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What type of sewing machine lives at your house?

Well, you all know the machine that has served me well for 3 years now.
Click here if you don’t.

 

I get asked frequently what type of sewing machine I use but every time I answer, I think….“Gee, that doesn’t help much. It’s only one type and one person and one preference.” (oh, and one small budget…..believe me, there are pricey machines that I would love to have living at my house. If you know of any swanky machines looking for a place to live, call me….)

 

So, I was thinking…..let’s ask the rest of you.

 

Then I can refer people to this post. And,Why not? You all collectively have a lot more advice than I do.

 

So share it with me. I’m actually really curious what others like.

 
So leave a comment and include:
  1. Brand and model of sewing machine.
  2. Your favorite feature of your sewing machine.
  3. Something that bugs you about your machine.
  4. Price range


I’ll start:

  1. Singer 7444
  2. It has a wide stitch selection. I love having options. Oh, and I love that it’s computerized.
  3. The button-hole setting is very finicky. Sometimes it makes me so steamin’ mad. And I mean steamin’. Grrrr……that is the ONE thing that actually makes me want a new one.
  4. $200

 

Okay, if you have a minute…….go on and share.

 

Don’t be shy.

 
Thanks for checking out my What type of sewing machine lives at your house? post. Check out my full collection of DIY Sewing articles. Find even more sewing projects, patterns, and tips for beginners and advanced sewists by Liz Call, Mariah Leeson, Randi Dukes and Tauni Everett.
 

Comments

  1. Lacey says:

    Type: Singer Ingenuity

    Like: Computerized stitching (70 stitches), easy to use, came with a quilting extension

    Dislike: Gathers fabric dust inside easily

    Price: $200-250

  2. Alida L. says:

    I have a Bernina Artista 185
    It is FABULOUS!! It does embroidery, lots of different stitch options, it's really quiet, automatic thread cutter, computerized so I can download embroidery patterns, I could go on all day.
    Nothing really bugs me about it. Really!
    I don't know how much it cost but it was probably a lot. My mother-in-law gave it to me when she bought a new one. Sweet woman, I love her to pieces!

  3. kimberly says:

    Brother CS6000i
    Really easy to to use. Works flawlessly most of the time and it has tons of stitch options. :-)
    It does have a small problem going through thicker materials (ie – many layers of fabric being sewn together), but I fixed that by buying a heavy duty needle used for sewing jeans.
    I bought mine for $160 from Amazon.

  4. jmberrygirl says:

    It's a Brother. I call it Satan. It's a year old. Approx $150.00 I like that it gets the job done with limited muss and fuss. Most of the time. There's this knotting issue. With the bogging. It makes me crazy, but I am fairly certain the fault lies with the user and not the machine…

    1. IMO says:

      It could be your thread. The ‘bargain’ threads are very expensive and not worth the frustration. Try a better quality thread.

  5. Marlatt Five says:

    Brother LS-2125i

    I love that it's basic because I'm still and intermediate sewer.

    The thread comes loose atleast once every time I sew.

    $100!!

  6. Luv 2 Kreate says:

    1. I have a Series 8 Bernina 820
    2. I LOVE the extra large sewing space, the needle up/down, the thread cutters, extra large bobbin, speed control, really there is so much to love about my machine those are just the TOP ones.
    3. My only complaint is that is didn't come with a straight stitch needle plate. I really would like to get one and I think for the price it should have come with one…JMO
    4. It was a little pricy, but well worth every penny.

    I also have a Singer Ingenuity. I started out with this one, but quickly found it didn't do the things I wanted it to do. I still use it every now and again, and it has been a good machine. It came with all the quilting accessories, and I LOVED that! It was around $300 I think.

  7. Joe, Christina, & Rocky says:

    I have a Brother CE5000 PRW. My Boyfriend got it for me for my birthday – and I had no idea what I was looking for, but I liked that it was the "project runway edition" and it got decent reviews all over.
    I really haven't had any problems with it, but I wouldn't really know any better? It's a great beginner machine with a ton of stitches and really easy-to-read instructions, all digital, ran about $140.
    I've made a bunch of "beginner" projects with it, blankets, pillows and the like – and it's never given me much hassle!

  8. Vone says:

    Juki Industrial sewing machine
    I love it. It can sew through anything. It's actually not as loud as I thought it would be when I got it. And I've used it on many more different types of fabrics than I would have thought too, knits, lightweight satins and leather. You can wined another bobbin while you sew on the side of the machine.
    Downside is it only does straight stitch.
    I bought it for $300 off someone who was moving out of the country but I think it retails for closer to $600.
    I also have a serger and Singer home sewing maching. I use it for the decorative stitchs and buttonholes (it does super easy buttonholes) but I choose my Juki over it whenever I can.

