Best Embroidery Machine For Beginners (2021 Buyer’s Guide)

When starting your sewing and embroidery journey, it can be daunting and confusing to pick which sewing and embroidery machine is the best embroidery machine for beginners.

Some have many features – but are they the right ones? No one wants to spend a small fortune on a machine that isn’t right for them.

Don’t panic – this lineup is here to help.

If you’re a beginner to sewing and embroidery machines or looking to dip your toes into the world of creating, then read on as we dive into embroidery machines for beginners. Will you find the right machine for you?

Best Embroidery Machines for Beginners

Top Pick

Brother PE800 Embroidery Machine

A beginner-friendly unit that comes with a lot of features and can import additional designs easily.

Brother PE800 Embroidery Machine

When it comes to solely embroidery projects, I think that the PE800 embroidery machine takes the cake as one of the best embroidery machines.

This one gives users a no nonsense embroidering experience.

New embroiders shouldn’t have to spend hours learning sewing elements on a machine for beginners either.

In general, they should find a machine that allows them to focus on amazing embroidery designs.

Best for Sewing and Embroidery

Janome MOD-30 Computerized Sewing Machine

Gives an amazing experience and number of features, all without an astronomical price tag.

Janome MOD-30 Computerized Sewing Machine

This comes in at best for the money as it has a host of accessories and gives users round up of the sewing experience without spending a small fortune.

It’s best for those who have little to no sewing time behind the pedal of an embroidery machine.

Best Combination Sewing and Embroidery Machine

Brother SE1900 Sewing and Embroidery Machine

A great embroidery machine for beginners with a whole bunch of feet and accessories that allow users to dive straight into embroidery design work.

Brother SE1900 Sewing and Embroidery Machine

This has a high number of stitches, designs, and accessories that allow users to grow, but without outgrowing a computerized sewing and embroidery machine.

There are elements such as an automatic needle threader and LCD display which makes it easy to design and work.

Top Embroidery Machines for Beginners

Here are all the products from the lineup…

Brother SE600

Makes sewing and embroidery projects a breeze thanks to its built in designs and other helpful features.

Brother SE600

It’s no secret that I love the Brother SE600. I’ve included this easy to use machine in many roundups regarding the best embroidery machine for beginners.

Features

I find that the Brother SE600 makes sewing and embroidery projects a breeze thanks to 80 built in designs and 103 built in stitches.

I know many individuals within the sewing and creating community who swear by this machine, and I myself have used this embroidery and sewing machine many times as I like the 4 x 4 embroidery area.

Free Arm

The free arm also makes creating apparel fast and easy – no longer should you have to struggle with arms and sleeves.
Those looking to jump straight into a creation can do so thanks to the included selection of presser feet for a tailored and personalized sewing experience.

Editing

Speaking of personalization, this unit allows users to edit work via the LCD screen which gives creators many different design options.

Custom embroidery designs can be uploaded to this unit easily via the USB port too – it makes designing quick and easy.

Specs

  • Color: White
  • Material: Metal
  • Power Source: Treadle Cord
  • Dimensions: 21.18 x 15.51 x 16.54 inches
  • Weight: 11.8 Pounds

Pros

  • Custom import of designs via USB port
  • LCD touch screen display
  • 4 X 4 embroidery hoop

Cons

  • N/A

Best for Sewing and Embroidery

Janome MOD-30

Gives an amazing experience and number of features, all without an astronomical price tag.

Janome MOD-30

Here is another Janome unit. If I were to start my sewing journey all over again, there’s a high chance that I’d go with this computerized sewing machine as it gives an amazing experience and number of features, all without an astronomical price tag.

Designing

This is another unit that gives embroiders the chance to edit stitch length up to 7MM to create bold, dramatic designs.

This is perfect for beginners as it allows them to focus on stand out embroidery designs rather than small, fiddly designs or creations.

Stitching

Despite having a small price, this Janome machine has a robust stitch ability, delivering 750 stitches per minute which can be selected and edited via the LCD screen.

This Janome sewing and embroidery machine comes with 30 built in stitches, which I think is the ideal amount for those just starting out.

