Today’s 10 Best Sewing Machine Brands

Every family deserves the best sewing machine. If you pick the right one it will last you for years, perhaps decades! Everyone wants to avoid the expensive trip to the repair shop if your sewing machine turns out to be unreliable. It's very important to choose the right brand with a good reputation, and this is what this article will help you with. This is today’s 10 Best Sewing Machine Brands. 

We all know that sewing is an excellent hobby to develop creativity. And who knows, a simple hobby of sewing on-trend dresses, customized pillows, decorative curtains, or other items at home might eventually become a profitable business.

best sewing machine brands

Nowadays, different kinds of sewing machines with various functions and characteristics are being manufactured. Many options are available today for trained sewists or even for beginners.

There is always the question of whether you go for the latest and trendiest brands, or the time and tested ones, this list will help you with that as well. 

Based on the reviews of buyers and assessment of experts, we’ve collected this list of the 10 best sewing machine brands. Our tips will help you decide on what sewing machine would be the best for you according to your demands and priorities. Well-known brands offer the best service and high-quality machines, with a low probability of defective parts, and most importantly, long-lasting.

1. Janome

A Japanese company, Janome, was founded in 1921. In Japanese, the word “Janome” means “eye of the snake”. The round bobbin system was the most advanced during that year and a new round bobbin looks similar to a snake’s eye. Hence, “Janome” was chosen to be the company’s name. The company prides itself on only providing advanced and high-quality sewing machines to its customers.

The company was first to release a computerized household sewing machine (Memory 7) in 1979. Also, it introduced the first Embroidery-only machine for home use in 2003, which can read and write in a PC Flash Card.

Janome exports its products to more than 100 countries around the world and is proud to be the No 1. sewing machine manufacturer in the industry. Large numbers of intuitive and highly sophisticated sewing machines are produced every year even in comparison to the other big brands.

Affordable sewing machines from Janome are reliable and can still work effectively after long years of operations, provided that you follow the instructions and recommendations of the machine manufacturer.

We can recommend this great, super convenient, entry-level bundle if you're new to sewing.

2. Brother

Brother Industries Ltd, originally called Yasui Sewing Machine Co in 1908, is a multinational company manufacturing electronic and electrical equipment. It's a Japanese corporation headquartered in Nagoya. Brother produces not only industrial sewing machines but also desktop computers, printers, multifunctional large machine tools and other computer electronics for home and office use. Its global facilities can be found all over Asia, Oceania, Europe, the Middle East, Africa, and America. With 17 000 employees and physical offices in more than 100 countries all over the world, Brother is certainly available to assist you wherever you are.

Brother aims to provide the best quality and follows a strict standard when it comes to their products, services, suppliers, personnel and manufactured materials. And to prevent any possible defective products, all machines should pass strict quality control.

Most certified buyers and owners of Brother’s sewing machines say that the products are more fit to be used commercially than for home-use. It’s sewing machines are not only easy to use but durable too! Because of its affordable price, Brother’s sewing machines are, no doubt, one of the most purchased machines by many.

This brand continues to lead the industry of embroidery and sewing machines for its prompt customer service, advanced technology, computerized and updated software, high quality and trusted products.

It's hard to recommend a specific brother sewing machine due to just how many high-quality models are available online. Here is an entry-level model, quilting machine, and a higher-end model.

3. Bernina

It was in 1893 when the Founder of Bernina, Karl Friedrich Gegauf, invented the world’s first hemstitch sewing machine that can sew 100 stitches in a minute. The hemstitching technique was later known as “gegaufing”. It was the first of Bernina’s sewing machines that became popular abroad. 

In 1900, a small factory was established with 70 to 80 employees. During that time, the hemstitch sewing machine consistently gains popularity and being sold locally and abroad. After the death of Karl, his two sons took over his factory and added improvements and other special functions to previous machines. Bernina’s first zigzag machine sewing machine became available in the market in 1938 and the portable version was released in 1945.

Today, Bernina is one of the leading manufacturers of household sewing machines. Aside from embroidery machines, Bernina also offers electromechanical, electronic, sewing-embroidery and computerized machines. You have different models to choose from based on your preferences and needs, for amateurs or professionals! From simple models to high-end ones, one thing is for sure, Bernina will live up to your expectations. 

Bernina has a number of online options a the higher end of the price range. They also have a subsidiary company Bernette, that provides lower-cost machines.

4. Singer

Isaac Singer, the father of Singer Company, patented the first efficient and practical sewing machine in 1851. This marked the start of the company and its leadership in the industry. Singer manufactured the world's first zigzag machine, first sewing assistant mobile app, and a lot more advanced products for any level of sewing enthusiasts.

Being in the market for more than 150 years, Singer has proved that its sewing machines and equipment are produced with high attention to detail, quality, and durable materials. 

Consider that the quality would also depend on the model, service support and maintainability. This brand is the choice of many buyers because of its modernized technology and optimized machines. 

Online I can recommend this computerized sewing machine, and this one which has an LCD display if you prefer that.