  9. the heller family says:

    I have Singer Inspiration and I think it is perfect for a beginner because of the easy top loading bobbin and it is priced low for around a $100.

  10. Lisa says:

    Baby Lock Allure

    I can sew ANYTHING with it. I have sewn 5 layers of leather and it acted as if it was nothing. Plus it's an embroidery machine.

    There is nothing about it I don't like, I thank my husband for it every week.

    Price, ummmmmm…. much more than I would pay for a machine myself. But totally worth it.

  11. Jen says:

    Singer 403A
    I love that it's not a piece of junk plastic (been there, done that!). It's totally old school, but it gets the job done and is still going strong.
    I do wish it had more bells and whistles, but despite it's age, it actually has a lot of stitches and attachments.
    I bought it used on ebay for about $75, and that included shipping.

  12. Gena says:

    1. Baby Lock Design Pro (pretty basic)
    2. Love the threader feature, so handy, so fast!
    3. There isn't a speed adjustment, which would be really nice for some things when I am trying to be a little more cautious and go slower. My foot just doesn't keep as steady sometimes.
    4. $300ish (I have an awesome grandma-in-law who takes sewing very seriously so she helped pitch in with my husband for an anniversary gift our first year!)

  13. Erica says:

    Brother (something or other it was grandma's)
    I love that it works (and beat the heck out of hand sewing) and was free.
    I battle the bobbin (set in kind) regulary, and the spool holder broke before I got it so the spool falls off regulary.
    I don't think they make it anymore so it is priceless. :)

  14. Suzanne says:

    Type: Baby Lock Xscape; Favorite feature: It's only 12 pounds — very lightweight — but it is a workhorse!!! It has 66 different stitches; Bugs me: Nothing. I love it! Price: Around $350-$400.

    This machine is meant to be traveler — hence its light weight, but I use it all the time and love it!

    (The other day Jodi and I had lunch together and made the connection that you are her sister. I had visited your blog just a few days before for the first time! Small world.)

    – Suzanne
    https://justanotherhangup.blogspot.com/

  15. Logan and Sydney says:

    I have a Brother CE-5000PWR (Project Runway limited edition). I love that it is computerized and was still really inexpensive. Also it has a lot of stitch options. I hate that if something gets stuck or whatever the machine freezes (it happened in the middle of a buttonhole and I could't pick up where I left off after I fixed it). I bought it at walmart after my Singer bit the dust. It was around $150-$200. It was the cheapest digital machine I could find.

    1. Melissa Lane says:

      I am having the same problem would you mind telling me how you fixed the freeze up or Error I think it is 6 Thanks

    2. M says:

      I got one of those sitting in a chair. It lasted about one week here and I knew it would never keep up with me. That’s when I went to a real sewing machine dealer and got my Viking Emerald 183. It does EVERYTHING!! I only have to push the right buttons.

  16. Brenbren says:

    Bernina 220
    It has lots of stitch options, runs smoothly and sews even smoother. I {heart} this machine. Her name is Gigi and she is the newest member of our family!
    I wish it had the turtle and hare option (speed control dial) But it isn't that big of deal.
    $799-950

  17. serra says:

    I am still learning about my machine. I know it's an old bernina– like at least 30 years old and runs like a champ. I love it because I know it will run forever if I take good care of it, and it's got all METAL PARTS!

    price $50 love the DI!

  18. laundryontheline says:

    Kenmore 15618

    This is a strong, sturdy machine, it handles all kinds of weights and thicknesses of fabrics, it is the best buttonholer I have ever had in a machine, it came with a walking foot which I use a lot!
    On the downside I have always had problems with the tension, and after owning it for four years I seem to have run it into the ground (it does get a lot of use though and I do not take it in for "check-ups" so perhaps it is fixable.)
    Cost – around $150 (Canadian)

    1. Robin says:

      I know this was posted awhile ago but I am looking for the kenmore 15618 user manual…just a copy of it.not sure if you would be willing to help with this :)

  19. Jeanna GT says:

    White 2037 (beats my sewing genie)

    It has enough stitch options for a novice like me!

    I just had to get it fixed because the tension is constantly getting messed up

    Around $350

  20. Susie says:

    Bernina Record 930e. It was my mom's and you can't buy them anymore.

    I love that it is easy to use and doesn't get stuck easily.

    I just wish I knew how to use some of the fancier options. Also, I don't have a manual so I have to skim the PDF every time I want to learn something.

    I don't know how much they run for now (used), but I get the impression it was top-of-the-line in the '80s.

