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rcski2000
November 24th, 2010, 01:04 AM
I am wanting to buy a serger but need to justify expense. I want to use it to finish up a couple of sewing projects but want to know how useful it will be quilting. I don't want to buy one for just a few items.

Also if you could recommend an adequate machine for a beginner but that I can grow with without busting the budget.
Thank you in advance!!!
Cheri:icon_beuj:

pdjewelrylady
November 24th, 2010, 01:59 AM
i want one too :)

(think santa is listening??)

toggpine
November 24th, 2010, 04:13 AM
I love my serger, but I don't do much quilting with it.
I have put on the initial edge of bindings and sewed the edges of quilts that I am just adding a back to, turning right side out, and top stitching down. There are some folks who piece with their serger. I haven't yet. I might on fancy fabrics like brocades or satins that fray. It makes a great finished edge.
I use it for clothing and craft sewing. I like how it puts a rolled edge on things and with a small adjustment I can create ruffled "lettuce edges" on my daughter's plain t-shirts I buy in the boy's department because they are cheaper and don't look like tramp clothes. You can also feed elastic through the foot to incorporate directly into the project. There are as many feet available for a serger as for a regular machine I think. I have a ruffler foot that the sales lady threw in as a "baby shower" gift when I bought mine. I haven't used that one yet. I guess I prefer to gather the "old fashioned" way, and I have not read through all of the directions on how to use it.
I have a BabyLock Imagine. I had a trade in of another standard sewing machine when I bought this one. I can't remember what I paid, but I would suggest looking at a dealer, especially after a big sewing expo or state fair. They always seem to have demo machines for sale after those. You might also ask them to keep you on a list for any that come in as trades.
I like mine because it seems to be pretty idiot proof. I was afraid of all of the threads I was going to have to keep track of when threading. The Imagine has an air threader. You stuff the thread down a little hole and then push down on a lever and it shoots the thread out the other side. Sweet! One gal at the sewing center in Joanns was afraid of what would happen when the bellows went out. She thought I wouldn't be able to thread my machine. I just trim off the thread at the top and pull it through the tension system to make a tail. Then re-thread that part and tie the ends together. Then I pull those two through the machine. This is the easiest way to re-thread that part in any case. The upper threads work just like my regular machine for threading. I have had mine for about 5 years and the air threader thingies still work fine when I need them to.
In this economy you might get lucky and find a good machine on Craigslist. I'd beware of buying one without trying it out first. You also want to make sure you get all of the power cords, accessories, and instruction manuals if you buy from a private seller. MY first choice would be to try to find a used one through a dealer, as they will check it out & clean it before they sell it to you. You may also get some great freebies from them. I scored the above mentioned ruffling foot and a video on serging. I think the foot was because I was about 7 months pregnant and was so jazzed about making my own baby clothes. I also asked for an instructional workbook for my model for Christmas a couple of years later. Those are not cheap either, but I had several of my family members go in together to get it for me. It was one of the things I uncovered when cleaning out my sewing room a few months ago. I hope to start going through it after the holidays are over. I'd like to be able to do even more things with it.
Some dealerships will let you buy on layaway or on credit. I also liked going into a dealership to compare all of the different models. Try to go in when they are not very busy (call ahead to find out the best times), and you will get better information. Take paper & pen to make notes. Easier to get out without committing $$$ if you are on a fact finding mission at first.
Good luck & happy serging!

Heather1967
November 24th, 2010, 05:50 PM
I have a serger and have had it for about 20 years. I have never once used my serger for quilting.

Primarily it is good for using to make clothing and some crafts. It sews, finishes and trims the seams all at one swipe. I only used mine for clothing, pjs for my kids, dresses, skirts, etc, for me, housecoats, etc. Now I use it to finish my cross stitch fabric and sometimes to finish the edges of rags so they don't fray all over the place when washed.

Honestly, if you are doing mostly quilting, don't bother with the expense, or buy one second hand so it's much cheaper. I haven't used mine in probably 3 years. I got it serviced and there it sits.

Heather

rcski2000
November 30th, 2010, 12:02 PM
Thanks for the advice. I ended up just getting a new sewing machine. I got one of the Singer Curvys at JoAnn's on Black Friday and I am loving it. I should be able to get the edging I wanted with it.

Cheri