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Choosing Your Sewing Machine

What sewing machine is best for you?

Choosing your sewing machine. Which sewing machine is best for you?


Choosing Your Sewing Machine 

          What sewing machine is best for you? There are literally hundreds of models and dozens of companies, so it can be a hard choice to make, especially if you are new to sewing. But even fashion design veterans have to decide which features are most important to them, and what theyíll need to create unique couture looks. 

          The first thing youíll need to consider is what kind of machine you would like, and what will fit your purposes best. The three basic types of sewing machine are: mechanical sewing machines, electronic sewing machines, and computerized sewing machines. (Electronic and computerized sewing machines are both considered digital sewing machines.) 

Mechanical Sewing Machines:

Mechanical sewing machines are old reliables that have been around for generations. You select stitches, change stitch length and width, and adjust settings by turning knobs and dials. They have less of a selection of stitches than the other types of machines, but  they should fit your basic sewing needs. If youíre home sewer hobbyist who mostly sticks to traditional patterns (whether clothing, crafting, or quilting) a mechanical sewing machine might be right for you. 

Electronic Sewing Machines:

Electronic sewing machines have a large range of decorative stitches and buttonhole options that are often selected by choosing a number. They often have features such as: automatic threader, automatic buttonhole, speed control, LCD screen, and LED lighting. These are great mid to upper range machines. At Love to Sew studio, we use electronic Project Runway Brother machines (a few different models) and we love them. 

Computerized Sewing Machines: 

Computerized sewing machines have all of the features of electronic machines, but also offer a wide range of embroidery designs. Some you can link to your computer, or attach to an entire embroidery machine. They are the most expensive and considered top-of-the-line. If youíre a professional, or you plan to do machine embroidery work on your clothes and projects, a computerized machine might be good for you.


Here are a few other things to consider when purchasing your machine: 


1.    What is my skill level, and what will it be in the near future? If youíre new to sewing, I donít suggest buying the fanciest, most expensive computerized machine you can find. You most likely wonít use any of the special features (like embroidery, double threading, add on later options etc.). Whatís more is that the machine can do so much, that it is likely to confuse and frustrate you. On the other hand, I donít recommend buying a $100 starter machine. These machines are often cheaply made and break quickly. If you are considering sewing regularly or semi-regularly, but are just starting out, a mid-range mechanical or electronic machine with a good reputation is the way to go. 

2.    How often will I use this machine? If your just an occasional home sewer, who makes clothing, crafts, quilts, etc. but only as an occasional hobby, rather than a daily one, it might not be necessary to buy the most expensive machine. You will want to consider durability and how long the machine lasts.

3.    How much machine maintenance am I willing to do? Some machines require regularly machine oiling, and all machines require regular cleaning. If youíre not interested in oiling your machine, stick with a machine with more plastic parts. 

4.    What budget to I have to work with? Sewing machines can cost anywhere between a hundred dollars to the thousands. Unfortunately, sometime you just have to wait for that dream machine. 

5.    Will I be transporting my machine very often? If so, a lighter-weight machine might be necessary. Although metal parts are often preferred by those in the industry, machines with more plastic parts and plastic bobbins weigh significantly less. They often cost less, too, and there are plenty of good mid-range machines with plastic parts. 

6.    Do I have special needs for my designs? Are you planning to work with heavy-duty fabrics, like leather? Do your designs require intricate embroideries? Do your research, because a basic sewing machine just wonít cut it (or um... sew it). 

7. What are the different sewing machine companies? What are the differences between them? What brand would be best for me? Some sewing machine companies include Brother, Singer, Pfaff, Bernina, Janome, Kenmore, Juki, and Husqvarna Viking. As for the differences and what would be best for you, this questions needs a whole page and more of answering. Check it out, here: Different Sewing Machine Companies and Brands



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