How Much Money Should You Spend Buying a Sewing Machine? | SEWING REPORT



how much should you be spending on a sewing machine we are diving into that question and welcome to the Sony report I'm Jennifer Moore helping you discover your love of sewing crafts and DIY projects and it is the ultimate question for the beginner Sohus seamstress how much should you spend on your first sewing machine and I'm here to tell you that's kind of a trick question because it's gonna be different for everybody so when I started out sewing I didn't know anything I didn't really know what I was doing I ended up buying like a vintage sewing machine that wasn't exactly use our friendly beautiful machine though although I haven't only used it in a while and then I ended up getting a kind of an entry-level computerized brother machine the SC 400 great machine and I will link all of the sewing machines I can below that I own or that I recommend so and I've also done a few other videos and live shows about sewing machines so if you'd like to check those out I will also link the playlist I currently own five sewing machines so started off with the brother and then after I kind of outgrew that I we ended up giving it away I own a vintage Singer 201 to a never sewn sparrow 25 which is definitely a great entry level budget machine I dropped the way too much money on this Janome 7700 and I will go into that I also have a sailrite zigzag machine and then I have the Brother serger the Brother 10 34d serger some of these machines serve different purposes so in my opinion I think it's good to have unit askers I'm kind of lazy and I don't like switching on a lot of stuff so I really prefer to like a separate serger sewing machine if I ever get an embroidery machine it's gonna be a separate unit and I I borrowed a cover stitch machine from pink castle fabrics a while back to do some videos and I would prefer having two separate machines versus like a serger cover stitch combo just cuz I just hate switching stuff out you have to change the thread like it's just such a pain in the butt I don't know so you're probably wondering if you're just starting or if you don't own a sewing machine how do you figure out what to buy how much should you spend and do you really need like one of those fancy expensive sewing machines I was talking to a friend a while ago it was actually a guy and he was like do you like those fancy ones he's like are those really necessary and I think that's a good question there are so many brands of sewing machines and over the years I've you know learned a little little bit about some of them but to the person coming in from the outside you know you don't know all the brains in fact I talked to a lot of my friends and they said they'd only really heard of singer and brother they weren't really aware of like the Bernina is even not even the genome ease in some cases they didn't know thoth or like Husqvarna jukey for sure you know people unfamiliar with this world they just don't know any of that and it's I see it sort of as like a chicken and egg scenario of course you have to have a sewing machine in order to start sewing but if someone doesn't so what's gonna get them to buy and start using a sewing machine if they're not into it and one thing I think would help I've seen a lot of classes being offered by like sewing machine dealers or like other types of sewing businesses and I see one thing on the registration or the information that I think kind of deters people and that for many of the classes I've seen advertised is that the person already has to have a sewing machine and bring it to class now if you're someone and you you don't know if you like sewing and you want to take a class on it are you gonna buy a hundred or 200 or 300 dollar machine to take class you don't know if you're gonna like on a subject you don't know if you're gonna be hot on or not either so I can definitely see why someone who's kind of interested in sewing maybe that's you would be a little bit dissuaded or like you know am I really gonna drop 300 bucks on something only to find out you don't like it here's the other caveat I know a lot of you in the sewing community see machines under like a hundred dollars being throwaway machines meaning if they break or something goes wrong with them they're not worth getting fixed you should just throw it away because the repair cost would be more than it would to just get a new sewing machine and the other thing I've heard about some of these lower end machines is that they're not very good use again I've heard mixed things and I think some I've seen some great reviews on some models that are under a hundred and fifty dollars so and I personally had a good experience with a machine that was under four hundred dollars this one is certainly under 400 bucks and this one I paid I really I paid $2,500 for this about three to four years ago do I think it's a great sewing machine yes I do do I think that the difference between this one and the ever sown is worth 20 what twenty one hundred dollars I would have to say no and I would say if you're looking at the Janome like memory like the Janome home series I think