Summary of Best Budget Sewing Machines
Choosing the right sewing machine can be very exciting but it can also be overwhelming. There are so many different models and brands available that figuring out which one will meet your needs the best can be so intimidating you may decide not to buy one at all. Take heart though, because we have provided you with the tools you need to sort through all these choices and find the perfect sewing machine for your needs.
The three top rated budget sewing machines we have featured above are all excellent choices for any sewer regardless of experience. They each offer plenty of stitch selections and an array of features that will allow you to sew and complete all kinds of projects. If you’re still not sure, read our buying guide below. It is filled with information that will help you understand the different features and how to choose the right machine for your skill level.
One of the first things you will need to do before you start researching the many different models and makes you need to know how you will be using your machine and what you’ll be using it for. Knowing this ahead of time will prevent you from going nuts with all the different choices and options you have.
Budget Sewing Machine Buying Guide
There are several things you want to consider before you purchase your sewing machine. We have listed the most important considerations below.
Set a Budget – When you are on a budget it can be frustrating to look at all of the higher priced machines and see what you “can’t” get. Budget sewing machines do not have to be low quality or cheap. There are many great budget models out there by reputable companies. If you’re shopping on a budget, set your price and then stick to it. Don’t look for the cheapest machine you can find; you are better off setting your budget, deciding on the max you will spend and then find the best machine you can for the budget you have set.
Number of Stitches – Once you have gotten the budget out of the way, think about what you need in a sewing machine. It is easy to get swayed by all the bells and whistles but truly think about what you NEED for the projects you want to do. Just because a sewing machine has tons of stitches doesn’t mean that it is a high quality machine or the machine for you. Many of those stitches a sewing machine has are never used. Make sure it has a straight stitch and zigzag stitch at the very least and you’ll be covered.
Adjustable Stitch length – Even if you only use the zigzag and the straight stitch, it benefits you to be able to adjust the length and width of the stitches you are using. Most sewing machines offer a variety of stitch lengths and widths but you may not find this option in a very low priced sewing machine.
Included Attachments – A great selection of presser feet makes a big difference in what you are able to do with your machine. Check each sewing machine you are interested in for the attachments they come with and which ones you will need to buy separately. If you are getting a sewing machine so you can make clothes, look for a model that comes with a zipper foot, buttonhole foot, and blind hem foot. If you’re doing something like matching quilts you will need to purchase a walking foot. If you love freehand embroidery, there is a freehand embroidery foot you should use. If one of the feet don’t come as standard, make sure you can purchase these feet separately.
Motor Size – If you want a strong machine that can handle a lot of sewing work, get one that has a heavy motor. The heavier the motor, the stronger the machine will be. It will be a lot easier to sew denim, upholstery, and other heavy fabrics with a powerful sewing machine. Plastic machines or even machines that are mostly plastic will not be able to withstand heavy use but a metal sewing machine can. Heavy machines aren’t as easy to move as lightweight ones are but most find it is worth the extra weight to get a solid machine that will perform under heavy use and with tough materials.
Brand Reputation – The Company that makes the sewing machine you are interested in should be a well-known company that has a great reputation. Sewing machines are not created equally; there are some that are excellent in quality and performance and there are others that you want to stay away from. An expensive machine from a poor company with bad feedback is still going to be a bad purchase because the quality won’t be there. You are much better of choosing a lower cost machine from a highly respected company.
Noise Levels – One of the things that people don’t think about often enough is how loud the sewing machine will be. Once you are in the middle of sewing and trying to deal with a super loud machine it will be too late. Research the quieter machines that do not make a lot of noise and choose from those. Customer reviews are a good place to go to find out information on how loud a model really is. Customers will speak up and state whether the machine is super loud or that it barely makes a sound.
Computerized or Mechanical? – The majority of all the high end sewing machines on the market right now are computerized. Some even have touch screens and programmable sequences for stitches. They are much higher priced so if budget is an issue you won’t want to look at the high end machines. Mechanical sewing machines are lighter in weight than computerized models. Despite not being as fun and popular as the computerized varieties, they can handle basic sewing skills with no problems. Mechanical machines are also easier to service should something go wrong or the sewing machine need routine maintenance.
Frequency of Use – Really think about this question and try to answer as honestly as possible. Everyone who sews or wants to sew wishes or imagines themselves having a lot more time than they really do for sewing tasks. Most people, unless sewing is their business, can only sew on the weekends or in the evenings. If you will only be getting your machine out every few months then it is unlikely that you will need a high end super fancy machine with lots of features. A really good electronic sewing machine could be just the thing to encourage you to sew more.
Expectations – What do you want to accomplish with your new sewing machine? Do you want to make clothes and need a sewing machine that offers serger capabilities? Are you an avid quilt maker? What you want your machine to be able to do and the features you want it to have are very important when you are looking at all the different options. There are sewing machines on the market that have tons of options and features available. If you are the type of person that loves to learn new things, this could be a great choice for you. If you are very new to sewing and are just getting the hang of sewing in a straight line, a sewing machine with tons of options could be very intimidating. You will be the happiest if you purchase a model that will have features that support what you will be using it for the most. It is a good idea to choose a sewing machine that will grow with your skills as they grow. If your goal is to ultimately make your own clothing, look for options that have overlocking stitches, variable stitch lengths, and other features that support clothes making so as you learn and increase in skill you don’t have to go out immediately and purchase another machine.
There’s not a real simple answer to the question of which budget sewing machine is best for you. The right choice starts with knowing what your sewing goals are and then being realistic about your current skill level and abilities as well as your budget. Sewing is an exciting activity that can really add the ability to be creative into your life.
Whether you want to make blankets, crafts, or clothing, the options are almost endless on what you can accomplish with a high quality sewing machine. Your budget will determine the level of quality somewhat but companies like Brother and Singer have excellent budget sewing machines available for all skill levels from the person just starting out to a more experienced person who wants to upgrade from their current super basic machine.
The three choices we have featured here are a great place to start looking. All three of them are from reputable companies known for quality so you can’t go wrong with any of them if you take the considerations into account that we have laid out for you in the buying guide.
The information you have learned about how to choose a budget sewing machine that is strong, versatile, easy to use, and long lasting will help you narrow the choices down so you can weed out the ones that don’t meet your goals and make a confident decision on the one that you want to purchase.