All About My Sewing Machine

by This is Carrie on June 5, 2009

Never participated in a meme before, but I just couldn’t pass up this one from Sew, Mama, Sew.

What brand and model do you have? Bernina Activa 240

How long have you had it?
About 5 years.

How much does that machine cost (approximately)? I think I paid $1200 for it back then. It was expensive, but I figured with the amount of design education I had been through and the amount of sewing I had done and would do in the future, it was a good investment (and I thought I deserved it).

What types of things do you sew? Almost all clothing.

How much do you sew? How much wear and tear does the machine get? I sew on the machine about 5-10 hours a month. I like to get it serviced once a year.

Do you like/love/hate your machine? I love my machine, but then again, I sewed on a “starter” machine for ten years so any kind of upgrade was going to make me happy.

What features does your machine have that work well for you? My favorite features: Automatic needle up/down (love to have machine stop w/needle down), automatic buttonholer (not afraid of adding buttons to my designs anymore) and all the specialty feet (my edgestitch foot gets used almost as much as the basic presser foot).

Is there anything that drives you nuts about your machine? I have found that getting my Bernina serviced has been a lot more expensive than my old machine. The specialty feet are also expensive. I’m also not a huge fan of computerized machines. But, it’s worked beautifully so far.

Do you have a great story to share about your machine. We want to hear it! I sewed on Berninas all through college and fell in love–hoping one day I might be able to have one of my very own. My machine was a birthday gift from my husband (whom I also fell in love with in college).

Would you recommend the machine to others? Why? Yes, but not as a first machine. It might be a little overwhelming to a new sewer.

What factors do you think are important to consider when looking for a new machine? Buy according to what you want to do with it. I sewed all sorts of clothing for 10 years on a super simple starter machine. Straight stitch and zigzag are what I needed. Most of the time, you don’t need all the bells and whistles. I also like a heavy machine that doesn’t bounce around on the table when I sew fast.

Do you have a dream machine? Right now, I really love the Threadbanger Janomes. Mostly because they’re cute, not because I need a replacement machine. Makes me wish I was a beginner sewer again. They’re simple, a good brand, have a nice weight and they’re cute. What more could you ask for?


{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

Jane June 5, 2009 at 11:42 pm

I was just thinking that I might want to upgrade my machine in the next year or so. On the one hand, my machine is fine. On the other hand, I have improved so much in the past three years that I feel adventurous. This meme arrived just in time.


This is Carrie June 5, 2009 at 11:52 pm

I will say, I've only loved the process of sewing for the last three or four years (even though I have been sewing since age 12). A large part of my change in attitude towards sewing is a result of my Bernina machine. Having a good machine cuts out a lot of sewing frustration, leaving just the enjoyable parts behind.


Kage June 6, 2009 at 1:59 am

I did not read this, but you already knew that.

Define meme though.



LMT June 7, 2009 at 4:12 am

This was so informative. Perfect timing as I am in the market for a "first timer" machine. Really, thank you. Happy sewing.


This is Carrie June 8, 2009 at 4:10 am

I added a new link in the post just for you, Kage.


alotalot June 11, 2009 at 9:42 pm

My machine lets me leave the needle in the down position too. I really love that feature!


jenni stockberger July 8, 2011 at 8:14 am

i just stumbled upon your blog as i am researching the bernina activa 240–i have always used my only kenmore 14 for the past 10 yrs but it recently died–i have an opportunity to buy the bernina activa 240 for $100 plus shipping and am planning to purchase it. are you still pleased wyour machine? your blog is lovely by the way!!


jenni stockberger July 8, 2011 at 8:15 am

i mean the bernina activa 140…oops i am a beginner.


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