a great less expensive option is the Janome skyline series and I will link one below I think they have they have like the large throat space that if you're a quilter might be good but they also have a lower price of about a thousand some of them are about a thousand dollars they can go up a little bit as well but I think compared to $2,500 there's a few more bells and whistles this one has but is it worth the extra $1,500 probably not in fact I spent $1,200 on like the premium sale bright zigzag machine package to be honest with you I haven't only used it I know that sounds terrible still trying to figure out what to do with it but that's what I meet about not buying too much machine or one where you you know you haven't tried it out or you don't know if it's for you again that's a lot of money to spend on something that you that you never use on the other hand if you are curious about sewing but you don't want to buy a machine what do you do in order to get access to one to figure out if you're gonna like it so here are some recommendations try to find a local sewing class or sewing studio or a lesson or a workshop where the machine is provided these can be a little bit more rare but I'm seeing them pop up every once in a while I think more businesses need to do that though because you have to understand that the target customer you want the person who doesn't sew but wants to probably doesn't already own a machine so if you can provide them with a you know starter one like a two hundred dollar one that's easy to use they might be like wow this is actually pretty cool I like sewing the machines pretty easy to use not very frustrating I'll buy one but if they never get to use it how are they gonna know if they like it so going to a class or trying to check something like that out might be a good way for you to test drive your machines you can also of course go to a sewing machine dealer and try to see if they will let you try out the different models but again if you here's the thing about getting into sewing though when you're buying a machine and you're not sure what you want to sew I think it's really difficult for you to make a decision based on a lack of knowledge because if you get into sewing and you find you like quilting but you don't want to make clothes I would make a different sewing machine recommendation to you versus if you were doing clothing or garments or dress making so I think that's one reason why if you're new to it I might wait to buy machine until you figure out what do you want to sew with it how hardcore do you want to get with it if you have a friend or friends with sewing machines I would also recommend trying to see if they'll let you come over to the house and try out their machine I would also recommend if you can try out different makes and models don't just go to one store and be like Oh Baby Lock these are cool that's it test them all out try out Janome use trout ever sons brothers singers fox Husqvarna marinas dukey's sale rights like honestly get to sit down and in front of it in front of as many machines as you can because each brand might feel different or so some people loved you know me some people hate them some people have loyalty to different brands and you need to figure out what machine you feel the most comfortable comfortable with and has the features you want so if you have a friend who sews see if you can try out the machine I'm sure they would be happy to let you do that because let's be honest people who so want more people to so another thing you can do is try to seek out sewing conventions or Expos in your area there's one called the original sewing Expo Abilene Expo again all links I'm gonna include as many links as I possibly can they have workshops you can take classes where they're in sponsored studios so for instance I've gotten to try out burn Eanes baby locs all kinds of different machines just because I signed up for a particular workshop and you get to really see what these machines are like and you also get an extended period of time to try them out so I've taken a few three-hour workshops and you get three hours with the machine to see how you feel about it I've got to try out like a six thousand dollar baby lock Ovation serger again not something I'm gonna buy because I don't want to spend six thousand dollars but it was cool to try out and I got to see what it was like just to use that particular type of machine so if you are trying to figure things out and you don't know where to go that's what I would recommend either go to a sewing machine dealer go and go to more than one go to several different dealerships and see if you like them again you can because most of the people I know who gets so machines now they're either at Costco or like sam's club they see a machine and they just buy it without like really doing any research or they go like me you know I go on Amazon for everything and I look for good ratings there are other things you can do to try out sewing machines so that because again it is kind of a big purchase to commit to even a hundred bucks for people is a lot of money and there are ways that you can actually try out these