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Brother PQ1500SL Sewing Machine: A Comprehensive Product Review

brother pq1500sl review

When you invest in a piece of machinery, you want to make sure you are getting the best of the best. You also want to make sure you do not break the bank while doing so. This is especially true when investing in a sewing machine. Whether you are the head costume designer at a costume shop, an aspiring fashion designer, or someone who just likes to make skirts on the weekend, having a reliable sewing machine is vital for your work. If you want something top notch in the sewing world but easy on the checkbook, check out the Brother Pq1500Sl sewing machine.

In this post, we'll share everything about the Brother PQ1500SL to help you learn more about it.

What Is the Brother Pq1500Sl Sewing Machine?

Brother PQ1500SL

The Brother Pq1500Sl sewing machine is an incredible machine at a reasonable price. It can sew up to 1,500 stitches per minute, which will allow you to finish your sewing projects in a flash. This sewing machine also comes with four different feed dog settings so that you can have the maximum amount of fabric control at all times.

Product Specs  

What makes the Brother Pq1500Sl so great is that it can really help you save time. It has a built-in needle threader that takes the pain and hassle out of threading. There is also an auto thread trimmer on the Brother Pq1500Sl that will trim your thread with a push of a button.

Not to mention the fact that this sewing machine comes with a 25-year limited warranty, basically guaranteeing you a long lasting piece of equipment. It has been known to consistently deliver year after year, with its only real downside being its weight.

Pricing  

Brother PQ1500SL Sewing Machine

The price of the Brother Pq1500Sl, along with all the other sewing machines on this list, will vary depending on where and when you purchase it. If you want to make sure you get the best price around, make sure to check all available listing before you purchase it. If you decide to order the Brother Pq1500Sl from Amazon.

How it Compares

We picked a few similar sewing machines available on the market to see how they compare.  

  • JUKI TL-2000Qi Sewing and Quilting Machine
  • SINGER 8060 600-Stitch Computerized Sewing Machine
  • Janome MC-6300P Professional Heavy-Duty Computerized Quilting Sewing Machine
Brother Quilting and Sewing Machine, PQ1500SL, High-Speed Quilting and...
  • AUTO THREAD TRIMMER: The Brother PQ1500SL Quilting and Sewing machine comes with a push-button automatic thread trimmer
  • BUILT-IN NEEDLE THREADER: This quilting and sewing machine includes a built-in needle threader that makes loading thread...
  • SEWS UP TO 1,500 STITCHES PER MINUTE: Finish sewing projects quicker with lightning-fast speeds of up to 1,500 stitches...

The price of this sewing machine will vary depending on where and when you purchase it. To make sure you get the best deal, be sure to check all possible listing before purchase it. If you order the Brother Pq1500Sl from Amazon.

Ease of Use 

Assembly Time

Design Quality

Warranty

Pros

  • With an LCD light
  • Has four feed dog settings
  • With a 25-year limited warranty
  • Built-in needle threader
  • With an auto thread trimmer
  • Reasonably priced

Cons

  • The machine itself is quite heavy
Sale
JUKI TL-2000Qi Sewing and Quilting Machine
  • Updated with LED lights and one pedal operation
  • 1500 SPM for quilting apparel and home décor
  • Automatic needle threader. Stitches: Straight Stitch

The Juki TL-2000Qi is a great sewing machine with quite a lot to offer. Like many other machines on the market, it comes with an extension table to provide you with a wider work area.

What is unique about this sewing machine is that both the arm and bed are made with aluminum die cast to help ensure low vibration while you work. You can now get back to sewing without having to worry about the movement, available space, or quality of your machine

JUKI TL-2000Qi Sewing and Quilting Machine

The price of this sewing machine may differ depending on where and when you purchase it. To make sure you are getting the best price, be sure to check all possible listings before purchase. You can order the Juki TL-2000Qi from Amazon.

Ease of Use 

Assembly Time

Design Quality

Warranty

Pros

  • Can sew up to 1,500 stitches per minute
  • Has an automatic needle threader
  • Provides low vibration while you work
  • Has an extension table

Cons

  • Slightly more expensive than other sewing machines
  • Only has a two-year warranty
Sale
SINGER | Quantum Stylist 9960 Computerized Portable Sewing Machine...
  • SINGER COMPUTERIZED SEWING MACHINE: The SINGER Quantum Stylist 9960 portable sewing machine has loads of ease-of-use...
  • AUTOMATIC NEEDLE THREADER: Threading the machine is so easy that you can have the entire machine threaded, from the...
  • BEST SEWING MACHINE: The SINGER Quantum Stylist 9960 sewing machine has 600 Built-In Stitches including 5 Alphanumeric...

The SINGER Quantum Stylist 9960 is an incredibly intelligent sewing machine that can take your work to a whole new level. With a small digital LCD screen and a selection of buttons, you can create over 600 different types of stitches, all of which are built into the machine. This includes things like buttonholes, fonts, and mirror imaging.

SINGER | Quantum Stylist 9960 Computerized Portable Sewing Machine...

It can really take your ideas and push them where you never believed they could go. Plus, it will be able to save you a great deal of time on embroidering, hand-stitching, or continuously resetting your sewing machine for different stitches.

Ease of Use 

Assembly Time

Design Quality

Warranty

Pros

  • Comes with 600 built-in stitches, including 13 types of one-step buttonholes
  • Has an automatic needle threader
  • Comes with a 25-year limited warranty

Cons

  • A bit expensive due to the advanced features
  • Has a much smaller extension table than other sewing machines
Janome MC-6300P Professional Heavy-Duty Computerized Quilting Sewing...
  • 66 Stitches with 4 buttonholes
  • Knee Lift and Drop Feed Control
  • The LED Display area shows a variety of information, including a low bobbin indicator light and twin needle guard

The Janome MC-6300P Professional is another computerized sewing machine that could help you save time. It comes with an LED display that shows all types of information, including an indicator for when your bobbin is running low and twin needle guards. While it may be more expensive than other sewing machines, it could help you create fabulous work.

