In the world of garment patterns and sewing, the name Bernina stands apart. It is one of the most familiar names in the world and has a very dedicated following. With their Swiss design and their diverse functions, they really can provide almost any kind of sewer with an ideal solution.
First, let’s start by emphasizing that they are a global company. They have representatives and distributors in the Americas, Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia and the Pacific, as well as Europe. This is a definitive plus because it also means that anyone owning a Bernina sewing machine can also easily get service and parts.
Like a few other companies, however, we found that the list of available Bernina sewing machines could feel overwhelming. They currently have:
Within these categories are further distinctions, and the sewing machines alone have a range of series from Series 2 through Series 8. They also don’t make it that easy to distinguish which of them is the “introductory” machine versus the more advanced option. The company website does have a comparison tool, but even that is not simple to use.
What we can say is that they offer a “Classic” series that comes highly recommended for those who are not yet familiar with sewing or who just want a very functional and reliable machine for home use.
Apart from the Classic series, the 2 Series and the 3 Series are also full featured models that would be easy to use for those with a bit of experience with sewing, but who want to upgrade a bit to more modernized features and functions.
If, on the other hand, you are interested in fully computerized and multi-function machines, Bernina’s 5 Series and up will be of interest. Called “precision tools” these are machines that will accept custom art and provides touch screen functions.
So, the availability of many different functions and styles can be seen as a definitive pro, but the lack of ease in terms of choosing the right model for your needs must be seen as a bit of a challenge.
We would also point out the difficulties in terms of getting accurate pricing for the machines too. Because they are a global dealer, the company does not publish even suggested retail prices for any of their machines. This leaves it up to the consumer to conduct the most effective comparison shopping possible. They can do this through the website by using the dealer locator tool. This gives the shopper all of the information needed to get in touch with their local distributors, dealers, and repair shops. With this information, the shopper can then contact the distributor to determine which models they make available and what they would charge for the purchase.
Again, this doesn’t feel convenient or efficient and could discourage someone from actually buying a Bernina machine. This is unfortunate, because a cursory glimpse of their many offerings shows that they are one of the most reliable makers of sewing machines. It is also clear that they can easily provide buyers with individual machines that would easily meet all of their needs, and even take them into the future without the need to further upgrade or purchase additional sewing machines.
We did not find any negative feedback or consumer information about Bernina sewing machines, and feel that any purchase would be a wise one. Just spend a bit of time finding out which of their many models would be well-suited to your sewing goals and habits, and then just do a bit of comparison shopping between the available vendors.