Many of us have sewn for decades, while others are relatively new sewists. Regardless of when we begin our sewing adventure, we usually want the latest and greatest equipment, but having a sewing machine that works well is essential. Whether we sew on a newer model machine, or an antique inherited from Aunt Bertha, it’s important to have a machine that works well because one that doesn’t can not only be frustrating, but it can also damage our expensive fabric.
Are you attached to your machine?
It is quite typical for us to develop an emotional attachment to our current machines, so we must be absolutely certain we want to replace it. We seem to always want that new machine, but at what point to we take the plunge?
I have criteria I try to follow to help me make my most important decisions.
First, and probably foremost is, Do I really want a new sewing machine? If I am unable to voice an emphatic “YES,” I wait until I am certain I am ready.
My next question to myself is, Can I afford the new purchase? If I can rationalize the purchase, and my ability to fit the purchase within my budget, I then ask myself, In what way will a new machine enhance my sewing experience?
What about features, classes, and service?
For a new machine to meet my criteria, it must have features and benefits my current machine does not. It must also be a substantial “step up” from my current machine. A new machine must include physical instruction from the dealer, even if I have to pay extra for it, and on-site service from the dealer’s seasoned technician.
Financing can be an option
If my ability to make a new sewing machine purchase is a bit out of reach in my current financial situation, I would check with the dealer to see if any financing options are available. Most sewing machine manufacturers regularly offer special financing opportunities for their more expensive machines…however, they are always subject to credit approval.
Anything free is good!
If the cost of a new machine is not an issue, I might ask the dealer if there are any special accessories they might be willing to include if I pay cash. We all love a bargain.
Trade in that old clunker
I would also ask the dealer how much I might expect to receive for my old machine as a “trade-in.” You just might be surprised at the value of your old machine as a trade-in.
A relationship with your dealer
Something you really want to consider when replacing your machine is, how the dealer makes you feel when you are in their store. While getting the best deal financially is foremost in our minds, the price of the machine should not be your deciding factor. If the dealer makes you feel welcomed, and if the dealer is knowledgeable about the machine, offers classes, listens to you when you tell them what you are looking for in a machine, and has on-site service, you might want to give the dealer real consideration. If, on the other hand, the dealer seems to be rushing through the machine demonstration, tries to convince you to purchase the machine of the dealer’s choice, and basically isn’t listening to you or showing you the machine with the features that are important to you, even if that dealer has a slightly better price than the dealer who makes you feel “like part of the family,” perhaps you should consider going to another dealer.
One thing you need to remember, you can purchase a sewing machine from any dealer. When you buy your sewing machine from a dealer, part of your machine purchase is a relationship with that dealer. Over the years you may have developed a loving, emotional relationship with your old sewing machine and you want to foster that same feeling in your new machine and in the relationship you will develop with your new dealer.
Purchase when it feels good
Do remember this – you don’t replace your sewing machine every day. Purchase what you want…when you decide the time, and circumstances, are right for you. You want to look back on the replacement of your sewing machine as a fond memory…not a nagging regret.