Sewing is an ancient practice that has seen tremendous improvements throughout the course of history. Back in the old days, there weren’t any sewing machines so people had to use tools to sew by hand. However, thanks to modern technology and the availability of sewing machines these days, sewing is now easier than ever.
Today sewing machines are available in different types. From manual machines to fully automated ones, you have plenty of options to choose from. These machines can help you put your creativity into practice and create amazing designs.
In a Hurry? Here are Our Top Choices from Each Sewing Machine Brand
Since there are numerous sewing machines available these days, you may find it hard to select the one that is right for you. So, to help you out, we’ll review some of the best sewing machines currently available in the market. Brother, Singer, Juki, and Janome are some of the top sewing machines manufacturers and we will list three best sewing machines from each manufacturer. Before we talk about the best sewing machines, we will discuss some things and features you should look for in a sewing machine.
Things to Look for When Buying the Best Sewing Machine
The first thing to consider when you’re looking for the best sewing machine that suits your needs is the frame of the machine. You’ll need a fairly heavy duty that gives a solid footprint to the sewing machine. We have observed that some sewing machines are so light that they wobble around when you are sewing and cause you to miss stitches. However, this doesn’t mean that an extremely heavy sewing machine is a good option. If the machine is too heavy, you will find it difficult to carry the machine around.
Next important thing to consider when buying a sewing machine is whether it offers automatic thread tension feature or not. If you are learning to sew, you will find it hard to adjust the thread tension manually every time. You may end up breaking the needle and threads if you don’t set the right tension. Therefore, you should look for a sewing machine that comes with automatic thread tension adjustment.
Most of the best sewing machines have an easy bobbin installation system. You can easily load the bobbin from the top and string it to start sewing. Some bobbin installation systems are too complicated and they make it difficult for you to install the bobbin and start sewing. We recommend you avoid buying a sewing machine that has an overly complicated bobbin installation system.
Features of the Best Sewing Machines
Even if you want a basic sewing machine, you should make sure that it can handle different fabrics –like corduroy, denim, satin – without puckering, stretching them or producing loopy or loose stitches. In addition, you may want to look for these features.
If a sewing machine has a one-step buttonholer, you won’t have to stop the machine and turn the fabric to sew a buttonhole. With an automatic buttonholer, you can just insert the button you want to sew into a slot and the machine will automatically sew a buttonhole of that size.
Good Controls and Ergonomics
A good sewing machine doesn’t growl or stall when sewing multiple layers or thick fabrics. Moreover, you should look for a machine whose controls are easy to manipulate and LED display is easy to read. Also consider the design of the machine, as sewing machines that have more room on the right side of needle allow more space for your hands and the fabric you are sewing.
If you are buying a sewing machine that you can carry around with you and easily take with you to sewing classes, look for a lightweight yet stable sewing machine.
Automatic Needle Threader
One of the most troublesome things about sewing is threading a needle. Sewing machines with an automatic needle threader save you from manually threading a needle and a lot of frustration.
The needle positioning feature allows you to easily move the needle from left to right. You can also have the needle stop at an up or down position when the machine stops.
Most sewing machines come with presser feet. You should see how many are included with the sewing machine you are buying. The multi-purpose foot allows you to do straight stitches and zigzag stitches, but you may also need a buttonhole foot and zipper foot. You don’t have to worry if presser feet aren’t included with the machine as you can easily buy them for a few bucks.
The power switch is used for turning the sewing machine on or off. You should look for this safety feature if you have kids who might try to use the machine.
The speed control feature allows you to control the speed at which the fabric is fed through the sewing machine. You can increase the speed when dealing with light fabrics and slow it down for delicate stitches.
When shopping for a sewing machine, consider the number of built-in stitches that come with the machine. Most of the sewing machines available in the market offer several built-in stitches including decorative, straight, and zigzag stitches. These are important as they will make your sewing job easier.
Most sewing machines will allow you to change the thread tension or adjust it automatically. If the thread is too tight, it can cause puckered fabric. On the other hand, if the thread is too loose, you will end up with loopy stitches.
3 of the Best Brother Sewing Machines
1. Brother CS6000i
The CS6000i is one of the most popular sewing machines available in the market. Although it lacks in flashy features, it makes up for that with its undeniable reliability. The Brother CS6000i has a bright LCD display that allows you to see machine settings and other basic information. It doesn’t have touchscreen functionality, so you’ll need to use the four buttons located on the corners of the screen to cycle through the selection menus. It will take some time for you to get used to it; but after a while, you will find it easy to select the stitches and changing settings using the buttons.