  21. angela says:

    1. Bernina 940 (i think)
    2. It was my grandmother's machine.
    3. Haven't found anything yet.
    4. Free (see #2).

  22. Jaimi_C says:

    *Sear's Kenmore 1316
    *It really handles thicker projects with ease.Its a heavy duty metal machine and very plain and simple to use.
    *Wish it had more stitches.
    *I don't know how much it cost. Its a machine from the 80's and my mom got it at a grage sale a long time ago for $15.

  23. burkfamily1 says:

    Jeans Machine by White
    I like that it works for the most part.
    We bought this about 8 years ago when we were pretty poor. The sales lady told me that "Jeans" was just the name of the machine, and that didn't mean it was for sewing jeans. I hoped it would anyway. It was about all we could afford. This machine does not like heavy cloth. It's so frustrating! I do a lot of sewing with heavy cloth, and it clogs up and breaks needles all the time. I can't even tell you how many broken needles I've had. Sometimes I'll break 4 or 5 on just one project, even when I'm trying to be careful. The button hole function doesn't work either. One of these days…..
    It was a long time ago, so I'm not sure how much it cost. Probably between $100 and $200.

  24. Delia says:

    Kenmore…actually I am not sure what type of Kenmore but the basic one from K-Mart I bought almost 4 years ago.

    It has all the basic stuff I need and it has not broken down once in 4 years or needed a tune-up…and I have been hard on it.

    It is REALLY basic. Only like 10 stitch options.

    $50.

  25. Vintage Dutch Girl says:

    Kenmore 19233
    Love having many options, especially the needle-down feature and love the computerization.
    Wish it went faster.
    $450

    Also new Brother serger 1034D. So far so good…it just scares me a bit!

  26. Lara says:

    I own a Singer 2263.

    It is pretty basic, my husband bought it for me.

    It is perfect for the beginners!

    I LOVE it!

    It was $100.

  27. kris says:

    husqvarna viking rose sewing/embroidery machine with quilting attachments
    nice included stitches, super smooth and quiet
    nothing bugs me, it's a great machine
    it's discontinued, you can get it for $300-$500 on ebay now

  28. Pink Heather says:

    I still have the Kenmore my parents bought me for graduation back in the early 80's. Have no idea what it cost.
    The thing I hate about it is having to buy the needles through Sears. I wonder if they even still make them? The last time I bought needles was probably 20 years ago and I stocked up… BIG TIME.
    I love that it still sews. I use it more on my scrapbook pages now, rather than sewing fabric, though I still need to do the occasional mending.
    I'm going to need needles soon. Paper really dulls them fast.

    1. Brenda says:

      You DO NOT have to buy your needles from Sears. Most home sewing machines take a common needle size available everywhere. You should change your needles often, that can make a big difference in your stitching quality. I buy Schmetz by the 100 when on sale at the dealer but you can get them 1/2 off @ Joann’s w/cpn or at Walmart or online. I have about 50 machines including new and old Kenmores and all my machines take this same needle system. Best wishes.

    2. IMO says:

      Brenda,
      Are you serious? About 50 – FIFTY – machines? You must have one gigantic sewing room! 50? Wow.

    3. Brenda says:

      The machines are stashed all over my house. But I DO have a large sewing room, 27 x 43, because I got a position teaching sewing at the local Community Center.

  29. Merry says:

    I don't have one, but this post is definitely so helpful! I'm thinking about getting one soon.

  30. Courtney says:

    Janome (2 years old, step up from basic model)
    I really like the automatic button hole and the drop in bobbin.
    I wish that it had a curvy stitch.
    I think it was around $300.

    My Grandmother is an Expert seamstress and she recommends Janome as a good "inexpensive" machine.

  31. Lauren says:

    1. Janome Sew Precise
    2. LED screen tells you what your stitch length/width needs to be when you change your stitch setting = no looking it up in the manual every single time
    3. One-step button-hole…argh! Tear my hair out frustrating!!
    4. $350, I think (I got it on sale)

  32. Jen says:

    I wish I had a sewing machine!

    1. IMO says:

      When you do get ready to buy one, I would suggest going for quality (good reputation, solid, METAL if you can find it, etc.) over a machine with a bunch of bells & whistles & fancy stitches you’ll probably never use. There are few things more frustrating than having a fancy machine that won’t even sew a straight or zig-zag stitch without major hassle. Go for quality and simplicity….you can always get fancier.

      Here, my comment is almost 4 years later…..hope you finally have a sewing machine!

