Thursday, June 21, 2012

High Quality Sewing Accessories for the Home Sewer

In order to achieve attractive, professional looking projects, it is imperative to possess right kind of quality tools. The assortment of available sewing notions is never-ending, but you don't need them all, nor do you need to break the bank to get started. As your sewing experience grows, you'll add to the basic notions and find tools that you love. The tools used should provide exact, consistent and repeatable measurement while sewing cloth or crafting an item. The correct tools don't have to cost a fortune but are invaluable. 

You will always have a easier task when you use excellent quality tools designed to do the job.  This will make the difference between enjoying sewing and dreading the task.  I consider my sewing tools to be as important as my treasured high quality vintage sewing machines and I take good care of them. 

Simflex Ruler - to divide areas evenly - cause I hate math!

Applique Sharp Needles from Clover:
sizes 9-12 - perfect size here for most hand sewing uses

Wearable Pin or Wrist Cushion Turquoise Collins:
Color: Turquoise Size: 2 1/2" diameter  This handy wearable Pin Cushion has a jewelry style pin back. It easily attaches to your clothing for a cute, wearable pin cushion that is also functional. Pin one to your tote bag or project case, or to a pillow or armchair cover while hand sewing. Attach ribbons and charms to the pin for a fun and festive touch. Great gift or stocking stuffer!  These flower pin cushions always make me smile. 

Collins Pin Cushion Design Wall Assorted:
Design Wall Assorted- cushion has a loop on the back so it can be easily be hung from your design wall, cabinet door knob or quilting frame. Also can be sit on any flat surface. Great for keeping all your pins handy while you work. Comes in assorted colors.

Point Turner:
simple tool to safely push out corners once you turn something right side out
my favorite needles that will cover most any type of need based on fabric and threads.  SCHMETZ is internationally known as the finest sewing machine needle manufacturer in the world. Sewers everywhere count on the quality of their products. Your choice of high quality sewing machine needles can result in the same high quality of maintaining smooth, even stitches in your work. SCHMETZ makes a variety of needles created especially to do particular sewing jobs very well. What many sewers don’t know is how to choose the correct type and size of needle for the work that they are doing. It is crucial to choose the correct needle to complement your thread choice and the kind of sewing work that you are doing.

Most sewers don’t have any idea how to choose the correct sewing machine needle for their specific thread and project. Most just continue to use the needle that came in their machine until it breaks. Sewing machine needles are not indestructible . . . they will not last forever. The points get dull from repeated use and the shaft may get bent from hitting pins in the fabric. A general rule of thumb is to replace the needle after eight (8) hours of use and at the beginning of each project. Each time you buy thread or fabric you should be asking yourself what kind of needle will work best with the project you have in mind. Here’s what you need to know.  Choose your needle size based on the type and weight of thread that is being used as well as the fabric that is being sewn. The goal is to have the needle slide easily through the fabric without damaging the fibers or creating too large of a hole, and to carry the thread smoothly without damaging it when sewing.

Each package of SCHMETZ needles has European and U.S. size equivalents written at the very bottom of the front of the plastic case. Typically they range from 8/60 (the finest) to 20/120 (the largest). This number, indicating the size, will help determine the suitability of the needles to the fabric, thread size and the kind of sewing being done. In general, the finer the thread and the finer the fabric that is being sewn, the finer the needle should be.  Each package has the name of the needle it contains. These names can help you choose the right type of needle for the work you are about to do (i.e., "Universal," "Quilting," "Sharp," "Metallic," "Topstitch," "Embroidery," etc.). Each type of needle is made for a particular job and should be chosen according to the type of fabric and thread used.  Use an 80/12 universal for light to medium cotton,linen, wool or polyester and an 90/14 universal for medium to heaver cotton,linen wool or polyester and a lghter weight denim.

A home sewer needs three pairs of scissors: one pair of quality scissors or dressmaker's shears that are for cutting fabric only, one pair of general purpose scissors for cutting patterns and trims, and one pair of small scissors for cutting details, trimming threads, clipping seams, and other close work.