The Brother CS6000i features an oversized table that allows you to work with larger items and quilts instead of just sewing small garments. One of the things we like about this sewing machine from Brother is that its speed can be adjusted. The adjustable speed switch is located at the front and you can use it to change the speed during operation. This way you can speed through straightforward stitches with ease and slow down the machine when you are dealing with complicated areas.
Threading of the CS6000i is super easy. You just have to follow the numbered diagram on the machine and you will be threaded in no time. Overall, the CS6000i is a great machine and one of the best models ever produced by Brother. If you want a good sewing machine that has all the necessary features while also being affordable, you should add Brother CS6000i to your shortlist.
2. Brother SE400
The SE400 is one of the best models produced by Brother. It has secured positive reviews from the majority of customers on Amazon. The Brother SE400 doesn’t just offer high-tech features but is also reasonably priced which is perhaps why it’s loved by customers. One of the things we like about the Brother SE400 is that it can be used for both sewing and embroidery work, thanks to the 70 embroidery designs and 67 stitches that come with the machine. Additionally, the text can be custom programmed in over five different fonts.
As Brother promotes the SE400 as a sewing and embroidery machine, it is no surprise that the machine comes with an embroidery area. The 4×4 inch area provides embroiderers the creative freedom they need for utilizing the built-in embroidery designs to create something awesome.
The embroidery area is useful when combined with the computer connectivity features of the Brother SE400. The SE400 offers you connectivity capabilities that you can use to load more embroidery designs into the machine. There are several .pen embroidery designs files available on the internet so you can just download these on your computer and then copy them to your sewing machine. Thanks to the computer connectivity capability, you won’t find yourself limited by the machine’s built-in embroidery designs.
One of the best things about the Brother SE400 is its LCD screen. Thanks to its LCD, you can control all the settings with ease. You can also preview the design you want to stitch. On the whole, the Brother SE400 is a complete package that offers you everything you could want from a sewing and embroidery machine.
3. Brother XR9500PRW
The Project Runaway XR9500PRW is another great model by Brother. It comes with 100 built-in stitches including utility and decorative stitches. The XR9500PRW allow offers monogram functionality. It doesn’t have fancy font features like the ones you get with the SE400, but it offers enough to get the job done.
Like the Brother CS6000i, the XR9500PRW features an oversized wide table allowing you to take on larger projects and quilting work. One of the things we don’t like about this model is that the monogramming function is very basic – you only get one font for personalization. It is hard to find a machine that offers monogramming functionality at this price range. Since Brother was offering it, it wouldn’t have hurt if they had included more fonts. All they had to do was write some more lines of code!
The Brother XR9500PRW is a great option for anyone looking for a reliable and versatile sewing machine that’s also inexpensive.
3 of the Best Singer Sewing Machines
1. Singer 9960
The Singer 9960 is packed with advanced features and technology. It is an expensive machine, but it gives you the best bang for your buck. The main attraction of the Singer 9960 is the 600 built-in stitches that come with the machine. There aren’t many sewing machines that offer this many stitches. You can choose from straight or zigzag, wide or thin and large or small stitches.
The LCD display of the Singer 9960 is impressive. It will give you displays of stitches, their length and width, and all other information that you might need without having to wiggle through menus. One of the things we like about the Singer 9960 is its threading system. Even the most experienced sewers want a simple threading process. Singer has designed an easy threading system to make things easier for craftsmen. You will have the Singer 9960 threaded and ready for sewing in just about five seconds.
There is no particular thing we dislike about this impressive sewing machine. It is an awesome machine and the only downside for some people would be the price. But when it comes to Singer sewing machines, you get what you pay for; so, this is really no surprise.
If you want a versatile, adaptable, and extremely powerful sewing machine that is easy to use, you should add the Singer 9960 to your shortlist.
2. Singer 7469Q
The 7469Q is one of the most expensive sewing machines made by Singer and it’s undoubtedly one of the best models. It is a little cheaper than the Singer 9960 discussed above but retains many of its finest features.
The Singer 7469Q is primarily built for quilting and offers plenty of features to support the art. However, you can still use it for garment making if you want.
One of the most impressive features of the machine is that the needle can be programmed to stay in the up position or hold the down position once you are done stitching. Anyone who is familiar with quilt making would know how important this feature is. Another thing we like about the Singer 7469Q is the drop-and-sew bobbin system. You no longer have to waste your time raising the bobbin thread before starting to sew. The drop-and-sew system is easy to use – simply drop the bobbin and you are ready to sew.
Thanks to their extensive experience in the field, Singer understands all the essentials for quilt making and has included them with this masterpiece. You will be glad to see the contents of the box that include a large extension table to help you complete larger quilts with greater ease and four quilting feet that’ll help you take on any quilting job with confidence.