5. Husqvarna

Husqvarna has been making history since 1689. It was in that year when the company was founded as a royal arms factory in Huskvarna, Sweden. Later in 1872, the factory's artisans started to create sewing machines when the demands of firearms declined. In the 1930s, the first Husqvarna's first electric sewing machine was presented. More improvements and innovations followed like the world's first “writing” sewing machine in 1980 up to the sewing machine with Wifi and cloud storage capability!

Husqvarna continued to design high-end sewing machines as well as household machines in Sweden and made the products available to all the sewists around the world. The company’s mission is to inspire sewists and provide significant tools that would make sewing easy and fun. Amazingly, Husqvarna has about 18 thousand dealers in more than 100 countries worldwide.

Husqvarna doesn't distribute online via amazon so I'd recommend you check out their site page on sewing machines.

6. Pfaff

George Michael Pfaff, the founder, produced his first sewing machine in 1862. The first machine of Pfaff was handmade, designed to stitch leather to manufacture shoes. Pfaff produced sophisticated sewing machines with unique design and high-level performance. Pfaff won the IMB Innovation award 2006 for its programmed welding solution with 100% parameter control.

For over 150 years in the industry, Pfaff continues to develop and seriously takes into consideration the evolution of sewing from pure necessity to a form of expression of creative minds. It inspired the company to create products that would stand out in the crowd – a design with a class that would attract consumers, plus high quality, easy to use, and durable.

Pfaff machines are also suitable for embroidery. Selected machines can be a little pricey, but its diverse functions and usage would be worth it! Manuals are provided to get you familiarized with the system operation and the device, which is a beneficial strategy for beginners! 

Pfaff doesn't distribute online via amazon so I'd recommend you check out their site page on sewing machines.

7. Elna

The brand Elna symbolizes innovation, quality, and service. It's a growing company that aims to deliver excellent products and services to worldwide customers and distributors in more than 50 countries, with these three elements as foundation.

The company believes that their machines need to be modern, easy to use and versatile to make sewing fun. Thus, Elna was first in the industry to present special features like an automatic needle threader, lightweight machines, heirloom stitches interchangeable cams, PRO Cards, cartridges, and EnVision Cards. Its products include overlocks, sewing machines, ironing machines, and presses. Elna’s ironing press was the first ironing press designed and created for home use. Different models are available to cater to your needs and to provide excellent quality that can successfully perform even with significant loads.

Elna sewing machines are known for its elegant designs, exceptional quality and excellent functional capabilities that are available for personal use or even in factories.

Manufactured at JANOME plants in Japan, Taiwan, and Thailand, the Elna brand is recognized in the garment industry for its quality and design. 

Elna doesn't distribute online via amazon so I'd recommend you check out their site page on sewing machines.

8. Juki

Juki corporation is a manufacturer of household sewing machines since the year 1947, for Japan market. It was only in 2000 when the corporation became available in the world market. Its modern machines became well-known to many countries because of its state-of-the-art design, reliable operating system, and amazing technical capabilities.

Juki’s sewing machines are consistently tested, developed and improved to cope with modern technologies and the market’s needs. Juki competes with other successful brands when it comes to intricate drawings on clothes and design solutions. This brand is well-known for most manufacturers and their machines are usually used to make shoes, clothes, bags and other household items. 

Juki serves a wide range of industrial sewing machines and household sewing machines that are user-friendly for both beginners and professionals; and creates products that encourage creativity.

Juki has a number of options, a mid-to-high range sewing, and quilting machine, and a popular portable machine, to name a few.

9. Jaguar

Japan has one sewing machine that has always been manufactured in the country and that is the Jaguar sewing machine. The company guarantees maximum durability as all the functional components are all made of metal. Jaguar Co., Ltd. that is based in Osaka, Japan rise above its game among other competitors and 

Maruzen Mischin Company was founded in Japan in 1949, with the primary purpose of selling sewing machines on a large scale. But in 1952, the company made a name in the business; it can make both straight stitches, as well as a zigzag. With that success, the company quickly enters the market of sewing machines in Japan. And after a few years more, they already became known in other countries as well. Then in 1978, they have changed their name from Maruzen Mischin Company to what known today as Jaguar Sewing Machine Company. And ever since it was founded in 1949, Jaguar has established its own identity in the market of sewing machines in Japan and the USA. To date, there are more than 20 different models of sewing machines, and overlocks are proudly manufactured under the trademark of the company, Jaguar.

Jaguar seems to have some online sales, but they are difficult to track down. If you're interested I would just go to their page here.

10. Toyota

Toyota, a popular Japanese brand, is well-known for its beautiful and modern cars. But this company does not only produce cars but sewing machines, too. Surely, you’ll not regret buying equipment under this name. Suitable for beginners or professional sewists, the Toyota sewing machines can perform many functions. It has a variety of models, electromechanical and computerized machines that are easy to use and durable for long time use.

Settings of every model are easy to understand, making the machine a user-friendly even for the novice. Toyota’s electromechanical sewing machines are much cheaper than other brands. It has adjustable stitching speed and provided with a soft case for storing or carrying the device. Some models are suitable for sewing household items like curtains, bed linen. It works great for light clothing, jeans, jackets, and even for sliding velvet, thin chiffon or drapes.