machines so sewing machine dealers friends look for classes in your area where the sewing machine is provided or like sewing Expos or sewing conventions great places to be able to actually test drive these machines and kind of see them out in the wild so some other thoughts I've got about sewing machine now this one the retail price is about four hundred dollars I have been very impressed with the performance of the ever sown sparrow 25 I've been using it for over a year and it's not failed I've never I've not had any issues with it in fact I've never had a sewing machine that needed to be repaired maybe it's just me I do so quite a bit but I even my like cheapo Brother serger that was 200 bucks haven't had a single issue with it so maybe I've been very lucky but also don't think hey this is gonna need to be serviced all the time cuz I want to be honest with you I haven't had any real problems with it by now you're probably thinking general how much should I drop specifically on a sewing machine I would say it depends on your budget how much you enjoy sewing what you need to do with the machine if you're just doing real basic stuff you could certainly get away with getting like an under $200 machine from Brother for sure if again you're a sporadic Sohus tanned you just want to do simple stuff if you want to start doing like hardcore quilting you may want to look in like the Janome skyline series if you're super hardcore and you want to do long arm quilting those are gonna run you about twenty to thirty thousand dollars but I would definitely say look at reviews you want a machine that is fairly decent quality look for metal parts versus plastic also look at reviews talk to people people about what they like and also think about what features do you want now here's my caveat I am very averse to debt and I am a very much a living below your means kind of Galle so here on the sonar part I've decided that I'm not going to do I'm not gonna try to encourage you or promote doing anything that I wouldn't do and that is going into debt so I know a lot of sewing machine dealers offer financing I wouldn't go down that road personally if you do or if you don't have a problem with that again there's no judgment you can make up your own mind but I see sewing machines even though I love sewing obviously I still see this as a bit of a bit of a luxury this is not a necessity I can survive like if I was stuck on a deserted island and I didn't have a sewing machine you know I would I would be able to live probably not not very happily but I would be able to live so I don't want to promote you doing anything that would wreck your financial future and us financing a sewing machine if you don't have the cash for it if if it's me I'm not buying it because I want I want to pay for things in cash so that's my personal philosophy if you disagree that's totally okay we can't agree on every single thing under the Sun and I totally understand that but I just wanted to share my stance with you and kind of why I go that route because a sewing machine if you if I don't have the money for it I'm just I'm just and that's my philosophy with everything if I don't have the money for it I'm not doing it we have decided to not really pay for anything with financing that includes cars we have no car payments and we recently got out of debt we don't really want to go back into debt so that's why that's not something I personally encourage and I'm sorry sewing machine dealers I know you guys all offer financing but you know this is just my you know personal moral compass here and I just can't I I can't in all good faith tell you to do something that I wouldn't do so you won't see that over here here at the sewing report I also don't discriminate against any particular sewing machine manufacturer I will talk about any brain from Janome to ever sewn to singer Jupe sale right I'm kind of curious to try all of them just because I I think there was different things to like about each one so I am NOT one of those brand snobs and I've encountered them in the wild a little bit and sometimes that can be a little bit frustrating I understand that you might really love something but that doesn't always mean it's right for someone else or that the other person might feel that same way about a certain sewing machine maker that you that you do so I also want to encourage you if you are trying to help someone buy a sewing machine or if you're trying to buy a sewing don't let that influence you just because someone else is like you should only buy this particular brand you know what you got to figure that out for yourself so I am not particularly brand loyal to anyone I will talk about different makers I'll talk about whoever because you know what I don't have any exclusive deals anyways I hope you enjoyed this video about sewing machines I know this is a little bit rambley but uh you know I've been kind of feeling this one for a while and I wanted to get these thoughts out so if you enjoyed it hit that like button and subscribe to the sewing report if you enjoy everything from sewing DIY and crafts i'm jennifer moore and i'll see you back again for another video