There isn’t much to complain about this sewing machine from Singer. But, we would say that the 96 built-in stitches that come with Singer 7469Q might not be enough for advanced sewers and, at this price tag, Singer should have included more built-in stitches.
The Singer 7469Q is an ideal machine for anyone who wants to take on complex quilting projects. It’s reasonably priced and comes equipped with features designed to make your quilting work easier. The Singer 7469Q isn’t ideal for garment making and if you are looking for a sewing machine for only garment making, you should be able to find better options than this.
3. Singer 4432
The 4432 is a beast created by Singer for craftsmen who are serious about sewing. This heavy duty sewing machine will allow you to work with the thickest of fabrics like curtains. The Singer 4432 combines power, reliability, and speed to create a masterpiece that you will be proud of.
One thing you will notice immediately about this sewing machine is its remarkable speed – 1,100 stitches per minute is an extremely fast stitching speed. Not many sewing machines can match this speed. The increased speed will prove vital when you are working on larger fabrics like curtains or want to reduce the time it takes for you to complete your projects. The speed can be controlled with the foot pedal and you can slow the machine down when you are working on delicate areas that need more precision.
The motor installed in the Singer 4432 sewing machine is one of the most powerful ones ever produced by Singer. This means that this heavy duty sewing machine can work through the thickest of fabrics with ease. The 4432’s motor is much powerful than the one installed in the Singer 9960 despite the fact that 4432 is much cheaper than the 9960.
The Singer 4432 is built from a super strong metal frame that makes it a seriously durable and sturdy machine. Even when you are operating the machine at the highest possible speed, you won’t feel any shaking or wobble as it runs through the toughest of materials. This is extremely important when you are stitching at a higher speed because even the slightest movement can ruin your piece.
Everything about the Singer 4432 is great and we can’t find any flaws or potential deal breakers in this machine. We would definitely recommend it if you are looking for a powerful sewing machine to take on thick fabrics. This machine is perfect for people who want to create home-décor items that require thicker fabrics.
3 of the Best Janome Sewing Machines
1. Janome Horizon Memory Craft 12000
The 12000 is one of the best sewing machines Janome has ever made. It is easy to get the hang of this sewing machine if you have done some sewing in the past. The Janome Horizon Memory Craft 12000 has a user-friendly GUI that helps you navigate through the 425 built-in stitches included in the machine. It also boasts an automatic thread tension control and in-built needle threader to make the sewing process a whole lot easier for you.
The Janome Horizon Memory Craft 12000 has AcuGuide which helps it feed the fabric evenly into the machine from both the bottom and the top. Since it is a computerized machine, you will have greater control over the speed of the machine. This helps you sew better and complete your work with greater efficiency. The Janome Horizon Memory Craft 12000 is powerful enough to sew almost anything from velvet, linen, wool, to multiple layers of fabrics. Not only that, but it can even sew harder fabrics like leather, fur, and reptile skin.
While using a computerized sewing machine does make life easier, it comes with its drawbacks. The electrical components in this machine are more prone to damage and if they start malfunctioning, fixing them can be a hassle.
By and large, the Janome Horizon Memory Craft 12000 is an excellent sewing machine for advanced sewers who are serious about their work. We don’t recommend this machine to beginners since it is relatively expensive and not the easiest one to operate.
2. Janome DC2013
The DC2013 is another great sewing machine from Janome and, unlike the 12000, really easy to get used to. The machine comes with 50 built-in stitches which are plenty of anyone who is new to sewing or want to carry out basic work. The Janome DC2013 is a good option for those who want to start learning quilting or sewing and it has plenty of features to satisfy the needs of novel and intermediate craftsmen. Some of the features of the Janome DC2013 include 15 needle position, adjustable stitch width and length, tension control, and easy selection.
A hard case is included with the machine to keep it safe from dust and prevent it from getting dirty easily. You can use the Janome DC2013 for stitching natural fabrics like cotton, wool, and linen, fine fabrics like velvet and silks, some varieties of synthetic fibers like polyester and rayon as well as upholstery fabrics. However, this machine won’t give you the best results if you use leather, rubber, fur or sew multiple layers of fabrics.
The Janome DC2013 is a good option for anyone looking for a sewing machine to get started. Its features are easy to understand and you will get used to them in no time at all.
3. Janome 2212
The 2212 is a simple sewing machine from Janome designed for inexperienced sewers who are interested in learning the craft of sewing. Unlike most of the other sewing machines available today, the Janome 2212 features only 12 built-in stitches and five-piece feed dog. This might limit the advanced sewers to express their creativity but it makes the machine easy to operate and navigate. The Janome 2212 is lightweight so you can easily carry it with you to the sewing classes.