The modern design of Toyota’s machines will definitely attract anyone’s attention. They are also lightweight, neat and space-saving. Cheaper electromechanical models are available too for those who have a limited budget for a new sewing machine. A durable, affordable, reliable and excellent quality machines are what consumers usually look for when buying sewing machines and these are what Toyota can provide.

Which Is The Best For You?

There are lots of new manufacturers today. But, consumers must look at what the statistic is saying. That you can depend on the best brands listed above when it comes to durability and reliability to help you out in your work, be it in business or personal use.

We advise that you look carefully on these ratings and their details when it comes to choosing your sewing machine:

  • Type of machine: Computerized or Electromechanical Sewing Machine.
  • Types of fabric it can work on
  • Shuttle type of the sewing machine
  • Stitch length
  • Operation of loops
  • Other features: pressure regulator in the presser foot, decorative stitches, force in stitch regulator, control in needle stop(up/down), completeness of the set of the machine and needle threader.

Our modern sewing machines today are very different to the antiques of earlier generations. We have many more functions, but many more parts that can go wrong. This makes selecting the right machine and brand so much more important.

best sewing machine brands

So which name among sewing machines is the best? Which business gives us the best price for the most benefits? Who can even know which are the best sewing machine brands?

Like most things, the answer depends on you. Every brand in the list above makes excellent machines, but they all have strengths and weaknesses in different areas. Your choice will depend on what your vision is for your work. Once you know what you will focus on we highly recommend that you spend some time researching for yourself, this is a big purchase that will hopefully last years.


The technology in the production of sewing machines has advanced dramatically and it is difficult to tell which brand produces the best or the worst. Especially now that popular companies branch out in other countries. Also, the price only speaks of the characteristic and technicality of a sewing machine, which is pretty much the same for all businesses of the same type of sewing machine. However, when it comes to selecting sewing machines, most buyers also take into account the brand name and where it is manufactured. And through this, it gives the buyer a good reason because the brand name alone can guarantee the satisfaction, quality, and durability of an item. For example, Swedish firms are regarded as the face of longevity and quality in sewing machines.

Sewing machine manufacturers provide different kinds of models: household, overlocks, industrial, or embroidery machines. Each company has available models of electromechanical, electronic, computerized and mechanical machines. After all, it all depends on your preferences, needs, and capabilities. So choose the best sewing machine that fits your needs, and most importantly, the one that will show your creativity best!

Let us know what you think are the best sewing machine brands in the comments below!

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75 Responses to Today’s 10 Best Sewing Machine Brands

  1. Karen Boyd says:

    A number of comments mentioned their beloved vintage sewing machines. I understand. I still use, occasionally, the Singer 15-91 that I inherited from my mother. As a young person I sewed many, many garments on it such as a bathing suit, prom gown and more. It had one of the more up-to-date features, it could reverse. It also had button hole attachments and a blind hem attachment. When I bought my first machine in 1970, I naturally chose a singer (I was still a teen and didn’t know they made different levels of quality) It was horrible. It didn’t stitch straight, etc. So I traded up to a Domestic which was made by white. It served me well for 24 years. In the interim my dad bought me a sensor sew 100 (Kenmore) It was a electronic machine with a huge number of decorative stitches and alphabets. It was also trash. I used the domestic. Finally I bought a Bernina Serger and my husband pointed out that if I sold some of the antiques from my mother I could buy a Bernina 145. I should mention my mother was mentally ill from a dysfunctional family and the furniture had bad memories for me. However this lower end Bernina was wonderful. I was in love. I wish I still had that machine, but I was lured into trading up four times. The article said best brands of TODAY. I am not sure what that means. I know that as a person who has also taught sewing machines, Singer did not make the best machines for awhile. I don’t know about today. And while some brands, like Bernina, have a cult following, I know that they are pricing themselves out of my zone.

  2. Sam says:

    This is fantastic🤘😝🤘 BTW I love brother sewing machines most.

  3. Glynis Whitaker says:

    I have a 43 year old New Home XLII. I think that Janome used to be branded as New Home. Am I correct?

  4. meivessiM holt says:

    I have used a variety of machines, my favorite being the Sears Kenmore. I still have two of them, the reason being the buttonholer. The most disappointing features of the newer machines are are 1. The presserfoot lever is in the way of my sewing and catches on my fabric, taking space needed. I can use my left hand to operate the lever if it is in the back. 2.the needle threader gets in the way of my project. It is unnecessary, and I have never used it. 3.the set screw for holding the needle in is an effective hammer giving me nerve damage to my fingers when I need to hold closer to my stitching. I do know how to use a screw driver and how a set screw works. I don’t need the inch long extension. 4. The button hole maker is useless and difficult to control. Basically it doesn’t work. It gets in the way of my fabric. I can’t figure out why those design changes came about as standard! Don’t the engineers know how to sew? Have they ever patched a small pair of jeans?? The other thing I can’t figure out is, with all the configurations they’ve come up with for decorative stitches and embroidery, why can’t they design a simple half inch long loop for a half inch button, or other common sizes used? It would be nice to just pick the pattern an have a neatly finished button hole. Thank you.

