In Search of a Travelling Sewing Machine…
To think I lusted after a Bernina…
(this picture just cracked me up… it’s got nothing to do with this story! lol)
Wow… I decided to play a little during breaks from doing some work on this blog this past weekend. I thought it would be fun to actually try to narrow down what Bernina I’d want. I’ve been lusting after getting B’s footsies for a long time. But now, after *finally* doing my real homework, I’m just not even close to being revved up enough over any one model.
It was kind of wild to discover that I’m not missin’ a thing in a sewing machine.
By the time I wade through all of the features on the top 9 machines of Bernina, I walk away being soooooo glad I’ve got two machines that have all of the features I want (except for being smaller – wishing I could have one that is about 20 pounds or less).
After comparing, the Babylock Ellisimo Gold is really quite a value after evaluating it up against the Bernina offerings, IMO.
And the Horizon kicks some butt of it’s own, too.. after seeing how much I’d have to spend in B-Land in order to get some of the same features!
Unless someone is getting one of the very Top of the Line’s for Bernina’s dual feed (which is understandable) I think the Ellisimo blows rest of the Bernina lineup outta the water.
Just a few wonderful features on the Ellisimo Gold:
Automatic Needle Threader
Automatic Feed Dog drop for embroidery
Beautiful, wider than 9mm stitches (multi directional ones)
And awesome quality embroidery and stitches.
Comes with loads of accessories
What the EG is missing: Dual Feed. (I’m not a big fan of walking feet – I can slap a walking foot on any machine)
What my Horizon has: Dual Feed. (and truly more effective than what other brands are offering, IMO)
The Horizon weighs 25 pounds. (I should just suck it up and get a decent Tutto bag for her, huh?)
Not sure what the EG weighs in at.. she’s not talkin’.
I still want (eventually) a third machine that could travel better than what I have… the Horizon and EG are pretty big. So Bernina… just know I tried.
Here’s how it went down… maybe this will help someone else:
Looking at the Bernina 5 series, I would have to get a 580 just to get an auto thread cutter? Really? And… not sure I want another embroidery machine – and after being spoiled by the EG.. it would irk me to not have an auto needle threader – that is just soooo sweet on the EG for embroidery thread changes – just hit three buttons in a row and she goes! (1. threads the needle, 2. lowers the foot, and 3 – away you go!) Boom, boom, boom. It’s delightful.
But … Get back on track here, Rip, this all started over thinking about the perfect travel machine.
And the 580, nor any of the 5′s, have a dual feed. So I can’t imagine spending the $$$ on those.
But just for fun… in case dual feed isn’t a biggie for you… let’s drop down to the 550 and take a look – no push button thread cutter? That blows the 5 series …. Pretty lame, Bernina – even that little $310 Brother machine with Embroidery that I tried this summer has that!
So I’m killin’ time… so what the hey… I even watched YouTube videos to see the 7 series some more…. and honestly… I get bummed out by them. I can’t imagine having to lower the feed dogs manually to do embroidery – how cheesy is that on a TOL? The only two embroidery machines I’ve worked with are the Brother mentioned above and the Ellisimo Gold… and there ya have it… a $310 machine and a $7,000 one… but Bernina doesn’t put a droppin’-the-dogs feature into their machines? What’s with that?
And another little thing I picked up on… no 1/4″ foot included on the 780? What kind of move is that? That just seems cheapskate to me.
The 780 weighs in at 30 pounds (guessing that’s without the embroidery module). Not seeing the sense in getting bigger and heavier with less features than I have between the two machines I have now.
And to get a sewing machine with the hover (I wouldn’t buy my next machine without it – if the machine is in the over $2,000 realm) … and it seems (unless I’m missing something) that Bernina isn’t including that on any unless I’m back up into a 40 pound, ($10,000!) 830 model.
And Janome… I love ya… but it doesn’t seem that you included hover on the new 8900 that you launched. Seems it takes moving into the 12000 Embroidery machine… for about $8,500 street price. —-but dang… that is an *awesome* machine.
I don’t need another machine at home – and that’s where these heavy beasts are really meant to live.
Not done… lol….
OMG… I didn’t expect this… (again, I take so much for granted on my beeeeeautiful EG)… have you seen Bernina’s excuse for needle threaders? What *are* you thinking, Bernina?!?!? The $300 Brother has an automatic needle threader… but you have to pop $9,000 to get one on a Bernina machine? Even the embroidery models don’t have an automatic needle threader?
Dang, I’m so glad I got the EG! For those of you that have never done 30 color changes on an embroidery project – some are done every 2-3 minutes – take my word for it… having an automatic needle threader is da bomb!
The 7 series use almost exactly the same, inexpensive, threader that is on my Granddaughter’s New Lotus and that I have on the Horizon. Really?
Dang.. I would love to have a Bernina for the feet… but to get:
Needle Threader (hit a button and go! like the cheapie Brother or my elegant EG!)
What’s that mean? An 830? $10,000?!?!?!
The more I look at other machines (still).. the more I appreciate what I already have.
I guess I’m sitting this 7 series out…
I wish they had a 20 pounder machine with the features above. Doesn’t look like that is ever gonna happen.
The only thing I wish I had on the Horizon is the hover – but the knee lift is still nice enough – especially for the price!
My only regret is that I didn’t really scour over the list of features better on these machines a few months ago.
When I got my EG, I was shopping for embroidery capabilities *only*. The EG shines in that department – but I had no idea it also had so many good features that Bernina leaves out. I just wish the EG had a dual feed like the Horizon. *That* would make it the perfect machine.
So at the end of the day, I found it *easy* to write off Bernina’s offerings right now … I’m probably good until they come out with something else. And given they seem mired in their own problems right now with just getting the 7 series out the door … new machines probably won’t be happening any time soon.
So after sitting on this post in “draft” mode overnight….
The one thought that comes to the surface this morning – big time – when comparing out the machines for the features above is how Pfaff has the features in one machine – and not weighing in at 40 pounds.
Over on another board that I hang out on, there’s a Creative Performance culture that just loves those machines. Purple. And all.
I took a class last summer to try out the Pfaff.
I don’t like the purple of the Creative Performance. Nor do I like the layout of the buttons on the Creative Performance and the Creative Sensation (that start/stop button should be on the nose of the machine – down by the needle – not up in the middle of the machine, IMO). There’s lots of buzz out there about Pfaff problems, even recently. Bummer. I don’t trust Pfaff’s workmanship or dependability (but the local dealer offered an extended warranty in the deal). And, I wish their dual feed was better than it is (like the Horizon).
But, it seems that for the features, Pfaff has at least got a head on their shoulders to incorporate their dual feed on an embroidery machine and keep the price under $10,000. But if I was going to lay out that kind of dough, I’d be back looking at the Janome 12000 if I couldn’t live without the dual feed, hover, and a needle threader.
The price on a Creative Performance (without the Embroidery) was about $4,000, if I remember correctly. That’s pretty spendy for a travel machine. But at least it has the hover and dual feed.
No travel machine Nirvana out there for me right now….
So the search for a decent little travel machine continues…