  33. Carole says:

    Janome QC (Quilters Companion) 6125. I don't think you can get this specific model any more. It's a good entry level quilting machine.
    What I love – lots of stitches, it came with everything you need to quilt, which is awesome.
    What I don't like – it's a bit clunky.
    Cost – I think it was $700 (CND).

  34. Nancy says:

    I have a Bernina 440.
    I love the needle up/down and the knee lift…
    I wish it had an automatic thread cutter…
    I can't remember exactly how much it costs, cause I traded in another Bernina and then added some cash…

    1. Peaches Norsworthy says:

      I have the very same machine, And twin new grandsons. I am trying to stitch #156 around baby blankets for them (the hearts) I don:t know h ow to get into the 100’s on the machine. There is somthing I need to press. Do you know ? Thanks

  35. Kalleigh Hathaway says:

    Ha ha … this assumes I have only one machine!

    1. 1920's Singer (electric with knee pedal power)
    2. Simple and easy; never any tension problems – I use it only for piecing quilts since it only does a straight stitch in one direction (although there is a fancy buttonhole attachment contraption)
    3. Doesn't have a backstitch – I'd use it much more if it did
    4. No idea. I think I found mine for $10 at a yard sale about 20 years ago.

    1. 1980's Bernina – have no idea what model. I traded my bare bones 1990's Singer for it to a wealthy family friend who doesn't know how to sew but didn't want to be without a machine.
    2. Lots of fancy stitches and feet
    3. Sometimes has tension issues, especially with machine quilting. Also the bobbin winder is kind of broken so I wind all my bobbins on my Singer.
    4. No clue, either what it cost back in 1982 when it was probably retailing, or now to buy used.

    I don't do much sewing beyond chain stitching quilt pieces and the occasional machine quilting project, so I actually use the Singer more often. I had to pull out the Bernina when making the last few Cathedral Windows quilts I did because I needed to go backwards and forwards several times when sewing the base squares. These machines do everything I need them to. My mom has one of those fancy Husqvarna Vikings that she puts computer disks into and it sews her embroidery patterns while she works on her serger or standard machine, but with just my quilting and the occasional basic craft, I'm happy with what I've got.

  36. bethany says:

    Brother innovis-40
    I love that this machine is quiet, has an awesome button holer, and should last me a long time!
    Nothing-absolutely nothing bad about it.
    around $400

  37. Holly says:

    1. Viking Husqvarna 190 Selectronic. It's at least 20 years old. My mom had one like it that I used in my teen years (she still has it). My parents wanted to get me jewelry for my college graduation gift, and practical gal that I am, I asked for a sewing machine instead. And it was used at the time.

    2. I love that it's simple, especially by today's computerized standards! I'd much rather embroider by hand than by machine. It's a workhorse, and I dread the day it breaks and I have to wade through all the fanciness that's out there today.

    3. Last year I sent it in for a tuneup, and I *swear* the neutral needle position is a little to the left of where it used to be!

    4. No idea what it cost. You probably can't get one anymore.

    1. Kimberly says:

      Hi Holly! I think you and I are the only people with the Viking 190! I inherited from my mother a few years ago. I am teaching myself to sew and quilt. The Viking manual is completely, completely useless. If I have questions, can I ask you? I don’t have any in particular now, but it would be nice to have someone to talk with if I need it. I just discovered the few decorative stitches on the left, in green….I never really paid attention to them….who knew you could slide that stitch length selector all the way to the left?! I felt like I won the lottery! Glad I found them b/c I can’t seem to get my zigzag tension right, so I’m using one of them for 154 applique circles that I’m making for my first quilt project. :O I get grandiose ideas sometimes that backfire. I need to have my machine serviced, but I’m using it every day, so I hate to lose my momentum! Anyway, have a great day. If you don’t mind questions, please email me at krschneider@sbcglobal.net. It sounds like you sew a lot and therefore, know a lot more about the machine than I do, but if I can help you in any way, I’d be happy to do so.

      —Kim

    2. M says:

      does it not have the stitches on the ‘lid’ or a pull out piece on the bottom?

    3. Linda Morris says:

      I bought a Viking 190 back in 1982-1983 after both sons were in school. I had all sorts of plans of things I would sew. Then my library job in my sons’ school came to me. No more time to sew. This weekend I got this little used machine out to practice making a baby quilt for a future grandchild in August. I love this machine and the way it handles. These were supposed to be some of the best made sewing machines for the time they were made. I look forward to making a few projects during my retirement years.

    4. Linda Morris says:

      P.S. My son has the old treadle Cabinet Singer Sewing Machine thay my mother had. I loved that machine. I made me a number of clothes on it in my teen years. As long as you can still buy belts and machine oil, that machine is a great forward and backward stitch machine. Son loved the cabinet, but maybe a granddaughter will lean to use it.

