Inspiring Quilters, Stitch by Stitch
i am in the market for a new sewing machine that i am hoping will be ''the one'' i have been considering a janome 6600p because all i am interested in is peicing and home quilting. this machine seems to fit the bill for what i need. i am not interested in spending 8000. or even 5000.00 for a machine that has features i will not use half of .i would be willing to spend extra if the machine were out of this world. i just want a good machine, with a deep roomy throat to quilt in. if you have one of these i would love your input or if you have another brand that you love dearly and use it mostly for peicing and quilting at home then please so say so. i trust the input of quilters who actually use the machines more than the manufacterers who are trying to sell them ...your opinions mean a lot to me.....
I recently did the same thing and through my research and asking questions I ended up buying a Brother PX 1500s. It is a workhorse from what I hear, has 9"throat, comes with an 11x23 extension table and several optional feet . It only has one stitch so it will fit my needs for piecing and learning to fmq. It is a beautiful machine. I personally am trying to decide if I want/need a larger (24x24) extension table. Since I have not yet sewn with it I am also picking brains to see if I should wait and whether the extension I have will be adequate. Good luck.
I am far from any type of expert in the area of quilting. Just started about a year ago and fell in love with the hobby. I started by taking a classes at my local quilt shop. They sell Janome. They also have a policy that if you trade your machine in within a year and spend at least $300 more, they will give you credit for the original price of your Janome trade in. My first machine was the bottom of the line Magnolia. It was a good machine. The more I learned of the various options available, I traded up to a Janome 4120 QDC. Again, a great machine, enjoyed the decorative stitches which I originally thought wouldn't matter, the speed control without the foot pedal, auto cutter. The one thing I did struggle with was larger quilts and the throat size. Over President's holiday weekend they ran a special of 3 years and 0% interest if you spend at least $2500. I gave in to my whims and upgraded to a Horizon MC8200. It has all the features plus some of my last Janome and the larger throat. It's cost is $3000, which I do think is kinda foolish for a hobby, but I have raised my children and then some, so at this point in life, I deserve it. And I love it so far. I have been very satisfied with Janome. A big part of that is my local quilt shop and their knowledge, support, etc. Its a family owned shop and it is also an authorized Janome repair shop.
One feature I wasn't looking for but have found that I love and now wouldn't want to go without is the memory feature when using the various stitches in a sequence. I use this for all my labels and for adding some decorative stitching to my borders.
Good luck on your new purchase!
Thank you for taking the time to reply. I will update my post as I begin to use my new machine. Right now I'm just looking at it and am scared to start lol! Pre-fmq jitters I guess. I need to decide on my set up then begin by learning to thread it!
I have had students that have left their machines in the box for over a year out of fear onlly to find that they have now lost out on the needed warranty. After helping several students do this, I have discovered the best way to start is by opening not only the box, but by going through the owner's manual. Find all of the parts including the accessories to make sure nothing is missing and check all of the buttons to make sure they work properly. Follow the given threading guides until you can thread it without looking in the book. All of this should take about an hour and then you will be ready to sew on your own knowing that the owner's manual will help you answer any questions or to trouble shoot any problems as they arise. If the answers aren't there contact the customer service dept. of the machine company. Enjoy your new machine!
that is very sound advice Debbie. that's exactly what I did too. on mine I looked for all the parts and then put it together. after learning how to thread it correctly and learning how to make a bobbin on it (it was different) I then went straight to the trouble shooting page and read over and over what could possibly go wrong and why. then I read the rest of the manual. knowing what issues could arise is great because if you decide to start sewing right away then you already at least know what to do or why it happened. :)
Carla, I am a quilter and home decorator sewer and I have used several old as well as new inexpensive sewing machines for the past 30 years. You will find that as you grow in your sewing/quilting, your needs will also expand to try new techniques that may require more modern features. If you want a very good quality machine that won't continuously give you frustration and heartache, save until you can purchase a Bernina or Husqvarna. Even if you can only afford the lower end of these brands, you will not be sorry. They will last you years and not give you the tension problems and thread-breaking problems that the cheaper brands will no doubt give you. Also, Janome is the same maker as the Sears Kenmore. One of my sisters finally broke down and purchased an inexpensive (relatively speaking) Bernina after 40 years of sewing on singers, Kenmores, and Phaff's, and now she regrets not owning one from the start! I purchased my Bernina Artista from my local quilt shop. Not top of the line nor bottom. It was a store demo model so I bought it on clearance ($1000 off) and it has not given me one problem in 7 years. Still feels and runs like new! I Love my Bernina. My other sister purchased a Husqvarna about 8 years ago and she too loves her machine. I think it is a quilting one but uses cards for the quilting stitches. One thing you need to keep in mind as a quilter, you must get a machine that has Needle Up / Down feature and a hands free pressure foot for pivoting. These are a must for any quilter!!! Good Luck and go QUALITY! Dorothy
thank you all for you're response. I think many will get a lot of useful information out of this discussion.
I agree with you 100%. After teaching for several years using many different brands, when I finally decided to buy my own new machine, I discovered nothing could beat the Viking machines. I tried the Bernina and it was a close second, but everything else was not even close. No matter what machine anyone buys, it is important to keep in mind what support and service you will get after you buy it. My Viking dealer gives me free lessons for life and a monthly VIking Club just to try new feet and make projects most of us would not normally attempt on our own. This is open to all owners regardless if they bought the bottem end student machine or the top of the line Diamond Deluxe. Together we share and support each other along the way.
If no one can help you use it when you have problems, it isn't worth the money.
I see that is a year old post but I wonder - Did you get a new machine?
yes. I did end up going with the janome 6600p. it was perfect for my needs and I love it. :) I have been noticing your work. it is amazing. you are quite an artist.
I'm glad to hear you did get a new machine.
Thanks for the kind works. I hand quilted for twenty two years but now almost all of my work in on the machine. I had/have so many ideas I want to get as many done as I can! In 2012 I bought a Handi Quilter Sweet Sixteen and I love it. I can get an entire small art quilt under the 17 inch throat space - fantastic.
You have been very productive and your work is beautiful. I'm glad to have communicated with you here and look forward to seeing your new and upcoming projects.
thank you Ann, and I too will look forward to seeing your work. i admire art quilts. they are so mind boggling. it's crazy what one can do with fabric. have a great day.