Stitch up a great deal.
From beginner sewing machines to top-notch ones with all the bells and whistles, there’s no shortage of models to choose from. Find the best one for your needs and budget to get started on your next big project.
Popular sewing machines
|Bobbin type||Needle threader||Number of stitches||Purchase|
Singer Fashion Mate 3333
Singer Heavy Duty 4432
Singer Featherweight C240
Janome Sewist 780DC
Janome Memory Craft 9900
Why buy a sewing machine?
Whether or not a sewing machine is worth the money really depends on your personal circumstances, but there are several reasons why buying one is a good idea:
Why shouldn’t I buy a sewing machine?
Sewing isn’t for everyone. While some people love sitting down to stitch, create and mend, others find it to be a repetitive and frustrating chore. If you fall into the latter category, how likely are you to ever want to use a sewing machine on a regular basis?
Before you part with any money, think about how much you will realistically use your machine.
If you prefer to buy your clothes rather than make them, and if you’re happy tackling basic mending tasks with a needle and thread, you’re probably better off saving your money.
What types are available?
There are four main categories of sewing machines:
|Mechanical sewing machines||Controls are manipulated by hand.||
|Electronic sewing machines||Use a built-in motor operated by a foot pedal to control the needle.||
|Computerized sewing machines||Features a microprocessor that is pre-programmed for different stitch styles.||
|Sewing and embroidery machines||These models take all the features of a computerized machine and add the ability to do complex embroidery.||
How much do sewing machines cost?
The cost of a sewing machine depends on the features you need:
- Beginner sewing machines. A beginner sewing machine should offer a basic selection of stitches, at least one buttonhole setting and solid construction. Prices in this category range from $100 up to around $800, with computerized models usually starting around the $300 mark.
- Mid-level sewing machines. Machines for intermediate sewists offer a wider range of basic and decorative stitches, embroidery patterns, more attachments and an automatic needle threader. They’re capable of tackling a much wider range of challenging and ambitious tasks, and are generally priced anywhere from $700 or $800 up to $3,000.
- Advanced sewing machines. Top-level machines offer the widest selection of stitches, presser feet, embroidery capabilities and customizable features. Please note that these are only for experienced sewists, as many of the advanced features and options will be a waste of money for anyone new to sewing. You can expect to spend several thousand dollars if you’re shopping in this category.
How to compare sewing machines
Once you’ve thought about the type of sewing you want to do and how much you’re willing to spend, consider the following essential factors:
Additional features to consider
- Presser foot. Check what sort of presser foot attachments the machine comes with to help you tackle different tasks, including inserting zippers, sewing buttonholes and completing hems.
- Foot pedal. Is the foot pedal of a decent size? Is it responsive to pressure and does it have an anti-slip base?
- Lighting. Check the machine’s task lighting so you can be sure that you’ll be able to clearly see what you’re sewing. Also, check how easy it is to change the lightbulb — it’s quite a complicated task on some models.
- Case. Look for a heavy-duty case that will ensure your machine won’t wiggle and wobble when in use. At the same time, make sure it’s light enough to be easily moved when needed.
- Free arm capability. Being able to convert to free arm sewing makes it much easier to tackle tight and round sections of fabric like sleeves and pant hems.
- Noise. Noise is a factor many people neglect to consider when buying a sewing machine, but it could be a dealbreaker if the only time you get to sew is late at night when the kids are in bed and silence is golden.
- Warranty. Check the length of the warranty, what it covers and what’s excluded. Also, check what the policy is on repairs — is there an in-store service or will your machine need to be sent back to the manufacturer or to a repair center should something go wrong?
Which sewing machine is best for me?
The best sewing machine for you depends on your skill level, the type of sewing you want to do and how much money you can afford to spend. To find the ideal sewing machine for your needs, compare a range of options and the features they offer. As an example, we’ve weighed up the pros and cons of five popular sewing machines in the table below:
|The good||The bad|
|Singer Fashion Mate 3333||
|Singer Heavy Duty 4432||
|Janome Sewist 780DC||
Sewing machines widely range in price and complexity, so compare a few different options before selecting the model that’s right for your sewing needs, skill level and budget.
How did we choose these products?
To choose our list of the best sewing machines, we conducted online research to determine some of the most popular models currently available. We also factored in price, ease of use and overall features.