The Ultimate Buying Guide For Embroidery Machines

The Ultimate Buying Guide For Embroidery Machines

Our main purpose is to inform you on the best embroidery machines that are currently being sold. Also, we add additional customer reports and opinions to fill in any gaps that we might have left out. You’ll have the confidence to make your decision by the end of this article.

First, we’ll briefly discuss the certain mechanics behind each embroidery machine. In that section, we give advice on what features to look for, and why embroidery machines are a great investment. After that, our review section covers the best embroidery machines that are suited for each situation.

*Notice: On mobile devices, scroll right to see entire table.

What Is An Embroidery Machine

Embroidery can be defined as the technique of using colored stitches to create fabrics or designs. It’s a high-level form of personalization that appeals to a wide range of customers and can be utilized for a various amount of applications.

Working On Embroidery Machine

One of the reasons why people are so attracted to machine embroidery is because it enhances your clothes natural appearance. Even though modern embroidery machines have the features such as automatic stitching, your clothes won’t look like they were mass produced.

Also, clothes that are embroidered tend to have more value. If you look at embroidery machine designs, you’ll see hundreds of stitches come together to make one colorful and intricate clothing pattern. Because of this, embroidered clothes command higher prices when sold at local and retail stores.

With an embroidery machine, you’ll have a tool that allows you to keep up with the latest fashion trends. Any machine that you buy from this list will give you the advantage to create your own unique patterns while still giving you the fabric needed to follow the design techniques of luxury fashion brands.

Types Of Embroidery Machines

Embroidery sewing machines are starting to take a turn to more computerized sewing methods. This is because they are easier to implement and take less time in completing your design projects.

Combined Sewing Embroidery Machine On Table

Combined Sewing/Embroidery Machines

Combined sewing machines are also known as computerized embroidery machines. They are a mixture between both single and multi-needle because of its adjustable settings. Most combined sewing machines give you a choice to pick which ever one is suitable for the situation.

Single-Needle Embroidery Machines

These are the most basic form of embroidery machines. It looks similar to traditional machines because of its flat-bed and a removable embroidery unit. Single-needle machines are easy to use and can be used for general stitching, creating intricate stitches, or making computerized machine embroidery designs.

Single-needle machines have only one head. The head is comprised of the needle, thread, bobbin, and other accessories associated with the machine. When the machine is embroidering, the needle remains stationary while the embroidery arm recreates the appearance of the computerized design.

Sewing On Single Needle Embroidery Machine

A single-needle machine has one point of hoop attachment. And these machines have a lower range of hoop capabilities than a multi-needle machine. On average, single-needle embroidery machines create at least 300-1000 stitches per minute (SPM).

Multi-Needle Embroidery Machines

We start to see designers change from single to multi-needle machines as technology within the fashion industry improved. This type of machine is the next step for someone serious about creating and sharing their designs.

Usually, multi-needle machines have about 4-10 needles. Each of them can hold their own thread color. Multiple machine embroidery threads give you the benefit of switching your color choices, unlike single-needle machines. Single-needle machines have to take out and replace the color thread which can take up a lot of time.

Multi-needle embroidery machines run at a speed of 400-1000 stitches. Unlike single-needle machines, they can hold up to two points of hoop attachments. Because of this, they have a versatile range of selection when it comes to embroidering hoops onto your clothing.

2 Types Of Machine Embroidery

No single embroidery machine can support every single need of a fashion designer. Each of the machines listed has their different strengths and abilities to help you make better patterns.

Working On Free Motion Machine Embroidery

Free-Motion Machine Embroidery

Free motion embroidery does exactly as it sounds. It gives the user the benefit of having complete control of the machine’s direction, needle size, and the stitching. With a free-motion embroidery machine you, not the machine, has the power to decide where the needle stitches.

Once you learn how to use a free-motion embroidery machine, you’ll have an adept set of sewing skills. Remember, free-motion embroidering is hard to learn at first as it teaches you other techniques such as thread painting and quilting. That’s why you should get a free-motion machine if you are a beginner wanting to improve their overall skillset in sewing.