 Gingher Seam Ripper:
 Gingher's seam ripper features a razor edged cutting blade that safely retracts when not in use. The handle is ergonomically balanced to provide the user with fine cutting control in numerous positions. This tool is beautifully finished with chrome over nickel and comes in its own storage box. With proper use and care, the blade should last a lifetime and is covered by Gingher's guarantee.

Gingher Thread Clippers:
save time by not having to get your fingers into holes of a scissors just to clip threads.  These Gingher scissors are my favorite stitching scissors to take on the go.  They are the quality made German Gingher brand, and feature a lightweight black nylon frame and sharp tipped stainless steel blades.  They have a protective cap with a loop hole that you can thread and wear around your neck.  How convenient is that!!!!  Now they won't be misplaced.  I actually own several for my classroom sewing, box, and another for my carousel organizer -- handy to grab.  Then there is my back up pair.  The phrase "too many scissors" doesn't exist in my vocabulary.  They are a staple for all sewers.

Gingher scissors:
small, but still large enough for quick clipping and trimming

Gingher Shears :
my favorite for cutting garments - invest in these to last a lifetime!

Gingher Pinking Shears:
especially if you don't have a serger - or until you invest in one!

Gingher Rotary Cutter 45 mm:
safe because blade only exposed with pressure exerted during use!

Gingher Pendant Needle Threader:
Part of the Gingher Designer series, this needle threader are printed in lovely patterns. Working from the back of the needle threader, hold the thread along the back and pull the thread over the top holding it tight. Insert the needle eye first into the threader, release the thread and gently push up on the lever. Release the lever and pull the threaded needle out. The needle will be naturally rotated to the right position to allow the thread to be pushed through the eye.  You can wear this little threader like a pendant around your neck!  So handy!

Dritz Needle Inserter and Threader:
Dritz Threaders are the perfect tools for threading needles, elastic, drawstrings and more. Machine Needle Inserter- Holds needles steady for easy insertion and removal from the machine. Ideal for specialty threads. Needle threader reduces eye strain and threads needles quickly.

Gingher Applique Scissors:
really helps (but does NOT guarantee) to not cut through the right side of fabric when trimming another layer close

A Cone thread holder adapter for standard spindle sewing machines:
Temporarily converts standard sewing machine thread spool holders to accept large thread cones.

Tweezers from Clover:
perfect for grabbing loose threads in the bobbin area especially!   

Glass Head Pins from Clover:
EZ to get hold of - won't melt with iron - perfect strength, yet fine enough for silks

Bobbin Savers:
BobbinSaver holds any and all bobbins - small or large, metal or plastic - and their threads won't tangle or unwind. It is made of a flexible rubbery type plastic that will hold any size bobbin. It will even stay in place even if the ring is turned upside down, yet it is very easy to remove a bobbin by hand. Will hold around 20 large bobbins or 30 small bobbins.

Mini Megnetic Seam Guide:
Will make a perfect seam for you every time.  This one is supposed to be safe for all computerized or electronic sewing machines.

Silk Organza:
the BEST for a see-thru pressing sheet, adding body as underlining or interfacing

5 in 1 Sewing Gauge from Clover by Nancy Zieman:
absolutely an amazing tool

Wrights Sidewinder Bobbin Winder:
With the touch of a button, quickly and easily fill bobbins without having to un-thread and re-thread your sewing machine. The compact size means it fits anywhere, making it great for toting to class! The SideWinder comes with a UL-approved AC power cord/adapter (included) or runs on two AA batteries (not included). Accommodates all bobbins that have a standard round center hole.

Bias Tape Maker Set:
save and get all sizes at once

Tutto Sewing Luggage - for safe transport or storage of your machines
Protect Your Sewing Machine While Enjoying Sewing.  Thread tangles and lint build up can be reduced dramatically just by changing to a better quality thread. This will prolong the life of your sewing machine and make for happy stitching. Readily available, inexpensive thread can shorten the life of a sewing machine. This is is especially true when doing a lot of sewing, such as making a quilt. In addition to high lint build up and thread tangles, lower quality thread also contributes to wear and tear on the tension mechanism. 

