Sewing Machines & FSL

Last week, I started to understand why there is not a lot of people doing free standing lace (fsl).  It beats up your machine – really beats it up.  My sewing machine has a slow, medium, and fast speed which I get to control whenever I’m doing general sewing and I usually have my machine set to the medium speed.  I’m usually spending the entire day sewing – usually Saturday and Sunday.  And that was an “and” not an “or”.    After all, it’s my “therapy”.  =D

However, when the embroidery arm is engaged, it always stitches at the fastest setting and I have no control over this.  Hence the wear and tear on the machine.  So between the speed of the embroidery stitching and the time I spend at the machine, there seems to be a lot of heat being generated.  If I spend too many days in a row doing this, the machine literally seizes and the needle will no longer go up and down.  So I had to bring my machine into the shop to be repaired for the 3rd time since August.  Back in December, while working on Christmas presents and decorating my tree, the machine seized for the 2nd time.  The guy doing the repair then couldn’t believe it.  First of all, it was a Sunday when it happened and of course the shop was closed.  Secondly, I was so pissed at having to bring the machine back to the shop for not only a second time so soon, but more importantly, it also meant I had to actually stop sewing!  God Forbid!!!  So what does any naturally technically inclined female do?  Why she takes apart that machine to find that little bugger of a piece of thread so she can remove it, that’s what!  Does she succeed?  No unfortunately.  😦  What the repairman found, he couldn’t believe because he just had to take the pictures!  I had embroidery thread wrapped around parts he didn’t even know existed.  There seemed like there was “miles” of thread.  The friction generated by the thread caused gouges in the metal parts.  That’s right, the metal parts, not the plastic ones, the metal ones!

So now I am awaiting word of the damages for this 3rd repair.  I was also having a conversation with Fred, the machine expert, that if I wanted to continue to do lace work, I would need a totally different machine.  Home sewing machines, including those with embroidery features, are not meant  to bear the continual pounding and speed of the embroidery attachments.  Just the occasional use.  Soon, my current machine will no longer be able to be repaired.  So he wants me to think about a machine totally dedicated to embroidery, which would be a professional machine.  But he is also aware that at a price tag of $6,000 and me currently unemployed, this will not be happening.  I also want the Brother “dream” machine to do my quilting with.  But that’s $9,000 with a trade-in.  That one too, will not be happening.

So what’s a girl to do?  Regroup of course.  But the question is how?  Thoughts anyone?

Why I started this blog

I started this blog to talk about embroidery, mostly free standing lace machine embroidery. I just fell in love with it. There are people out there that are doing some beautiful things. I’ve been making Christmas presents for people and, for the most part, they are loved and appreciated (thanks Mom!) – although I am having trouble “reading” the younger generation these days. But I am having trouble finding information about this aspect of the craft. So I decided to start this blog to talk and share my findings.