Which sewing machine is the best?
Whether the hem of your pants needs fixing or the waist of your skirt needs adjusting for a better fit, making your own clothes can save you time and money. And with a high-quality sewing machine, you don’t have to be an expert seamstress to fix, trim, and make your own clothes.
However, sewing machines aren’t just for novice seamstresses. You can find them for any skill level, so you can tackle projects ranging from hemming pants to more complicated tasks like quilting. Some are even Wi-Fi enabled, allowing you to add designs from your computer for highly creative projects.
If you’re looking for a versatile sewing machine from a brand you can trust, the Singer 7258 100-Stitch Computerized Sewing Machine is ideal.
What to know before buying a sewing machine
Sewing machine come in several types, which work for different skill levels and budgets.
- Mechanical machinery: These feature manual controls, usually rotary dials or push buttons. They are often larger than other sewing machines, so they take up more space in your workshop. A manual machine is best if you’re on a budget and mainly undertake basic sewing tasks, such as attaching hems, repairs, and following simple garment patterns.
- Electronic appliances : These offer more stitch options than a mechanical model and usually feature an LED display screen and touch controls for extremely user-friendly operation. Electronic machines cost more than mechanical machines, but they can handle more complex tasks, such as topstitching and piping.
- Computerized machines: They are electronic models, but they are more complex than the basic electronic models because they can connect to your computer with a USB cable. You can then download patterns and send them to the sewing machine. A computerized sewing machine is great for elaborate and creative projects, but is more expensive than electronic machines.
When you invest in a sewing machine, you want to be sure you can use it for years. Repairs to electronic and computerized sewing machines can be expensive, so make sure you’re protected if your machine has any problems.
Some manufacturers offer limited warranties of up to 30 years, but terms vary from machine to machine. Carefully read the warranty information for any model you’re considering to make sure you know what it covers and how long the protection lasts.
Also known as the throat size, the amount of working space a sewing machine provides varies from model to model. This refers not only to the length of the machine but also to the distance between the needle and the body. Most sewing machines offer a throat size between 7 and 18 inches.
For basic sewing projects, the size of the throat isn’t particularly important, so almost any pattern will do. However, if you plan to make quilts, blankets, or other bulky items, you want a model with the largest possible working space.
What to Look for in a Quality Sewing Machine
For simple, basic sewing projects, you really only need two stitches, straight and zigzag. But most sewing machines offer a wide range of stitch options that let you handle almost any sewing project you can throw at them.
Standard stitch options include:
- Straight: Straight stitches are exactly what they sound like – the needle lays the thread in a straight line. It is used to secure two pieces of fabric together.
- Zigzag: These are used for elastic or stretchy materials because they won’t pop when the fabric stretches.
- Lock: Lock stitches are used to lock the top and bottom threads of single stitches together so that they are completely secure.
- Serger: These are a bit more advanced. They help prevent the inside of a seam from fraying and provide a finished look.
- Decoration and embroidery: Some sewing machines offer decorative and embroidery stitches that allow you to monogram items, embroider designs and more.
Automatic needle threader
An automatic needle threader greatly simplifies sewing because you don’t have to manually thread your needle. This is especially useful if your hands are unsteady or you have vision problems.
Placement of the bobbin
Sewing machines have either a front-loading spool or a drop-in spool.
- Plug-in coils are generally easier to put on and generally create better stitches. They are also often clear so you can see how much thread you have left.
- Front loading coils can work well for quilting and embroidery projects as it is easier to change them out in the middle of a project.
Adjusting the needle position
A sewing machine with needle position adjustment allows you to move the needle to the right or left with the press of a button. This can be useful when sewing zippers or along edges.
Automatic Thread Cutter
An automatic thread cutter lets you cut the thread at the touch of a button, saving you time and frustration.
If you regularly sew garments, an automatic buttonhole allows you to sew a buttonhole in one step. You also don’t have to stop the machine to change the direction of the fabric. You can even find machines that allow you to place a button in a designated slot, so the buttonhole is always the perfect size.
With speed control, a sewing machine can send fabric at a steady rate, allowing you to work at a good pace without having to stop or adjust the foot pedal.
How much you can expect to spend on a sewing machine
Sewing machines usually cost between $30 and $300. For a high-quality mechanical sewing machine, you’ll typically pay between $60 and $100. Electronic and computerized sewing machines with lots of special features usually cost between $100 and $300, but you’ll pay upwards of $300 for computerized models with high-end features.
Sewing Machine FAQs
Is it difficult to use a sewing machine as a beginner?
A. Nowadays, sewing machines are user-friendly, which makes it easy for beginners to learn. You should read the owner’s manual carefully before using your machine, however, to make sure you know how to use it. Many manufacturers also offer online tutorials to make the learning process even easier.
How loud is a sewing machine?
A. A sewing machine is often noisy, but the amount of noise varies from model to model. You can find some that operate at around 60 decibels, which is about the same sound level as a conversation. Others are much noisier, so some sewers prefer to wear noise canceling headphones when using their machine.
What is the best sewing machine to buy?
best sewing machine
What do you want to know: This versatile machine comes from a highly respected brand and offers 100 stitch options that are suitable for both beginner and intermediate sewers.
What you will love: It offers many convenient features, including an automatic threader and a push-in bobbin. It has an automatic buttonhole function for one-step button sewing. Stitch options are clearly displayed and easy to select.
What you should consider: The plastic case doesn’t seem particularly durable.
Or buy: Sold by Amazon
Best sewing machine for the money
What do you want to know: This is a great option for beginners, made by a popular brand with a great track record.
What you will love: It offers 70 stitch options and one-step buttonhole settings, and it has a large workspace for quilting and other large projects. Its display screen is extremely easy to use. It even works well with medium weight fabrics.
What you should consider: It doesn’t work as well for heavy materials.
Or buy: Sold by Amazon
Worth checking out
What do you want to know: With lots of useful features like built-in stitch options and user-friendly controls, it’s a great choice for beginners.
What you will love: It allows you to manually adjust stitch width and length with easy to use buttons. It includes an easy-to-follow stitch option chart and does not heat up during operation. The reverse lever makes it easy to lock stitches.
What you should consider: It doesn’t offer as many features as some higher-end models.
Or buy: Sold by Amazon
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Jennifer Blair written for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their buying decisions, saving them time and money.
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