Some manufacturers to look for when choosing high quality thread include Mettler, Guterman, and Sulky. Colors and prices can be compared on the internet, but the ultimate comparison is side by side. You may have trouble seeing or feeling the differences in individual threads. The amount of lint in your bobbin case can show the differences as well. High quality thread also means fewer tangles and less stopping for thread breaks. It's well worth a little extra time and money to learn the differences in threads. Bargain bin thread just isn't worth it.  Polyester-covered cotton is a good general-use thread. However, when selecting a spool of thread for a specific project, match the thread fiber to the fabric. For example, use 100% cotton thread with cotton or wool fabric, and use 100% silk thread with silk fabric. 

Measuring Tools:
You will need a dressmaker's measuring tape, a regular 12-inch ruler for measuring and marking patterns and fabric, and a sliding dressmaker's measuring tool for measuring hems and alterations.

Marking Tools:
Marking tools are used to transfer the markings of a pattern (such as darts, buttonholes, or notches) or to make alteration marks to fabric. There are many types of marking tools: chalk blocks, chalk pencils, dressmaker's carbon paper and tracing wheel, marker pens, and vanishing pens. Find one that works for you and with that particular fabric.

Ironing Tools:
Technically, you can sew items together without involving an iron in the process, but to produce professional results, you need to iron out the wrinkles of all fabrics before you begin to use them and also press all seams, darts, hems, and so on. You will need a high-quality steam iron, an ironing board, and large squares of lightweight cotton to use as press cloths between the iron and delicate fabrics. In addition, a "seam roll" and a "ham" will make your job easier. A seam roll looks like a bolster pillow and is used to press seams in sleeves and other small areas; a ham looks, well, like a ham and is used to press darts and other curved areas. If you would rather wait to purchase these items, you can make the same shapes out of one or two rolled-up towels.

A large pullout 7 compartment wooden sewing chest/box.  A "must" for organizing all of your new tools!

Shark Professional Electronic Iron - G1568  This iron weighs 3 pounds and 13.4 ounces full of water, it is 12" tall, 7 ½" from the front to the back, and 5" from side to side. The hot plate on the bottom is 8-7/8" x 4 ¾" there is also 27 steam ports that are 1/8" in diameter. The overall color is silver and grey and there is a see through water reservoir between the handle and the body. This iron has a stainless steel sole plate, a rubber water inlet door, steam burst button, variable steam and a self cleaning option, an electronic temperature control, spray button, clear water level window, a cord that pivots, 4 fabric settings (linen/cotton, polyester, wool/silk, and nylon), LED temperature indicators, power light, auto-off light, anti-drip function, and a anti calcium filter. 

You can also use this to give your clothes a shot of steam while they are still on the hanger. With just a push of a button a shot of steam will come out and hit your garment. There is an adjustable laver that will allow you to set the amount of steam that will come out. This iron will automatically shut off after sitting still for 7 to 9 minutes. All you will have to do is reset the iron, is by rocking it back and forth gently and it should turn back on..

The Shark comes equipped with a ten foot power cord. This has no dial that will allow you to regulate how heat is going to the hot plate, you will now see a lever on the right and left hand sides that will allow you to control these settings.

You should clean this iron about every two week to keep it working properly.  This has a self cleaning setting that uses very hot steam to clean it, and you will need to do it over a sink. Keep doing this until all of the scale or water impurities are no longer present.  1600 watts of steam power.

I have my eye on a good steam cleaner/garment steamer like this one.  The McCulloch MC-1275 Heavy-Duty Steam Cleaner. Review    Providing 1500 watts of steam power, this heavy-duty cleaner requires no chemicals and is easy to use. Ideal for cleaning and detailing cars, trucks, motorcycles, or boats, the cleaner removes stains and odors from upholstery, carpeting, and floor mats, as well as grease and grime from engines, wheels, and chrome accessories. It also works well for removing stuck-on dirt from the BBQ grill, patio furniture, or garage. The "steam ready" light indicates when the unit is ready to use, and a steam-control switch provides control over the amount of steam coming from the unit. The cleaner features a storage compartment for its 10 attachments, which include a steam jet nozzle, two extension wands, a triangle brush, an upholstery/floor brush, and a utility brush, as well as a squeegee, funnel, measuring cup, and terry cover for the floor brush. Its 12-foot power cord, caster wheels, and included accessories offer convenient mobility and make it easy to clean nooks and crannies in hard-to-reach places. The 13-pound steam cleaner has a 50-ounce water-tank capacity, which allows for one full hour of use. The unit measures 17-1/2 by 11-3/7 by 9-1/4 inches. --Catie Unger

Although there are many more possible items and accessories for sewing and tailoring, some of which you might want to add to your workshop over time as you become a more advanced sewer. However, the items discussed here should give you all of the tools that you need to get started right away with making your own clothes or soft furnishings.