38 comments

  1. **I understand others may have different views and perspectives on sewing machines – please be respectful and constructive in the comments**

  2. Love your video and your honesty about the various machines. I particularly appreciate that you are not 'pushing' any one particular brand. Impartiality is important when you review equipment from a variety of manufacturers.

  3. I am a beginner and I do not know where to start or which one to buy? I want one to sew kids clothes, blankets, headbands ect…. I'm so confused I just need someone to tell me the exact one to buy for what I want to do. Lol also under $160

  4. I inherited my paternal grandmother’s sewing machine back in 1986. It is exactly like the black vintage singer you showed. I taught myself to sew on it with my maternal grandma’s help. She could sew anything. I have graduated to fancier computerized machines but I keep that old singer in its cabinet in the dining room. It has sewn miles of costuming where I needed the power of that all metal machine to get through multiple layer of heavy skirt fabric etc. Any time my new machines can’t do the job or something breaks on them I can always count on the indestructible old Singer. I hope you haven’t totally given up on her! Great informative video as always!

  5. In the last 2 years I got some real sewing machine gems on gumtree.com.au. I bought a brother STAR 3D for $30.00 AUD tonight. I now have 8 sewing machines (including my brother 760D overlocker) – which is way too many sewing machines.

  6. My first sewing machine was a very inexpensive singer that my ex got me but I could never figure out the front loaded bobbin and broke the machine with out ever really getting to use it (I am mechanically challenged). Than my current husband got me a great little computerized brother machine with an automatic threader and drop in bobbin. It is a great machine I still use it and have bought special foots and accessories to upgrade it and use a lot more features than I did in the beginning but it was a great machine to learn on and the drop in bobbin feature is a lifesaver!! The only thing it does not do well is sewing super heavy duty things like several layers of denim which is why I now am looking for a heavy duty machine for my second machine. (I still want to keep my brother for other projects)

  7. ….great video and I think you hit on all the perspectives one should consider before purchasing a new machine…I too purchased the Janome 7700 & it sits on the back on my sewing table while I use my Bernina 1008 which is a mechanical machine that I love for it's ease of use, smoothness and ease to maintain……I sew constantly and really love this machine…that being said, I understand that it might be too expensive for the causal sewer…but one machine that I have in my collection which always is in the top 5 sewing machine for the past several years is the Janome HD1000….this is a heavy duty solid machine that has a good selection of stitches for garment construction and is around 300.00…I have been sewing both professionally and now for my pleasure since 1960 and give the Janome HD1000 a thumbs up!

  8. I love my older sewing machines for quilting I did buy a long arm from gracy and use my Jenome with my long arm and I'm very happy. I think with my quilting this is just fine with me and I make over 12 big quilts every year for big quilts the long arm and I don't use the jenome for my quilt quilting for smaller quilting products.

  9. I agree that when you start you don't know what you want or need. good advice in this video

  10. I have 4 machines. I love each of them. a babylock serger, a brother embroidery machine, a juki 1020q quilting machine. My travel machine that also is a workhorse is my viking emerald. It took mea while to get here. My first machine was a babylock Maria and I also bought a brother innovis 1500d embroidery/sewing machine that I am selling.

  11. Good topic to consider! I started on a Brother with embroidery functions, but soon found I liked quilting and only needed other functions to make things for my children like costumes and household items. I found my first "luxury" machine at a thrift store and upgraded to a Juki the next year. I really love my computerized Juki and straight stitch Juki, but that is what works for me. I agree it is challenging to make a big investment before understanding what kind of sewer one might be!

  12. I have a few machines😉! Do your homework before you buy. I like my Viking and brother machines! I keep upgrading my machines, because my sewing changes. I have found what works for me😊.

  13. It was easy for me to update my serger going from brother to juki. I just can't for the life of me figure out where to go with my sewing machine. I've went from a heavy non computerized singer, which was a piece of crap, to a computerized brother from Wal-Mart that has been great. However my daughter is getting into sewing so it's only right I upgrade. To what is the question!

  14. My first sewing machine was a Brother LS 1217. I Purchased it for $25 at a yard sale 9 yrs ago. This Christmas my husband upgraded me to a Brother SE625. My 9yr old has since laid claim to the LS-1217. She loves to sew alongside me when I'm working on a project.
    – Elizabeth

  15. Hello, I have several machines to include an embroidery/sewing machine combo. It sews great and embroiders great but I agree it is a pain to change back and forth. i have only one machine that was paid for over time however it was zero interest and I prefer using someone else's money as long as I have the funds to purchase/pay off if needed. I think most computerized machines sew good and it is definitely an investment that should be researched.
    As always, really enjoy your videos! This one has a lot of great information.

  16. Great video. It made me stop and think about spending way above my budget for a really costly machine. When my brother SB700T works just great.

  17. Amazon gift cards add them til you get the amount you need to pay it out right….😂😂😂😂😂

  18. I want to sew everything coats,purses,slip covers, dresses slips,bras, upcylcleing clothes, quilts, I need heavy duty non computerized sewing machines.

  19. Haha my last sewing machine was more than my first car!! But then again, I’m not a beginner.

  20. Check out Joanne this weekend…1/2 price classes at different stores good luck girls and guys…😂😂😂😂😂

  21. I had a Janome Skyline 3 and LOVED it …. They recently had a sale and I upgraded to a Skyline 5 for the same price I paid for the 3 .. Love the 5 as well!

  22. Bernina snobs drive me crazy. I run across a lot of them that feel that unless you drop 8000 on a machine you are wasting your time and the assumption that everyone can afford to spend that much is a real turn off.

  23. Love your videos 🙂

    I have machines ranging from $130 to $3,000 and have taught dozens of people to sew. I tell beginners to not overthink it, just buy the cheapest machine out there with an automatic need threader (a feature worth paying for). Maybe $120-$150 at Walmart or on Amazon. You can make just about anything on it except jeans or purses that have thick seams. You can get it secondhand really cheap, just make sure to test it out to make sure it works.

    If you realize you don't like sewing then you haven't wasted much money. But, if you realize you love sewing and want to upgrade, then you'll have a better idea of what features you will use.