While the machine doesn’t feature an automatic needle threader, it is easy to thread. The 2212 can handle light fabrics like linen, polyester, cotton, wool, velvet, and upholstery. It can also sew through multiple layers of fabrics. Since the Janome 2212 is a mechanical machine, maintaining it isn’t too hard. There are no electronic parts that you should be concerned about. Unlike programmable sewing machines available today, this mechanical model doesn’t do everything with a touch of the button. This means that you will have to move those hands of yours a lot when you are using this machine. This is a good thing if you are new to sewing since it will help you become accustomed to the craft of sewing and understand what it is all about. The Janome 2213 can be a bit noisy so you’ll have to find a private room when you are using this machine.
3 of the Best Juki Sewing Machines
1. Juki TL-2000Qi
Made from aluminum die-casting, the Juki TL-2000Qi is a portable, light machine built to ensure that your sewing projects go as planned. It is one of the best models ever built by Juki. Besides the large working area of up to 23 inches, this machine has the capability to handle large quilts and home décor projects with ease. The Juki TL-2000Qi excels highly at straight stitching. This machine is ideal for dressmaking, quilting, tailoring, and other projects. It is dependable and we haven’t read any complaints of needle breakage or skipped stitching. This is why the Juki TL-2000QI is touted as one of the best and most dependable sewing machines available today.
The stitch quality is amazing and if you’re searching for a sewing machine that can create amazing stitches, we would definitely recommend the Juki TL-2000Qi. This machine is a true workhorse and each part of it is made of metal, guaranteeing its durability. The aluminum arm and bed of the machine minimize vibrations, ensuring that you don’t ruin your fabric while sewing.
2. Juki HZL-DX7
The Juki HZL-DX7 is one of the high-end sewing machines. It can be used for making even and consistent straight stitches, zigzag stitching, and free-motion quilting. A Juki ‘box feed’ has been integrated into the machine to ensure consistent and even fabric feeding. This gives you beautiful, even stitches every time. The box feed system of the machine also allows you to get high-quality stitches no matter what type of fabric you are using.
The Juki HZL-DX7 sewing machine is created to make sewing more comfortable for the craftsmen. Thanks to the increased movement and lifting of presser foot up to 14 mm, you can handle multi-layer products – made from heavy materials – with ease. Moreover, you have the option of adjusting the stitching parameters and sewing speeds according to your needs. If you wish to come up with your own unique designs while using best finishes, you’ll be able to achieve this with the Juki HZL-DX7. This sewing machine will assist you in turning your creations into magnificent masterpieces. We highly recommend this machine to advanced sewers because of its impressive features and high-quality stitching.
3. Juki HZL-F600
If you are new to sewing, then the Juki HZL-F600 would be a great choice for you as this machine is beginner-friendly. It is a computerized machine perfectly suited for garment making, quilting, home décor, crafting and other projects. While the Juki HZL-F600 might not allow you to do embroidery, it lets you do everything else. It is incredibly silent and excellent in power.
Those who have used the Juki HZL-F600 had some good things to say about it and the machine also has excellent owner ratings. You get plenty of advantages from purchasing this powerhouse machine. The biggest one being that while you are using the Juki HZL-F600, you won’t witness fabric shrinkage. This holds true even when you are sewing using the lightest fabrics. The reason you won’t face fabric shrinkage is because of the box feed system that ensures that the machine’s feed dog stays in contact with the material for long. You will also witness free-motion sewing due to consistent and stable thread tensions.
The Juki HZL-F600 comes with a useful extension table and has a well-lit sewing area. An automatic needle threader is also there to make your life easier. The Juki HZL-F600 also comes with an easy-to-understand manual to help you understand its functions and features. All in all, it is a great sewing machine for both beginners and advanced sewers.
Our Final Thoughts
We have discussed some of the best sewing machines from the top brands including Brother, Singer, Janome, and Juki. If you want a sewing machine that gives you the best value for money, go for Brother’s products. If you are interested in getting more features and functionality, we recommend you choose a Singer’s sewing machine. On the other hand, if you are looking for a high-end sewing machine that can make your sewing work more efficient, opt for a Janome sewing machine. If you want to take on complex projects and/or deal with heavy fabrics, then we suggest you choose a powerful sewing machine from Juki.
Each sewing machine we have discussed above has some amazing features. But, the one that is right for you will depend on the work you intend to do with your sewing machine. So, take your time to consider what you will be using the sewing machine for and then make your decision.