I Have Got to Get My Sewing Room Organized!

After a massive move, I am trying to get my sewing room organized and I could definitely use some help.

I have a standard vintage oak and iron Singer treadle sewing machine cabinets and I have an oak vintage Singer parlor treadle sewing machine cabinet.  Both cabinets will hold my gorgeous Singer 127 VS Sphinx sewing machines. 

On top of the cabinets will be my Pfaff 1473 CD sewing machine and my Viking 6030 sewing machine.

 Then there is my mother's Nelco J A-38 sewing machine in cabinet, and my Elna SP 33C sewing machine in cabinet.  On top of them will be a Janome. 

I plan on putting all of the sewing machine cabinets on the window wall of a guest bedroom. 

Wall hung lamps will light the two sewing cabinets on either side of the parlor cabinet, which due to the window will not have separate lighting.

The antique oak tall chest will store my thread, and other notions.

The white wicker daybed is on the long wall flanked on one side by the small cabinet my dad made in H.S. and an antique oak low chest. Another wall hung light will be over the chest.

A comfortable adjustable office chair will serve all three sewing cabinets.

The on the next wall is a tall antique oak two drawer dresser topped by a antique oak wall cabinet and an antique oak bookcase.

I found a pair of  2 vintage padded table protectors- each is 18x42 inches and 1/2" thick on Ebay for only $24 shipping included.  One side is a dark reddish brown felt, and the other is a grained vinyl. They fold up to 14 x 18 x 1 1/2 inches. These were made to protect table tops from damage. They are heavy, solid, quality old pieces, and together they weigh 7 Lbs 3 Ounces. 

Why am I so excited?  Because these table protectors are the basis of my new sewing cutting/ironing table! 

In front of the daybed will be a large white rolling kitchen cart.  The pair of heavy folding dining table protectors will allow me to use it as a large cutting table yet not take up the whole room.  The height of the cart and the wheels will make the cutting table mobile, appropriate for my height, and provide needed storage.  With both table protectors in place, my cutting surface will measure 36 by 42".  Maybe I will sew a padded iron board pad out of an 100% cotton mattress pad!

Most of my fabrics will fit into the closet, with a few having to be stored underneath the daybed.

I have a large wooden expanding sewing box and a smaller matching sewing box. The large one will hold most of my sewing tools, with the exception of my sewing scissors which will be in a large Gardenway Kitchen Carousel. The small sewing box will hold my rug braiding equipment.

I have an old wood ironing board.

I went through my sewing machines and I found a Singer Stylist 534 sewing machine and a vintage Rotary straight stitch machine!  Where did these extra machines come from, and where are my missing machines?  I am going to sell the Singer Stylist 534 because it keeps losing the tension; the Rotary and the Janome may go next. 

Friday, June 8, 2012

My Favorite Sewing Machines!

Compact Sewing Machines
Elna Lotus, Stella and Elnita models

In comparison to a Singer featherweight sewing machine, the Elna Lotus or Stella zig zag models weigh less than 14 pounds with it's built in portable case. The straight stitch Singer featherweight weighs in at 19 pounds in it's case. All of the Lotus machines have zig zag stitches and most have additional built in stitches. Add Swiss Elna quality and you have a lightweight portable sewing machine that will outperform the featherweight.  The Elna Lotus and Stella and Elnita models are rapidly increasing in popularity and value. I love these little buggers! 

