The Destiny is the latest offering from Baby Lock. It was designed to replace the Elissimo Gold II and is such an intriguing machine that I actually visited two different dealers in order to prepare for this review.
Before touching it, I attended a demonstration at Cynthia’s Fine Fabrics in Tamarac, Florida. Then within a week, I drove to Laura’s Sewing and Vacuum Center in Palm Beach Gardens to get a hands on experience.
While some people may think the extra effort was not really necessary, I am truly glad I took the time and went the extra mile(s). If I had skipped either of these experiences, I could very well have been left scratching my head and not really knowing how to present this review.
At A Glance
The Baby Lock Destiny is possibly the largest sewing machine for home use I have ever seen… with or without the embroidery unit attached. The good news is you do not have to remove the embroidery arm to sew.
In addition to its size, the next thin that caught my eye was the large brilliant full color LCD touch screen and the metallic highlights in the gold accent paint.
There is a laser pen and three USB ports on the right side of the machine as well as a headphone jack. More on that later.
The Baby Lock Destiny has a space under the lid where you can store bobbins and frequently used accessories like the three in one tool – a special three position screwdriver that makes it easy to change the needle, presser foot ankle and needle plate.
When the embroidery unit is not attached, you have the option of using the free arm or adding the extra-large flat workspace that includes two additional on board storage compartments.
The Baby Lock Destiny also has tons of bright LED lights, which illuminate the entire work area with extra lighting immediately above the needle, a stylus and large, conveniently placed, ergonomically designed keys that control the following functions:
• Reinforcement stitch/stitch lock
• Needle up/down
• Thread cutter
• Presser foot up/down
• Variable speed slider
• Automatic needle threader
- 770 Built-in stitches including 149 Utility stitches
- 15 one-step buttonholes
- 1 four-step custom buttonhole
- 442 Decorative stitches
- 79 Decorative satin stitches
- 20 Satin stitches
- 17 Cross stitches
- 63 Utility stitches
- 5 Alphanumeric fonts
- 30 Quilting stitches with 57 needle position options
- Adjustable stitch length and width
- Utility and decorative stitch editing
- 5 Memory settings for each Utility stitch
- Sew Utility and Decorative stitches while embroidery arm is attached
- Automatic drop feed on screen
- Lock key
- Reinforcement priority settings
- Lateral and diagonal feeding
- Variable needle positions
- Fully automatic built-in darning
- Twin needle settings
- 11.25″ to the right of the needle
- Start/stop button
- Reverse stitch
- Reinforcement key
- Needle up/down
- Thread cutter
- Automatic presser foot lift
- Automatic needle threading
- Variable speed control slider
- NeedleCam™ Digital Camera
- Edge sewing with NeedleCam Digital Camera
- IQ Designer with paper holding frame for image scanning
- Guide beam
- Needle beam sensor pen
- Enhanced stadium lighting with 5 settings
- Advanced pivoting
- Automatic fabric sensor system
- Automatic thread and hoop sensors
- Quick-set, top-loading bobbin with sensor
- Quick-set independent variable speed bobbin winding system with variable speed
- Ergonomic 3-position knee lift
- Programmable 3-step needle up/down
- Automatic thread cutter (with on/off capability)
- Needle plate with scale in inches and centimeters
- Multi-function foot control
- Free arm
- Two accessory storage compartments
- On board Operational Guide with up to 43 help topics and built-in videos
- Sewing Application Guide
- Help Messages
- Embroidery Stitch Count System – SCS
- Save settings screen images
- Updatable via software downloads
- Language conversion capabilities (12 languages)
- Baby Lock digital USB mouse
- 641 Embroidery designs
- 316 Baby Lock exclusives including 37 Nancy Zieman designs
- 15 Buttonhole embroidery designs in 3 sizes (45 total)
- 15 Buttonhole embroidery frame designs
- 160 Large decorative stitch designs
- 14 Bobbin work embroidery designs
- 140 Frame combinations
- 27 font styles
- Extra-large striped alphabet and characters (100 total)
- Extra-large block alphabet and characters (100 total)
- Exclusive script alphabet and characters (70 total)
- Large floral alphabet (64 total)
- Greek alphabet (24 total)
- Embroiders up to 9.5″ x 14″ (240mm x 360mm) embroidery field
- Memory capacity approximately 2MB