  38. tinahead81 says:

    brother lx3125
    i love that its very easy to use(i'm a beginner-never used a sewinig machine before)
    i wish it had the automatic threader
    it was $54(its a referb)@ overstock.com

  39. Emma says:

    1. Brother CS-6000i
    2. I am a VERY beginner sewer, and it's perfect for me, very easy to use. It has a lot of different stitches, which are fun, and it comes with a free motion quilting foot, which I haven't used yet, but I am excited to try it out.
    3. At first, I had a lot of problems with the bobbin getting stuck and the thread getting caught and breaking, but I think it was user error with a tension setting.
    4. It was a gift, but I think it was around $150-$200

    http://www.elaiswhatisay.blogspot.com

  40. peaches says:

    husqvarna Emerald 183
    like all the different stitches, can also stich letters (only one style, but it is nice),
    when I put down the feed dog, it sometimes takes a few try and error to put it back.
    But that is the only small thing.
    And I love the fact that I can choose the speed and that it is computerised.
    Love the machine. Costs around 600 euro.

    1. M says:

      I have a Viking Emerald 183. It does everything and easy to operate. Price was on sale for US$1000. It only wants one type of thread and certain needles for certain sewing tasks but it is a gem. Takes awhile to get used to after the old Singers that were work horses. I would say that it is intermediate in price. The $1000 was well invested as I make all my clothes, dog clothes and about live with it. Also make some men clothing, reupholstering, etc.

  41. Stephanie says:

    1. Singer 'Pixie'
    2. 8 different stitch options, small, purple (!!)
    3. I tried sewing on some stretchy material and it was just not working – but, I think that was more the user than the machine…
    4. $40-$45 (Wal-Mart)

    For being a major beginner in the land of sewing, I really didn't want to spend much mony at all, and only happened to buy this machine because it was on sale…and for what I do with it, I love it! It sews cotton fabrics like a dream, and seems to be very 'idiot proof'! (That, and because it was inexpensive, I'm not afraid I'm going to break it, which means I actually use it!)

  42. sjones says:

    I have a Kenmore 18221
    It has basic stitches and some decorative stitch options.
    Nothing bugs me so far I'm loving it!
    The price range is $99-$130 (depending on what sale is happening).

  43. LeAnn says:

    1.Baby lock Decorators choice
    2.Lots of stitch choices, reliable, fast, computerized functions and the easy button holes.
    3.It's kind of whimpy. It doesn't handle TONS of fabric well. But I think I'm a little tough on it sometimes.
    4. $500 ish

    my dream sewing machine is a Bernina. Those things are tough!

  44. Cheryl says:

    1. Brother SE270D
    2. Dummyproof time savers like automatic threader, bobbin loader, built in scissors & digital troubleshooting guide AND does embroidery (haven't tried that out though)
    3."Safety" feature that freezes machine if something gets stuck
    4. Got it for $255

    1. Anonymous says:

      I have been using that same machine for years! Every so often I fight with the tension and very thick fabrics, that’s when I turn to my 1958 Kenmore 117.841. It’s a workhorse and never lets me down. But, the Brother SE270D has really done a lot of sewing for me throughout the years, with not much complaining.

  45. Jackie says:

    I'm a beginner so I'll be difficult….all I know is that I have an older Singer (probably 20-30 years old) that I bought off Craigslist. I haven't used all of the stitches and stuff yet since some of it scares me….
    But in the month or two I have had it, it has served me well (as I swear and rip seams) :)

  46. Bobbie says:

    I have a Bernina 1008. It really does not have a lot of bells and whistles. It basically just have need for the straight stitch and zig zag. I have also used the zipper, buttonhole, and some decorative stitches.
    THe only thing that bugs me about my machine is when it needs a tune up…man it groans and moans and lets me know its time for some tlc…It has only happened a couple of times in 3 yrs.

    I have not a clue what the price range is…I received it as a christsmas present from my parents. It was used, but barely used. I would definitely go to a sewing machine shop and let them know you are interested in a good machine that is a trade in. All I know is they got a great deal on it.

  47. Carrie says:

    Brother CS-6000i
    I LOVE the fact that it has over 50 stitch options, some of them are very fancy and cute!
    I don't really have anything that makes me mad about it, cause when it freaks out most of the time it's something I have done to mess it up.
    $175-$200

  48. Look What I Did says:

    Janome 8077
    Internal metal parts and some really pretty stitch options
    I really don't know yet… I just got it for Christmas and have only been practicing with it so far
    I think it was around $300?

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