When my Bernina sewing machine started misbehaving, I decided to get it serviced. Here are my tips from that experience.
WHERE DO YOU FIND AN ENGINEER?
My first course of action was to do a Google search for sewing machine services in the London area. But I was casting my net wide and non too carefully. A lot of sewing businesses still have barely functioning websites. How could I possibly choose where to take my beloved machine?
So, I asked my blog readers for places and you came up trumps with suggestions. Personal recommendations are so reassuring.
WHO DID YOU RECOMMEND?
The three stand out recommendations in the London area were:
Sew Amazing in Mile End
Tony’s Sewing Centre in Tufnell Park
Chapman Sewing Machines in Camden
WHERE DID I GO?
Sew Amazing in Mile End. Extremely friendly service – if you go here, carve out time to hang around for a chat! I chose these guys because they were near me, quick to answer the phone and friendly.
HOW LONG DID IT TAKE?
It took just over two weeks for the work to be done. When the machine was ready, I was sent a text message asking me to phone first, and then come in to pick up the machine. It then took me another two weeks to organise myself to pick the machine up. Depending on your own levels of efficiency, you can expect to be without a machine for 2-4 weeks.
HOW MUCH DID THE SERVICE COST?
£79.85, for the service and a bobbin of thread! I paid when the work was done. They threw in a free bottle of sewing machine oil.
WHAT WAS WRONG?
Thread was caught behind the shuttle drive. I was advised to always ensure that the tails of needle and bobbin thread are pulled behind the sewing machine foot (rather than to the side of it) when I start a row of stitches.
ANY OTHER TIPS?
Think about how you’re transporting your sewing machine. These things are heavy! I managed – just – on public transport but wished I had a car.
Leave a standard foot in the machine, not one of your fancy ones.
Plan your back up strategy. What machine are you going to sew on in the meantime?
If you’re mid-project, rescue your coloured thread from the machine going in for service.
I was advised not to leave computerised sewing machines in very cold places – the boot of the car or the garage – because they can be disrupted by the sudden warmth when you bring them in to central heated rooms.
AM I HAPPY WITH THE SERVICE?
Yes! Sew Amazing were brilliant to deal with and my machine works again. It was delivered back into my hands with a little test row of stitches as evidence of its happier temperament.
I don’t intend to spend the best part of £80 more often than I need to, but next time I need to – I know where to go!