- Reads embroidery designs with a stitch capacity of up to 700,000 stitches per design
- Full color LCD Touch Screen shows
- Design placement using drag/drop and slide/ scroll capabilities
- Enhanced Realistic Preview
- Design previews and needle position image can be enlarged 200%
- Needle positioning grid
- Estimated embroidery time display and stitch count
- Needle advancement in 1, 10, 100, or 1000 stitch increments
- Measurements displayed in inches or metrics
- Color separation
- Thread color indicator
- On-screen hoop size indicator
- Bobbin thread sensor
- 300 color names
- Screen saver customization
- Thumbnail images viewed at 150% the normal size
- 9-Point trial check points
- Starting point key for instant alignment of characters or patterns
- Customize embroidery pattern and thumbnail back ground colors (66 options)
- On-screen grid
- Cuts jump stitches (with on/off capability)
- Embroider without removing the foot control
- Embroidery Editing Capabilities
- Combine embroidery designs on screen
- Character/text array
- Character spacing
- 0.1°, 1°, 10°, and 90° Pattern rotation
- Enhanced design enlargement and reduction ((up to 200% and down to 60%)
- Design duplication
- Automatic appliquê
- Automatic basting
- Mirror imaging
- Change color selections within designs
- Color sorting on border designs
- Monochrome option for embroidery designs
- Programmable custom thread color selection
Working on the Baby Lock Destiny BLDY
There are so many things to remember when it comes to working on the Baby Lock Destiny BLDY that I almost don’t know where to start. For starters, when you turn it on, you have three options… sewing, embroidery or IQ Designer.
The embroidery stitch menu contains a variety of on board embroidery designs by one of my favorite television sewing instructors, Nancy Zieman. Sewing with Nancy, her weekly PBS show is the longest running sewing program to date.
If it wasn’t for Kathy Stipe, the Baby Lock Regional Representative who ran the demonstration at Cynthia’s Fine Fabrics, I would not know half of what the Baby Lock Destiny is capable of doing.
The laser pen has a guide beam that not only pinpoints where a design or seam is to start and stop, it is also a great tool for creating professional quilt projects.
The dual foot pedal has a small pedal attached to the left side – the side car – which can be programmed to perform one of several different functions… including cutting thread, reverse stitching, sewing a single stitch or raising or lowering the needle.
The Baby Lock Destiny BLDY has a digital dual feed, longer feed dogs and a motor driven walking foot which helps keep specialty fabrics and silks from slipping.
The multi-positional three in one screwdriver is one of the new innovations which makes removing and inserting screws at the needle, ankle and needle plate easier than ever.
There is also a couching foot and special thread guide that is attached to the upper left side of the machine, making it possible for you to work with yarn and ribbon.
The embroidery unit does not have to be removed when the Baby Lock Destiny is in the sewing mode. When sewing with the embroidery unit in place, the arm moves all the way to the left, giving you the largest workspace possible on a home sewing machine. When in the embroidery mode, the hoops slide onto and off of the unit and are clamped securely into place.
The large embroidery hoops that are standard with the Baby Lock Destiny BLDY are reinforced and mare stable than any other hoop that is available with other home embroidery machines.
After a morning of watching a demonstration in a room filled with people who were as anxious to learn about the Baby Lock Destiny, I couldn’t wait to get my hands on one.
When I made the drive to Laura’s Sewing and Vacuum in Palm Beach Gardens, I was so eager to see the Destiny, I almost walked right past it. There it sat … right next to the door.
On board thread guides make threading the Baby Lock Destiny and winding the bobbin comfortingly easy… even if you are preparing to work with yarn or ribbon.
The only difference is that the couching guide simply snaps into place on the top of the machine and you change the presser foot.
When embroidering, the machine not only stops to signal that it is time for a thread change, a light bar next to the spool pin even tells you what color thread to use next.
The on board camera and scanner are easy to use, making it possible for you to use the IQ Designer to transfer anything – line drawing, an illustration or an image from a computer file – to create practically any embroidery design you can imagine.