  5. shaynermaven says:

    I’ve had my Husqvarna Viking Lily 555 for 20 years. Two features I really wish it had were automatic threading and automatic thread cutting, but that didn’t exist then. Other than that I don’t think there’s anything else I really need, as this machine does everything else I need. I only use a fraction of the total stitches it can do, as I make basic things. While it’s fun to drool over the brand new machines available, I wouldn’t spend the $$$$ on them.

  6. Vickie Perrine says:

    I bought a Husqvarna 630 in the 80″s, and used it every day. 10 yrs ago I had a car accident (traumatic brain injury) but luckily retained all my sewing knowledge. My main problem is I have a very difficult time learning new things. So, I bought some old 630’s off Ebay, for parts, figuring I’ll eventually need them.. Trouble is, they all work!

    When I first bought it, the guy told me I wore out my Singer, had some plastic parts, so I asked him “Ya got anything that’s all metal?”

    This machine has done everything I’ve asked of it.

  7. Alice says:

    Don’t overlook the possibility of an older machine; I have a mid-20th century Singer Slant-o-Matic that is a workhorse, and a mid-80’s Bernina for fancy work. If I could only have one, the Singer is the one I’d keep! Not only is it easy to find a repair shop, you can find old all-metal Singers for well under $100.

    • Amy Herr says:

      Exactly! The old straight stitch and or mid century singer with a zig zag and good cams are amazing!!

      • Rebecca Merrick says:

        My husband and his a Grandfather who was a tailor at the time, bought a Singer Fashion Mate 360 for me for Christmas in 1980. I have been using it since and have had no problems with it. No repairs needed, just a cleaning. I love this machine.

  8. Diane Duval-Smith says:

    I will never go past an Elna Supermatic or the next one down. I have used my Elna for 48 years and also bought a second hand one exactly the same model but less used as a back up. I also bought my daughter a second hand one the model down from the supermatic and she loves it.

  9. Gloria Jane Horton says:

    I have my Montgomery Ward sewing machine that just turned 37 years old. It’s fantastic ! It has never had to go to a repair shop because I have always taken excellent care of it… cleaning..oiling..etc. Replacement parts such as belts interchange with Singer. I am now 70 years old and starting to teach my granddaughter how to sew on it. I would love to buy a new one but they are now too expensive for me and they just aren’t the same quality.

    • Wanda says:

      I missed an opportunity to buy a Viking and bought a Montgomery Wards machine as a “consolation”machine. I sewed on that machine until it died! I was so sad to part with it. One of my all time favorite!

    • Carol says:

      I have a Montgomery Ward sewing machine that my husband bought me in 1974 that I just love. I bought a newer one at a yard sale about 7 years ago but I like my 1974 one better. Older they are the better they are.

  10. Connie Burroughs says:

    What diversity…my fist machine was an off-brand that my mother had in the 50’s. In the 70’s I bought a Pfaff computerized machine and loved it. We were living at the beach and the metal parts began to rust and in the 90’s could no longer be replaced. I loved that machine! The dealer offered me a “deal” on a Janome 6600P….little did I know that they were going out of business (hence the deal) and I never had any instruction, etc. Along with that Janome I have a Janome Embroidry machine and a Janome Surger. My granddaughter wanted to learn to sew and Hancocks was selling Bernettes so I now have two of those plus a Brother for classes. The Brother just didn’t work well for me so I purchased a Janome Magnolia for classes. Finally, I purchased a Bernina 740 and I LOVE IT! It is by far my favorite and at 78 I do not plan to invest any further just keep on sewing with my Bernina.

  11. Sue Lubin says:

    I have had a Singer model that came to market to soon. It could not hold the “tension”, it lasted a few months and ultimately my husband sent it back to the president of the company. It was completely overhauled and sent back to me. The same thing repeated itself and it was finally thrown out. Then, I also had a White machine which was fine but I gave it to a shelter when I got my Bernina. I got that machine as a treat to myself when I sold my accumulated overtime back to the hospital I worked at. It (the Bernina) is a 1230, the beginning of the computerized machines. I adore this machine and I will never give it away or trade it in. I am not interested in embroidery but the Bernina’s guide book gives many details as to how I can embroider with it. I learned to sew in school in the “Home Ec” class in about 1949-1950. Two years ago, I bought a “Brother” machine because it had 140 or so stitches (havn’t used but a few) but mainly because it is lightweight and I can pick it up and take it to sewing classes. I like this machine, sews well, good tension and it serves the purpose.
    I never knew that “Toyota” and “Jaguar” made sewing machines. I enjoyed your article and am going to forward it to my grandaughter who is in the market for a machine.

  12. Demetria says:

    I am also surprised that Babylock was not on the list. I personally never knew that Toyota made sewing machines or that they were so good or popular that they would make a “Top 10” list. Same goes for Jaguar. I personally have only had 2 machines, first was a Singer, my current one is a Husqvarna Viking.

    Like I said in another comment. What I realized is that it is definitely better to buy a sewing machine from an established sewing machine dealer. Literally check out the dealer before you even think about buying a machine! I did that! I learned my lesson after dealing with the Singer I bought from Walmart!

