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Top 5 Sewing Machine Shopping FAQ

A Story: How I ended up buying the wrong machine!

I learned the hard way to think about budget second and what I create first. The budget is important. Everyone still needs to pay their rent and put food on the table, but, from experience, I know what it’s like to end up with a machine you just never fall in love with. I bought a machine with many bells and whistles, but it still wasn’t right. When I purchased my first computerized machine, I was sucked in thinking, “What a deal!", by the price for everything I was getting.


After bringing home my new machine, I watched more Youtube videos on sewing machines and discovered something called “Stitch Creator,” where you can design decorative stitches. I had no idea this function existed. Later I would also find out about other machines. Machines that allow you to sew a square without turning your fabric, and have a “pivot” function where your foot automatically raises when you stop. Also, fabric sensor machines automatically know the thickness of the material you are sewing. Not knowing the technological advancements in the sewing world is why buying a machine based on price alone is not the only way to shop. Technology is constantly changing, and unless you’re dealing with a very informed salesperson, you won’t know what exists until your walk out the door with the wrong machine.   


Luckily, After some haggling, the store was kind enough to let me trade in the sewing machine 48 hours later, but only within the same brand, which meant I ended up with a machine that had “stitch creator” and sewing, but also embroidery. The machine also came with an extension table, but the table was hard to take off, which I was doing all the time to change from sewing to embroidery. I saw many videos on machine embroidery and thought maybe I would fall in love with embroidery too. However, I never did or the ongoing cost. Embroidery takes its own threads, stabilizers, computer programs, and waste I can’t recycle into other projects as I do with fabric scraps. I was blindsided, naive and misinformed. Even Youtube didn’t inform me of the added money I would shill out with this new embroidery investment. 


I learned embroidery, and this machine brand just continued to frustrate me. I just loved sewing and wanted only a sewing machine with more features. I wasn’t interested in pushing a button to have a design stitch out, which looked simple, but was complicated. However, after spending close to $3,000 on the machine, a Protection Plan, all new thread, and four types of stabilizers, I was stuck with a machine I didn’t want in my house. I tried really hard to love this machine but couldn’t and couldn’t do another trade-in.  


Thankfully, after some more research, I was able to find a couple of different sewing machines I now love. The first one came from where I bought the first machine, where I wasn’t allowed to do another trade-in. The second machine came from another shop, which was willing to give me a $999 trade-in value for the machine I no longer wanted, so I could walk out with something else. Even though the trade-in value didn’t cover the total cost of the new machine at the other shop, I got another fantastic machine to love, even though I had to take the financial loss on the machine I traded in. Of course, the economic loss hurt, but I couldn’t stand keeping a machine I couldn’t love, and now I felt sorry for the machine. Of course, it wasn’t the machine’s fault; it was my naivete. However, I hoped that someone would fall in love with the machine I left behind because the machine deserved to be loved while now selling at a great price. 


In the end, I bought two different machines. I am now happy with what I have in my house, just not my credit card bill that accumulated. But when you have the wrong machine, you just have the wrong machine. I hope to save others from making the same expensive mistake by telling my story. There’s nothing worse than having a machine you don’t fall in love with. So, what’s the right machine for you? I hope this story and answering the other questions above will help you successfully navigate your sewing machine shopping journey.  


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