why all those sewing machine

fincheloverFebruary 22, 2010

Just curious and confused,I've been reading where some peoplde have 3 0r 4 sewing machines. Why? a lady stated she only uses one for making blocks another for piecing. To me is this necessary. Anyones comment

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why does a man need 3 or 4 of the same tool?ralfsmom

    Bookmark   February 22, 2010 at 8:32PM
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It's an addiction -- kind of like being a fabraholic:)

    Bookmark   February 22, 2010 at 8:37PM
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I have eight machines. YOU GOTTA PROBLEM WITH THAT? lol. I am just kidding. Seriously I do have eight machines. One is an antique hand crank, one an antique treadle. Two others are antiques I have not had a chance to recondition. I'll keep them because they're unique to look at as well as use.

I have one super cheap modern I bought to do mending on, because my three old very nice mechanical machines need to go to the shop to be cleaned and reconditioned. All three of these originally came from my mother or MIL. When I get the old Necchi running, I'll get rid of the new, cheap machine. But, I own them outright, and I don't have to pay rent on them so I guess I'll keep them.

    Bookmark   February 22, 2010 at 8:41PM
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Maybe she meant me??? I use one to piece,,,one to quilt. The reason being,one was a gift ,and by using two I dont have to change the settings and feed dogs etc. back and forth...If I were a betting gal.I'd wager almost everyone has more than one machine!!

    Bookmark   February 22, 2010 at 8:44PM
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I have my Great Aunt's ancient Singer (early electric) and a treadle that belonged to my SIL's grandmother. But both sit on a shelf and I never use them. I sew with one modern machine and that's it. I don't think I need another one. And don't know where I would put it if I had it!


    Bookmark   February 22, 2010 at 8:53PM
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I have many sewing machines. I have a couple of nearly antique machines which were given to me. I use them occasionally, but I didn't buy them.

I have the machine I use for most things - my Pfaff 7570, which has an embroidery unit. I use that for most of my sewing and all embroidery. But if I happen to have an embroidery project to do, I can then set up one of the other machines for sewing. I don't do much embroidery anymore - that was part of my previous business, although a small part.

I have an industrial sewing machine, which I used when running my upholstery business.

I have two sergers. One is 30 years old, and a workhorse, but it doesn't do everything. The second does everything, including a coverstitch. I don't use these regularly anymore, but I used them each several times a week when I was in business.

Then there's my DH's old Kenmore - still a fine machine, and it's the one I use if my beloved Pfaff is in the shop for cleaning, or if I'm using it for embroidery.

I also have a long-arm quilting machine.

It sounds like I'm trying to justify the number of machines because I was in business, but I would have bought them anyway, LOL. What if one were BROKEN??!! I might hyperventilate!!

I wouldn't part with most of these machines, any more than I would part with my air compressor, 4 pneumatic staplers and nail and brad guns. I like my drill press, too. My DH has the radial arm saw, the chop saw, the table saw, so at least he can't complain about the number of machines I have, LOL. And I get to use his stuff, too.

    Bookmark   February 22, 2010 at 8:55PM
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I have three. Two were my Mother's but they need to be cleaned and serviced, so I am not using them right now. I have my computerized machine to do pretty much everything I need. It has nearly 100 different stitches, but I use one, the straight stitch!


    Bookmark   February 22, 2010 at 9:42PM
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I guess because I can! I lived with only one for many years until DH's aunt died and I had to take over her house. I inherited hers, her mother's and for space had to give mine up to a GD. Neither of these worked well for quilting and so I decided to invest in one better quilting machine, quite a splurge for me. I also ran across a cheap featherweight and couldn't resist. I love them all and they each have their own part in my hobby. I'm even thinking of buying another for my frame. But I'll think on it a bit. My husband says it's worth every penny and cheaper than therapy for me.

    Bookmark   February 22, 2010 at 10:39PM
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They follow me home.

The first my parents gave me when I graduated from college, a Singer Fashion Mate. The next I bought an electronic Viking Quilt Designer. Then I wanted a Singer Feather Weight, from Canada, made the same year I was born. Next was a Brother serger, that paid for itself with a job to make 50 table cloths. And lastly, my mom's Singer from 1951 came home to live with me, this was the machine I learned to sew on, how could I give it up? So actually, I've only bought two machines myself.

