This, my friends, is the other thing I mentioned I got at the K&S show. Momentous, no?
It is a Brother 1034d overlocker and I hadn’t really intended on buying one at all. About a week before the show, I was pottering online and thought: if I were to buy an overlocker sometime, what’s a good one to get? Some basic information on the subject could not possibly go amiss. I spent quite a while reading, finding the customer reviews on Amazon (both .com and .co.uk) to be very informative. I explored many different brands and price ranges. I came to the conclusion that about €200 seemed to be a reasonable amount to pay for a reasonable model.
The Brother seemed to score well on a number of fronts: it uses 4 threads but can be used with 3 threads also for different features (like a rolled hem); it has a colour coded threading system which many customers have reported to be very straight-forward and easy to use; it has a good range of ability and is reported to handle both light and reasonably heavy materials well; it comes with extra feet; it costs £189 in the UK. When I went to see what shipping would be, I discovered that the company selling through Amazon don’t ship to Ireland (this was before the Parcel Motel revelation). Curiosity piqued, I googled for other alternatives to discover that there is a Brother dealership in Bray and that there were to be exhibiting at the show.
I investigated the machine fully at the show and was quoted a price of €230. Given that £190 works out to be almost €240, before any shipping, I figured it was probably the best I was going to get.
This is how the front looks when you go to thread it or dust it out. Each thread has a coloured tension knob which relates to the guide along the rest of the machine. Very, very straight forward. I did a lot of fiddling about with it when I got it first and read the manual thoroughly. The manual is extremely clear and helpful and any issues I’ve had so far have been entirely user-related. Here’s a seam I finished this morning. I’m working on a top from New Look 6806.
Obviously, it’s not the kind of finish you want for everything but when you just want to finish something quickly, like this top, it’s nice to have. Before I forget, the feet I got with it are a blind hem foot, which overlocks and does the hemming at the same time, a piping foot (ditto) and a gathering foot. I haven’t tried any of them out yet but greatly look forward to it. To overcome my aversion to sewing with knits, I cobbled together one of these the weekend before last. I didn’t do a muslin or anything so the neck is far, far too wide. If I had cut a smaller neck and a smaller size, it would have been fine. However, it was most satisfying to find that sewing with knits is just not a big deal and the overlocker gave a great finish.
Other sewing includes a plethora of handkerchiefs (handkerchieves?). Scrap fabric too beloved to do anything else with. The fabric on the top is leftovers from this top and on the bottom, a quarter metre I bought a year ago at the Dundrum Cath Kidston shop specifically for this purpose. I have found that my nose gets quite runny on the bike and paper tissues do not cut it whatsoever.
A circular shawl from Malabrigo sock given to me as a present at my hen party.
A brown jumper of endless stockinette for Alb. Exact same as the last one. I didn’t even swatch, which was very bold of me, but it seems to fit fine. The only thing is that he did like the contrast colour I got for the stripe, so I left it out. I think I may run out of yarn as a consequence. I have almost two full balls with still a sleeve and the collar to knit. I might make it! Must knit faster to find out.