Feed Dog

There is also a helpful feed dog system so users aren’t left tackling materials when trying to guide them through a sewing space or work area. One thing to note is that there is not a USB port for users to import their own designs.

Specs

  • Color: White
  • Material: Metal
  • Power Source: Power Cable
  • Dimensions: 7 x 16 x 12 inches
  • Weight: 12.7 Pounds

Pros

  • Selection of stitches perfect for beginners
  • Good features for its price

Cons

  • No Knee Lift
  • Slower Stitches Per Minute Sewing Speed
  • Built in stitches may not be enough for machine pros

Brother PE535

If you want to start working with small designs that can be developed, then this embroidery-only machine might be the one for you.

Brother PE535

If you’re looking for a machine that I think is likely to last a long time, the PE535 may be for you, coming with a 25 year limited warranty.

Clearly, Brother is confident this is an embroidery machine that will last.

Build In Designs

Embroidery enthusiasts and creators can choose from 80 built in designs on the 3.2” LCD touch screen, making projects quick and easy.

I like that there is also a range of themes for designs, especially the floral ones.

Those who like to work with fonts and personalized designs can develop upon the 9 fonts – 6 English and 3 Japanese.

Customization

The Pattern Drag and Drop feature also allows users to execute work in a jiffy by using a finger to position designs.

If you like to work with a custom design consistently, then you can upload that to the built in memory unit via the embroidery machine USB port.

Function

This is an embroidery only machine, so if you’re looking for a sewing hybrid unit, then this is unfortunately not your unit.

However, if you’re just about to jump into working with small designs that can be developed, then the PE535 may be the perfect embroidery machine for you.

Specs

  • Color: White
  • Material: Metal | Plastic
  • Power Source: Treadle
  • Dimensions: 16.5 x 7.8 x 12 inches
  • Weight: 15 Pounds

Pros

  • Import designs to memory via USB port
  • 25 warranty
  • 80 sewing stitches

Cons

  • Not a sewing machine

Top Pick

Brother PE800 Embroidery Machine

A beginner-friendly unit that comes with a lot of features and can import additional designs easily.

Brother PE800 Embroidery Machine

Coming in with 650 stitches per minute, the Brother PE800 embroidery machine is another embroidery only machine unit for beginners – sorry sewers!

This is another embroidery machine that I think beginners will love as they can easily import custom designs via the USB port computer connectivity of computerized embroidery units.

Built In Designs

There are also over 130 built in designs that can be selected from the 3.2” screen, where designers can also rotate, resize, and edit designs.

As for fonts, there are 11 which gives users a vast amount of design potential

I have recommended the PE800 in the past for home businesses or those used to working with fonts professionally.

However, this computerized embroidery machine is so easy to use and I would recommend it to beginners since the interface is not overly complicated.

Extra highlights

Beginners can also rest knowing that their designs are stitch safe, thanks to the backstitch element that can un-stitch 1, 10, or 100 stitches at a time.

Should something happen to the power, or there is an electrical short and the machine ends up suddenly turning off, all is not lost – this embroidery machine will remember where it left off.

Embroidery Field

This machine also has a large embroidery field of 5 x 7, which is one of the larger fields for a Brother unit and won’t leave you squinting when designing.

This is another machine that Brother has built to last, or at least that’s what the 25 year warranty would suggest.

Either way, users can be assured that they are covered by a warranty should a fault occur with the machine – of course like all machines, read any warranty in full!

Specs

  • Color: White
  • Material: Metal
  • Power Source: Treadle
  • Dimensions: 21.75 x 19.02 x 19.09 inches
  • Weight: 13.7 Pounds

Pros

  • Remembers where it’s up to with a designs
  • Backstitch element
  • 5 x 7 large embroidery field – which is one of largest embroidery fields of a brother embroidery machine.
  • Year limited warranty
  • Built in USB port for computer connectivity
  • Good for lettering fonts

Cons

  • Not a sewing machine
  • Not the fasted built-in sewing stitches speed for machine pros

Singer Futura XL400 Embroidery Machine

A combo machine unit that offers some of the best brand experience when it comes to an all-around embroidery and sewing machine.