    There are 3 types of sewers: garment makers, quilters and crafters. I used to be all 3 until I realized I don't actually like quilts, lol. You won't know which one you are until you've spent some time behind a machine.

  24. I think a newbie can get a free machine, just ask around. In the last year I gave away three sewing machines to people I know that were interested in sewing, but didn't want to invest money. I gave each a mechanical vintage sewing machine that all worked perfect. I showed them how to use it, they probably only had to go out and buy a pair of scissors. I gave them needles, pins, measuring guides etc. None of them sewed beyond the first week. I'm sure each has forgotten how to thread it by now. It's discouraging as someone that wants to get people sewing, but I think people should spend some money to show an investment towards it. Classes are great, or hiring a teacher. The machine is the cheapest part, go buy some patterns and fabric. Get inspired.

    My 1st sewing machine was a $75 Bernina Bernette that the original owner never used for 20 years, she had the original box and everything. I learned how to sew on it, the machine was terrible, it could barely sew thru cotton twill. I got rid of it in a month and got a Singer 201 that had to have the motor rewired. I love that machine, I sew on it exclusively with the 1034D serger. I sew the bulk of my wardrobe. I prefer to spend my 'sewing' money on fabric, not machines.

  25. I was convinced a few years ago, I had to have this Pfaff machine. I went to a dealer to see if I would like it, and I did not like it at all. I wish I could afford the Ovation serger.

  26. Oh, and I'd like your opinion on why Berninas have this teeny tiny narrow workspace. It's really a turnoff for me as I was actually thinking of looking into an entry level one, down the road. It not only makes them look so top heavy but the lack of workspace… ugg. If they are made to use with a table, then why the front loading bobbin? "Tiz a puzzlement!" lol

  27. Hi there…Carol here! Remember me?, my Janome 7700 broke my wrist… well, it's healed now and I'm back to sewing up a storm but not on the Janome, which I will have to take some time learning and/or sell it (but not right now). Anyway yes, choosing a sewing machine is certainly hard. I'm so enjoying learning with my Brother 6000i and it's doing everything I need it to do "right now". I got the used Janome, thinking I was going to do a lot of quilting and now I'm not so sure. I recently tried cutting out a simple pattern with rotary cutters and couldn't manage to even do that so if I don't improve, I guess there won't be quilting in my future! lol As I'm sewing I'm beginning to see what I really do like and expand on. Something like embroidery, which I never thought I'd be interested in, now seems appealing to me. I'm looking at the Brother 400/600 for that but if not, really like the Eversewns.

  28. That Brother 1034d is a freaking work horse. I used and abused mine for years and it never failed. And I passed it on in perfect condition when I got a new one, and it persists as a work horse. lol. Lots awesome, practical advice. Thanks for the video.

  29. I have a Husqvarna sewing machine, Singer serger, Janome embroidery machine and a Brother coverstitch – no brand loyalty here, I chose each for the best value for money given the functions it offered!

  30. I borrowed a cheep begenners sewing machine because mine needs a repairman. It was very hard to use for me and would keep it's owner from sewing since she is a young begenners. I will teach her to sew on my vintage Singer and my computerised Brother. Then she can try her begenners Brother.

  31. My first sewing machine was a basic Toyota back in 1979 – and it still works and is used regularly. It has made many, many clothes, curtains, cushions etc. It has paid for itself many times over. My next machine – bought about 10 years ago – when we took the Toyota to our holiday home – is a basic Janome…the one used in schools. It was well under £200. I also have a Janome overlocker – it was just over £200 and has been used a lot. Like the Toyota they have paid for themselves multiple times over. More recently I have started leather bag making so I now have two industrial machines as heavier sewing would have destroyed the domestics. Both are Jukis: the 8700H (£550) and the Juki 1541 DNU. The 1541 is a super powerful machine that will sew through 1cm (nearly a half inch) of leather (£1800). These have already paid for themselves in bag sales. I honestly could never envisage spending thousands on a domestic sewing machine…I'd rather spend it on fabric haha

  32. Great video. When anybody asks me about a first machine I tell them to look for a machine with, straight, zig zag, stretch and automatic button hole stitches. Yes even stretch stitch even if they think they will only quilt because I've gotten a few calls over the years saying my stitches are popping on jersey. I also tell them to test drive a few at a sewing machine store to get a feel for different brands.

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