I love hanging out in sewing machine and fabric stores. You simply never know what you might come across. One day while visiting Cynthia’s Fine Fabrics in Tamarac, Florida, she unpacked a brand new Baby Lock Imagine.
As many times as I have been there in the past, I never seemed to be there when a new machine was put on the floor. I had no idea what went into setting up a sewing machine or serger for display.
After unpacking the machine and making sure everything was included in the box, Cynthia personally sat down and went through all of the steps necessary to achieve all of the essential tasks this seger was built to perform.
At A Glance
The Baby Lock Imagine is a four thread/two needle serger that comes equipped with a tubular looper system and the exclusive ExtraoidinAir threading system that takes away all of the drudgery of threading a serger that many long time home sewers had become accustomed to.
There are no tension dials, another user friendly advantage, indicating that the Imagine comes with a self-adjusting tension feature.
The Baby Lock Imagine is equipped with a differential feed control on the right, adjustable stitch length and width dials beneath the needle and a stitch selection dial on front.
There is also a hidden compartment beneath the two spool pins on the right side of the machine where the most frequently used accessories are stowed away in a small plastic pouch.
This pouch contains a package of spare needles, a gadget that is a combination lint brush and needle insertion tool, tweezers and a screwdriver.
- Adjustable stitch length and width
- Dial adjustable built-in rolled hem
- Heavy-duty cutting system
- Side thread cutter
- Bright LED lighting
- Built in needle threader
- Differential feed
- Built in tape/ribbon guide
Working on the Baby Lock Imagine
I watched as Cynthia explained to one of her sales associates and me that one of the things that makes the Imagine so easy to thread is the tubular looper system which prevents threads from tangling behind the looper door.
She also showed us how the Imagine has a built in needle threader, making the threading process even easier – so easy in fact, that you can easily see a beginner setting this machine up with no problems whatsoever.
She then explained that you can thread from any position – meaning there is no particular order which the threads must be put on the Imagine.
To put it more succinctly, while it is necessary to thread other sergers in a particular order, this is not the case here.
Cynthia used fabric scraps of differing weights and thicknesses to show us how easy it was to use the Baby Lock Imagine to insert a neck band or sleeve band, use the standard presser foot to attach elastic or ribbon, get a perfect roll hem, gathering, and to get great results every time when you attempt to use the overcast, flatlock and overlock stitch features.
I then sat down myself to get a feel for the Imagine’s weight and touch. This machine is quiet, sturdy and well-constructed. There is no vibration at all and the solid feel is very comfortable.
This machine is so well-built, in fact, I wouldn’t have any concerns about working with extremely delicate fabrics; nor would I hesitate to sew denim or very thick fabrics on the Imagine.
- Natural fibers/cotton-linen-wool
- Fine fabrics/silk-satin-taffeta/velvet
- Synthetic fabrics/blends-rayon-polyester
- Reptile skin
- Extra thick fabrics or multiple layers
Standard accessories included with each sale:
- Instruction manual
- Quick reference threading guide
- Instructional DVD
- Lint brush/needle insert tool
- 2 Needle clamp screws
- Extra needles
- 2 Screwdrivers
- Replacement upper cutting blade
- Looper threading
- Soft machine cover
- Mounting bolt with washer
- 4 Thread nets
- 4 Spool caps
- 4 Sponge disks
- Allen wrench
- 4 Cone holders
- Beading Foot
- Blindhem Foot
- Clear Foot
- 2 cording feet (3mm and 5mm)
- Elastic Foot
- Flat Sole Foot
- Lace Applicator Foot
- Rufﬂing Foot
- Inspiration Guide
- Gold Standard Comprehensive Care Program
|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 Imagine is now in its third generation, a testament to the workmanship and the faith of the people at Baby Lock in their own product. Not many sewing machines or sergers can withstand the test of time like the Imagine.
I have no hesitation in recommending this serger for use by beginners. It is not only user friendly, it is also one of those machines that does more than just stand the test of time.
The Baby Lock Imagine is capable of doing everything anyone could ask of a serger and doing it exceptionally well.
This is one of those machines that someone who is learning to use a serger will be happy with for many, many years to come.
It is also an ideal choice for the home sewer who is in the market to replace an older serger. The ease in threading the Imagine and the way it performs will not disappoint even the most advanced of home sewers.
The quick reference guide is an added benefit. With this at your side, switching from one stitch type to another can be done in just a few quick seconds.
I love the feel of the Imagine while working on it. The design is excellent for users of practically any height. The foot pedal is large, but not so large that it is clumsy.
The control dials are easy to use, but not so delicate to the touch that they are engaged without you actually moving them yourself. Try though I might, I could not find a single thing to complain about on this machine.
I would not recommend use of a serger this fast by a child in elementary school. Any machine that can sew up to 1500 stitches per minute has the potential for a young child to accidentally get a small finger in the way of the blade or the needles.
A child in middle school, however, might be able to operate the Baby Lock Imagine quite comfortably. This is definitely a serger that would fit well in any sewing room, regardless of the skill level of the people who would be using it.
I urge anyone who is in the market for a new serger to take a long hard look at this one. All you have to do is visit your local Baby Lock dealer and ask for a demonstration.
After watching the Imagine go through its paces, take a few minutes to sit down and get the feel of it for yourself. No machine is perfect for absolutely everybody, but if you ask me, this one comes very close.
- 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.
- Exclusive ExtraordinAir threading system
- Tubular loopers