Singer Futura XL400 Embroidery Machine

If you want a combination machine unit that offers some of the best brand experience when it comes to an all-around embroidery and sewing machine, the XL 400 may be the one.

Firstly, the XL 400 quite literally outshines most competition, as it has 6 staybright LED light elements which really come in use when sewing in the dark.

I sometimes end up sewing late into the night ,so if you’re anything like me then this would be handy.

Features

Beginners don’t tend to go big when it comes to first designs, but if you like to go against convention and throw yourself into a project and design, then this Singer unit has multi-hoop capabilities which can extend designs up to 12X20 with a 650 stitches per minute capability.

This machine makes the experience easy, as the XL400 has a SwiftSmart sewing system which threads needles so you don’t have to.

Extra highlights

This is another of the best embroidery machines for beginners as it has 125 built in designs. Those who like to work with their own designs can do so thanks to the USB port computer connectivity capability, which allows users to upload embroidery patterns and work.

Durability

Singer machines are known for lasting a long time, and all the ones I’ve personally owned have confirmed it.

They are covered by a long 25 year warranty so users can craft in peace for a quarter of a century.

Beginner Friendly

Used to using a different brand or machine?

Don’t worry – this Singer unit comes with a helpful guide, DVD, and instructions that show how to set up the machine and what to do if you encounter any issues during a project.

Specs

  • Color: White
  • Material: Metal
  • Power Source: Power Cord
  • Dimensions: 866.14 x 374.02 x 511.81 inches
  • Weight: 23 Pounds

Pros

  • Extra large multi-hooping space
  • Over 100 different built in designs
  • Bright LED Light

Cons

  • Price is too high for some
  • Not best for beginners or first time use

Janome 4120QDC

A unit with a range of built-in stitches and an extension table for easier crafting.

Janome 4120QDC

If you have been looking at the best machines for machine embroidery for beginners, then it’s likely that you’ve heard of Janome and their Memory Craft machines.

I personally think that their 4120QDC unit is the one of the best computerized sewing and embroidery machine units for beginners for many reasons.

Function

Firstly, it is built to deliver a variety of design projects and types of sewing. With 120 built in stitches, this embroidery and sewing machine makes it easy for crafters to stitch to their heart’s content.

There is an extension table for users to work on bigger projects in a larger work area once their size of their designs dictates to do so.

Extra highlights

This is not a slow machine either, and coming in at 820 stitches per minute this is more than enough for beginners to push out projects in a swift manner.

There are also time saving elements that improve the overall sewing experience such as the automatic thread cutter which can swiftly snip thread as needed.

Features

A 7mm stitch length also allows for bold, standout designs which is enough for any sewer despite their levels of experience.

The handy LCD screen makes it easy to on screen edit designs so users can get on with a project at the push of a button.

Whether that’s fashion or quilting, this Janome machine for beginners can execute many built in designs and custom ones too.

Specs

  • Color: Tan
  • Material: Metal
  • Power Source: NA
  • Dimensions: 15 x 19 x 10 inches
  • Weight: 22.2 Pounds

Pros

  • Easy to use screen
  • Many built in embroidery designs
  • Cool colour that would fit many modern spaces
  • Instructional DVD
  • Machine embroidery feet included
  • Expandable work area
  • Automatic thread cutter

Cons

  • Colour not for all spaces

Brother SE625 Computerized Embroidery Sewing Machine

Execute designs quickly and accurately with its swift stitch speed and editing capability.

Brother SE625 Computerized Embroidery Sewing Machine

Beginners looking to create work in a flash without spending forever on a project might like the SE625. In my eyes, it is one of the swift best embroidery machines at 710 stitches per minute.

The large 3.2” Sew Smart LCD color screen allows users to see their designs in full color and edit them before executing.

Designs

For a beginner machine the SE625 has a total of 103 built in stitches, 280 embroidery designs so users can create some amazing work. 80 are built in – 200 are included on a CD which can be uploaded to the machine.

These cover sports, nature and my favorite – floral, again.

Features

As is standard with a Brother embroidery machine or hybrid combination sewing machine, there are a number of features and design aspects on offer that are not available with other providers – the SE625 is no exception.

I would suggest this to beginners as this has a number of built in sewing stitches and designs for those new to the craft.