1940 Elna #1 - the first portable, free-arm sewing machine with electronic motor and built-in light, The carrying case also served as a sewing table. Invented by Ramon Casas, this machine constituted a revolution in the field of household sewing machines.
1952 Supermatic - another revolutionary concept as the first domestic sewing machine with fully automatic stitches. Interchangeable cams controlled the sideways movement of the needle as well as the forward and reverse feed of the fabric.
1963 First overlock stitch on a home sewing machine.
1964 Star Series - the first electronic sewing machines, offering new features including built-in and interchangeable utility and decorative stitches as well as an automatic buttonhole.
1968 Lotus - a truly innovative concept. The first compact household sewing machine due to its reduced size and weight. The protection flaps replaced the carrying case and formed a sewing table when opened. The accessory case was built into the top of the machine. Selected by the Museum of Modern Art in New York for its "Design Collection".
1972 Elna is chosen as the Official Sewing Machine of the Olympic Games in Munich.
1973 Introduction of the Elnapress, a professional pressing system for the home.
1976 Double overlock stitch.
1978 Air Electronic - first sewing machine with electronics operated by a pneumatic foot control.
1980 Elna Stella - retained the advantages of the Elna Lotus while improving on its design and added new features for sewing comfort. Electronics became an integral part of these new machines.
1982 Carina - first sewing machine to use super overlock stitch on all types of fabrics.
1985 Elna 5000 - first Swiss sewing machine with an electronic memory and first machine in computer range.
1986 First Elna overlocks introduced, featuring one revolution tension dials, recessed movable cutter with lockable blade system, marked adjustable pressure control, sliding thread guide for lower looper.
1987 Elna 7000 introduces updatable stitch package through use of cassettes.
1987 Elnalock L-5 - first portable 5-thread domestic overlock, 2-needle, 2/3/4/5 thread machine.
1988 First ironing press with a built-in sleeveboard.
1989 Elna 9000 computerized sewing machine introduced - with 7mm stitch width, face to face and mirror image, multiplication key, 6 memories.
1991 Elna PRO 5 DC - first computerized domestic overlock, with exclusive electronic speed reducer.
1992 Elna Diva - the sewing machine that can do it all with 370 stitches, 7 buttonholes, alphabets, monograms.
1994 PRO 905 DCX and 904 DCX - first overlocks with computer controlled tensions and expandable programming with exclusive PRO Card system. 905 is first domestic overlock to offer a cover hem..
1994 Elna 9006 computerized embroidery sewing machine, offering traditional sewing type stitches as well as automated hoop embroidery. EnVision Cards provide additional embroidery designs.
1996 Elna 925 DCX - first domestic overlock to offer three variations of the cover hem, including triple cover hem.
1998 EnVision software program introduced, compatible with home computer and Elna CE 20 and 8006 sewing machines.
1999 Elna introduces the 945 overlock - the extensive memory allows the sewer to have up to 48 built-in programs.
2001 Opal press introduced – with first digital LED temperature panel
2001 Xquisit – computerized sewing/embroidery machine with fully automated threading from spool pin to needle and automated bobbin winding for embroidery
2001 Xpressive software – semi-professional embroidery software for Xquisit sewing/embroidery machine
2002 686 overlock with built-in 2 thread converter, built-in reference cards and automatic tension release
2004 7200 Quilter’s Dream PRO computerized sewing machine includes industrial features –
speed and a long sewing arm – along with home sewing features – a versatile stitch package and knee lifter
2004 6600 Quilter’s Dream 2 computerized sewing machine offers innovative side storage with tilt-forward compartments
2005 8200 Xperience – Elna’s first embroidery only machine
2005 Xchange – multi access converter box reads and writes embroidery designs in most home formats


Lotus 35SP, 25ZZ, ZZ, SP, TSP models.
Stella 57TX, 57TSP, 27ZZ models.

An Elna TSP Top Special series sewing machine sews a fantastic stitch just as you would expect from the Elna sewing machines. This model was manufactured between 1974 - 1977. There are 7 super automatic stitches (of which, 2 are embroidery stitches) including the straight and zig zag stitches, some of the others are:- Blind Hem, Honeycomb stitch etc and has the Automatic buttonhole sequences modified by stitch width knob. This is also a free-arm machine and has a slide off Accessory box which is grey, installed under free arm, the free-arm is ideal for sewing collars and cuffs, trouser legs etc, there is also a built in light which is ideal for a dark room or just for that extra bit of light. This really is a lovely machine. It comes with The foot control,  Needles and bobbins.

