have about my machine. I like it, don’t love it, but can deal.

  117. Rose P in AZ says:

    Thanks for the opinions that help us clarify what we like about our machines and what to look for in a new one.

  118. mari says:

    love the viking, i have a singer but hope for a viking someday

  119. linda says:

    Thanks for the interview. I have been longing for a new machine and your tips are very helpful.

  120. Ellen Ban says:

    Very informative! I’m looking forward to seeing the compiled list about machines at the end of the month. Alissa and her machine do great work!

  121. felicia says:

    Great Post! I love when people dream but are content with what they have!

  122. Renee E says:

    WOW I never new a sewing machine like that one! Sounds nice.

  123. Elizabeth says:

    Thanks so much for all the great information. I’m looking to upgrade my current machine and it’s been very helpful to hear how others feel about their various machines!

  124. KathyB says:

    My first machine is a Kenmore which I love to pieces…but after several years I hoped for an upgrade and found a fantastic Viking on trade-in just this week…..it’s fun to read about everyone’s experiences as I’m currently machine obsessed.

  125. Shawnee says:

    Alissa, thank you for sharing! I am awaiting the arrival of my new machine…a Viking Platinum 775. I hope it gives me many happy sewing hours. Choosing a machine can be so confusing!

  126. phyllis says:

    Thanks for sharing

  127. Molly B. says:

    Amazing quilts! You are really a master! I’m having sewing machine envy too . . . .

  128. susaninfrance/texas says:

    this is a super great idea this month!! loving all the info.

  129. Lynne in NC says:

    Wow! I’m not a quilter and didn’t know about all the possibilities with ONE machine. Thanks for the information, there’s a lot to glean from this article. I appreciate the photos, too.

  130. Yaneth says:

    Thank you for sharing all your useful info. Your quilts are gorgeous!

  131. Melanie says:

    I so wish that April had been sewing machine month – I just bought a new one! But so far, I’m happy with my decision, and Alissa has helped reassure me that my choice was fine :)

  132. lina says:

    I’m learning a lot from this interview! It’s good to know this objective point of view. thanks a lot.

  133. It is great to see what machine everyone else has. I feel quite humble with mine, the feed dogs don’t even go up and down so I can’t try free motion so it’s just a dream for me at the moment. It does look pretty though. Your quilts are beautiful, keep up the good work. I enjoyed reading your blog too ;-)

  134. Joan says:

    Great Interview. I love learning more and more about sewing machines. Thank you for all the helpful information. I’m looking for a second machine so all this info is wonderful.

  135. Nicole Kirk says:

    Wow – all of that awesome stuff comes from that machine! I am super super impressed and SO envious! Cute idea to name the machine! hee hee

  136. Trudy Callan says:

    Thank you so much for this information.

    http://www.sewingwithtrudy.blogspot.com

  137. Fran says:

    Thanks for the great advice. I tend to stay away from looking at machines out of my price range as well. But I can dream as well. :)

  138. candice says:

    I purchased a bernina on a special sale and had 6 months to pay it off interest free. I just paid that bad boy off about 2 weeks ago! Yahooo! And I love, love, love the Bernina! Much better machine than the 2 brothers I’ve had.

  139. what an amazing bridal shower gift :) i have never bought a brand new machine for myself either, but instead have sewn on used machines. they get the job done, but oh, the dream of carefully choosing and purchasing “the perfect” machine is always in the back of my mind…. someday!

  140. Mare says:

    My Mom just got a Bernina. It’s beautiful! That one is on my wishlist too.

  141. Michele says:

    Wow! She’s has sewn some really fabulous quilts…thanks for sharing her blog link. I’m looking forward to seeing what else gets made :-)

  142. Mindy says:

    More good things to look at when purchasing a machine. Thank you for the tips! I keep learning just how little I know.

  143. brenbren says:

    That machine looks a little complicated, but FUN!

  144. ariel says:

    I am really loving this month’s topic…I’m learning a lot about what I’d like to look for in a new machine…thank you so much!

  145. Regina says:

    Great observation about why you don’t look at other machines – I am the same way – i work the best with what I have (Janome Sew Precise) and have done what I think is pretty amazing stuff. It’s not necessarily the machine – it’s the driver!!!

  146. carolyn says:

    great stuff! Thanks for the interview!

  147. Hilary says:

    Thanks for your advice I agree that needle down, and adjustible speed are wonderful.

  148. Kris says:

    Naming the sewing machine?! I’ll have to ask my daughter to come up with a name for mine!

  149. Melissa says:

    My sewing machine is a gift from my mother-in-law, too, and I’m a bit intimidated by it. It’s a Husqvarna, which is like what she has, and she loves hers, but my old Brother was working for me just fine…so now I have to learn how to use the Rolls Royce of sewing machines when I was pretty happy with my Geo Metro. :o)
    It’s good to know that good sewists don’t have to upgrade to the most expensive to still make great things!

  150. April says:

    I have a EuroPro that its about one and a half million years old, has no bobbin case cover, hasn’t threaded properly in years, and I cannot bring myself to get rid of it.

