Monday, June 20, 2011

What Was I Thinking!

It has been a while since I have posted.  Lots of life has happened.

I did finally finish my basket quilt.  As I mitered the last border on it yesterday and laid it out on the floor so I could see it,  I could only think ....what in the world was I thinking!  I only wanted a table topper from this fabric, but it kept growing and growing and growing, until finally it emerged into this 95 x 100 queen size quilt.

I think I also possess enough scraps from the fabric to make at least a 40 x 40 table topper.  Is this what is called "two for one"?

I told my quilter the first of January I would have it to her by the 15th, and could she get it back to me by the middle of February.  Hah!  I was beginning to think I meant next year!

Anyway, it is finally finished and I just love it!  Hope you do too!

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

A Note to Evelyn

Dear Evelyn,

I will reply to your request for information about the Berninas I have here because I cannot reply to a nonreply email.  To receive personal emails you must have an email address to reply to.


When I bought my 220 Bernina I only wanted a machine that had a great quarter inch foot and a beautiful satin and blanket stitch.  Since I already had the Pfaff that did other things I only needed those 3 things in a machine and I did buy a quarter inch foot and a straight stitch face plate.  It was also light enough I could take it with me to a class if I wanted to.  It does not have the capacity to make button holes but that wasn't important to me.  It is a wonderful smaller machine and does not disappoint me in any way.  It does exactly what I wanted it for and does a great job.

When I started sewing on the 220 I remembered how much I had enjoyed my previous Berninas, and the size of the Pfaff quarter inch seam was not compatible with the 220 one.  So, I bought the 440 because I wanted the features of that machine and it would be compatible with the 220 seams as far as sewing was concerned.  Now I can start a quilt on one machine and finish it up on another and know the seams will be the same size.

 I did sell my Pfaff and I do miss the Integrated Dual Feed on it.  It was great, but I gained the ability to sew using two machines on the same project.  That has become important to me because my sewing areas are not contingent.

Now to answer your question.

Hello - I'm thinking of buying a Bernina 220 and wonder if you could give your appreciation of it - I see you upgraded to a 440 - what was the difference like? Will I be disappointed with the 220? I believe it does not come with the feet I want.. 1/4 inch, walking foot and free machining or darning foot... does the 440 come with these or is it worth getting 220 and buying the extras? 
I would really appreciate your view, Many thanks, 

If you can afford the 440, go for it.  The main reason I bought it is it has a feature that allows you to tighten the weight of the top foot and helps prevents fabric slippage when you are piecing.  I hope that makes sense to you.  It is the closest thing to the IDF of the Pfaff that is available in this price range. It has many more options as far as stitches are concerned than the 220 and, depending upon the dealer or the current package Bernina is featuring, will come with several feet you are wanting, and sometimes the walking foot is included (it was with mine).   It also does buttonholes if you need that. Mine came with a quarter inch foot, a darning foot, the Bernina Stitch Regulator and several other feet. It does have an embroidery module that you can get for it but I am not into that so I did not get that option.  Perhaps later I will add that.

Before I forget, the 220 and 440 feet are interchangeable, as is the straight stitch foot plate. And the feet are not cheap. I did buy foot 20 for embroidery because I like it better for embroidery as it is more open.

I did keep my 220 and I use it mainly for machine embroidery because I can set it up with the thread I want to use and the foot and foot plate and leave it that way.  I use the 440 for the main quilt I am sewing on because I have my design wall behind it and this is the area I use to put my quilts together on.  I also use it for machine embroidery if I need to.  I love having the option of doing one thing for a while, and then switching to something else to work on.  The machines are in different rooms.

I have now added a featherweight which is also compatible with the Berninas as far as stitch width is concerned.  I have set it up in a spare bedroom that has a tv in it and I can piece in there and watch tv when my other two areas are in use for other projects.  I am very fortunate to have the 3 areas and I can now have 3 projects going without having to move things around.   Added bonus is exercise going from room to room, lol.   I really do love the concept.  It is counterproductive when I have to move something to do something else and can't remember what I was doing.  Plus I can only cut out fabric for a little over an hour and then I am exhausted from standing, and this way I can do other things instead and not have to put my cutting stuff away.

I don't think you would be disappointed with either machine, frankly.  They are both great.  Right now with it being Bernina's 40th Anniversary you can get great financing on all of their machines and no finance charges using Bernina's Credit Card on purchases over $1,000.

After rereading this I am not sure I have really given you a concrete answer.  I will just say I love both machines,  but if you can only have one and can do it, go for the 440.  It is heavy and not fun to lug around, but it is a great machine.

My original Bernina was an 830 and I sewed on it for 35 years before I finally upgraded to the newer ones. They are built to last, that's for sure.

Hope this helps, if you have other questions, email me again, but be sure you give me an email address I can respond to please.