    I found the Sew Blessed store. Visited them, talked to the owner, found out how they got they got customer’s machines repaired, serviced, how long they had been in business. I went back the next week after I decided which sewing machine I wanted.
    They were offering the 1st maintenance check for free, they no longer do that!

    Being on their email list helps a lot. I know when the repairman is going to visit. So I can plan to drop off my machine. Then they will call me when it’s ready to be picked up. Usually I only take it for maintenance, like it need a good cleaning but it has been acting up so I’m taking it in the next time for service.

    • Mayra Cecilia says:

      Toyota machines were along Bernina the first ones to become computerized, I have one still working that is 17 years old.

  13. Martha Effinger says:

    BabyLock is my brand of choice. I have a ten needle embroidery machine, a Destiny 2 and an Evolution serger, all my BabyLock. I bought them all from the same dealer and their service and attitude are fantastic and there new machine classes etc are great. From past experience I would never buy a machine without a helpful dealer. Been there done that!

    • Donna Nemeth says:

      I agree with you 200%. I’ve had other machines but nothing has been better than Baby Lock. Their latest machine, Solaris, is soo awesome!
      It is an insult to not even be on the list even if Brother is similar company.

    • Alice Bonnell says:

      Babylock, babylock, babylock!! Had my first serger over 20 years, and traded it in on a new one. My sewing machine is 12 years old, and I still love it!! Second small sewing machine for classes, etc. works great and only weighs 11 pounds.

    • Susan says:

      Baby Lock and Brother are owned by the same company. That being said, I have a baby lock elegante and I have had a $200 brother machine from Walmart. I loved the brother machine. I have so many issues with the baby lock. :(. For the price, I’ll take the brother.

  14. carol says:

    Location, Location….Dealer, Dealer.. If you are in a smaller location and the dealer departs, you have just purchased one of these expensive machines, it is a challenge finding how to use and service this machine. YouTube, online groups, and the manual/DVD has been the only training I have had. I would not go this route again. All the decorative stitches, optons are not used.

  15. Anne says:

    I was very surprised at the machines that made your list. 2 I had never even heard of. I have Babylock Verve that I loved until the dealer decided not to be dealer any more, now I am without a repair person and the BL is brokern. I have a smaller Singer that is my travel machine that I like for mundane sewing. Then I have my workhorse, a Japanese made Singer that is 50 years young and still works like a charm most of the time. It is all metal for the most part.

    • Grandma G says:

      Is there a Brother dealer anywhere in your area? Lots of Brother & Baby Lock machines are very similar. I have the reverse situation. I have a high-end Brother machine and no Brother dealer nearby, so my machine goes to a Baby Lock dealer who has no problem working on it because it’s almost a duplicate of one of the Baby Lock machines he sells and services.
      Good luck!

      p.s. I have a 50-years-young Kenmore that is also Japanese-made. It still purrs and I use it as a back-up machine. Just like yours, it’s all metal with the exception of a few knobs on the front. They were made to last and this one could easily be purring still when I’m long gone.

  16. Donna says:

    I have a Bernina 930 for over 30 years and I love it. I only have it serviced a a dealer and it has served me will I have been looking into another machine but like most of you find they very high priced and not in my ability to buy
    but I have been thru a Singer 513 stylist Which could handle most stuff but getting service was a problem and a kenmore which was terrible piece of junk
    Took a stretch and sew course which they used a Bernina and that is how I decided to get mine

  17. Rosa marchiano says:

    Aprendi a coser con la Necchi de mi madre.Despues tuve una Singer y ahora tengo la Janome 2030 QDC .todas maravillosas.

    • Mayra Cecilia says:

      Nunca he usado una Necchi, no son tan populares pero todos los que la usan las adoran.

    • Andrea says:

      Me too! I loved that treadle-powered machine, and even after my mother had it taken off its original table, made portable and converted to electric, I insisted on keeping the table in my room, using it as a desk. I loved to push the treadle even as I was doing my homework! ?

  18. Richard says:

    I have two Brother machines. One is manual XR53 and one is an electronic model SQ9285. I love them both. I had a Singer Stylist for over 30 years and wore out the worm gears that run the feed dogs. Too expensive to get repaired.Parts only $15. It was the labor. Would be over $200 to fix. My aunt had a Huquvana sewing machine. She bought it at Joannes Fabric. It had to be sent out for repairs twice within the first few years. She hated it and her daughters bought her a low end Brother and she uses that and put the Husquvana outside during her yard sale.

  19. Diane Englert says:

    I love my BabyLock. It’s my dream machine and I bought it in 2005. Still going strong and I’ve put many many miles of sewing on her. I inherited my Mom’s fancy Bernina and I cannot use the ball control, I had to put it away.

  20. Cath says:

    I’m a bit surprised about some of the names on this list. I agree about Babylock. I have had wonderful luck with them. The one and only reason that I haven’t bought a new machine in the last 10 or so years is price. I just can’t justify buying a sewing machine that costs as much as my car did. I love to embroider but my embroidery machine and software are beyond support at this point. All these electronics are nice but they make the machines far more expensive, far more fragile, and rapidly obsolete. My embroidery machine, which cost a small fortune 12 years ago, has a flaky motherboard which can’t be repaired locally. It has to be shipped back to Germany. If I want to replace it with a similar new machine it will cost me more than twice what I paid for the first one. Electronics all get cheaper as the technology matures, except sewing machines! The price of those just skyrockets. They have priced me out of the market.
    Another point, I don’t buy a sewing machine unless I have a dealer who does repairs close to me. So IF I buy a new machine, it’s won’t be my favorite brand, or the brand that I think does the best job. It will be because I have a good repairman locally.