I only have one (1) television and one (1) computer in my house. So therefore, I can have extra sewing machines if I want. That's my story and I'm stickin' to it.


    Bookmark   February 22, 2010 at 10:41PM
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I have the following: 1 Singer, portable, non-electronic, relatively modern machine that I currently use most often.

1 Montgomery Ward, portable, the 1st machine bought for ME, by new husband for our 1st Xmas. It's taken me through a lot of clothing for my 3 daughters, and many quilt samples when I was teaching. Will sometimes pull it out to "loan out" to a friend in need ...

1 White, portable, "Jeans Machine" that DH bought me when the removable drawer on my Monkey Ward one broke, but I use it very occasionally, mostly when I want to show one of my daughters how to sew (not that they've actually shown a lot of interest).

1 Kenmore in a cabinet, that originally belonged to my Aunt's MIL. When she passed away, my cousin insisted that the machine was hers, mostly so that her brother's then-wife would not get it. The brother is now divorced, and since my cousin doesn't sew, she gave it to me. It currently sits in a corner in my bedroom, and is a good height to sit my portable on when I am in need of a place to sew. When I get time, I plan to clean it up and get it in working order. It's supposed to be really a good machine.

1 lovely old Singer treadle in a cabinet that has a front on hinges that swings open/closed. When it's closed, it just looks like a nice big wooden box, and we use it for an end table in the living roon. I will occasionally sew on this one, but the "band" that connects the treadle to the works of the machine is in rough shape, so I need to replace that before I sew on it again. It really looks lovely in the fall when I open it out and put a fall-colored/-themed quilt on it!

1 White Speedylock serger that I rarely use, primarily because I have no instruction booklet to use with it. I have a VHS tape that helped me learn how to thread it, but it is difficult to thread at best, and I have no idea how to adjust the tensions for optimum sewing. I also don't think it does anything other than 3 or 4 thread overlock. But that's okay, because I don't use it a lot.

My "best" machine is the one I just acquired from my mother. It's a Necchi in a cabinet, and has a knee control, NOT a foot control. Hooray! I just love it. My father bought it for my Mom early in their marriage (they were married in 1951), so it's older than I am (finally, something that is!), but runs like a champ. Dad tells me to oil it really well before I use it for the first time, but I grew up using this machine and look forward to using it again really soon. It's my pride and joy, and if I never bought another machine, I would be happy.

So that's what? seven machines total? I use them all on occasion, with one primary. I have also sold 3 or 4 other machines within the last 4 years, because we didn't have the space for them when we moved.

The only reason to why I still have all of these is that there isn't enough wrong with some of them to toss them out, and I can't see just wasting the money to get rid of them. They have all served me well over the years (the 2 cabinet machines that are electric have only come into my home in the last 9 months or so), and I am sentimental about them. Besides, if either of my 2 younger daughters want a machine to learn on, I've got 2 that they can practice/learn on without worrying about expending a ton of money until they learn well.

I hope this answers your question.


    Bookmark   February 22, 2010 at 10:46PM
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Toolgranny -
Buy the machine for your quilting frame. It will improve your life. And your better-than-gold DH wants you to have it.

If it were a tool he wanted, would he hesitate? I think not.

He's encouraging you to buy something you want. Get it.

It took me a long time to buy my long arm - at least 7 years, LOL, and when I finally did, DH was there adding on features - surely you NEED the hydraulic lift, and what about this thing or the other? So I did.

I hate to say it in these terms, but I feel it's true for many women. Be like a man. They usually go out and buy whatever they feel will enhance their lives, whether hobbies or otherwise. We should do the same.

Hell, I let the DH buy a missile silo, just because he wanted it! He did discuss it with me first, of course. But I've had a vastly better return on my long-arm, LOL.

    Bookmark   February 22, 2010 at 10:56PM
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I also have multiple machines. For many years when I was sewing for the kids, I only had one machine. After I started quilting, I began to collect machines. I have my Singer that I have had since 1981, my mother's Singer,2 Featherweight machines, a Jem Gold to take to classes, a Janome 10001 for embroidery,a Baby Lock Quilter's Choice Pro for my quilt frame, a Singer 237 that was given to me, and a Baby Lock serger that I bought in 1988. The machine I use the most is my Viking Quilt Designer. I guess that totals to 10.