Computerized Machine Embroidery

If you are looking for a modern embroidery sewing machine, try looking into a computer sewing machine. While they are the most expensive, they’ll grant you a lot of utility and the ability to create decorative designs.

Another advantage with computerized embroidery machines is their ability to store your designs for later use. Some machines accept cards with designs pre-loaded onto them.

Woman Working On Computerized Machine Embroidery

Others allow you to use your computer to link the machine embroidery designs onto the machine directly. Overall, use computerized machines if you want to make the most out of your fashion projects.

Steps Of Computerized Machine Embroidery

Making free machine embroidery designs can sound complicated at first. However, it’s a simple process that can be boiled down into six different steps:

  • Make the Digital Design
  • Create a Stitch File out of the Design
  • Upload the Stitch File
  • Make and Prepare the Settings
  • Place Fabric on Hoop Frame
  • Turn the Machine On

What To Consider When Choosing An Embroidery Machine

You need to know the difference between sewing and embroidery machine before making an investment.

Working On Sewing And Embroidery Machine

Sewing And Embroidery Or Combo

Sewing machines are made for practical uses while embroidery machines are used for art and creative designs.

Embroidery machines are mainly used in retail clothes manufacturing because it allows the designer to have complete control over how their design will appear. While sewing machines do a good job at stitching your clothes together, it might not do so well in creating custom patterns.

Also, you must understand that there are three different types of sewing.

  • Construction Sewing - Sewing with the intention to create or decorate clothing
  • Straightforward Sewing - Simple sewing applications
  • Specialized Sewing - Advanced machines that can use uploaded designs.

A machine that’s a combination of sewing and embroidery is a bit costly. However, these machines allow you to create virtually anything. For advanced users, we suggest buying a combination embroidery machine.

Easy Use

You should get an embroidery machine that matches your skill level. Most mechanical and single-needle machines are simple to use and teach you the basics of pattern creation. While they may be limited in features, they give you the chance to understand the principles of sewing before moving onto more advanced machines.

Woman Sewing On Machine

For those that are more skilled, look into multi-needle and computerized machines. These machines offer the biggest range of utility and customization.

Throat Width

Beginner shoppers tend to get confused when it comes to understanding throat width. Throat width refers to the distance between the needle and the body of the machine. The more throat width, the easier it is for the machine to embroider the cloth.

Machines with smaller throat widths can sometimes be frustrating to use. Also, the user has to continuously adjust the cloth for it to fit the machine. Make sure that the embroidery machine you choose has a throat width that’s suitable for you.

Hoop Sizes And Embroidery Area

The hoop size of your next machine is another major determinant. Hoop sizes range from 100 x 100 to 360 x 350. You should get an embroidery machine whose hoop size fits the scope of your project. For instance, if you’re creating a small house stitched cushion, then a 100 x 100 hoop size is good for you.

Blue Embroidery Hoop On Fabric

Larger projects require a bigger hoop size. Manufacturing at a large scale and industrial designs need the largest hoop size possible. Be sure to find out the desired hoop size you’ll need to complete your project.

Design Editing

Some of the higher end embroidery models offer additional features such as design editing. This means that users can fully manipulate and alter their designs before it touches the machine. Each machine comes with its own specialized design software that ensures that you have control over the end result.

Always prefer a brand that allows you to explore more machine embroidery patterns. This not only improves your skill, but also exposes you to creative options that might not be found in cheaper machines. For this very reason, look for machines that feature digitized software.


Look into a machine that has multipurpose features. Start by checking to see if the machine has an embroidery unit that’s separated from the machine. If it does, then the machine can be used for sewing, quilting, and embroidery.

Brother PE770 Embroidery Machine Machine Needle


You should buy an embroidery machine that offers a large selection of machine embroidery fonts. Fonts are an important aspect in embroidery as it gives the user thousands of fonts to use for their cloth.

Other features such as LCD screens and built-in designs are up to personal choice. Make a list of all of the features you’d want in an embroidery machine and purchase one whose feature matches to your goals.