And an Elna Stella TSP. Elna Air Electronic: the first sewing machine with an electronic speed control operated by air pressure. This model featured an exceptionally low base that converted into a low free arm of new design. Electronics controlled by a air foot control, permanent magnet motor, convertible from flat bed to free arm, with the synchrocolor system for the selection and adjustment of stitches, protection cover (instead of a carrying case).  The electronic foot which has two speeds allows you to regulate your machine to the exact speed required, whether you are sewing fast or slow.

This machine comes with eight stitches:
Elastic blind or edging stitch
Three-step zigzag or overcasting stitch
Elastic triple seam
Triple zigzag
Elastic edging stitch
Tricot stitch

These two Elna Stella TSP machines really purr when sewing; they are beautiful and so quiet. But I would not expect anything else being ELNAs. The machines feel solid unlike the new plastic ELNAs of today. The simplicity of the machines and solidness of them really makes them pleasureable to use and so handy for moving around. The stitching is perfect. Why they ever stop making this design machines, I will never know, they are just brilliant in performance, size and handiness.

An Elna TX Electronic.  An Elna TX Air Electronic Sewing Machine, This Elna TX is the Elna born in the year of the 50th anniversary of Tavaro S.A manufacturer of the renowned elna sewing machines, This sewing machine performs according to the same principles as the Stella-tsp, The Elna Tx has not just been given a new colour scheme, but also has 12 utility and decorative stitches, instead of 8. Green: straight stitch, stretch seam, interlock, zigzag, elastic blind and edging stitch, overcast stitch three-step zigzag. Red: elastic simple seam, net stitch, overlock stitch, triple zigzag, decorative edging stitch or tricot stitch.  It thus has in addition the famous overlock which sews and overcasts in one operation - highly valued for stretch fabrics, The interlock - for sewing loosely fabrics, Net-stitch for topstitching or simply following the outline of a decoration (Clothing table cloths, serviettes etc), and A Virtually indestructible stretch seam.  This machine has an electronic speed control. With the sliding control on the front right side of the machine you can adjust the slide upwards or downwards between the Hare and the Tortoise to get the necessary speed.  This machine comes with accessories in the top of the machine, Pneumatic foot control, Instruction book. There is also a light switch and motor switch, each switch can be turned on or off independently. It is also very light in weight making it very easy to carry around the home or to sewing classes.

An Elna Stella 37 SP Air Electronic.  This machine has been a very reliable machine for me. It sews fine as well as very thick fabrics. The stitches it has are straight stitch, zigzag, three step zig zag, and elastic blind hem. It also made a standard buttonhole, in a 4 step process. All the stitches are built in, so there is no need for cams. This machine is an upgraded version of the Lotus.  I like that the machine is very powerful for being so light, and would be an excellent machine for quilting, and is very portable. The case is made of Lexan plates that you detach from the machine.

I have two full sized antique Singer sewing machines [one was my grandmas].  It is a very simple, beautiful, heavy duty machine.  It does perfect straight stitches but the best part is that it sews through 8 layers of denim without issue. It has a light in the back which is it's own separate unit and is removable.  It runs smooth. After I oiled it, it sounded so smooth and sturdy, it was music to my ears.

Singer sewing machine with a vibrating shuttle.

I have my mother's Nelco J A-38 sewing machine.

I have an Elna 33c SP sewing machine.  The best thing about this machine is it's incredible stitch quality. I can put just about any kind of thread (metallic, top-sitching, cordonet) in the top, and sew on any kind of fabric and I get flawless, even stitches. It's very easy to adjust the bottom tension also.
It's powerful, and chugs right through multiple layers of denim. But it also handles light fabric well. 