    Bookmark   February 22, 2010 at 11:42PM
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I've got several machines too. I was in the midst of sewing costumes for a school play once and my machine broke. The repairman said it'd be several weeks before it would be fixed. I couldn't wait I had deadlines to meet. I went to a local thrift store and bought another machine for 8 dollars. It sewed like a dream. I used it for years.
Years later I was given two other older machines. There's nothing like them. Eventually I'm sure I'll give my grandkids the extras if they show any interest in sewing.
Even my DD whose 25 has more than one machine. She started out with one machine when she went to college. A degree in costume design and she wanted a second machine, a better one with more stitches and capabilities. She now uses one machine in her home and the other is her travel buddy that she takes with her when she's doing fittings for friends.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2010 at 12:18AM
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I have 35 antique (OK a few are modern) vacuum cleaners, what do you think of that?

Alas, only two sewing machines though and they both meet my sewing needs... though one day I may get a treadle and a serger. Why? THEY ARE FUN... I don't need any other reason! I LOVE my all metal antique sewing machine for its simple beauty, solid feel, and excellent performance... not to mention the fabulous purr it makes while sewing. I also LOVE LOVE LOVE my modern plastic computerized machine for its versatility (old one doesn't even zig zag) and features... throttle, needle up down, auto thread slice... and I think it's pretty too even though the only thing metal on it is the needle! I appreciate all sewing machines for what they are, both new and old.

That said, I got my vintage one out last night to do some piecing on. Hadn't used it in a while, so I blew the dust off and oiled it. What a different experience than sewing on a modern machine! It sounds more pleasant, seems a touch smoother and more precise, but man I missed the modern one! The modern one seems easier to go in a straight line on (I think because it has more feed dogs) and I just can't live without the auto thread cutter now that I've gotten used to it! I pieced two blocks on the old machine and then nearly threw my back out hurling it back in the closet in favor of the modern one!

    Bookmark   February 23, 2010 at 5:43AM
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I have over 60 antique and vintage machines. Why? Because they are pretty!

    Bookmark   February 23, 2010 at 7:43AM
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For those of us with multiple machines, (I have 5) we collect them for the same reason people collect antything.We have an interest in the items, we like the way they look and work, there is some history attached to them( sometimes sentimental attachment) and often we even use these items.
My DH and I are both collectors. He was a mining engineer and has a big collection of mining memoribilia-carbide lamps, books, maps, stock cetificates, minerals, various equipment etc. I have a large collection of pitchers some of which I use from time to time. I think if you're a collector, you're a collector and you value whatever you collect for various reasons and enjoy having the items around you. As well there's always the fun of hunting for new items for your collection. I remember seeing posts here where someone was so excited to have tracked down a Featherweight on eBay. So it's not just about having a machine to sew with.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2010 at 9:39AM
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There was a post a while ago about a member having over 20 machines. She knew how to service and repair them. Annie you beat her LOL!!!!
I have a Janome I use and a Kenmore in the closet. I would like to have both set up and use the Janome just for piecing quilting, but I don't have the room. One day I do plan to have a machine for quilting.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2010 at 10:22AM
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I guess I'll have to attend meetings like Sewing Machine Anonymous! In my little (101x10) sewing room I have 2 antique toy machines on top of the book case and a wonderful Janome 6600. The boat anchor Bernine just sits covered up on the floor, but does come thru in a pinch. Another place has a Singer converted to electric, my DMIL's Kenmore in a beautiful wooden Maple cabinet and a workhorse Viking Rose. I guess they are good friends with their own personalities!


    Bookmark   February 23, 2010 at 10:33AM
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Wait, wait, wait! Mary, did you say a missile silo? Now how does someone store that??

Tomorrow is my birthday and I have a blank check from DH. Guess what I'm shopping for.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2010 at 11:33AM
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We don't actually store the missile silo, LOL. We prefer to leave it in the ground. But I could store lots of sewing machines there!

Here's a link.

Have fun shopping for a machine!

