New Kid on the Block
My 1031 is a workhorse of a machine. I've no problems with it. She's on the heavy side, though, and since I go away for a quilting retreat at least twice a year and sometimes go to sewing days at other locations, I got to thinking that I'd like to have a lighter machine, one that was easier to carry. I acquired a Featherweight and while it was light and easy to carry, I never really bonded with it. My main complaint was that the bobbins seemed to run out every time I turned around. There were other issues, too. A couple of friends had picked up Hello Kitty machines, made by Janome, and were happy with them as their light-weight travelers. So I got one of them, and again, we didn't connect. I was beginning to feel like Goldilocks.
My sweet friend Judy recently got a Bernina 380 and is smitten. But now Bernina has stopped making 380s. I decided to investigate the 350, the main difference being the number of fancy stitches it provides. My dealer was having a sale over Super Bowl Weekend, and as soon as I sat down with 350, I was a goner. She came home with me and has scarcely had a minute's rest. If possible, she's a better machine than the old faithful 1031. Smooth running, quiet, nifty little needle up/needle down feature, push button stitch size, you name it. In the few days I've had her, I've machined on a binding to a quilt without struggling, without swearing, I've pieced a few blocks, and paper-pieced a third of a flock of sheep. I'm in love. Oh, and she might even weigh a little less than her predecessor!