  21. Sheree says:

    I am on my second upgrade Janome 2030 QDC machine; not high end, only has 29 stitches, has the threader (which I love) I have found it to be great. I have be wondering about another upgrade with more stitches; we will see.

  22. Kevin Walker says:

    I owned a Pfaff sewing and embroidery machine. It was one of the more expensive machine they had made when I bought mine. It lasted 3 years with minimal use. I was told it was the mother board and they no longer made the mother board for that machine so I would have to buy another machine. I did buy another machine. I bought a Brother sewing machine at Walmart and then later a BabyLock embroidery machine when a dealer moved to town. I also bought a Babylock serger and I wouldn’t have anything other than Babylock now. I like the Brother but because of the dealer I bought the Pfaff from I won’t buy a Brother from them.

  23. Peg says:

    Love my Juki. I am a quilter and this machine pieces with consistency and speed. After buying my first machine that only does straight stitch, I bought a computerized multi stitch for appliqué and sewing apparel. Love both machines.

  24. Viv says:

    I love my Juki which I came across at the Knitting and Stitching Show a few years ago. It is solidly built and copes with all thicknesses of fabric. Since purchasing my machine I have bought one for my daughter and we both have Juki serger machines. I previously had a Janome which was brilliant for embroidery but not so good for the day to day sewing jobs. However I wish I had kept it just for embroidery.

  25. Karen says:

    I bought my first sewing machine, a Singer in 1967, it was such an upgrade from my Mom’s “Family” machine (a Singer knock off) from 1949. My Singer was a very simple machine — it did have a zig zag stitch and a separate HUGE attachment for making buttonholes. I never did successfully master that! It sewed well, however after about 20 years I wanted a machine with a bit more versatility and more functions. I sold my Singer to a young woman who couldn’t afford a new machine and it is still in use 🙂 I bought a Kenmore 35 in 1985. I used both machines for a few years — the Singer would sew ANYTHING! It could handle leather, the Kenmore definitely did not have that capability. The Kenmore had some fancy stitches and a built-in 4 step buttonhole maker. I use it a lot — it has made a lot of clothing and quilts. At 71, I likely won’t have another machine, however I sure would like to have one that would thread itself! The hardest part of sewing for me is threading the needle. I am visually impaired (have been since birth) and threading the needle is very difficult. I haven’t found a needle threader that really works well — I have tried many. However, even when I have to get help in threading my machine — sometimes I just get too frustrated and allow someone else to help — I spend many many hours at the machine. I love to create and thankfully, my granddaughter will still wear the creations I make for her 🙂 She is 8 and 1 of these days she will not enjoy handmade clothing I’m sure! If I had the opportunity to do so, I think I would look at a Brother — there is one that appears to be self threading and I am told that that feature works really well.

    • I. Reid says:

      I bought a Janome Quilters Companion more than 10 yrs. ago and I love it!! It has the needle-threader and I love that too! I don’t make quilts, but this machine had all of the features that I wanted. That threader, a drop in bobbin, automatic buttonhole maker and local service. . No problems whatsoever with it. Would love to get that computerized embroidery machine (even tho I have several built-in stitches) but as with others, just can’t justify the price! I am an arthritic 72 and enjoy these features more and more each year.

      • Mayra Cecilia says:

        I think you make a great point here. local service this is the top priority when you purchase an advance piece of equipment.

      • Grandma G says:

        Have you tried propping a small piece of white cardstock behind your needle? A piece about 1/3 the size of a business card is perfect. The light of your machine reflects off the cardstock and makes it easier to see the needle eye. Another trick I find helpful is to get a little glue stick and slide the end of the thread between the top of the glue and my finger. By the time I’ve wiped the glue off on my apron or a fabric scrap, the glue has dried and stiffened the thread enough to easily slip through the eye. I’m 68 and also have some arthritis challenges as well as eyes that aren’t what they used to be. Good luck!
        Oh yes, those true auto-threaders are great. I bought a high-end sewing/quilting machine that has one and I love it. Maybe you might want to check out a dealer and see if they have a used machine with that feature? I did it and ended up with a fabulous machine – a dealer-demo model that was fully serviced. It’s a slightly older model but I love all the terrific features including the terrific fully automatic needle threader. I just press a button and watch it work. The best part is I bought it for approximately 1/3 of the original price!

    • James Seals says:

      One way to easier threading is to place your finger to the side of the needles eye as you push the needle threaded in to it. Your finger will guide the threader right to the eye.

