U think diesels are expensive??!?! Just wait till you see how much good quality sewing machines cost!!!!
What kind of sewing machine is she getting? The type of work she plans on doing would determine her needs... If I was you, i'd pick up a couple of big folding tables for the time being. One to put the machine on and one to cut and lay out patterns, don't skimp on lighting either. A 4 bulb 48" fluorescent fixture would work great over a pattern table. You wont have much money in the tables, she can move things around to suit her better and if she wants something more permanent she will know what will best fit her needs.
My mom has a Bernina 1260 she recently got for quilting, and she has a 20+ y/o viking that she uses for everything else, along with a Bernina Serger. She would tell you to buy the best you can afford, you get what you pay for, most sewing shops will finance machines as well. (IIRC the top of the line Bernina right now is ~$12k)
I'm warning ya Nick... nice machines are HIGH dollar.. Injectors, turbos, head studs, etc can be had a lot cheaper than most higher end sewing machines
But, when they are taken care of they will out live the owner. If she starts sewing as a part time job, look out, she can make killer money.. especially if shes smocking....
Man I sound like such a homo knowing about this ****:doh