At the moment I am finishing off yet another dinner mat. I am working on the edge of a piece of applique with a lengthy perimeter. I have discovered that doing buttonhole stitch by hand is far superior in it's finish ( looks wise ) than doing a quickie zigzag on the machine. I know that sometimes you just NEED to get the machine out for speed, but IMHO it always seems to give the same 80's look...and if you do wander off the line, Oh all that unpicking!
I am not in a rush to get my dinner mat finished so why not take a few evenings calmly stitching around the edge? I am finding it quite therapeutic, and I am sure it will last just as well when it comes to washing the finished item. Somehow the edge seems more defined, I am really liking the look and somehow feel more in touch with the piece than if it was just run up on the machine in an evening...it feels more like a piece of artwork than a household item in the making.
What is your preference machine or hand?
Happy stitching wherever you are.