Lastly, find attachments to the machine that will utilize your projects. Certain attachments such as presser feet or a quilting table can be added to your machine. When looking for a good embroidery machine, see if it gives you the option to place attachments and accessories on it.

Here are five pieces of advice we have for beginners using embroidery machines. Follow them, and you’ll see a massive increase in your machine operational skills and the complexity of your embroidery patterns.

  • Start with Simple Pieces
  • Master & Understand Your Machine
  • Take Embroidery Classes
  • Use the Correct Needle
  • Learn How to Hoop Correctly

Best Home Embroidery Machine

After telling you everything you need to know about embroidery machines, it’s time to go into our product review. Here, we’ll go in detail about the best machines in their respective categories. After that it’s up to you to determine which product will help you during your sewing projects.

Winner: Brother PE770 5x7 inch Embroidery Machine

Here are some of the main features of this product:

  • Unlimited Design Options
  • 6 Lettering Fonts
  • 136 built-in embroidery designs
  • Design Editing
  • Back Lit LCD Screen


One thing that makes this machine a popular choice is its 5”x7” embroidery field. This gives you the ability to stitch larger designs for bags, household items, and jackets. Also, this device provides enough space to rotate and combine designs, frames, lettering, and borders for a completely customized creation.

Additionally, consumers like the automatic threading feature. It’s easy to read and can be utilized to make the embroidery process easier. Simply follow the threading diagram that's placed on the machine. Next, with the automatic needle threader, your thread will be pushed through the needle’s eye.

Brother PE770 Embroidery Machine On White Background


The design editing feature is the reason why it’s the best home embroidery machine. With it, you can rotate, increase or decrease the size of the designs you want on your cloth. It also allows you to see what your design will look like on the LCD screen before stitching. Use this product if you plan on creating extravagant designs on your clothing.

Watch out for the lower bobbin tension that occurs with this machine. It’s not as sturdy as other models and can break if you’re not careful.

Overall, we believe that the Brother Embroidery Machine is a great addition to your home. It’s quiet, powerful, and gives you full access to a wide spectrum of design patterns. This might be a great choice for you if you want to have an easy-to-use embroidery machine for domestic projects.

Runner Up: Singer Embroidery Machine

Here are some of the main features of this product:

  • Automatic Thread Cutter
  • Stitch Memory with Editing
  • 820 Built-In Stitches
  • Sewing Sewer Assistance
  • Presser Foot Sensor


The Singer Embroidery Machine is another favored home machine. While it’s a runner up on this list, it still serves as a fully functional machine.

For instance, it has a Buttonhole feature that is a simple 1-step process. The Buttonhole has an underplate that places the fabric in between the foot and the lower plate to create perfect buttonholes on multiple fabric layers. This process gives reliable results each time and comes in handy when you need to make quick embroiders on your clothes.

Singer 9980 Sewing Machine On White Background


Some of the advanced features are crucial in helping consumers make perfect patterns. It contains over 820 built-in stitches that can be utilized for almost any embroidery scenario. Also, it’s large LCD screen helps you see the exact length and width settings, tension, and gives you the recommended presser foot. This product is great for beginners because it assists them in finishing their projects.

Speed control is one of the main things that separates this embroidery machine from its competitors. In fact, users can use the pressure foot sensor to ensure that the pressure foot is in the right location. This provides a smooth start for the machine and reduces the occurrence of thread bouncing.

There are a lot of complaints associated with the machine’s circuit board. Be sure to replace this product every three months to ensure that it keeps working.

This machine is the perfect entry-level tool for people getting into embroidery. It has features that are made to assist and help you make the right measurements on your designs. Get this product if you plan on improving your skills and techniques within the embroidery field.

Best Sewing And Embroidery Machine

When you are making a substantial investment like a sewing or embroidery machine you need to ensure what you are buying.

