One of my sewing weaknesses is that I really hate gathering (the process, not the end result). By either the "proper" method or any of the meant-to-be-easier "cheat" methods, I can't ever seem to get my gathers even, or close to it. (My machine did not like it when I tried to use the stretch-the-elastic-as-you-sew method - on my longest stitch length, I got tiny stitches so small I could barely pull them out. It might work on a fabric that could take some tugging, but this knit I'm trying to gather isn't sturdy enough.)
So I got a ruffler foot for my machine, in the hopes that it would make the process easier. After all, not being able to gather puts a lot of limits on what I can make. So far, the ruffler foot produces knots and ominous clanking and no gathers or pleats at all. Not quite what I had in mind! I'm not sure yet whether I'll keep experimenting with it - I'm afraid it's going to do some damage to the machine, and I can definitely see broken needles in my future with all that clanking. Maybe I should spring for the $50 brand-specific one, since the machine isn't plaing nice with the generic one I got.