Choosing a sewing machine: My tips for beginners

The #1 question I get asked about sewing, is WHAT sewing machine to get. And let me tell you, the answer isn't as complicated as you might think.

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To anyone asking that question, my answer is always to use the one you can get your hands on.

Seriously, it doesn't matter if it's your mom's old machine, a random find at your local supermarket, or a family heirloom passed down from your great-grandmother. As long as it's working, you're good to go. You'd be surprised at the beautiful things you can create with even the most basic sewing machine.

But, if you're itching to buy a new one, here’s what I would recommend.

First things first: Don't splurge on a fancy sewing machine. Not yet, at least.

Believe it or not, I'm still rocking the same €200 sewing machine my parents gifted me over 8 years ago. Yep, everything you've seen me create has come from that trusty machine!

Now, don't get me wrong. I do dream of upgrading to a Pfaff quilt ambition™ 635 someday. But for now, I just can't justify dropping nearly €2000 on it. :')

So, what's my recommendation?

Head over to your local sewing machine store (or any Citymarket of Prisma if you're in Finland, otherwise check your local big supermarket) and ask for a good beginner to intermediate machine. Aim for something in the €200-€500 range. You want a machine with a few bells and whistles, but not every fancy feature under the sun.

I would, however, steer clear of the super cheap machines with only basic stitches. Trust me, you'll outgrow them in no time.

Look for a machine with a few stretchy stitches and ideally, an automatic needle threader (this isn’t a must-have, but it will definitely make your life SO much easier!).

For reference, the sewing machine I've been using for 8 years (and counting) is a Singer Fashion Mate, but they've released a few new models since then that I think are quite similar.

Now, I can't vouch for other brands since I haven't used them. But with these guidelines, you should be able to walk into your local sewing machine store and walk out with the perfect machine for you. 🧵✨

If you’re looking to go the Amazon route, here are some links to machines I would opt for if I were searching for a beginner-intermediate machine. But as I mentioned, the only one I have real experience with is the Singer Fashion Mate. 🙂

If you’re looking to go the Amazon route, here is the link to Singers Amazon storefront* where you can browse through all of their sewing machines.

When I looked through the site, these machines caught my eye:

Singer Sew Mate 5400 (US & Canada)* This looks like a newer version of the one I’m using!

Singer C5200 (US & Canada)*

Singer Confidence (US & Canada)*


And, if you live in Finland or Sweden, these links are for you:

Singer Fashion Mate (Finland) This is the exact same sewing machine I have.

Singer Fashion Mate (Sweden)

Singer One*

Singer Heavy Duty*

But, with all of this said. What sewing machine you use doesn’t really matter THAT much. Start with what you have, and note what features you like, what you would like to have in a future machine, and what features you never use. Everyones sewing styles and needs are different. And what works for me might not be what is best for what you’re planning on using the machine for. Go with your gut, and just enjoy the craft as much as possible!

Happy sewing!

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