Sunday, January 16, 2011

Janome 8050

Better get on an update to this machine or time will stand in my way! I did two projects on her in the last several weeks. The cover she looks so cute in, and a pair of pillowcases. She sews very well. I am using her without the foot pedal to make myself learn to control the machine with the Start/Stop button. So far so good. I have only run off the edge once! It looks like a person could use a few more hands or maybe just a few extra fingers using the S/S button, but it is fun, and it rids me of finding a place for the foot pedal in my small space. One less cord is a great help sometimes. The feet that slip in like my Viking feet are a nice touch. No problems so far, and using the same top loading Janome feet as other Janomes, the machine is very versatile. Since it only comes with the few feet it came with I ordered a few more Janome feet. I will need the Overcast foot and the 1/4" foot and an embroidery foot, so she needs her own. Of course I ordered them from Sew Vac Direct in Texas, my favorite online dealer. The machine has a nice array of stitches, as far as I have been able to tell, the same as my Kenmore 19110/Janome 115110. I have checked out several stitches and they stitch out just as nicely as Janomes should! The display is a personal favorite of mine and one major reason to buy this machine. You can use a two digit method of stitch choice, rather than keying up all the way to your stitch of choice. Very handy. Nice bright display as well, which is really a fine thing. The brighter the better. As I think I already mentioned in my previous post, the light could be brighter, but it is placed in the best position of any sewing machine light I have worked with. So additional lighting will be nice, but not essential as it is on so many machines. All in all, a nice machine, and a lot of fun, and a finished preliminary report!

Saturday, January 8, 2011

1,000 Clever Sewing Shortcuts & Tips

The book came out last year, and I didn't think to blog it. Deepika Prakash gathered up the tips and did the hard work of crafting the book. I am on p.11, Tip 7. There are so many great tips in the book, as well as articles by master sewers on sewing knits, sewing lace, sewing special fabrics, doing a rolled hem on a serger, and bead embroidery. But the wealth of the book is in the tips rounded up from members of, which, as of this writing, is over 244,000 strong! On the very same page as my tip (p.11) there is a suggestion to buy a 54 beverage cooler on wheels to use as a machine rolling tote - inspired! I don't need one, but if rolling ever becomes a sewing necessity for me, this idea widens the prospective pool of merchandise. I love the Brother Universal case I bought - fits sergers and sewing machines. The huge embroidery machines won't fit though, so if you have one of these this case won't do. But I digress. Get the book, you won't be sorry!

Friday, January 7, 2011

Sew many things...

Blogging should be fun, not a task, and lately it is a task I feel. But, this is a new year. Last year was a struggle in lots of ways, but I thought an update on the Babylock a nice idea, and then I thought I'd mention the Christmas present! Having nabbed a Janome 8050 on cyber-Monday, I thanked my husband for getting it for me for Christmas and put it under the tree. :) Now that I have tried her out - she's a sweet ride! So to speak. Very light, very capable, nice stitches, new slip on feet. Not the quietest Janome ever, but not loud either.I will write a review on in a few months. Now for an update on the Babylock. This is a nice workhorse sort of machine. Very noisy by my standards after my Pfaff 1222E, and my Janomes and Elna, but she means business. I have done a few projects on the Babylock, and am satisfied. A great mechanical backup. This is a heavy machine. I'd say she weighs only 5 pounds less than my Pfaff, and the Pfaff is one heavy machine.The thread tension on top has to be rather high - around 5-6 most of the time, and this is probably due to wear on the tension disks over the years. As I suspected, the machine is from the early 90s, and had an owner who actually used the machine! So I feel lucky to have her. As far as sewing goes, I have finished a couple of easy valances for my kitchen and one bath, and have made a sewing machine cover for the Janome and two pillowcases. I am still working on my Lutterloh princess top, but that will be finished this weekend! WOW. After only about 5 months.