Winner: Brother SE400 Computerized Sewing Machine

Here are some of the main features of this product:

  • 4” x 4” embroidery hoop
  • Downloadable Machine Updates
  • 7-Point Feed Dogs
  • Automatic Threader
  • Bobbin Preparation


Since it’s a computerized machine, it gives the user the chance to upload their own personal designs. This machine uses .pes files to digitize the designs and .pen ibroidery (Brother’s separate app) files so that they can be available after purchasing them. You’ll like this machine if you have a lot of designs ready to be embroidered onto your clothes.

Shoppers like the bright workspace that this machine provides. This prevents the need of having task lights which have been proven to be faulty over the years. The light floods the needle area, giving the user a clear and operational workspace when completing their projects.

Brother SE400 Computerized Sewing Machine On White Background


Versatility is another defining feature of this product. For instance, it serves as both a sewing and embroidery machine. To switch the setting, change out the base and the foot of the machine. Since it is a combo machine, it allows users an extensive range of embroidery and sewing applications.

Consumers across the board reported issues with the hoop size it provides. Since you can only use a 4 x 4 sized hoop, you are limited to creating only small designs.

This is one of the highest rated machines because of its compatibility with computerized designs. It gives the user the chance to create, save, and upload their designs and use them for a final result. Purchase this product if you want something that’s easy to use and provides full design customization.

Runner Up: Singer SE300 Legacy Sewing & Embroidery Machine

Here are some of the main features of this product:

  • LCD Screen
  • 200 Pre-Installed Embroidery Designs
  • 250 Pre-Built stitches
  • Downloadable Software


Like the Brother SE300, this is a combination machine. This means that the user will have no problem in stitching and re-stitching, or creating embroidered patterns. It’s a great tool for those in need of an all-purpose embroidery machine.

It comes with a USB Stick that helps users transfer their embroidery designs. This places it a step above competing devices which have to tether to a computer to upload their patterns. Mainly, you’ll want this product if you want a simple method to transfer your .pes files.

Singer Sewing & Embroidery Machine On White Background


This machine is great for single stitching; meaning that it can embroider the patterns onto small items. Also, it can make buttonholes automatically. This saves users time and is another reason why you need to buy this product.

But, you’ll want to make sure you see your design on a PC first. The LCD screen is small and won’t give an accurate representation of what the final result will look like.

You can’t go wrong with the Singer Sewing & Embroidery Machine. It’s a powerful hybrid machine that helps users expand their creative capacity. Since it functions as a combination machine, you’ll have a useful tool that helps make creative machine embroidery.

Best Embroidery Machine For Beginners

When buying a sewing machine for a beginner the most important thing to think about is simplicity and flexibility.

Brother DZ820E Embroidery Machine

Here are some of the main features of this product:

  • 136 Built-in Designs
  • Pre-installed Tutorials
  • 6 lettering fonts
  • 120 frame patterns
  • Built-In USB Station


Flexibility is the main thing that sets this machine apart from other competing brands. Unlike the Janome embroidery machine, the Brother DZ820E comes with other 136 designs to help beginners get started. If you are a beginner who enjoys having multiple designs at their disposal, then this might be a good choice for you.

We also like that this product comes with built-in tutorials. It goes into detail on how to insert embroidery arms and how to thread the machine. Beginner designers like this feature as it allows them to get better acquainted with the machine.

Brother DZ820E Embroidery Machine On White Background


Brother’s iBroidery app is an expansive library of exclusive embroidery shapes, patterns, and limited-edition designs. Users have a selection of up to 5,000 different patterns to use to their liking. It’s an app that will extend your usage and enhance your experience with the machine.

Presser foot issues are common with this product. Call Brother to schedule a replacement if this situation ever occurs to you.

Simplicity and flexibility are the main reasons why this machine is great for beginners. It allows them to make their own patterns, while also learning the mechanics behind the machine. It’s a good starter embroidery machine if you want to improve your embroidering skills.


The Brother SE400 Computerized Sewing Machine is the winner. Since it has both sewing and embroidery properties, it’s great for general usage. In addition to the apps and extra features, it is perfect for customization.

If you have any pictures of your embroidered designs share them in the comment section!

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