Summer does not prevent me from sewing and for two months I make my 2019-2020 wardrobe as well as several samples (about fifty) that I will use during activities at the Janome dealers and shows. The more I use my machines, the more I appreciate the electronic features that are strategically placed at my fingertips.
But what about the myth ‘An electronic sewing machine often breaks down’? Well, without manhandling my machines, I can say that they were put to the test with my two months of intensive sewing. They sewed stable fabrics, stretch fabrics, very thick fabrics such as leather and faux leather, suede and denim (jeans); they have stitched and quilted in addition to placing zippers of all kinds, bias, piping, ribbons, and more. All kinds of different and specialized threads ranging between 12 and 100wt were used. Yet none of my machines “dropped me”: not even a broken needle!
The features that have been most useful to me are:
1. The start/stop button : For some functions I prefer the foot pedal but you do get used to using the stop/start button quickly. Did you know that the machine works slowly as long as this button is held down even if the speed cursor is completely pushed to the right??? Really very convenient. The cruise control slider adjusts the sewing speed according to the technique used; for example, slower speed when inserting a piping or zipper and faster on straight seam lengths.
2. The Reverse sewing button: The machine sews in reverse as long as you press the button. Do you know the function of these two stitches: the straight and the zigzag stitches run in reverse continuously without having to hold the key… Oh, that’s great!
3. Lock Stitch: When you sew certain patterns, the machine sews tie off stitches or lock stitches and automatically stops when the automatic stop button is pressed. When you sew all the other patterns, the machine sews until the end of the current stitch pattern, sews the tie off or lock stitch and then automatically stops.
4. The Needle up/down button: if activated, the machine will always stop with the needle lowered, except in the case of certain stitches. This function keeps the fabric in place when we have to stop sewing to replace our hands to ensure we keep our position and have our sewing straight and even…. without any discrepancy.
5. The presser foot lift button: The presser foot will go up or down at the touch of this button. However, on some Janome models, this function is automatic When you start sewing.
6. The thread cutter key: Just press this button when you’re done sewing to cut the threads. Did you know that the cutting length is consisten and that the top thread is taken to the back/underside of the fabric? AND it doesn’t cut the threads after pressing the button three times in a row if this is what you require?
7. The automatic threader: You don’t have to wet the end of the thread and aim it at the needle to thread most threads that range in thickness from 12 to 100. The automatic needle threader does it for you!
8. The bobbin winder button: Yes, it is possible to wind a bobbin while you are sewing on the machine. No waste of time!
Electronic sewing machines are easier to handle than mechanical machines.
Remember that an operator error is not a manufacturing defect. During the purchase, your owner’s class and reading the owner’s manual, you will be well prepared for using your machine.
Originally published on by Céline Ross, August 17th, 2019 on Vie Janome. Edited by Anne-Margaret and Liz Thompson.