I can’t believe I had two whole weeks to do some sewing and knitting BUT didn’t quite get round to it. Well, that’s exactly what happened. I took time off to spend the last week of the school holidays and the beginning of the new term with my kids. I had intended it to be a ‘sew/knit’-cation and preparation for the new school year combo, but it was not to be. I guess I was too hopeful that our teenage son will be able distract his siblings enough for me to get some things finished.
Anyway, my only make in all of the two weeks was my first pair of trousers, – a BurdaStyle shorts for our oldest, primarily because I ran into all sorts of problems. My trusted old Brother XR-6600 just wouldn’t behave. A combination of irregular stitch length, misaligned stitches and bobbin thread issues (it kept winding in the opposite direction and I really felt like taking a hammer to it), really got my goat. Top-stitching the welt pockets became a chore and had to unpick the stitches at least twice.
Nothing I tried worked, and I thought may it needed to be serviced, considering it’s never had one it in the almost 10 years I’ve had it (I didn’t really start using it to make anything substantial until this year). In frustration, I decided to make my sewing corner look nicer, so I planned a trip to Ikea to buy a new table and bits and bobs for my sewing corner. I would usually order online, but the £35 delivery charge made me think thrice.
Before all of these frustrations, a sewing machine with metal chassis had been on my wish list but I couldn’t make a decision. After reading several reviews and watching tons of YouTube videos, I narrowed it down to the Bernina 3 series. After continuously struggling with my Brother, I finally bit the bullet and went to a supplier near my home to see the Berninas, but they only had B330 and B350 in-store. I spent about 30 minutes testing the B350 on several pieces of fabric I took with me, and then I made a decision.
So, here it is; the latest addition to my sewing corner.
Here is a closer look at the stitch card and available stitches.
I still like my Brother and won’t part with just yet. Several of the stitches on both are similar, stitch no. 6 for overcasting on my Brother (length 1.4 and width 4-5), and stitch no. 3 on my new B380. I prefer the wrong sides of both stitches, but I’m quite attached to the one on the former.
I’ve been using the B380 exclusively to sew since I got it, and reserved the XR-6600 for overcasting. I’ve been testing it extensively to see what it can do and really love the blind stitch with the blind hem foot #5 because it bites the fabric just right. I’ve also used it to top stitch. Apart from the blind hem foot, it came with six other ones.
- Reverse stitch foot #1 – all purpose foot.
- Overlock foot #2 – to overcast raw edges of fabric.
- Zipper foot #4 – only works in two needle positions, far right or left.
- Jeans foot #8
- Open embroidery foot #20
- Walking foot with three soles
In addition, I bought the edge-stitch foot #10. Though the blind hem foot can be used for edge- and top-stitching depending on the desired allowance, it has a bar in the middle of the opening whereas the edge-stitch foot doesn’t. I wish they had thrown in the invisible zipper foot #35 also, because I love invisible zips for almost everything. In its stead, I intend to buy the manual button-hole foot #3 for inserting invisible zips. Yes, you heard right, I saw that tip on thesewingcorner.blogspot.co.uk. I love a foot that is versatile and I heard it can also be used for heirloom sewing techniques as well; and it’s almost half the price (I exaggerate a teeny-weeny bit; foot #3 is £25 and foot #35 is £35) of invisible zipper foot #35.
I’m still finding out what the B380 can do and the YouTube video series by Heirloom Creations really helped me get started.
Here are both the old and new.
Till my next post.