Here is a link that might be useful: DH's home away from home

    Bookmark   February 23, 2010 at 11:42AM
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I guess that I am an anomaly in that I only have one machine. It was my mothers-a Singer 99. It is a wonderful machine. The sad thing is that when my mother passed away, my dad gave me her Bernina. I sold it, since I did not sew to speak of at the time and figured the Singer was plenty for me. A couple of years later I started my quilting hobby. Oh well. Someday I will get a machine that has a few extra stitches.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2010 at 11:59AM
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I LOVE this thread and it couldn't have come at a better time!!! With a year of sewing and quilting under my belt I want to get a bigger and better machine. With my DH being in construction the man toys are overflowing at our house so it took all my strength not to laugh out loud as I read Mary's reply while riding the train to work this morning. Without saying a word I turned the screen toward DH for him to read and he chuckled as well. So glad my local long time quilting friends have been filling him in on things like "no one has just one machine" and everyone has lots of tops that need to be quilted." :)

    Bookmark   February 23, 2010 at 12:27PM
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I have 3 machines and an embroidery machine. I bought a Bernina 1630 back in "96. Then a Janome Gem Gold for quilt guild and couldn't pass up a singer featherweight that is very old. I love all of them. I think I'm about to grow out of my sewing room, but it's good to know I'm not the only one with more than 1 machine. I'm also love to buy fabric.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2010 at 1:19PM
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I have 5-They just sort of grow on you. I usually give them away when I get a new one but I kept my Janome 9000 when I bought the Baby Locke Ensire. Have to have a serger-- a My Locke. My Singer feather wt. and my old White treadle. They just are and I love them. Jayne

    Bookmark   February 23, 2010 at 1:25PM
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I have two treadles out on my porch that I haven't done anything with yet. I also have two Featherweights and a cabinet singer - 15-91 that sews beautifully but I have no place to set it up. I use my Pfaff all the time and I have another old machine sitting on a dresser just because it looks pretty. I also have numerous antique toy machines that I was collecting for a while. I also have a serger that I could never master and I don't even remember where I put that one. I have threatened to make it into a planter:) It's sick I know but I love them all. All I need is a much bigger house.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2010 at 2:16PM
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I have a Serger that I never use anymore. Never really got into serging except for drapes, but I had to have it or I thought I would die w/out a Serger!
I have a Pfaff 1222 E that is almost 40 yrs old -that I forced myself not to use for a year, so I would learn to love the new Pfaff Quilt Expressions 2048 (still learning) - bought the 2048 because the 1222E needed service. I screwed up the timing sewing leather- it was my fault.
I have a Brother something or other that belonged to my Mother - who did not sew. It is the only thing I brought home with me of hers when she died. It sews horribly - but I use it to wind bobbins for a semi industrial Machine I own to sew sails and canvas.
And my newest - is a Featherweight for which I blame this forum - another machine I can't live without - although I haven't had a chance to finish getting her to "purr" perfectly.
I think that's 6 machines - I might be forgetting one.
I really want a longarm / mid arm / something to quilt with - I may actually die if I don't get one ~LOL~.
So, I keep buying sewing machines, because they are my lifelines. Sewing allows me to get in the zone ~ the zone where it is only me and the stitches.
Keeps me zane.
Other then the Brother, I have bought & paid for all of them, beginning with the Pfaff 1222E that I paid for with years of babysitting money - it was state of the art at the time and I was a teenager. I even bought the cabinet and a chair from the dealer.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2010 at 2:55PM
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I have two machines, and I never use either one of them. I bought a used HuskyStar electric with 24 stitches about 12 years ago when my boys needed their jeans hemmed--I never did hem anything. It's been in a basement closet for 10 years.

I have an OLD Miracle Model 850 in a cabinet that a 'Olde Country Gifts' shop put out for the trash. I wasn't even quilting when I picked it up, but the wood cabinet and heavy machine is so solid and graceful somehow, that it seemed a crime to put it in a landfill.

I'm inspired by this thread! I had to go look at my HuskyStar to see what kind it was, so I brought it upstairs to clean and oil. Wonder if it still works?