    That said – the broken and missing things are ONE HUNDRED PERCENT MY FAULT and not those of the EuroPro. I loved her too had and too often, and before I really knew what I was doing. She was my first friend and I’ll love her forever.

  151. sara b says:

    this has been fun reading about everybody’s sewing machines. thanks :)

  152. anne says:

    Thanks for sharing.

  153. Elizabeth says:

    Thank you for all the tips on what to look for when picking out a sewing machine! I’m hoping to get myself one by Christmas…

  154. Bethany says:

    Great info. Thanks.

  155. Monica says:

    The interview was very interesting, but more importantly, it got me thinking more about my machine. What I love about it and what I would like to change. Thank you!

  156. Jan says:

    Thank you so much for running these interviews. I’m learning so much! I love seeing what others have used successfully and what they recommend. I also enjoy seeing so many people talking about a love we all seem (seam!) to have in common……sewing! What a great pastime and very enjoyable therapy to boot!

  157. Katie says:

    I like the darning needle that her machine has. Mine is basically a foot that’s plastic and therefore see-through so it makes it really hard to free-hand quilt. Actually pretty close to impossible. My machine is a Kenmore. Fortunately I have a walking foot which allows me to at least kind of easily straight-stitch quilt. One day, I’ll get a machine that’s better for quilting.

  158. Kim B. says:

    I am arranging to learn to quilt this winter. I can’t wait! Thanks for the great info about quilting and your machine!

  159. stephanie says:

    what a nice bridal gift!!! My first machine was a christmas gift from my mom… she must have known then that I would eventually develop a love for sewing!

  160. Em says:

    Great interview! I have never heard of a Euro Pro machine. I also echo what Alissa says about the feet available and having the setting to have the needle down. I wish I had a walking foot and that setting on my machine!!!

  161. Gerwerken says:

    I loved this mostly positive appraisal of a machine from HSN. It is easy to get gear snobby and think we need the best, so I like to be reminded that relatively inexpensive machines can still get the job done the majority of the time.

  162. Suzi says:

    Great information. Thanks for sharing with the rest of us!

  163. Jennifer says:

    Nice interview!

  164. MARIA ISABEL says:

    Very interesant your words thank you Alissa.

  165. Lauren says:

    I am loving all the memes so far, can’t wait to see the entire list later this month! It’s like Consumer Reports but much more fun!

  166. Nichole says:

    I echo all of Alissa’s sentiments. I use my machine primarily for quilting as well, and agree with the features she highlighted as being “must have.” It has been fun to read about different machines and what matters to different sewists on various blogs. Thanks SMS for another great installment!

  167. Cheryl says:

    Thanks so much for the interview! I’m sure that a lot of people will benefit from the information and the opinion of someone that uses this machine.

  168. Kristin says:

    I hadn’t thought about thinking of a wide throat, that is something I will have to keep in mind when looking for a machine! Thanks!

  169. Caroline says:

    my aunt has a Juki quilter and absolutely loves it . . . she won it in a appliance store contest though. They’re really expensive so I don’t think she would have bought one otherwise- but judging from how perfect she says it is, it might be almost worth the price.

  170. Brenda says:

    I love the comments about the dream machine. I figure my next one will be my last one, and it is fun to think about fulfilling all those dreams in one machine :)

  171. Laura says:

    This information is great to have. I just found out that my machine (the Viking Emerald 118) doesn’t have a free motion/darning foot to go with it so I’m a little frustrated that I won’t be able to do any free motion quilting on it!! Last year, when I bought my machine, I didn’t even know about free motion quilting so I guess I shouldn’t feel too bad. But regardless, I wish I thought about the things that Alissa had mentioned before I bought my machine. This is a great month!

  172. Kristin says:

    Thank you, Alissa, for your comprehensive review of your machine and the education on Euro-Pro. I didn’t know anything about that brand.

  173. Liz says:

    my sewing machine is oooooolllllddddd as rocks and trees….or nearly. but it’s a viking husqvarna and will hopefully last till the apocalypse. nonetheless, this is good info in this post.

  174. Kristie says:

    So helpful. I will be taking it all on board for future machine shopping!!

  175. Christina says:

    Now I want to race out and buy a new sewing machine with a thread cutter, more stitches, needle down… sigh… maybe one day. So many great ideas to keep in mind. Thanks. :)

  176. maryanne says:

    Great interview – with some advice I’ll try to keep in mind for whenever I get around to trying out quilting.

  177. Sara says:

    It’s always cool to get to know someone that is just an amazing quilter! Super jealous over the awesome bridal shower gift!

  178. Tina says:

    Great interview! Sometimes I think about a new machine (a longer throat to fit those quilts would be nice!) but mine works fine so it is hard to justify a new one. Instead I think I might buy a serger! Easier to justify that since I don’t have one already.

  179. Dawn says:

    Thanks so much Alissa for sharing! Beautiful quilts, I wish I had the patience for it.
    Dawn

  180. Laurie says:

    It’s amazing that this machine helps create such beautiful work! I thought she may have quilted with a longarm!

  181. Rochelle says:

    I’m right there with you on the Bernina, Alyssa. My mom has one and it’s the best!

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