Are you considering purchasing a serger sewing machine? Choosing your first one can be a confusing task. You need to choose from three, four, or five thread models. There are also a wide variety of features to consider. Some machines include color-coded threading paths, adjustable differential feeds, LCD screens, and various accessories. The Sewing Life crew has compiled six of our favorite options as the best serger for beginners. Whether you want the most economical serger or the top overall choice, one of these machines should match your needs.
In a Hurry? Here are Our Top Choices
Brother 1034DX Serger (3/4 Thread)
The Brother 1034DX is the updated model of the 1034D, which was the previous frontrunner for the best serger for beginners.
The main difference between the Brother 1034DX and the previous version is the lighting. The updated model has LED lighting while the older model has bulb lighting. With LED lighting, you shouldn’t ever need to worry about replacing the light.
The 1034DX still has all the features that make it a great choice for beginners, including:
- Three or four thread capabilities
- Easy to read color-coded threading guides
- Differential feed
- Stitch width dial
- Comes with three different feet
- Removable trim trap
- 25-year warranty
It also sews up to 1,300 stitches per minute. However, you’ll find that most of the sewing machines on this list offer the same speed.
Pros and Cons of the Brother 1034DX Serger
The main advantage of the Brother 1034DX is the reliability of the machine. Despite the reasonable price, it is a dependable machine that should provide many years of use.
The 1034DX is also easy to operate. If you’re familiar with a standard sewing machine, you should have no problem switching to the serger sewing machine to stitch your seams.
There are no major disadvantages. However, the Brother 1034DX does need to be oiled before you use it for the first time. This is an important step that is easy to overlook. Unfortunately, Brother doesn’t clearly explain this at the beginning of the instruction manual. We found this information at the back of the manual, which may cause some users to skip it and potentially damage their machine.
Overall, the Brother 1034DX is one of the easiest serger sewing machines to use, which makes it a great choice for beginners. It even comes with an instructional DVD to help you get started. Just remember to oil it before you use it for the first time.
Singer ProFinish 14CG754 Serger Sewing Machine
The Singer ProFinish 14CG754 is a close competitor to the Brother 1034DX. It’s one of the best sergers for beginner sewers. Both options have similar designs, accessories, and warranties. They can sew 1,300 stitches per minute and include LED lighting.
There are a few differences. The Singer includes one all-purpose foot while the Brother serger includes multiple feet to suit almost any project. However, the Singer does have an advantage. With the Singer 14CG754, you can choose from two, three, or four-thread stitching with six different stitch types. Beginners may also find the adjustable settings easier to control. You can simply turn the knob to adjust the stitch length or width.
Here are the main features of the Singer ProFinish 14CG754 Sewing Machine:
- Adjustable tension
- Adjustable stitch length and width
- Color-coded, lay-in threading
- Includes a dust cover
- Movable upper knife
- Differential feed
While all these machines are portable, the Singer 14CG754 weighs just 13.5 pounds. It’s also a compact 14 x 11 x 11.5 inches and includes a convenient carrying handle. You can easily put this machine away when you don’t need it and just get it out for seam work or hemming.
Pros and Cons of the Singer ProFinish 14CG754 Serger
The Singer ProFinish comes equipped with almost everything that you need to start stitching seams. You get tweezers, needles, a spreader, and a screwdriver. You just need thread and fabric.
The one issue that we found is that the Singer ProFinish doesn’t work as well with thicker fabrics. The needle doesn’t always penetrate multiple layers of thick denim. This may be an issue if you plan on hemming a lot of jeans.
Why should you consider choosing this serger? Like the Brother 1034DX, the Singer ProFinish is a high-quality machine sold at a reasonable price. It also includes its own 25-year warranty. While it works with many types of fabrics, you may have difficulty with very thick fabrics. However, this is one minor drawback for an otherwise great machine.
Juki MO654DE Portable Thread Serger Sewing Machine
The Juki MO654DE Portable Serger is a lightweight, yet powerful machine. It’s also a step up from the Juki MO644D that people commonly recommend for beginners. With this quality machine, you get faster sewing speeds and a more powerful knife system. What does this mean for beginners? You can sew thicker fabrics compared to most of the other options, including the Brother 1034DX and the Singer 14CG754. As a beginner, it’s also one of the best serger option to consider.
Besides more power, the Juki MO654DE includes these features:
- 2-3-4 Thread Serger
- Automatic rolled hem
- Color-coded threading
- Movable upper knife
- Differential feed
It also comes equipped with a user manual. The manual helps explain how to thread and use the system, providing a good overview of how to use a serger. This is useful as the machine doesn’t come with an instructional video.
Pros and Cons of the Juki MO654DE Portable Thread Serger
While there are many details to enjoy, the best part of the Juki MO654DE is the power. As mentioned, you can stitch through thicker materials with this machine. You should have no problem hemming jeans.
Keep in mind that there are a couple of limitations. This machine doesn’t include the adjustable stitch length or width setting that most of these machines offer. Another issue is the differential feed adjustment. The operation is not as smooth compared to the Brother or Singer sergers. You may also struggle to thread the machine for the first time. The instructions and the color-coded threading guide help. However, it’s still a little harder than it should be.
Juki may not be the biggest brand name in the sewing machine industry. However, they created a quality serger. Most first-time users should find the machine easy to use after you learn how to thread it.
