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Serger question

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March 20th, 2011, 06:47 AM
Super Mommy
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 951
Hi, I do not know anything about sewing machines, and I am hoping to get one in the next few weeks. I've been reading about having a serger and it makes things more simple for certain patterns (for wipes and other items). Do I have to buy a serger sewing machine, or can it be purchased as an attachment? I was hoping to spend under $200 for the machine, but I noticed serger machines are more expensive.


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March 20th, 2011, 11:05 AM
SuJo's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 2,111
A serger is more of a specialty machine, it's not a regular machine. What it does is an overlock stitch to finish seams/edges of fabrics. While it can stitch a seam at the same time as finishes the edge, it's not the best choice for that in all applications. If you do not have a sewing machine at all, it would be best to start with a decent sewing machine first. You can still finish edges using one of the specialty stitches on a sewing machine, there will be in the least a zig zag, some will have other overlock stitches as well.

When you are looking for a sewing machine, in the lower price range I have found the less stitches the better it will be at the ones it does have. IMO the Bernette by Bernina's are a much better cheap machine than any singer or brother. I had to sew on bargain machines this last week, and the Singer was a POS, if you plan to do anything more than an occasional hem I would stay away. The bernette, on the other hand, handled layers of fabric much better, and the needle always remained in the right place (not striing the plate like on the singer, or getting stuck in the bobbin).
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March 20th, 2011, 02:50 PM
Jenna's Avatar AWESOME!!!
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Maine
Posts: 3,718
I bought a Janome Magnolia 7318 a month ago. So far, it's handled everything I've thrown at it, and I LOVE the machine!
Little side note about Singer - I asked around because I wanted a machine like my mom's (a 15-year-old Singer). Back when mom got that machine, Singer was THE machine to have for general home sewing. But I was told about 4892635 times in the last couple months that the quality of Singer's machines has taken a nosedive in the last few years. Surprised the heck out of me! But the machine I ended up with is very similar to mom's, with more features, at a really nice price.
Another one that was recommended to me right before I bought was the Janome Sewist 500. It looks like a nice machine, but the Magnolia 7318 was (and still is) $50 cheaper, and there weren't any features on the Sewist 500 that I really needed. It's a good choice if you want a 1-step buttonhole though.
I was also warned away from the Brother CS6000i, FWIW. Stinks, because I saw a few good reviews mixed in with the bad ones, but unofficial opinion seems to be that the machine just wasn't built sturdily enough, even for the low price paid for it.

**Also, you can get a foot for a lot of machines that sorta acts like a serger - does overcast with edge finishing. Definitely not the same results, but it's a bit similar.
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March 20th, 2011, 06:49 PM
Platinum Supermommy
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 5,522
You don't need a serger, your machine can do it.... Sergers are good if you are selling diapers.

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March 20th, 2011, 07:04 PM
SuJo's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 2,111
Wanted to add: those foot attachments add a blade, but you can use the stitch without them and just keep it on the edge. I had one of those feet at one time and it was a PITA and not that great. Save your money!

Overstock carries sewing machines, they have the janomes; and its a greater deal if you can find a 10-15% coupon!
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March 20th, 2011, 08:11 PM
Jenna's Avatar AWESOME!!!
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Maine
Posts: 3,718
Yep, get it from Overstock if you can. Coupon codes are pretty easy to find, and $3 shipping isn't bad. Free shipping from Amazon, but most coupon codes are gonna save you more than $3. The ONLY reason I used Amazon was because the 7318 was out of stock at Overstock when I went to buy it.
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March 22nd, 2011, 07:44 PM
Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Michigan
Posts: 2,652
I have a serger and a sewing machine. I would definitely start with a sewing machine. I have a Brothers sewing machine that DH got me at Walmart for $80. It's very basic, but does everything I need it to from a basic hem to a fancy diaper. My serger is a Brothers 1034D. I think it was $200. I haven't experimented much with it, but have used it for diapers, cloth wipes, and a few simple projects. I wouldn't invest in a serger just for diapers, even though it is convenient, I would just get a good sewing machine and later on a serger.
*Natural Birthing, breastfeeding, cloth diapering, co-sleeping, baby wearing momma to 2 amazing children, Micah (5-22-09) and Reagan (4-21-11)
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