    • Amy Herr says:

      I own 12 machines in total. 11 are singer from different decades in the 20th and 19th century. From Tredel to hand crank all the way to computerized. Boat shuttle, drop in and side load case. All but one are singer. The oddball is my brother serger. Which I absolute love! Easy to use and great for entry level and general things. It is really all I need. While a baby lock self threading would be a dream, I cant justify the cost for what I use it for. My first new machine (150 yr anniversay) was a singer. It lasted 20 years until the feed dogs failed to grab the fabric. It served me very well with the stitches on it and made many quilts and countless outfits and many formal dresses for my daughter. I bought a new computerized one and it does a great job for me. My S model 12 works excellent once you get the thread tension and tredel throw down. The old metal singers are complete work horses with all the metal and can easily be serviced at home. My 15’s are great and accept all the wonderful attachments from my 1918 66 tredel puzzle box. And my button hole attach looks complicated, but works well as does my zig zag attachment. It all depends on what you want from your machine. I can do embroidery on my 1918. My 99 hand crank I line to use for precise sewing. It is a dream machine. The only machine I have issue finding part’s for is my 301 A. For obvious reasons. Only so many were made and parts are really not manufactured for them. Sorry for the book here. It boils down to what you use it for and how much you are willing to spend and reliability.

      Ps, I got my dead singer fixed by myself with a shim under the feed dog! FREE!

  26. Joyful says:

    I have a Brother Qattro and a Janome and I love them both … So happy to see them take No 1 and 2 spots on the list. But even if they didn’t they’d still be Top of the Shelf to me. Very happy with both.

  27. Melissa says:

    I do not see active links for your recommendations. Am I missing something?

    • So Sew Easy says:

      Hi Melissa, I only put links to recommendations on some of the brands. Others only sell via local dealers so there’s not much I can link to other than the manufacturer’s site, which I have linked in most cases. Hope that helps.

      • Joan says:

        None of the links were active, So Easy. None.

        • Mayra Cecilia says:

          I checked the links and they are working on our side. It could be your browser, this article has been live for a few days and no one has complained before.

          • Sharon H says:

            I am using Safari on my iPhone and iPad and neither has active links except where you link to a company’s page. It appears that when you are linking to Amazon those links are not active, at least not when using Safari. I am interested in finding out which Singer models you recommended.

    • Jess says:

      If you have an ad blocker on your browser, you won’t be able to see the recommendations. You can either disable your ad blocker, or switch to a browser that doesn’t have an ad blocker.

  28. Valerie says:

    Thank you for the information. There were some brands I’d never heard of. Cool. I own a Janome and love it. It is my third sewing machine. Kenmore and brother were the first two. They worked well for a long time and I gave them away to others that wanted to sew but couldn’t afford a machine. My Janome is going strong after 10 years. I will keep the other brands in mind when it’s time to go shopping for a new one, however, I just may be staying with Janome.

  29. Annie says:

    I have a selection of machines I have a white which is 40 years old and it makes the best button holes I have a singer that is treadle and it still works for straight stitching a Williams that is a treadle a embroidery machine that is singer not crazy about it but works most of the time…. A singer industrial machine which works great . My Janome is great and works fine and a Janome S5 its great will sew leather and fur… so all in all they are all good machines . Will buy a Juki next.

    • Amy says:

      I too have a White (like Annie on Nov 16): purchased in 1970! Still works, and I still use it for heavy layers of technical fabrics or canvas – that my other machines just will NOT sew. Also own a Bernina 180E – embroidery is mostly unusable now, due to outdated technology and software, but it sews like a dream. I despise the VERY expensive Babylock I bought to replace the Bernina. Also, 2 sergers: a Babylock 8 thread wave – pain-in-the-neck to use – I mostly use the chain stitch feature; and a 14 year-old Jaguar 4 thread, which is my go-to, despite the manual threading. And once you learn how to thread your serger, it will never be a frustration again.

  30. Susan Robottom says:

    Love my Janome. Only problem is that the buttonhole has different size zigzag on each side and cannot find anyway of altering it.

    • Richard says:

      I have a two Brother sewing machines and there is a screw adjustment to get both sides the same. I was looking online and even watched some videos. It looks like the Janome doesn’t have that feature and that is quirk with the Janome. But, you can try doing the button hole twice. Just keep all your settings the same. Start the button hole a second time. This will make a denser button hole. That is the only suggestion that I have.

  31. Claudia.M says:

    Mit meiner W6 Nähmaschine und auch Overlock, sowie auch mit der Zoje als Industrienähmaschine bin ich super zufrieden 🙂

  32. Audrey Miller says:

    Some information may be misleading. e.g. Husqvarna Viking machines are not made in Sweden any longer.
    I believe an important aspect of selecting a machine is how the manufacturer supports their machines with parts and upgrades. Husqvarna Viking is such a disappointment in this area. I love my Viking machines, especially my machines built in Sweden, but it has become increasingly difficult to get parts for repair and upgrades are non existent after a few short years. I would never buy a new Viking again for those reasons. My understanding is that Bernina is better at supporting their machines in this regard. I would like to know what other brands do a good job at keeping parts and upgrades available.

