"Sewing" the seeds of generosity

Consumer Reports News: December 02, 2008 02:58 PM

For months now, the folks testing our sewing machines have been making buttonholes, blind hems, zigzags, and zippers using the 18 machines that will appear in our March 2009 ratings-based report, on sale and online in February.

One of the last tests they conducted was of the machines' quilting abilities and features. The testers assembled countless scraps, but instead of throwing out all of the material, they used them to make a 3.5x4.5-foot baby quilt for a coworker expecting her first child in January (shown).

If you have leftover fabric from your own or your sewing circle's projects, consider donating it to Project Linus, a nonprofit group that over the last 13 years has made more than 2.6 million blankets and afghans for seriously ill or traumatized children. Project Linus, whose slogan is "providing security through blankets," accepts donations of clean, unused cotton and cotton/polyester material. Get more details on donating by contacting a Project Linus chapter in your state.—Kimberly Janeway

Essential reading:
Read our First Look on the Brother Innov-is 40 sewing machine, which is featured on the reality TV show Project Runway. And join our sewing circle by posting a comment below about your own projects or sewing machine.

February 2009 update: Our report on sewing machines is now available online. Find the best sewing machines in this report.

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