Okay, I’m officially in LOVE with this machine, from top to bottom and side to side. Oh, BTW, I just want to point out that I did NOT buy a sewing machine, no. This is a “sewing computer!” Really, it says so in the manual. Nowhere does is say “sewing machine” when referring to this “thing,” and since it has a USB port and something that looks suspiciously like a PS2 port, it’s obviously not just stuck on itself or being snobby. Maybe that’s why we already get along so well, since I’m admittedly
somewhat of a confirmed techie girl. Anyway, to continue…
I’m officially in LOVE with this sewing computer. Right now, as I type this on my laptop computer, the machine sits here stitching away on a nice little bird embroidery design, and it’s the laptop computer that’s controlling the stitching. This embroidery unit that goes with the Bernina 440 works hand in hand with the Bernina Embroidery Software EditorLite on the laptop. I opened the embroidery file (which I just purchased online this morning!), changed the thread colors in the design to match what I had on hand here and wanted to use, and told the software to write to the sewing computer. Another program called the PC to EC (Personal Computer to Embroidery Computer) opens up automatically, and makes the link to the embroidery unit which is hooked to the Bernina 440.
At this point, you can move the design in the hoop, zoom in or out, change hoops, look at the threads you’ve selected to use, or start the embroidery. The program tells you everything you need to know about the process, like how long it will take to stitch out, how long each color takes to stitch, how many stitches overall and for each color, etc. It’s just plain idiot proof. If there is a problem with the sewing computer or the cable connections, it tells you about it and how to fix it. I wonder if it can arrange for take out for dinner, so that I can keep sewing???
When the computer is stitching, it will tell you the color it’s on, and how many stitches it’s done and how many left to do. The thread on the cones in the pictures goes down as it’s used on the sewing computer, and it says how many minutes are left to go for that color. How cool is that? Right now, it’s telling me (on the task bar on the laptop) that it has two more minutes of stitching to go on this green frame that it’s doing in this picture. The cross hair that’s on the hoop on the screen moves around as the needle does and shows the exact stitching location right then.
The EditorLite software will do other amazing things, like resizing, adding text, and I don’t even know what else yet. More than I’ll ever need to do, probably, though I can upgrade the software so that I could digitize my own designs if I ever wanted to. Oh please, there must be millions of designs out there on the internet, so I can imagine I’ll have enough designs to keep me busy for a decade or two without digitizing! As it is, every time I use the software I find some new cool thing, and say “Woah! This is sooo slick!”
Here’s the finished product. I’ve decided that the hardest part of the whole thing is figuring out what colors to use for the design. Obviously, a test stitch out of everything you want to do is a necessary evil. You may already be aware that I really HATE testing anything. I just want to do it and move on. However, I’d also hate to have to take all those 30,000 stitches out if it didn’t go well, so the test stitch out of the design is probably the lesser of the two evils. I’m adding these birds to the setting squares of a show quilt that I’m working on right now, so they do kind of have to be perfect! So, now I need more “stuff:” different hoops, more threads, other kinds of stabilizers, etc., etc., etc. Time to go shopping!