Compare these machines to find the best sewing machine for making clothes. Pick one that fits your budget since these machines are perfect for beginners.
When you are making clothes the most important stitches you need are a straight stitch and a zigzag stitch. All the other fancier stitches are great to have, but they are not essential.
I have not sewn on all of these machines I talk about in this post, but I have sewn on some. Do your research instead of relying solely on my advice to find the best sewing machine for you!
There are affiliate links in this post. I only link to things I recommend. All opinions are my own.
Where to buy a beginner sewing machine
There are lots of places to find good sewing machine for sewing clothes. If you are okay with buying used I would check thrift stores, yard sales, and facebook marketplace. The machine might need a tune up, but vintage machines usually work very well.
Next, check you local dealer for any used machines they might be selling. They get used machines which they tune up, and then they resell for a good price. This is a great way to get a more expensive brand for cheap.
Buy the best machine you can afford at the time, even if it’s used, so that when you want to upgrade you will be able to use it for a trade in.Heather Paulsen – Heather Handmade
If you are really set on buying a new machine, I would check your local dealer and Amazon. The prices at your local dealer are more expensive than Amazon, but when you buy from a dealer the parts inside are metal instead of plastic which is better quality. Even if you don’t buy a machine from a dealer, you should know where a local dealer is so that you know where to get your machine cleaned or fixed.
It really depends on your budget and how much you will be using the sewing machine. If you need a place to ask for advice I would ask in one of these sewing facebook groups. I bought my machine from a dealer, but it was a used older model.
mechanical vs computerized
There’s a debate about whether a mechanical sewing machine is bettern than a computerized sewing machine. A mechanical sewing machine is one that uses electricity but only uses buttons and knobs. A computerized sewing machine is one that uses electricity, but it has a screen with options. The really expensive computerized sewing machines essentially have a small touch screen tablet on the front of it.
In all the research I’ve done, it seems like the computerized part of a sewing machine can fail making your sewing machine stop working even though all the parts are in good condition. All of the expensive machines are computerized so you can’t really get away from it.
This is the most inexpensive sewing machine on this list. Brother makes sewing machines very accessible to all budgets. It has high ratings and has lots of different stitches.
Bernette machines are made in Bernina factories, so they are well made but not as expensive as Bernina. This is the most basic Bernette, and it's mechanical.
Baby Lock makes really good sewing machines and this is the cheapest option. I've heard that there's rarely tension problems when using a Baby Lock.
This sewing machine is a great affordable option. I have used one of these machines, and it sewed great. I didn't see tension issues very often.
I have used some Husqvarna Viking sewing machines and they sewed great. They can often be found in your local Joann Fabrics store.
These basic machines are great for making clothes or any other sewing you want to do. It's mechanical and simple to use!
This is another Brother sewing machine that has very high reviews. It's more expensive than the other Brother sewing machine, but I've seen friends makes all kinds of clothing on this machine. It has a lot of stitches to work with.
I have never sewn on an Elna sewing machine, but I know a lot of people recommend them. There are lots of stitches, and it's mechanical.
This is another machine that I have never used, but I know a lot of people love it. It's simple and easy to use.
Bernina machines are not cheap, but they sew beautifully. I grew up using a Bernina and currently have a used Bernina, so I am a little biased. If you want a Bernina buy a used option so it won't be so expensive.
If you have a question about any of these machines, please share it on social media with the hashtag #heatherhandmade and tag me!