Kenmore 385-16231 Sewing Machine Review

The Kenmore 16231 Sewing Machine is a mechanical machine that includes some simple automation such as an automatic Stop/start button and speed control. Many sewers, beginners especially, love these two features because both give more control over the sewing experience.

The 16231 is also a pretty machine with soft green features and it’s solidly built — with an internal frame made of die-cast metal it won’t bounce around or “walk off” the table while you’re sewing. It’s quiet and incredibly easy to use as well.

Built-in Stitches

This machine comes with a decent selection of built-in stitches: 31 in total and a one-step, one-style buttonhole stitch. Use the Stitch length and width lever to alter and customize stitch patterns to give you 90 stitch functions or variations in all.

The stitch patterns are also color coded which makes classifying and selecting them a cinch:

  • Red: Straight, Zigzag and Utility stitches
  • Green: Geometric decorative stitches
  • Blue: Built-in buttonhole
  • Gold: Stretch stitches

The oversized Stitch Selection Dial is conveniently located on the side of the machine. Just turn it to select any stitch.

Other Features

Fabric feeding is important to any sewing project. Superior fabric feeding helps to create smooth even stitches with no puckers or snags. Kenmore 16231 has a 7-Piece Feed Dog System, an advanced feeding system that grips the fabric above the feed dogs in 7 places. As fabric moves along during sewing it “feeds” through smoothly and evenly to create stitches that are really nice quality and look professional.

Another advanced feature is the Presser Foot Pressure Adjustment. Adjust it to put just the right amount of presser foot pressure on fabrics as you sew; less pressure for lighter fabrics more for heavier fabrics. Correct pressure also helps to feed fabric more smoothly and to prevent puckers and snags.

There’s an extra high presser foot lift to accommodate bulkier fabrics or projects like quilts.

Automatic features like Stop/start, Needle up/down and Speed control, just make sewing flow more easily.

The Needle Threader lets you thread the needle quickly and easily, Drop Feed drops the feed dogs for free motion work and the Free Arm lets you reach those hard to reach areas.

The machine includes 7 presser feet and several handy in the box accessories.

So why choose a Kenmore? Many people who own these brands love them. The 385 models are built by Janome for Sears; they are built well — sturdy workhorses that are dependable as well as affordable.

If you don’t care much for computerized machines and like the simplicity of a mechanical machine this is a good choice for the money. It’s both functional and sturdy and perfect for beginners and experienced sewers alike.

Source: Rose A Leaming

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