Learning

This allows you to develop skills and not have to worry about investing in a new machine. This machine comes with everything you need in sewing machines for those with lower skills than machine pros.

From beginner to Project Runway in no time – that’s how easy this is to use.

Specs

  • Color: White
  • Material: Metal
  • Power Source: Cord
  • Dimensions: 21.06 x 16.42 x 15.28 inches
  • Weight: 25.3 Pounds

Pros

  • Many built-in designs
  • Full color screen
  • Tailor color of individual threads
  • 4 X 4 Embroidery hoop

Cons

  • Expensive for some
  • Screen could be bigger for those with accessibility issues such as sight

Best Combination Sewing and Embroidery Machine

Brother SE1900

A great embroidery machine for beginners with a whole bunch of feet and accessories that allow users to dive straight into embroidery design work.

Brother SE1900

This is another great embroidery machine for beginners with a whole bunch of feet and accessories that allow users to dive straight into embroidery design work.

The SE1900 was built with beginners and ease of use in mind, as it has an automatic needle threader and a jam resistant bobbin thread – something I wish my machine had when I started!

Embroidery Field

There is also a large 5 x 7 embroidery field with embroidery hoop so users can focus on the designs – not whether they can see them.

Like the machine mentioned above, this is another machine for beginners as it comes with a quick setup and 25 year warranty for those looking for something easy to use and with the potential for a long life.

Designs

Should that be the case, designers shouldn’t worry about running out of design potential as the Brother SE1900 has 138 built in designs and 240 built in stitches.

These include 11 lettering fonts – that’s an amazing amount of possibility which can all be selected at a push of a button on the LCD touch screen display.

Overwhelming Choices

It is worth noting that some beginners could get overwhelmed by the amount of stitches and design potential if they are not used to working with these kinds of sewing machine units. To that, I say stick with it, it really is a great machine!

Specs

  • Color: White
  • Material: Metal
  • Dimensions: 23.19 x 13.43 x 11.54 inches
  • Weight: 22.1 Pounds

Pros

  • 25 year limited warranty
  • Automatic needle threader
  • Large embroidery field and embroidery area
  • 11 Lettering fonts

Cons

  • Number of stitches can be overwhelming to some with less experience

Frequently Asked Questions

Sewing Gold Colored Fabric
Sewing Gold Colored Fabric

Why buy a sewing and embroidery machine?

Beginners and experts alike should buy a sewing and embroidery machine in order to get the very best from embroidery designs, projects or commissions.

Embroidery cannot be achieved successfully without specially designed embroidery machines that work to deliver projects with ease and fluidity.

Function

You can buy an embroidery machine that solely focuses on embroidery designs and has elements such as embroidery field features to improve projects.

Combination or hybrid sewing and embroidery machines for beginners come with features that are designed for sewing items too.

So, they feature elements such as an automatic needle threader or extended embroidery field for users to tailor and make creative custom embroidery machine projects.

What’s the difference between sewing and embroidery?

Man Doing Embroidery
Man Doing Embroidery

When sewing, a user creates a product or item.

Embroidery is typically used to enhance that item through designs or personalization of patterns and stitches.

A hybrid machine will be built to accommodate thicker thread that embroidery requires, as well as thinner thread typically used in sewing projects.

Beginners should keep this in mind, as this means thread is another element to consider and potentially another thing to purchase and keep track of during your embroidery journey.

How long do embroidery machines for beginners last?

Like anything, the answer to this question comes down to the life of an embroidery machine and how it is looked after and maintained.

Normally, an embroidery machine for beginners or experts alike can last well past a decade at least.

However, I know of embroidery machine units that are almost double – if not three times older – and still going strong. So, it totally depends.

Intended Use

If you use an embroidery machine for what it was designed for, within its capabilities then I would say you should expect to still have your embroidery machine for beginners when you are an expert sewer.

However, if you are someone who uses an embroidery machine past its capabilities, you should expect your machine to live a shorter life than others – elements such as the LED light could begin to fail.

For example, I once had a machine where I ran through the motor, which ruined the LED light as it messed with the embroidery machines circuits.

