On my What I Made Wednesday post about the patchwork bag I sewed, Dulcie of Human Sea and The Woollen Typist asked if it was machine sewed. The answer is yes, using the dinky John Lewis JL Mini sewing machine you see above. When choosing a sewing machine, I didn’t have a large budget, plus I wanted something light enough to transport around for when I teach workshops. (Being neither a car-owner nor muscular, this was a big concern.) Costing £59 and weighing 2.6kg, the JL Mini was just what I needed. It also comes with a spare needle, three bobbins, a threader and a 1-year warranty.
If you’re a hobbyist, I recommend it as it’s reliable and the options aren’t overwhelming – just 10 basic stitches (straight and zigzag), plus you can backstitch and adjust the thread tension. Threading the bobbin and needle are also very easy. The main drawback is the foot pedal isn’t responsive to variations in pressure – meaning it just goes at one speed. Also, because it’s a mini machine it wouldn’t cope with heavier, upholstery fabrics. But for the occasional home sewer it’s perfect.
One day I’ll probably need to upgrade to a sturdier machine which offers more stitches (for buttonholes and blind hems), and I’ve already got my eye on a Janome machine. I’ve used them in the past and they are dreamy.
Hope this helps if you’re thinking about buying your first sewing machine.