Friday, October 11, 2013

Sewing Machine Review!

Sew Mama Sew is asking for sewing machine reviews! Can't wait to read some others and maybe find my next dream machine. :) So here goes... 

Sewing Machine Reviews

What brand and model do you have? I own a brother cs-6000i computerized machine.
How long have you had it? I've had this machine for a just under a year; bought it in January of 2013. 
How much does that machine cost (approximately)? It's inexpensive - mine was around $140 on
What types of things do you sew (i.e. quilting, clothing, handbags, home dec projects, etc.)? I do crib quilts and carseat blankets, some baby and toddler clothing, stuffed toys, the occasional bag or pillow...a little of everything!
How much do you sew? How much wear and tear does the machine get? Before this month, I was sewing maybe a couple of times a week. Now that we're getting closer to Christmas, it's nearly every day. I sew during naps and after the girls are in bed, so maybe two-three hours a day actual sewing time. Most of my fabrics are quilting weight cottons, with a few flannels/fleeces thrown in, so the machine doesn't get worked very hard. I believe it could handle more than what I throw at it!
Do you like/love/hate your machine? Are you ambivalent? Passionate? Does she have a name? I like it. So far it's been a steady machine, even stitching, consistent speeds. It's definitely better than my starter machine was, and I love the stitch options. I feel more creative just looking at them! No name yet! :)
What features does your machine have that work well for you? I really like the stitching options that I feel make me more confident in garment construction and decorating. The light is bright enough for me to be able to sew at night with low lighting in the room, and I love how easy it is to thread and install the drop-in bobbin.
Is there anything that drives you nuts about your machine? A couple of minor things: I don't like threading the machine (besides the bobbin). The take up lever doesn't come up past the top of the machine, so wiggling a piece of thread into the hole can get a little fiddly and complicated. I have to use a pair of scissors to gently pull the thread out of the take up lever to continue threading. Also, the throat on the machine isn't very large, so making any quilts bigger than a twin size (at the most!)may prove difficult. Not an issue for me personally, but I can see where it would be for others! 
Would you recommend the machine to others? Why? Yes, I would. Despite the threading issues (which you do get used to) I think the machine is a great value for the price, and an excellent machine for beginning/intermediate sewists. Maybe even advanced sewists, I'll let you know when I get there! ;) The stitch options, drop-in bobbin, large workspace and additional quilter's table, plus all the accessories that came with it (different presser feet, a double needle) make it a lot of fun to play with, and easy to make just about anything - at least in my range of expertise! I don't think that it would be good for anyone looking to quilt anything bigger than a crib quilt - maybe  a twin, rolled up tightly. The throat on the machine isn't very big. It works perfect for me, though, since I don't do anything larger than baby size!
What factors do you think are important to consider when looking for a new machine? Making sure it has stitch options that you'll want, and big enough work space for whatever projects you do the most! For me, if I were to find another machine, I would look for one that also does embroidery - though I do hand embroidery, I would love to try machine as well. Finding a machine that does everything you could possibly want is the ideal, right? ;) 
Do you have a dream machine? I haven't found it yet, but I'm always looking! Until I find it, my brother cs-6000i is the perfect machine. :) 

Bonus: Do you have a great story to share about your machine (i.e., Found it under the Christmas tree? Dropped it on the kitchen floor? Sewed your fingernail to your zipper?, Got it from your Great Grandma?, etc.!)? We want to hear it! I feel like my machine just kind of fell into my lap, figuratively speaking of course. I was sewing on a simple brother from Walmart, the cheapest one they sold, and I was finally getting good enough where I felt it was time to move up. I'd been drooling over computerized machines with all the beautiful stitch options, but none of them were in my budget - money was rather tight. Browsing around through review sites, and suddenly the cs-6000i popped up! A few of the things I mentioned were brought up in negative reviews, but by and large the machine got rave reviews and when I went to look on Amazon, it was so cheap! It still was a tiny bit of a stretch for us, but my husband and I found a way to make it work and I'm so glad we did. I feel like the machine has paid for itself several times over since January. 

I hope this helps someone find their new machine - and I hope, if you do buy one, you enjoy it as much as I do! The pros outweigh the cons, and the fact that it's computerized (you don't even need to use the presser foot!) just makes it that much more fun, IMO.


  1. Meriel, I also have this machine and I love it. When I first got it, I too tried threading and had trouble. Then by accident I was waving the thread around and it went in that hole. All you have to do is make sure the lever is up and then pull the thread up and back down and it somehow goes in the hole. It is hard to explain. Just keep trying, it does work. Good luck. If you have anymore questions find me at

    1. Bonnie, thanks for the tip! I'll have to look when I'm home tomorrow - working with a friend's Janome earlier today, I noticed her lever is actually slightly open on the back, and I'm wondering if mine is too and I've just missed that (for 10 months!) ;) I will fiddle around with it!

    2. Aaand...boy do I feel dumb now. Almost a year and I couldn't figure it out - it IS open on the back, and threading is SO much easier now! Thank you Bonnie!!

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