Monogramming & Embroidery: Differences

Monogram

A monogram is normally two letters made into a decorative motif and has roots in documents found in Ancient Greece and Ancient Rome.

A monogram was used to personalize items and normally was made with a person’s name or initials.

Here is video on monograming on a towel using a PE800.

DIY Monogram Towels 2 Easy Ways ✂️ Brother PE800 Embroidery Machine | SEWING REPORT

Embroidery

Embroidery is the process of creating patterns and designs on items such as clothing or quilts in order to give it a more personalized appearance.

Embroidering also allows users to tailor a design and have control over the final product and what it looks like.

Examples

Monograms can be stitched on, but these wouldn’t be classed as embroidery designs, they would still be monograms.
However, if a flower was put onto a family quilt for example – this would be embroidery.

Thread: Sewing and Embroidery

As mentioned above, sewing thread is thinner than embroidery thread used by an embroidery machine as it is made to be concealed – normally in hems.

Embroidery Thread

However, embroidery designs are made to stand out with thread varying in size from 30 – 60.

60 is the thinnest, 30 is the thickest and used by thick designs like cross stitch.

If it wasn’t obvious already, thread can also affect the final outcome of a product or embroidery design.

Thread Types

For example, I work with cotton as I prefer the matte feel that it gives to a design. I don’t like to work with Rayon as I personally find it unravels easily and often.

When creating smaller items such as children’s fashion or embroidery designs, I like to work with a polyester thread as it is more durable and is likely to last longer in the wash, and a child’s everyday life – I also find this thread stands out and is more colorful than traditional threads.

Things to consider when buying the best embroidery machine for beginners

Purpose

Woman Sewing at Home
Woman Sewing at Home

SIt back and think about what you want to use the machine for and the life it will lead.

If you are a regular reader, you will know that I love to go on about the purpose of the best embroidery machines as in my eyes, purpose affects every aspect of sewing and embroidery machine life.

Features

Ask yourself what features or elements you want from the best embroidery machine in order to truly get the best you can from machine designs.

Do you need an automatic needle threader? Maybe a large 5 x 7 embroidery field or compact embroidery area?

Don’t Rush

Taking the time to evaluate the purpose of an embroidery machine for beginners allows users to pick one that offers the very best sewing experience for them – what’s right for one person may not be right for another.

Does Speed Matter?

I don’t know about you, but when I started sewing and embroidery it was because I found it a soothing, relaxing activity to get lost in.

So, at this time an embroidery machine speed was not a pressing element.

Beginners might benefit from embroidery machines that have a lower speed, mainly so they can learn the flow of a machine and its embroidery field.

Benefits

A faster speed on embroidery machines normally means that designs can be done in a shorter time – but this is not always a good thing, especially for those new to the craft who can let the material run away from them.

Control

Person Sewing Green Fabric
Person Sewing Green Fabric

Some embroidery machines for beginners come with the handy included element of a speed controller, normally placed somewhere on the front of a unit, or on the foot pedal – allowing users to limit speed and control how material is fed through a unit.

Preference

This is a feature I like on my machine, as I find that having the machine know the limit makes the experience for me easier as I am not left worrying about whether or not the speed will get away from me – especially considering I am quite heavy on the foot pedal of an embroidery machine.

What size screen do I need?

When it comes to having an LCD display, I am someone who prefers having a screen as big as possible to work with and edit designs.

This is mainly because sometimes I have issues with my eyes, so the accessibility and ease of use of a large screen is something that helps improve my sewing experience.

RECOMMENDATION

I would always recommend getting a machine that has as large a screen as possible as a small screen can make editing and adapting designs of embroidery stitches difficult.

Display

The best machines these days come with a LCD screen of some sort which is normally backlit by some form of LED light.

If an LED light is not used, there is normally an independent source to make a screen crystal clear and designs easier to see.

Information

A more expensive unit is likely to feature a bigger, clearer screen that gives a myriad of information including stitch placement, thread status, and more.

Lower budget beginner machines may not show information in-depth like this.

NOTE

Beginners may appreciate a larger screen as they hone skills and develop embroidery designs over time.