Then there is an Elna 62c SU sewing machine.  It runs so smoothly and has a great stitch. It has about 6 utility stitches and then has the cams that can be put in for a variety of decorative stitches. I love this machine and have done more sewing the last month because it is so fun to use. The cabinet it came in is a Parson's cabinet and I am really enjoying the whole set up.  Made in Switzerland, all the feet and accessories are of a high quality. The machine is a rotary hook top loading model that sews very smoothly and quietly although the motor is substantial and offers good needle penetration. There are 6 built in stitches- in addition to straight stitch, there is zig zag, stretch blind and edging stitch, over casting stitch, multi stretch stitch, blind stitch.  These can be adjusted with the stitch tuner to balance the stitches on different fabrics as can the optional cams. The pressure foot pressure is self adjusting and so far has fed the fabric very nicely for me, but is not of the sort that you can override and adjust yourself.  The feet are low shank screw on feet. Included as standard were General purpose, General purpose in a black Teflon version for non-stick properties, embroidery foot, buttonhole foot with two channels underneath for the buttonholes stitch to travel under, darning foot and darning plate, zipper foot, 5 bobbins (dome top with 7 holes and a solid bottom) plus oil, brush, seam ripper, screwdrivers. Included originally with the SU were also 2 single Elna-discs and 10 double Elna-discs.  Oh, and I love the way the screw for attaching the feet with is so easy to hold, it has little wings that can be turned out sideways to the screw and be used for additional leverage- handy for those with weaker fingers.  Stitching is very nice. What you’d expect of Swiss production. There are many incremental needle positions adjustments possible for topstitching, fine tuning of seam allowances, or for tapering during satin stitching- monogramming is possible. I like and need this feature in my sewing. Stitches can also be adjusted for balance using the stitch tuner, if they form too far apart or too closely. This is a nice feature that not all machines offer today- typically only the better quality ones.

The foot pedal is unusual, its more of a pedal with two small buttons. One on the right is for resting the side of your foot on and the one on the left is for the side of the foot to slide over and press down on to operate. The foot came in two varieties. The earlier ones as I have offer a range of speeds like any pedal does. The newer ones have a switch that is effectively a speed limit, capping the maximum speed when set to the minus symbol. It doesn’t actually have any different lower gear than the machine itself has, that can be accessed with the normal foot pedal. It just makes it more comfortable to sew more slowly.

The powercord is easy to plug in. If yours isn’t, it may have changed shape with age. Also it can when this happens be put in the wrong way, and you will know if this happens as the machine light will flicker when you wind a bobbin or sew. The cord should face to the back of the machine when it is properly inserted- there is a little groove on the bottom edge that needs to line up with the shape of the power cord when inserting it.

There were loads of great feet available as additional purchases.   Also available were additional cams which have become highly sought after by Elna users and those wanting to sell them. Although with searching they can be found for reasonable prices I’ve noticed they are more often ridiculously high prices, far more than they cost at the time or are really worth- although some people will always pay silly prices for them. I got some extras from my local sewing shop that were new, but had been in storage, and some second hand ones too. Some were as little as $3 each and the newer double cams were $8 . They really extend the stitch and project options from the basic 6 stitches that come in the machine. I have sewn nearly all of them out so far and they stitch out very neatly and consistently.

The most expensive is my Pfaff 1473 electronic sewing machine/embrodierer.   It still produces great stitches and consistent powerful needle penetration.  The 1473CD model was manufactured from 1990-1994. (1473 without CD was made from 1991-1992). It's a computerized model with 355 built in stitches - it was the basic enhanced utility stitches, and the other hundreds are decorative - I've used a lot of them in my sewing, memory for 3262 (stitches? have to find the user manual - I know it has separate memories of stitch patterns that you create and they must be based on the total number of stitches that the machine can hold? It will hold a "memory" of a stitch pattern until you delete it - some of mine have been in memory for years.); 9 auto buttonholes; 4 alpha/3 numeric styles; dual feed;l ow-bobbin thread indicator; battery back-up for the memory - my original battery hasn't failed yet.  This machine is great. Very quiet and smooth running. It has a huge array of stitches or you can use the Creative Designer to design your own. It has a one-step buttonhole but I have not used the buttonhole on this machine - no reason really, I just use the 7570 for that. The 1473 also has the famous Pfaff IDT feature (built in walking foot) which is wonderful and a breeze to use. The widest stitches on this machine are 6 mm. The feet are snap-on and there is a big variety available.
This was the top of the line machine at one time and several guide books were written Books by Glenda Black, Cindy Loosecamp, Philip Pepper were written with specific instructions for the 1473. Pfaff also had a big workbook but I have not seen it Great machine!!.