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Before You Shop for a Sewing Machine Learn about Sewing Machines


Buying a sewing machine is not something you do every day. A sewing machine is probably the largest investment you will make in any of your sewing tools. Making an informed decision will allow you to buy sewing machines that meet your needs and save you hours of frustration. Sewing is fun when the machine works with you to create anything you want.

Know Your Spending Limits and Compare Sewing Machine Models

  • Sewing machines can be found for less than one hundred dollars to over eight thousand dollars.

  • It's very easy to be convinced you will use everything and end up in debt, regretting your decision.

  • Carefully think about how much you are honestly going to use the machine and adjust your spending accordingly.

  • Keep in mind that a bargain is not always a bargain. A machine that is not designed for how and what you want to sew, can lead to hours of frustration.

Get to Know the Dealer - Before You Spend Your Money

  • Online or locally, learn about a machine dealer before you spend your money on a sewing machine.

  • Take classes that are publicly offered.

  • Ask for other's experiences on the forum.

  • Subscribe to newsletters for the best deal and to learn the communication level of a dealer.

  • Know the shipping costs before you place an order.

  • Know the return policy.

  • Have an address and phone number to verify that it is a real company.

Advantages of Having a Local Sewing Machine Dealer

  • Help is a phone call away and they have direct support from the sewing machine manufacturer.

  • Most have their own repair department, which avoids extended repair time leaving you without a sewing machine.

  • Classes usually offered with your purchase, give you the opportunity to learn everything your sewing machine has to offer and learn about optional equipment that may expand your capabilities.

  • Most know the local sewing community so you can meet others to share interests and knowledge.

  • Many will take the machines they sell as trade-ins allowing you to upgrade your machine when you can afford better options.

What to Bring and Test on Sewing Machines

  • Write a list of the kind of sewing you do so the dealer can help you find a machine that is suitable to your needs.

  • Analyze which type of fabrics you would use the most and take samples or scraps with you.

  • Test basic sewing techniques that you use on the sewing machines that you are considering. Make up sample facings, collars, multiple layers to top stitch or what ever you sew before you go to the sewing machine dealer.

  • Even if you aren't planning on sewing buttonholes, test them on the machine you are considering purchasing. Look for even balanced stitching no matter what direction the machine is sewing.

What if You Have Never Sewn Before

  • Learn everything you can about a sewing machine.

  • Learn the names of the sewing machine parts and have a general knowledge of what the parts do.

  • Visit the machine company websites to learn what kinds of machines each one offers.

  • Buy remnants of the fabrics that interest you and take them with you to the machine dealer.

  • Look for basic seam guides that are built into the machine and watch those guides, not the machine needle, when you test drive the machines.

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