As a Beginner, the number of different sewing machine models and choices available in the market today may prove a little overwhelming for you particularly if you are not so familiar with the different terminologies and specifications of different models.
But if you are starting to sew and would like to take baby steps you are better off knowing what you want to do with the machine and the type of use you will put it to when making the decision of which sewing machine to buy
Selecting Your first sewing machine
What should you look at when buying a new sewing machine? What are the most important features and considerations when buying a new sewing machine? Knowing the different features of a sewing machine and why they are important is essential to helping you decide between models. If you don’t know what the features do or why they are important, then how can you compare them?
To choose the best sewing machine suited to your needs you need to know the most important factors to look out for
- Brand name
The best beginner sewing machine brands available are Janome, Brother and Singer. They are all very well built and easy to use even by a beginner and the service is also available easily. There are other brands which are very good but they carry a higher price tag and are best utilized only by a very experienced person. Check out the post on the best sewing machine brands available
Most beginners make the mistake of buying a very basic sewing machine at first but after some experience, they long for some more extra features in their sewing machine
Checkout this post on the different parts of a sewing machine to familiarise with what is in store for you and what feet you should buy.
Some features you would like to have in your sewing machine if you plan to sew your own clothes are
- variable stitch lengths,
- overlocking stitches
- ability to switch to a twin needle
- adjustable presser foot pressure
- Automatic buttonhole.
- Attachments like zipper foot, blind hem foot (Checkout the post on the whole lot of sewing pressure foot attachments you may want to buy with our first sewing machine)
It is foolish to buy a very advanced sewing machine under the influence of a very shrewd seller when you only need a lesser feature rich machine. You should first have a plan to know what you are going to use it for – are you just going to mend the clothes or you want to start a sewing business eventually or maybe you always wanted to embroider on your sewing machine – all of these requiring different features in the sewing machine you eventually buy.
To sew successfully you only really need a straight stitch and a zigzag stitch. These two stitches will allow you to do just about everything you want to do on a sewing machine.
My sewing machine has a lot of stitches and when I bought it first I was very enthusiastic about using all of them but since then I have found that even when I sew every day I rarely use any of those stitches anymore other than the straight stich and the zigzag stitch . The conclusion I have reached is that you really need only 2 stitches – the straight stitch and the zig zag. The rest of the stitches are all very much optional.So don’t go overbudget for things you donot need
Some other features are very handy to have and are necessary for a smooth stitching experience – It is important to be able to adjust the stitch length in different situations like if you are darning or you are curling the edges of a scarf using a hemmer foot
Budget is also very important in your buying decision but that does not mean that you choose the cheapest in the market and end up feeling that you did not get the machine you wanted. Do not go looking for higher end machines if you have a small budget. If you have a budget stick to it. Another way to get around the budget is to look for a second hand machine but you should be sure about the reliability of the seller and the warranty of the product.Check out the post on what to look for when you want to buy a used sewing machine
Buying a very cheap plastic machine which promises many things may look very easy with all the commercial advertisements but do not waste your money there. It may look very cute and easy to sew but if it does not do the work you want it to do and it breaks down after the first few uses, there is no point – you will be put off sewing in all probability.
My advice is for you to buy the best sewing machine you can afford.
First you have to decide on how much you are going to use the machine – are you all enthusiastic about learning new techniques and ways of garment making, then you want a machine with more than a straight stitch. If you have plans for making garments for yourself and if you select a very basic machine without features like buttonholes and zipper feet you are going to be very disappointed.
Are you dreading the thought of learning the ways of the new machine, worrying if it will be too complicated then a very expensive machine with lots of features are not going to be of use to you – you had better stick to machine with some basic features that requires only threading and plugging in. Otherwise once you buy the machine, the thought of learning the new ways will seem very complicated to you and you will slowly keep it aside, not to use it again
If you are planning to start a sewing business in the near future look for an umbrella machine which can be worked for long hours unlike the home sewing machine which can only be worked for a few hours every day. Your dealer can give you some pointers on this.
Now you can go about choosing the best sewing machine with confidence
Buy the right sewing machine at the right price that is just right – for YOU
Once you have that dream machine do not forget to checkout the Learn to sew guide for beginner’s – with lots of sewing tips and techniques or the different easy to sew beginner’s sewing projects or different sewing patterns in this site to make beautiful clothes and accessories.