I'm always a bit curious about what machine(s) people are sewing on....
So here's my crew:
Annabel Lee is a Babylock Jewel. She has an 18" throat depth, a built in stitch regulator, and drives like a dream... The Jewel has been slightly redesigned into the Crown Jewel, with an LCD touch screen and slightly faster speed (1800 vs 1500 stitches per minute). The handles closest to the material were added on, giving me finer control when doing small stuff. Since your hands are closer to the design, it feels a bit more like doing free motion on a regular machine.
She currently sits on a 10' frame.
Baby (but her real name is Frances)
Baby is a Pfaff Quilter's Expression 2044. She's the first machine I bought, and it was a big jump forward from working with Maury (see below). She has the Pfaff IDT (dual feed) system, which operates kind of like a walking foot, though not as well as I'd like. Live and learn. What's that? Packing tape? Yes... some days are rougher than others. I'll get it taken care of... soon.
She's been my partner in crime since 2004, and helped me step into a whole different world of creating, moving from strictly patchwork into art quilting, sewing on strange materials (like copper flashing and Tyvek and all sorts of other stuff) and free motion work-- so she'll always be my baby, even if she does sit in the corner.
Maury is a Kenmore "zigzag sewing machine" from the mid-late-60s. Originally he belonged to the mother of my former sister-in-law, and ended up in my hands when I found myself really and truly on my own and with a powerful craving to sew. He neither zigs nor zags, these days... I keep threatening to open him up and see if I can fix that, but he's comfortable in his orneriness, and usually only comes out when I've got something really heavy to sew through. Sewing on Maury is like driving a really beat up old pickup truck... it sounds awful, smells funny, and is a little bit frightening, but you have a suspicion you could go through a brick wall and keep right on going. It's really a love-hate relationship with a lot of foul language.
Fast Eddie is a classic Singer industrial machine, made sometime in the 1930s. I brought him home from the friendly folks at Cobalt Studios, where he had been used for working on theater backdrops off and on. Fast Eddie is an ongoing project... obviously he needs some TLC and a good bath, but he runs like the devil. Like Maury, a bit scary, but I've been toying with seeing if I could find a way to drop the feed dogs and make use of that nice throat depth to do some free motion.
The pretty girl! Ethel was a birthday gift from my husband-- we found her at our local Habitat for Humanity Home Store and she was too good to pass up. She's a Rotary Special treadle machine in a wood & iron cabinet, and her duties are strictly ceremonial. Though I tease that I could use her if the power went out... Her treadle pedal needs to be re-welded, and she needs a new belt, but in the meantime she lives in our living room, looking pretty and offering all kinds of interesting stuff from the cabinet drawers. Everything from crazy-looking specialty feet and funky buttons to a hand-stitched needle case.
I love working in fabric and spend much of my time finding ways to recreate, in fabric, the feel of color and line achievable with paint. I'm particularly inspired by organic lines and patterns found in trees and in the human form.