    • Barb says:

      iI agree with the part as getting qualified persons to work on the machines. In southern Indiana just not good knowledgeable

    • KY Traveler says:

      Audrey I completely agree with you! I had a Viking Designer Ruby Royale for 3 years. Before it turned a year old I had a tension issue. I fought tooth and nail with my local company and headquarters for 3 years to get the machine fixed or to give me a new one. Over that time they had my machine in the shop more than I had it. Eventually no one would respond to my numerous phone calls. I finally just traded it in for a Brother, and the Brother is absolutely amazing! When I started having trouble with the machine and the company I Googled them. Had I done that first, I never would’ve bought a Viking. They are a terrible company! There are numerous stories just like mine. For the price that we pay for those machines no customer should ever have to deal with the things I did.

    • Suzy Wright says:

      My experience is that parts manufacturer’s come and go. With all of the new technology and computerized machines coming on the market, most of the time it becomes a demand decision with companies while circuit boards change and they no longer have their old equipment to make them. Older machines become fewer and wind up as door stops or vintage (history) shelf sitters or family keepers. Newer machines have a whole lot more than what they had 20 years ago. Move up to that newer machine. It’s like an old car, parts are hard to find and the steering is harder. We all must admit, 20 and 30 year old machines are very heavy and were meant to stay put. We all like going to our quilt groups and classes. Husqvarna/Viking still supports their 20 year old basic machines. All of their most important parts of the machine are still all metal and very much fabulous machines.

    • Demetria says:

      I bought my Husqvarna Viking at a fabric store/dealer that works with a repairman. I even got a free 4 hour how to use my machine class!
      I get email notices so I know when the repairman is visiting the store. So I drop off my machine for maintenance then they call me when it’s ready to be picked up. If I have issues with my machine I just wait for the next email notice and do it again!

      The store is in a smaller town 20 minutes away but it’s worth it! They have classes, sell all the sewing machine feet & other accessories, fabric, stabilizers, etc.

      I think that’s the trick to buying a machine is to have a good connection with the a good sewing machine dealer. I will never buy a sewing machine from a retail store ever again!

    • Grandma G says:

      It’s a shame about Viking machines isn’t it? Singer, Viking and Pfaff – all three – are no longer individual entities. They’re all now part of a large conglomerate called SVP. Sadly, because it’s now part of the conglomerate, there are some good Singer-branded machines still made, but they’re no longer the quality of yesteryear. Sears used to put their Kenmore brand on wonderful Japanese-made machines, but they stopped many years ago. Sigh!

      And unless you have something against Brother machines – I have two that I’m very happy with – their phone support is excellent and their machines usually can be serviced by Baby Lock dealers as well as Brother dealers because many of the machines are very similar. Just a thought.

  33. Barb says:

    Good info. I noticed that Baby lock wasn’t in the 10. Do you know why?

    • Felix Fradera says:

      I didn’t wrote the article, but I did some research and learn that the babylock brand is manufactured by brother, so indirectly is coverd in that 10 list.

      • knitbunnie says:

        My understanding is that they’re made by the same manufacturer, but to different standards. I own both brands, and Babylocks are made to higher, better specifications than Brother. They are NOT the same. Ask someone who works on both brands. Babylocks have fantastic dealer-to-customer support, which I cannot say for a Brother that someone buys at Walmart or Amazon.

        • KittyAnn Hudson (KittyAnn) says:

          Your statement is misleading. I agree about the smaller machines sold at discount stores BUT I totally support Brother machines sold via dealers! They are excellent machines and well made. Support is only as good as the dealer who sold the machine. I love my two Brothers purchased at dealer’s stores.

        • Demetria says:

          Oh wow, I didn’t know about that. Good to know.

      • Sandra says:

        Baby Lock is NOT made by Brother. They lease the same factory. I am Baby Lock trained. The machines do have many similarities. However, Baby Lock is American owned and only sells a few beginning machines online. The rest have to be purchased by a local retailer that has to have a trained technician.
        Singer is one of the worst brands from a technician perspective as many of their machines cannot be repaired.

    • Robin says:

      Because Brother manufactures for Baby Lock

    • Helen says:

      It’s my understanding that Babylock is made by Brother. Their machines are very similar.

  34. Michelle says:

    Thank you for creating such an informative article! I defiantly learned a few new things. I personally own a Brother sewing machine. I’m on my second one, thanks to my hubby for the upgrade! I love how versitle it is & how smoothly it sews. There are several attachments that can be purchased to increase your usability of this machine. I would only give up my machine for a higher Brother model. 🙂

  35. M-E Jinno says:

    I have had a Necchi, Bradford, singer, Huskuvana, white, brother, Bernina, Janome. They were newest model when purchased. They have all worked well and all were easy enough for kids to run. I still have most and use for different purposes. I’m a happy sewest. The variety of styles and brands help me to help friends who want to sew on what ever brand sewing machine that they have. Some were inherited when I taught 4Hers how to sew and make garments. When I stopped doing that I passed several on to an after school program and a homeless shelter.If well loved, they work forever almost.

  36. Dale L Bogdan says:

    I’m surprised that you didn’t include Babylock. I love mine and the serger as well. I am pleased with the machines.

    • KittyAnn Hudson (KittyAnn) says:

      Yes! I love my Babylock although my Janome/Babylock dealer said both are made at the same factory and have similar qualities, still. Also Necchi! They have made a comeback in recent years, good reliable machines.

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