Stitches Per Minute

Sewing with LED Light Feature
Sewing with LED Light Feature

The average speed for a standard machine with embroidery designs is between 650 – 1000 stitches per minute – which is the range those featured fall within.

Beginners are unlikely to want a unit that can execute designs at a faster speed than this, as it then opens up the possibility for design mistakes.

Thread Quality

The faster a unit and the stitches per minute, the higher quality thread that users will have to invest in, as faster stitches mean more friction.

This could lead to thread breakages or snaps.

This is something that beginners are likely to experience during their first creations, however, it is something to bear in mind as you develop and level up your skills as a sewer too.

The amount of thread I went through when sewing with faster stitcher per minute machines without realizing friction was a factor was unbelievable.

NOTE

Beginners remember: do not go for a unit that exceeds 1000 stitches per minute as these speeds are designed mostly for professionals and businesses.

Machine Quality Matters

One thing I wish I had thought more about when I just started my sewing and embroidery machine journey was that the quality of a machine matters.

Looking back, it seems so obvious to me, but as a beginner I just didn’t think.

Price

An embroidery machine that comes from a lower price range may be made of less quality or durable materials compared to more expensive units.

That isn’t to say you should go and drop a mountain of cash on an embroidery machine as a beginner, just make sure it’s worth it!

Build and Features

Sewing Machine Close Up
Sewing Machine Close Up

For example, a beginner portable machine may be made of plastic, which makes transport easy, but can increase the risk of a cracked or damaged embroidery unit should an accident happen.

However, on the flip side, embroidery machines that have more features and elements may be more expensive to replace or repair should a fault or problem occur.

Repair Experience

I had an embroidery machine with a super large screen, but less expensive features – for example it had a quite low sewing stitches speed.

However, one day the screen broke and I was left having to call a specialist to look at the problem.

I was told my super-duper screen would cost more than the machine did to replace – so I just got an entirely new one.

Size Matters

If you are someone who wants a machine to take out and about, then consider whether the dimensions and weight are what you can manage when transporting machines.

Imagine buying the perfect embroidery machine for beginners, only for it to be too heavy!

Workarounds

Likewise, think of the space you work in and whether there are elements of certain embroidery machines for beginners that could be adapted.

For example an extension table can give you more size, but may take up precious work area once set up.

Embroidery Machine File Compatibility

If you are a beginner in the embroidery community, you may not know that even the best embroidery machine for beginners might use a specific file type.

For example, a Singer embroidery machine can only typically read XXX stitch files as standard. However, it can also read a number of other file formats:

  • XXX
  • PSW
  • HUS
  • DST
  • CHE
  • EXP
  • JEF
  • PCS
  • PEC
  • SHV
  • PES
  • VIP
  • SEW

Janome File Type

Janome machines such as the ones featured above use the file type, like Janome Embroidery Format (JEF) which holds stitch data for designs and is the standard file format for all Janome series machines.

The JEF+ format on a Janome machine is a file created on Janome software and was sent to the machine from a computer.

TIP

Make sure the files are put into a specific folder, otherwise they may not be readable or viewed on your embroidery machine.

Wrapping up the thread

Thanks for coming on this journey with me to find you the best embroidery machines for beginners.

I hope we got to the heart of the embroidery area and found the machine for you.

Top Pick

Remember, the best pick for me is the PE800 as it lets users focus exclusively on embroidery designs, not juggling sewing as well. Beginners should walk before they can run!

Best for Sewing and Embroidery Machine for Beginners

My best embroidery machine for beginners is the MOD-30 by Janome, as it’s a decent machine for an amazing sewing experience.

Best Combination Sewing and Embroidery Machine for Beginners

For the best embroidery machine for beginners, the SE1900 combination embroidery machine comes with a 5 x 7 embroidery field, embroidery area, and the best selection of embroidery designs and features.

Don’t forget to look at these other articles reviewing the best embroidery machines for you here.

If you have social media, don’t forget to share your thoughts and feelings regarding which embroidery and sewing machine you think is the best one – I look forward to hearing from you.

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Kris Daub
Kris Daub
[email protected] byCurated I'm a maker at heart! I love to create and tech others to create. I particularly sewing and hand crafts like ebroidery. I also love larger home decorating projects. ✂️ 🧵