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Sewing In The Barn | Choosing a sewing machine

Sewing In The Barn is an Educational site for your easy

Sewing and Serging reference, we do not sell any products.
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What sewing machine should I buy?

Everyone has their own view about what brand of sewing machine is best to learn on as evidenced every time some new user asks what machine should I buy? That is not the best question to ask.  Keep in mind that name-brand buyers will often urge to buy their favorite brand of machine regardless of the price or suitability for your needs.


The way to figure out which machine is going to work best for you is after deciding what your budget is, determine what do you want to sew with it?  


Clothing construction machines have many options that are not needed if you really only intend to sew dog bandanas or other things that require only a straight stitch heavy duty machine.  It is better to buy a lower end reliable machine without every bell and whistle and then plan to buy a full featured machine later when your skills and interest level are sure to want to continue sewing.  Many people buy a high-end machine, try it a few times, and in the closet it goes forever more. Start with something simple and see if you like sewing and if you want to stick with it.


Consider the scope of what type items you want to sew and then start out by size and weight and reliability ratings at   That is a reliable unbiased site you can get honest reviews from folks who own the brand and model they are reviewing and they are not trying to sell you any one brand over another.

One word about the machines sold as starter machines for kids - avoid them, all models on the mini machines are poorly made, regardless of brand - these are sold as throw away machines oftern for less money than other machines.  No matter how cute they are - it is throwing good money after bad and there are no replacement parts, presser feet or others. 
Mini sewingmachine image   Mini sewingmachine image    Mini sewingmachine image      Mini sewingmachine image

Two entry level machines to consider for basic sewing - both models are lightweight easy to carry to classes, have basic clothing construction stitches included with buttonhole attachment and will work well for most everyone.



Janome Jem Platinum 720 image Janome Jem Platinum 720 

This is a great little workhorse usually hard to find on the used market but worth the effort if you can get one. It is a basic computerized model that weight 12 lbs. and parts are easy to get for them. Check any Janome Sewing dealer as they will refurbish these when then accept them as trade-ins for higher end models.


Brother LX3817 image

Brother LX3817   

this model is a good basic mechaincal machine usually available at Walmart for about $79.00

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