I finally upgraded my sewing machine. For over a year now, I’ve been working on my starter machine which Simon bought me for Christmas (2019). I never imagined that I would get into sewing with such a passion as for years I have dipped in and out of other crafts with no real consistency. But I have and so, knowing that the pleasure I get from sewing my own clothes isn’t going away any time soon, I finally treated myself to a computerised Singer model. I loved my first Singer (and I also have a Singer overlocker) so much that I decided to stick with the brand, not least because you get a lot more punch for your money than you do with some other brands.
My first machine is the Singer Fashionmate (note I say is, because even though I’ve upgraded, I love the 3333 so much). For someone who is starting out on their sewing journey, I couldn’t recommend it enough. I think, for me at least, the fact that is a mechanised sewing machine, it was easy just to get started sewing without all the additional learning processes involved in computerised machines. And because it had limited functions, you not only learned the basics, you mastered them pretty quickly. The triple stretch stitch was a wonderful addition to the machine and even though the machine could only do a 4 step buttonhole foot, it never failed. It also taught me how to get the measurements for the buttonholes just right, too, which my new machine does for me…
The one step buttonhole was one of the first features of my Singer Quantum Stylist 9960 that I used and it really did feel like magic (not only does it have the one step buttonhole option, it also features 13 or 14 – memory fails me at the moment- types of buttonholes! What used to take a good 10-15 minutes putting shirt buttons in can now be done in a couple of minutes (the automatic thread cutter is an added bonus).
Having only made a couple of garments on the Quantum Stylist thus far, I’m not in a position (yet) to give you a full review of the machine but one of the biggest revelations I have had since I started using it (thanks to Sally aka The Yorkshire Sewist, who also has this model, for pointing it out to me from the outset) is the lightning bolt stitch.
The lightning stitch does take a bit longer to sew (even when I turned the speed of the machine up – another thing I was never used to!) because it goes forwards and back as it stitches. When sewing with stretch fabrics, it’s the way to go; it is neat, strong and still allows the fabric to stretch without the stitches popping.
Yes, the zig zag stitch is good but the lightning bolt stitch is much smaller and gives an more finished, polished look. The strength the stitch gives is particularly useful for underarm seams, or anything that takes a lot of stress, really.
You’re going to want to try this stitch if you haven’t already – I’m excited to find out what else my new machine can do!