For this review, I sampled several different decorative and utility stitches. Not only is this one of the quietest, most solidly built sewing machines, it is also one of the most comfortable machines I have ever worked on.
There is no neck, shoulder or back discomfort. The super bright on board lights virtually make eye strain impossible.
The stitch quality is excellent. You couldn’t ask for better quality stitches on any sewing machine … whether it’s made for use in the home or in a factory.
Some sewing machines perform better at lower speed settings. I used each of the different speed settings and noticed no variation whatsoever in the Destiny’s performance or stitch quality.
- Natural fibers/cotton-linen-wool
- Fine fabrics/silk-satin-taffeta/velvet
- Synthetic fabrics/blends-rayon-polyester
- Reptile skin
- Extra thick fabrics or multiple layers
- 16 Snap-on presser feet
- Digital Dual-Feed System Foot
- Couching sole for Digital Dual-Feed
- Embroidery foot with LED pointer
- General purpose zigzag
- Blind stitch
- Button fitting
- Free-motion open toe quilting
- Free-motion quilting
- Free-motion echo
- ¼” Quilting foot with a guide
- Straight stitch foot
- Vertical stitch alignment foot
- Sensor Pen and Holder
- Knee lifter with 3-position handle
- LCD cleaning cloth
- USB cable
- Easy-lock accessory case
- Multi-Function Foot Control
- Soft canvas cover with 3 storage pockets
- 2 Spool cone thread stand
- Yarn guide and yarn threader
- Straight stitch needle plate
- Bobbin case and cover
- Alternate bobbin case for pre-wound bobbins
- Cord guide bobbin cover
- Bobbin center pin
- Embroidery bobbin thread
- Extra bobbins
- Embroidery Positioning Stickers (4-Sheets of 64)
- White needle calibration stickers
- 6 Edge sewing sheets
- Multi-position screwdriver
- Presser foot adaptor
- Seam ripper
- Twin needle
- 4 Embroidery hoops and grids
- 9.5″ x 14″ (240mm x 360mm)
- 8″ x 12″ (200mm x 300mm)
- 5″ x 7″ (130mm x 180mm)
- 4″ x 4″ (100mm x 100mm)
|After each use||Monthly*||Once Each Year**||As Needed|
|Clean race hook and feed dogs|
|Wipe head with soft dry cloth|
|Wipe head with soft damp cloth|
|Service by sewing machine repair professional|
Tying Off The Loose Ends
The Baby Lock Destiny BLDY is not a machine for beginners and anyone who allows a child to work on a sewing machine like this is simply asking for trouble.
An intermediate or advanced home sewer would be fascinated by all that this machine can do. There is so much to learn about this machine that even if you have been sewing for many decades, you would want to make sure you take advantage of all the classes you can possibly attend.
I like the fact that the on board tutorials are actual live-action videos, complete with audio step by step instructions.
With so many brand new features, it is almost a natural expectation that certain bugs may have to be worked out after the Destiny has been in use under normal conditions in sewing rooms around the world.
Dave, co-owner of Laura’s Sewing and Vacuum told me that one downloadable update is already available to correct one minor item that has come to the attention of the manufacturer.
I thoroughly enjoyed working on the Destiny, and have no doubt that all the hype leading up to its unveiling was definitely well placed. In my humble opinion, all the great features certainly make this machine worth the selling price.
Of course, each independent dealer has flexibility in pricing and is more than willing and able to customize terms to accommodate practically anyone who wants to take this multi-faceted, much anticipated sewing, quilting and embroidery machine home.
I encourage anyone who is seriously interested in adding the Baby Lock Destiny to their home sewing room to make a point of visiting the nearest authorized Baby Lock dealer and ask for a demonstration.
- Needs lots of help – able to sew a straight seam but unfamiliar with most sewing techniques; needs assistance and instruction on basic sewing techniques.
- Competent – can make different clothing items without assistance or guidance, but not good enough to sew intricate projects or to sew without a pattern.
- Expert – can sew anything without instruction or assistance; possesses an expansive knowledge of sewing techniques and terminology.
- On board video tutorials
- Introduces 23 innovative features
- Lots of new features – questionable as to how they will hold up in normal home use