Janome MOD-8933 Serger with Lay-in Threading
When you want a great value for your first serger, the Janome MOD-8933 Serger is a top option. It includes many of the features found on the Janome 8002D Serger. However, the MOD-8933 includes more adjustability. With the Janome MOD-8933, you can adjust the stitch length and tension. It also features a wider opening for threading and a tension release lever. If you’re shopping on a tight budget, this machine is the best serger for beginners.
Besides the improvements over the other Janome serger sewing machine, the MOD-8933 includes the following:
- Three and four thread capability
- Built-in threading chart
- Color-coded thread guides
- Quick change rolled hem setting
- Instructional DVD
- A variety of accessories
The Janome MOD-8933 is equipped with several useful accessories. Besides the helpful instructional DVD, you get screwdrivers, serger needles, tweezers, and four spools of thread. It’s also a compact serger, measuring just 11 x 12 x 10.7 inches. You can easily store this on your sewing table or put it away when it’s not in use.
Pros and Cons of the Janome MOD-8933 Serger
The compact machine is great for hemming pants, whether you’re working with denim or knit fabrics. This gives it a slight advantage over some of the other choices. The Janome MOD-8933 also makes it easy to switch to a rolled hem. You can turn the differential feed dial-up when working with stretchy fabric or turn it down when working with firmer fabric.
We didn’t like the fact that the machine doesn’t come with a free arm. Most of these devices include the free arm, which is useful when working with cuffs and pant legs.
Brother Designio Series DZ1234 Serger
The Brother Designio Series DZ1234 Serger Sewing Machine includes numerous features that help it stand out from the other options. It’s one of our favorite choices for the best serger for beginners, and here’s why.
One of the features that we enjoy the best is the inclusion of different feet. You get a gathering foot, piping foot, and blind hem stitch foot. You can produce a variety of edges and hems on various fabrics. It also features a retractable knife, which is missing from the Brother 1034DX machine. It also has a different layout for the controls.
With the Brother DZ1234, you get a convenient stitch width control switch instead of a knob. Compared to some of the other options, including the other Brother, the DZ1234 is incredibly easy to use.
It is packed with useful accessories and features, such as:
- Free arm design
- Color-coded threading
- Adjustable differential feed
- Multiple feet
- Works with home sewing needles
Like other Brother sewing machines, you also get a 25-year warranty.
Pros and Cons of the Brother DZ1234 Series Serger
One of the features that we like most with this machine is the versatility. We can use our home sewing needles with the Brother DZ1234 Series Serger instead of needing to purchase serger needles. However, serger needles are still needed for certain tasks, including working with thicker fabrics. Luckily, the machine comes with a serger needle set.
You also get a lot of useful accessories. Besides the standard tweezers, screwdrivers, and power cord, you also get thread, several accessory feet, two instructional CDs, and a techniques book. One of the instructional CDs details the basic operations of the machine while the other offers tips and suggestions for getting better use out of it.
We couldn’t find any disadvantages to using this serger sewing machine. It works great and it’s easy enough for beginners to start using it. The only issue that some people may have is the price. This is one of the most expensive options, but it comes with the most features.
Singer Professional 5 14T968DC
The Singer Professional 5 14T968DC is the only serger that we listed that offers two, three, four, and five thread capabilities. We know that most beginners don’t need the option to switch between two, three, four, and five threads. While it may be a little advanced to be the best serger for beginners, it will allow you to grow into it.
If you want to buy one of the more robust serger sewing machines, this is a great option. While you may not need all the features included on this machine today, you may want to use them eventually.
Here is a closer look at what this machine has to offer:
- Two, three, four, and five thread capability
- Four built-in rolled hems
- Includes a variety of stitches
- Includes color-coded stitch guide
- Color-coded threading
- Comes with many accessories
With this Singer Professional 5, you get a spreader, screwdrivers, tweezers, a needle set, brush, oil, dust cover, manual, and CD.
Pros and Cons of the Singer Professional 5 14T968DC Serger
The advantage of the Singer Professional 5 is the function of the machine. It offers the most range by allowing you to switch between two, three, four, and five thread stitching. It also includes more options for decorative edges, hems, and seams.
The only drawback is the cost, as it’s priced slightly higher than the other choices. If you’re willing to spend a little extra, you get a more versatile machine.
Decision Time: Which Serger is the Best for You?
A serger is a luxury item to have. You don’t necessarily need one, but they are very useful. If you like to sew clothing using woven materials, the serger allows you to produce clean seams that are less likely to fray. After our reviews, did we find the best serger for beginners? We found a few of the best, depending on what you’re looking for.
All six of the serger machines discussed above are great options for beginners. They’re easy to use and cover a wide range of budgets. If cost is a major factor, you may want to consider the Janome MOD-8933 Serger. It’s one of the more affordable options, yet it still delivers exceptional stitching.
For those that simply want the best overall serger, we recommend the Brother Designio Series DZ1234 serger sewing machine. It’s been a top-rated machine for years and allows you to adjust the stitch length and width instead of just the width.
The Singer 14T968DC is also a top choice, as it includes the most features, including two, three, four, and five thread capability. Keep in mind that it’s also the most expensive choice.
In the end, you can’t go wrong with any of these options. However, before choosing a serger sewing machine, you should review the features and consider what details matter most to you.