Can you ever have too many sewing machines?

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Sometimes I forget that most households have fewer sewing machines than bedrooms. Not us. The largest machine (so far) is my 12 ft. long A1 Longarm machine that is housed in our former living room. And then we have my small Janome machine for classes and my large Janome for regular sewing. Add to the mix that my daughter makes costumes … so she has a basic Singer machine and a serger. Plus we have three ancient sewing machines in the basement, for a grand total of eight machines. You’d think that would be enough. Or you would, if you didn’t sew!

As I mentioned, my teenage daughter makes costumes. Her studio is above our family room, and the floor/ceiling shakes as she sews at full speed. As a result of her heavy use, she burns out a sewing machine every 9 months or so. After the demise of her latest machine, we decided to buy her an industrial sewing machine.

Singer 191-d20 Industrial Machine

First let me say that these are not tiny machines. The FedEx man delivered all 280 pounds of the Singer 191-d20 (spread over four boxes) to our front porch. At the time, my husband and son were out of town and it was all we girls could manage to get the boxes over the threshold and into the house.  Two of the boxes weighed well over 100 pounds each.

My husband spent the weekend putting this together. I was going to write this post about how terrible the instructions were. That was before the sewing machine and table were assembled and they realized that the accompanying DVD contained excellent assembly instructions and not just information on how to thread the machine. Oops!

Although the machine is relatively quiet when sewing, the motor is much louder than we’re used to. My daughter spent about 30 minutes playing with it last night. She had thread break and then jam, so she stopped for the night. I’ll have a look at it today. I know that industrial machines aren’t nearly as easy to use as consumer models, so we expected a bit of a learning curve.

If you lost count, we now have nine sewing machines and 3 rooms in our not-that-big home devoted to sewing. By the way, none of them are embroidery machines …

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2 responses »

  1. Hi, thanks for sharing. Am looking for at the Singer d120 for FMQ. Did your daughter ever figure it out and since you have seen her use it would you recommend it for free motion quilting?

    • Yes they figured out how to set it up. At the end, my husband discovered that the enclosed DVD contained wonderful setup instructions. They had assumed it was a “how to use your machine” DVD and not even looked at it. So the whole setup mess could have been avoided.

      My daughter loves her machine. I had not thought of using it for FMQ. It goes very, very fast. It is noisy (sounds like the hum of a jet engine) and takes a while to learn to control. I think it would be difficult to slow it down enough to do any kind of fancy quilting. It sews through anything so I imagine you could use it for straight line quilting and even guess that may be what the sweat shops use for mass produced products. I hope that helps.

      You might consider a Sweet 16 sit-down machine. It is more money, but another alternative that has impressed me.

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