Have you see the Baby Lock Alliance?

Bridget McPhillips babylock Industrial sewing machine sewing machine review tutorials

Alliance, I am in love.
Baby Lock Alliance
It all started rather innocently.  I was very happy with my sewing machines.  For a closet collector, I have done a really good job of keeping my nose to the grindstones, staying focused on work and controlling my wandering eye.  Then, in a conversation with my sister she indicated that she wanted to find a better embroidery machine.  She has, and still uses, the Singer Futura; her's is 10 years old.  Well of course I volunteered to help her out and take a look around for something of an upgrade, nothing too fancy, just better display and all the up to date functionality.  So I started my search.

As you already know I love brother embroidery machines.  Brother makes a wide variety of machines which translates to a machine for every user and skill level.  So I started looking there.

I began the search for a machine for my sister and was immediately distracted when I came across the Brother Persona.  How could this be, that there was a new machine and I didn’t know about it!

I researched the machine online and then called around to all the shops near me that carry Brother machines.  The Missouri Sewing Machine Company, in Johnson County, didn’t have the Brother Persona, they had the Baby Lock Alliance.  I went in the next week and took a look at the Alliance.

The Alliance is a big machine.  Just as large as the multi-needle machines and heavy.  For me, this machine is a game changer.  The Alliance offers a free arm for machine embroidery, but is still a single needle machine.  The orientation of the machine is the same as that of the multi-needle machines, the hoops are clipped on over the wide open front of the machine meaning that you can hoop and embroider just about anything. That’s right, no more stretching and pinning and turning garments inside out trying to maneuver them into the hoop and under the needle of a flatbed machine.  This is an explosion of creative opportunity for the embroidery enthusiast!
Alliance display screen
The machine is a Baby Lock, so the quality of the stitch out is amazing.  The Alliance is also very user friendly.  If you are an embroiderer and you already use a machine and embroidery software you will be able to step right in and get going using this machine with little to no learning curve.  If you have never tried machine embroidery, I would not recommend starting with this machine.   Embroidery is an investment, I would recommend starting out with a more modest machine until you really decide that it is something you love.
Alliance hoops
The machine comes with a generous amount of hoops:
8” x 8” (200mmx200mm)
4” x 4” (100mm x 100mm)
1 5/8” x 2 3/4” (41mm x 70 mm)
2” x 2” (50mm x 50mm)
1 1/2” x 1 3/4” (38mm x 44mm)
1 15/16” x 2 15/16” (33mm x 75mm)
Hoops sizes
The machines on board software also includes 25 fonts and a text array function, allowing you to embroider text easily.

Out of the box, the functionality of this machine would keep most happy for years.  You can resize, rotate and mirror image, along with combining designs right on the machine.
For the more advanced embroiderer, add in your own embroidery software and let your imagination take you away.  Although the machine is still only a single needle machine, the Alliance offers a 4 thread spool stand to have your colors ready to go when they need to be threaded.  If you are currently using a flat bed single needle embroidery machine the bobbin function of this machine will be another one of your new favorite features.  Changing the bobbin will no longer mean removing the hoop from the machine.  The bobbin is front loading and located just under the free arm area, making it easily accessible even when you have an embroidery hooped and on the machine. The Alliance also has a separate bobbin winding motor, so wind up new bobbins as you embroider.

If you want more than the 125 included designs, easily use a thumb drive or connect you computer through the 2 USB ports to access your entire library of designs.
Free Motion Quilting Accessories
The other thing the machine offers that was a huge deal to me, is the free motion quilting package.  You can use this embroidery machine for free motion quilting!
The Alliance rivals all the functionality of the top of the line embroidery machines out there, but goes one step farther by offering the free arm for embroidery.  If this machine catches your eye in the same way it caught mine, give your local dealer a call and go check it out.

When ever I find sewing machine reviews I am always disappointed that there are never any price ranges included.  I know that different dealers may offer different deals, and I am not a dealer, but I have been told the machine retails for around $7,900.  There are quite a few accessories that can be added, in other words, they will not come included in the price, so it is still an investment.  It is a more affordable option that the multi needle machines that will start at around $12,000.

This machine has been placed solidly on my wish list!

And what about my sister?  Well, I think I have convinced her that this will be the perfect machine for her too.

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