I have 2 sewing machines ok 3. oh and a serger. and one older embroidery (seriously limited to the cartridges and i dont use much. I mostly make purses, baby goods, monogram items etc. HOWEVER, with this machine i have made lovely sheet sets by monogramming and adding embroidered touches to the cases and flat sheet top hems, also linens and runners. I have people asking me to make them for wedding/baby shower gifts all sorts of items so its become a little side business to feed my sewing habits. I love the versatility and ease of use of this machine I cannot say enough. Its half the price of the one I bought 15 yrs ago and comes with all kinds of threads which are really expensive if u buy them separate at stores.
I bought this machine primarily for sewing (travel and quilt piecing classes); I already have a top/mid-line sewing embroidery machine, so the embroidery feature was simply an additional bonus for me. I've used it but not extensively. For sewing, I have the mid/top line machine in a cabinet, as well as a computerized sewing machine, both of which I love, but both are too bulky to travel to classes easily. I wanted something smaller/lighter, but with many of the features her bigger siblings have (start/stop, speed control, thread cutters and a good quality threader, as well as the ability to edit stitches and save the edits. The SE400 has all of these, and it sews beautifully. I loved it straight out of the box, where it sewed a perfect straight stitch and all its features worked just as the (easy to read) user manual explained. In fact, my sewing only machine is made by the other B-label sewing manufacturer and it and the SE400 are just close enough with their features to prompt me to declare the SE400 to be her younger, cuter sister. It's a fabulous sewing machine, before you ever even get to the embroidery features. And they are not problematic at all. To take the SE400 through her embroidery paces, I stitched out 8 embroidery quilt blocks, and created the quilt top with her. The quilting and binding were done on another machine but as you can see in the attached photo, the SE400 is well able to do everything I bought her for. I could not be more pleased.
I have had this machine now only a month and a half, but I have put it through its paces. The needle threader is a dream! Best needle threader ever and I have a couple of machines of other brands with threaders. The machine is responsive, smooth, VERY quiet and does both sewing and embroidery well. Sewing on it is a charm! Really - the stitches are as good as any brand of machine, and I haven't needed to touch the tension setting for any of the projects I have done. It does free motion really nicely too and I didn't have to change the tensions for that either. I have used several different threads top and bottom on it and all does well. The light is rather dim, but I put LEDs in the harp, so it doesn't matter. I am a novice embroiderer and that is why I bought this machine - for the fun of a little embroidery, but now I love to sew on it! I wouldn't think this is a choice for a large free motioned quilt, since the harp is rather small, but for overall sewing and 4x4 embroidery you cannot go wrong with this machine.
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