Invented during the first Industrial Revolution, sewing machines enable you to effortlessly stitch fabric and other fabric-related material together. With these machines, you can make anything from dresses to coats or even accessories such as handbags and fabric purses. Depending on the number of times that you plan on using it, a sewing machine can be industrial or domestic.
The market has various types of sewing machines to suit different needs. The most popular ones include mechanical, electronic and computerized sewing machines. A mechanical sewing machine, for example, is among the most affordable models on the market. It does not require electricity but needs quite a bit of muscle power to run. Indeed, this machine operates through a spinning wheel that you have to manually move to sew through various types of materials.
Electronic machines, on the other hand, need to be plugged in an outlet before use. The motor normally powers the bobbin, machine lights and needle. By this token, the user will need to operate the machine by pushing down on a foot pedal. Not unlike a car, the power can be controlled by the intensity of pedal pressure: therefore, the harder you push down on the pedal, the faster the machine will operate.
A more expensive, albeit efficient and comfortable kind of sewing machines are the computerized machines. These models are normally used by more experienced machinists for industrial purposes. Computerized sewing machines can deliver a variety of stitch functions: the user only needs to select the appropriate function from a touchpad and allow the apparatus to do the work.
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Like most sewing-related apparatuses, embroidery machines come in a plethora of models with varying features. These machines are extremely convenient since they allow users to add embroidery designs to various types of fabrics without having to go through the painstaking process of stitching each pattern. In fact, embroidery machines can easily embellish items such as clothing- both personal and corporate- handkerchiefs, baseball caps and the likes. These machines were first popularized in 1980 and have soared in popularity ever since.
They come with a variety of features to easily adapt to each user’s level of expertise. Beginners, for example, might feel more at ease with an entry-level machine. These are normally more economical, lightweight and portable. To use a basic home embroidery machine, users simply have to select a pre-loaded design, insert the fabric and allow the machine to do all the work.
As far as models are concerned, embroidery machines can be single or multi-head. Single-head machines only have one station and can consequently only operate one fabric at a time. Therefore, multi-head machines may be more suited to users with larger needs. Embroidery machines usually come with around four to ten needles which enables you to create multi-colored patterns in the same batch. With industrial machines, users may even work on different fabrics at the same time. They are, however, more expensive than home ones.
With computerized models, you can even search for embroidery patterns online and integrate them to your fabrics. Some digitizing softwares are also fully compatible with embroidery machines.
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Quilting is often considered as one of the most entertaining forms of sewing. Best of all, while hand quilting can easily take weeks to months, a machine can help you make a quilt in a mere matter of days. These particular apparatuses can be used to indulge in various forms of quilting including in the ditch, straight line and free motion quilting. Like most sewing machines however, they come with numerous features so it’s important to carefully analyze them to ensure that you make the right choice.
In fact, some machines also include a free motion quilting attachment, which is often used to create more complicated designs. It is therefore recommended to users who have more experience in this field. A quilting machine normally requires additional accessories such as plastic or wooden quilting frames and the likes. Some machines enable users to indulge in free motion quilting. These are recommended to new users and are far easier to operate.
According to experienced users, it is best to favor machines with a knee-lift for quilting. This enables you to press your knee against the lever, which means that you’ll have both hands free to operate the machine. It is also important to determine in advance what type of projects you expect to indulge in. For example, users who plan on making bed quilts on a larger basis would be more comfortable with a machine that includes a wider table.
While some users prefer to make their quilts on regular sewing machines, others prefer a long-arm quilting apparatus, which is much more suited to this craft. This type of quilting machine usually includes a heavy metal frame, numerous fabric rollers, a wide worktable and a sewing machine head.
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Contrary to regular sewing machines, sergers will help you indulge in more durable double or even triple seams. Often used for industrial purposes, sergers are not exactly sewing machines on their own but they are compatible with regular machines. Because they tend to be more expensive than traditional sewing machines and harder to manipulate, Sergers are recommended for advanced users. It is equally important to gain as much experience as possible in straight stitching, multi-stitch, button, and zigzagging stiches before using a serger. Sergers are normally equipped with a needle plate, two needles and a much longer foot than regular sewing machines.
Another apparatus that is often used to create more complicated and durable seams is the Overlock. Most people confuse sergers and overlock machines because their functions are more or less similar but they do have a couple of differences, sergers, for example, can come with around seven to eight spools of thread, enabling you to indulge in various forms of decorative crafts. On the other hand, overlocks only have a couple of spools of thread, which largely limits your option. However, overlock machines tend to run much cheaper than sergers.
The most popular sergers include, but are not limited to, the 2-4, 3-4 or 5-thread Serger. As far as overlock machines are concerned, they usually include features such as differential feeds, easy loopers, various stitches and built-in cutters- a feature that can help you cut back on a lot of time and effort during the sewing process. Some- but not all- sergers also share these features.