I started with some free motion sketching (wrong foot in the photo). The Brother has something called Automatic Height Adjustment (AHA) where senses the thickness of the materials and adjusts the presser foot automatically. It works so well that I didn't even notice when I was sewing through 2 postcards together! It also adjusts tension automatically but lets you also control it. So far I'm finding the auto tensioning feature to be working really well.
The only problem with sewing the postcards is that there are a lot of edges (bobbin area, extension table) for the card to hang up on. There are more edges on this machine than on my old Pfaff.
Since I always use my Supreme Slider when I'm doing FMQ, it's not a big issue. On another note, you can barely see the needle threader in this photo but let me tell you it is AWESOME. It's much better than the Pfaff.
While I was doing laundry last Monday I noticed that Chris' jeans needed a little mending so that was a good chance to learn how to use the darning stitch. It took me a bit to figure it out but it works great. My Pfaff never did a perfect darning stitch so I usually just did some free-motion stitching to repair holes. The darning stitch is actually sturdier and look at the thread. I'ts perfect for jeans repair!
But this is the best part and where that AHA feature comes in again. I could never stitch with my presser foot riding off balance like that with one side up on several layers more fabric than the other side. This machine doesn't fret at all!
It went through the belt loop layers like is was two layers of quilters cotton. It didn't even mind going off the edge on both sides. Super cool!
Even cooler is this. The machine does a straight stitch 8 directions and a zig zag in 4 directions. When they demoed this for me I thought it was silly and couldn't think of any time that I would use it. Chris changed my thinking on that when he broke one of the strap hooks on his hunting waders. Waders are really heavy and made from bulky neoprene. There was no way I could rotate the fabric to stitch them.
Not only did it sew through all of these layers like butter, I was able to sew a reinforcing square with "x" stitching in the box. I this photo the machine is sewing from the left to the right. I didn't stop to reposition the fabric once.
Look at that! The "x" lines are a little wonky but that was a user error and the duck hunter couldn't care less. He's just happy to have the operation and ready for next year. By the way, I found the heavy duty side release buckles at Strap Works. They are better quality than what came on the waders and they are really reasonably priced. I bought 2 because I expect to eventually have to replace the other one too.
All in all I am over the moon with my new sewing machine!