My sewing goals for 2017

Although I want this website to be really useful and provide reviews of the myriad of products around today in the sewing world, I do want to keep it personal too and share what I am up to.

In 2017 I have lots of plans for my sewing.

  • up my quilting game

I began quilting a few years ago and really enjoy it – 2017 is the year that I plan to really get my head in the quilting game.  I’d like to make a memory quilt for one of my children who will be leaving home in 2018 and so I need to get planning, source my material and make a start!

  • use up my stash

Yeah, this one is tricky isn’t it?  Well it is when your stash is as big as mine!  I have plans to make lots of clothes this year and to also continue my tradition of making gifts myself for family and friends.

  • get a new sewing machine.

Yup – I have been so happy with my Brother C6000i but the time has come to invest in a better machine – perhaps a quilting one?  I am doing lots of research on all the models around and when I get it you’ll be the first to know!

  • sort my sewing room out

It’s too messy and not organized – goal for 2017 is to have it sorted, get some new storage areas and perhaps even a new sewing table.  Going to make some new curtains too and really brighten the place up.

  • learn to embroider

I haven’t mastered embroidery yet and I’d really like to.  Perhaps I can add some to the memory quilt I want to make.  I want to do hand embroidery not machine, so it’s going to take some serious commitment to learning and getting good enough!


Have you any goals for the coming year?

Janome 2212 review

If you’re looking for a top quality, yet entry level sewing machine then this beginners model from Janome might well suit you well.  Here’s our Janome 2212 review:

Our Janome 2212 review

I feel like I could spend a really small amount of time describing this machine – it’s very basic.  But I don’t mean that in a bad way at all, just that it’s what you expect from a beginner model.  You get the basic stitches, you get the build quality of a superior brand and you get the easy to use machine.

None of these are bad things and if you just want a nice, simple sewing machine that actually works really well then it definitely will work for you.

>>> Check out the latest price of this item here <<<

Quality entry level model

As I stated above, this is an entry level sewing machine but what makes this different to some of the more inexpensive machines is the quality of it.  Janome is one of the leaders in the sewing machine industry and their commitment to their products shines through in this model.

You get an extremely simple and intuitive machine here with 12 stitches that should cover everything you need to do.  You can also adjust the length of the stitches using one of the dials on the front of the machine.

If you want to secure your sewing, just use the reverse lever which is in easy reach at the front to simply sew back over where you just went.

The bobbin is front loaded and there is no automatic needle threader which would have been nice.

12 built in stitches

The 12 built in stitches include basic straight stitches, hemming, zig zag stitches for appliqué and also stitches for elastic.  There aren’t many to choose from but for a simple machine it covers all you need.

They are selected using one of two dials on the front of the machine and then you can use the other dial to fine tune what stitch length you require up to a maximum stitch length of 4mm.


Janome 2212 features and specification

  • 12 built in stitches
  • front loading bobbin
  • 4 step button hole
  • easy to reach reverse lever
  • free arm for sewing sleeves, pants and cuffs
  • easy stitch length adjustment
  • weight – 13lb
  • size – W 15.2″ x H 11.6″ x D 6″
  • 25 year warranty

>>> See more about this item here <<<

What others have to say

I really like to look around the internet to get a general view of what other people have said about this machine to add in to my review.

I have found over 350 reviews with an average 4.6 out of 5 rating.  It’s a very popular machine with the positive reviews praising the fact that it is a solid machine that does the job.

Some of the negatives are that it’s not so good for very heavy or thick materials.

>>> Check out more reviews and buy here <<<


It is a basic machine and yes you can get many others that do exactly the same for a cheaper price.  However I think it does the job really well, focuses on that and knocks it out of the park.  I imagine Janome’s loyal fan base will love it.

Brother XM2701 review – a good beginner choice?

If you’re looking for a beginner sewing machine then this one by Brother is a popular option.  Is it right for a novice sewer though?  Here’s our Brother XM2701 review – hopefully it will help you make your choice easier!

Our Brother XM2701 review

As a starter sewing machine I don’t think you can get much better than the features of this sewing machine from Brother.  The XM2701 has all the features you need, an easy to use design and some really neat details such as the automatic needle threader which I personally love and can’t do without these days!

The fact that it comes from an excellent brand like Brother also puts this machine in a higher category for me – I know that if I have issues I can get in touch with their customer service to get it fixed.

Finally, if you’re the type of person who learns fast and thinks they’ll outgrow an extremely simple and basic machine, you’ll want something like this that has a few extra features and stitches that will keep you busy as your skills grow.

>>> Check out the latest price of this item here <<<

Easy to use features

The Brother XM2701 is really easy to use which makes it perfect for beginners or those who just want a no whistles and bells machine.

You choose your stitches using the large round dial at the front of the machine, just set it to what you want to try and then there are three smaller dials at the top to fine tune your sewing.  One dial is for tension, another for stitch length and the last for stitch width.

With ease of use top of the list with this model it also has an automatic needle threader which makes getting started a snap.  There’s a top loading bobbin too which I find much easier than the front loading kind and there’s an automatic bobbin winder feature as well.

If you’re looking to sew clothes then you’re well catered for with a free arm to allow easy sewing of sleeves, pants and cuffs and also easy button, buttonhole and zipper sewing with the different sewing feet that you get.

27 built in stitches

It has every kind of stitch you are likely to need as a beginner or even as a more advanced sewer.  You get 27 in built stitches that are chosen using the dial on the front of the machine.

There are the obvious and useful straight stitches, hemming stitches, elastic stitches and a variety of decorative options too.  Some of these might be too advanced for a beginner to use, but they are useful and provides plenty of room to grow for the novice sewer.


Brother XM2701 features and specification

  • 27 built-in stitches including blind hem, decorative and also some quilting stitches
  • also has an automatic one-step buttonholer which uses the button to create the perfect size hole
  • has 6 different sewing feet which are easy to attach to help sew buttons, zippers, hems and zig zags
  • Automatic needle threading – great for those of us who struggle with poor eyesight
  • built in free-arm which is great for sewing sleeves and cuffs
  • LED lit work area
  • DVD instructions
  • machine weight – 12.6lbs
  • machine dimensions – 12.1″ x 5.9.” x 15.3″
  • 25 year warranty


>>> See more about this item here <<<


What others have to say

As well as giving my own thoughts I really like to scour the internet to get a general view of what people have said about this machine.

The reviews I’ve found online are generally extremely positive and with over 500 reviews there’s an average of 4.6 out of 5 rating being given.  It’s obviously a popular model and with good reason.

Major plus points go to the fact that it’s such an easy to use machine with the instructional DVD if you need help with what any of the parts do.  Having that on hand really does help combat overwhelm.

The majority of the negative reviews tend to focus on the fact that it’s a basic machine and some of the parts are made of ‘cheap plastic’.  Given the price point of this machine I don’t think this is a surprise but it’s something to bear in mind if you think it will bother you.

>>> Check out more reviews and buy here<<<


I personally think the Brother XM2701 sewing machine is an excellent buy, being extremely good value for money and giving a lot of room to grow for beginners.

Brother is one of the top brands of sewing machines out there so if you have any problems you’ll be able to find a myriad of you tube videos, spare parts or repairers to help you.  I think if you’re looking for a sewing machine to last you a while, whether you’re a newbie or an old hand you’ll get all you need with this machine.