I purchased the first model BabyLock released a few years ago. I am please with it but at the time I felt it was costly for a single-function machine, shop around since other manufacturers have released these units and the cost has dropped considerably. I suggest looking for built-in finger guard - a safety feature! Also, look for a machine that has more than 6 needles. I believe I read that a felter accessory can be purchased for some Bernina models.
I highly suggest "hours of practice" before jumping into a project. It is very easy to puncture holes into the fabric if you don't adopt a rhymn of motion and appropriate needle speed.
I say "purchase an Embellisher" and let your creative juices flow.
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Has anyone purchased one of the new embellish (needle felting) machines? Can anyone recommend a model? I see that several of the sewing machine manufacturers are now offering them. My friend has a Janome and has done some really cool things with it.