    Bookmark   February 23, 2010 at 3:32PM
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I let one of my SILs have my mother's machine several years ago and then when I got my Elna I gave my old but reliable Kenmore to another SIL. Waaaaaaa! Now you all have made me wish I'd kept them both. I started out feeling pretty good but now I know I have a sewing machine deficiency. I even looked on Ebay and shopgoodwill.com this afternoon to see what was available.


    Bookmark   February 23, 2010 at 3:37PM
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WoW! I didn't think there would be so many responses.
I would like to get me a newer one and I just may. My daughter got her daughter a Bernina for her High School graduation and they love it. I guess I better start saving my pennies.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2010 at 3:48PM
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Kate -ROFL......
The really sad part for me, is I want them all out, close to me...just in case I want to sew on one of them ~LOL~ I can multi task, but I cannot sew on two machines at the very same time no matter how hard I try~LOL

    Bookmark   February 23, 2010 at 3:56PM
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Patsy, my go to machine is a HuskyStar. I bought it new 4 years ago and have been pleased with my purchase. I haven't had a days trouble out of it. My son broke the needle threader, but I can still get it to work sometimes!


    Bookmark   February 23, 2010 at 6:11PM
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Hey Rebecca, mine seems to be in perfect working order. Our basement is a lived in, finished, carpeted kind of basement, perfectly dry. Bless the poor neglected little thing. The manual didn't call for oil anywhere, so I just blew out a bit of dust and checked the belts. It would like to convey it's sincere appreciation to the members of this forum. ;)

    Bookmark   February 23, 2010 at 8:10PM
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In my case, while I recognize the beauty of old Singers and other machines, I only have two: the Kenmore I bought when we moved back to the States years ago and the wonderful Babylock Espire that I have had for about 3 years now. Why did I keep the old Kenmore when I got the Espire? As insurance against a time when the Espire might have to go away to be fixed. I'd hate to be left with no machine right in the middle of some project!

    Bookmark   February 24, 2010 at 12:06AM
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I have only 4 now.a Viking rose that is the one i use all the time,a singer 2001,which is at my sons house right now,and another old singer,can't remember which one,and that is at my DIL's house now and i'm thinking i'm going to tell her she can keep it.I also have a Brother3034D serger.I had a bernina 930,but sold that as it was getting too heavy for me to lug around and set up.

I don't sew as much as i used to,and i don't want my kids to have to deal with all this when i'm gone~~~~~~~~~~~~Not planning on going anytime soon though.LOL Just planning ahead.

    Bookmark   February 24, 2010 at 2:58AM
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FlamingO in AR

I have 4 machines that are inside cabinets that I bought just for the tables they came in. (One is next to the sofa, one in the guest room, one in the office and one has my White on it.)Then I have my White that I use sometimes, the Bernina that I use most of the time and a Featherweight that is on display in my guest room. And I have a White Serger that is used as needed. So I guess I have 8 machines but only really use 3 of them.

    Bookmark   February 24, 2010 at 8:25AM
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Why did my husband have 18 fishing poles? I have a good friend who has - I think - 11 sewing machines. During her years of sewing she has inherited all the ones from aunts and grandmas, plus a few that were gifted to her. She has talked about maybe selling a few of them, but knowing her, it will never happen. Me, I only have 4 - the Kenmore makes perfect buttonholes, the little Janome is for when I go on retreats, the Bernina is my main one, and my old Featherweight is for - just because. I used to have a treadle, but I sold it.

    Bookmark   February 25, 2010 at 11:11PM
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Let's see. I have 6. My Bernina I use most, a Brother 1500 I use on a quilting frame, my DGM's Singer Treadle, an old Kenmore I am going to sell or give away, an old machine in a cabinet that I am not sure what kind even and lastly an old one from my sister's house.

    Bookmark   February 26, 2010 at 7:47AM
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A quilter needs tools just like a painter needs different brushes. Just don't ask me how many paints (fabrics) I have...that's a whole different story in itself. haha!

Not all machines can do the same things or even do the same things well. If that is ever invented...let me know! I want to buy it ASAP! haha

One machine may have very neat stitches for piecing yet is horrible for free motion quilting. A quilter needs to buy the tools that suit her tastes and needs best and if that means having 10 different sewing machines, then so be it.

Happy Sewing!



Here is a link that might be useful: AuraQuilts.com

    Bookmark   February 26, 2010 at 11:40AM
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