I'm often asked about what sewing machine and serger I use, so I thought I'd write a quick blog post about my sewing partners in crime.
MY SEWING MACHINE
My sewing machine is a Janome New Home 2212. It came into my life about two years ago, when I was a total newbie sewist, and still love it to bits!
It's a simple machine that only makes adjustable straight and zigzag stitches — which is all you really need to sew a garment. It has no bells and whistles, except for making buttonholes.
I think it's a great machine for sewists of any skill level, especially beginners! I love that it "grows" along with you, as you learn. It's easy to use, and very affordable IMHO. (I bought mine for $170 USD, at the time). So far, ::knock-on-wood:: it's held up very well!
When you shop for a sewing machine, you're "supposed" to go to a dealer, and try out each machine until you find the one for you. I, on the other hand, did my research online ... as you do when you don't have a local dealer, are lazy, and have the patience of a five-year-old. (I really looove tempting fate, don't I? 🙈) Thankfully, I lucked out with my choice.
There's more than one way to finish a seam, but everyone "seems" 🙃 to have a favorite.
I personally love French seams, especially for more special projects. But more often than not, (because I'm a sucker for instant gratification) I'll just whip out my Brother Lock 1034D. It's quick, efficient, and gives the inside of garments that store-bought "ready-to-wear" look.
This model was also surprisingly affordable, and worth every penny!
I'm not going to lie, threading this bad boy is not fun. It's actually like playing that 80s game "Operation" where a red-nosed cartoon character lies, exposed in horror, on an operating table while you use tweezers to extract objects from holes in his body. If your tweezers touch the edges of the hole, a buzzer goes off and you lose your turn. (Fun trip down memory lane, huh?)
Like the game, when threading a serger, you need to use tweezers to pull threads through specific hooks and holes. If you thread something the wrong way ... you need to start all over! 🤦🏻♀️ Of course, the more you practice threading it, the easier it gets. And once it's threaded, it's a dream to use!
CreativeBug.com has a great tutorial for threading a serger. Check it out! I'm sure you can also search YouTube for an equally helpful video.
I do recommend learning about "differential feed", to make sure your serged edges lie nice and flat.
Again, if you're new to sewing, these are great machines! I love them to death and don't see myself upgrading to anything else in the near future. Still, your mileage may vary. If you can, it's always a good idea to try before you buy.
It's also worth mentioning that a serger is absolutely not necessary, especially if you're just dipping your toes into sewing. Pinking shears or a simple zigzag stitch will also give you pretty finished seams!
Psst! A while back, I published a quick video about my sewing machine. Check it out if you want to learn more tips for getting started with sewing. 😘