|Jul. 29th, 2013 @ 08:39 am So, that sewing machine thing.|
I've spent the last couple of weeks perusing websites of the various sewing/embroidery machine makers, and I got to visit a Babylock store earlier this week. I found out some things, and came to a few conclusions.|
- Babylocks are nice, but the ones that do absolutely everything I might ever want are just more pricey than I feel comfortable spending. I just can't justify spending $4K+ for the Ellageo and Ellegante; about the most I can go for without feeling super-guilty is the Esante (available around here for $2500-2800). (It's not that I don't have the money, I just emotionally can't go higher than ~$2500-2800 at this point in time.) Which means I should maybe go back for a demo of the lower-level machines.
- I really don't have any interest in the licensed Disney patterns that seem to come as a feature on most (not all!) of the Brother combos, which means that they're just less useful to me. (onyoukai, any inside info on the Laura Ashley line? Any idea what the Innov-is NX800 is equivalent to? Cuz it looks like it would be extremely affordable.)
- Janome combos are really weird, in that they use only ATA cards for transferring patterns until you get up into Ridiculous-land of prices. (The MC9500 I can get for $2K and the MC9700 I've seen online for $2500, but they're both ATA-only, which I'd really just as soon not have to put up with. The MC9900, which was introduced just back in March, seems to sell for around $5K from what I've seen online.)
I made the mistake(?) of letting my husband see the spreadsheet I've been building of machines, abilities, and prices. He took a look at the scary-priced ones (which I had on there just for comparison, really!) and suggested I try looking at normal sewing/quilting machines (which I'd told him back at the beginning of this whole process I could get for only a handful of hundreds of dollars - Janome's DC2011 for example does a ton, is well-reviewed on Amazon, and is very affordable) and then look at separate embroidery machines.
Given that even the low-level Janome embroiderers have USB ports, and that I think there are some Brother embroidery-only machines where I don't have to take all the darned Disney stuff, this might be a reasonable way to go. I still may not be able to get continuous hooping this round, but I should be able to get something that has a decent (at least 5x7, and I'm hoping larger) embroidery area, editing and combo-ing, and USB compatibility. Who knows, maybe I can get a color touchscreen as well.
The other possibility is I get the Esante and live with it for a while, and possibly trade it up someday once prices on the Ellageo/Ellegante come down.
Either way, it'll still be a little bit before I buy anything. I plan on looking at the Janomes next weekend; maybe the Brothers too - the stores aren't that far from each other.
And one of the Babylock store people encouraged me to wait till late August and contact her then, as she'll have been to the sewing machine tradeshow: new machines may be introduced, which can get people to trade in older (but still good) machines, the cost of current machines may come down, and machines whose boxes have been opened (but nothing actually done with them other than let people gawp) have their prices lowered just for opening the boxes. So there's that.