Janome MC-6300P Professional Heavy-Duty Computerized Quilting Sewing...

The price of this sewing machine will vary depending on where and when you purchase it. To make sure you are getting the best deal, be sure to check all possible listing before purchase. You can get the Janome MC-6300P Professional on Amazon.

Ease of Use 

Assembly Time

Design Quality

Warranty

Pros

  • Can create 66 stitches along with four buttonholes
  • Has an LED display 
  • Comes with an automatic thread cutter
  • Can create script and block monogram stitches
  • Comes with a 25-year warranty

Cons

  • Does not have an extension table included
  • Will not stitch as fast as its competitors
  • Significantly more expensive than similar sewing machines

Conclusion


There are tons of incredible sewing machines on the market, but none quite like the Brother Pq1500Sl. This sewing machine can easily stitch up to 1,500 stitches per minute and comes with four feed dog settings to give you maximum fabric control.

Overall, the Brother Pq1500Sl receives a rating of 4.5-stars. It is incredibly affordable compared to its competitors and is backed by a 25-year limited warranty. It is simple to use with its auto thread trimmer, long extension table, knee lifter, built-in needle threader, and its LCD light. If you need something trustworthy, easy to use, and affordable, you need to give the Brother Pq1500Sl a try.

Brother HC1850: Is It the Best Quilting Sewing Machine Available?

brother hc1850

Sewing is a hobby many people undertake in their free time, however, for some, it's a full-time job. The Brother HC1850 sewing machine might be what you're looking for as a hobbyist or a professional seamstress.

It is easy to use, can easily stitch through thick fabrics, and features several useful features for quilting.

A sewing machine should be easy to set up, easy to operate and provide useful features.

People who have a passion for quilting want sewing machines that can create distinct patterns. Ease of use and maneuverability are also important factors. A sewing machine must be durable, simple to work with, and ergonomic to make the experience enjoyable. Start picking out fabrics, patterns, and intricate stitching designs.

The best sewing machines can handle complex patterns and seamlessly weave through thick materials with the slightest of ease.

Brother Computerized Sewing and Quilting Machine, HC1850, 130 Built-in...
  • COMBINATION SEWING & QUILTING: The HC1850 is a fantastic multipurpose sewing and quilting machine that is easy to use...
  • 130 BUILT-IN STITCHES: This quilting and sewing machine includes 8 styles of one-step auto-size buttonholes and multiple...
  • QUILTING FEATURES: The HC1850 comes with a detachable wide table, spring action quilting foot, and the ability to do...

The computerized Brother HC1850 sewing machine provides users with several features to make quilting a cinch. The device helps to increase speeds and to maximize efficiency. An affordable price tag also makes it a desirable model for beginners who are learning to quilt and stitch. These are a few aspects that make the Brother HC1850 a great model for quilting.

Specs

The sewing machine features 130 built-in stitching patterns. It also features eight, one-step buttonhole styles, and built-in sewing fonts. The device comes with a 25-year warranty and automatic needle threading. A full table and LCD screen make it easy to adjust settings. The bright light illuminates the sewing surface when owners sit down to begin sewing.

Features

The Brother HC185 has several distinct features for quilters. It has a full detachable table and spring action quilting foot. There is also a convenient, built-in stitch reference flip chart. This feature makes it easy for owners to choose the right pattern for the materials they're using. It has basic monogramming and can perform free-motion quilting. The machine is lightweight and portable, making it perfect for owners who work on the go.

Stitch choices

A wide choice of stitch patterns makes the Brother HC1850 an excellent machine for people who like experimenting. With a total of 130 stitch patterns, there's something for everyone. It offers:

  • Forty-two garment construction stitches
  • Eight buttonhole styles
  • Ninety-four decorative functions
  • Fourteen quilting stitch functions
  • Twelve heirloom stitch options

Adjustment and needle replacement

The computerized system puts owners in control. It features three different speed adjustment settings, for working with thin materials and thicker quilting materials. Users can adjust the width of the stitch patterns and length of each design.


It also features an automatic needle threader. To replace the needle, owners have to use the needle position button below the speed control button. Using the screwdriver that comes with the toolkit, once the machine is off, allows owners to loosen the needle.

Quality

Price

Rating

$300 to $400

Who Is the Brother HC1850 For?

The Brother HC1850 sewing machine is an excellent option for professionals and amateurs alike. It is an excellent machine for quilting. The product can easily handle thicker materials while sewing or stitching different patterns. It is great because it has several usability features to make quilting easy. It is also easy to adjust, making it great for quilting students or beginners learning how to sew. The machine is lightweight and easy to transport to multiple locations. So, for those who work from home and mobile sites, it's a great option.

The Advantages and Disadvantages of the Brother HC1850

Like every product, the Brother HC1850 sewing machine has several great features, but it some drawbacks as well. These are a few of the good and bad that customers should consider when choosing a sewing machine.

Pros

  • Computerized stitching
  • Drop-in bobbin and threader
  • Backlit controls and LCD
  • Lightweight and portable

Cons

  • Stitching quality isn't the best in comparison to high-end machines
  • The machine is a little pricey, especially for beginners
  • The stitching performance isn't as high as other models
  • Average performance capabilities for longer stitch patterns and designs

How We Reviewed the Brother HC1850 Against Competitor Models

We reviewed the Brother HC1850 against other top quilting and stitching sewing machines. We considered the availability of stitching patterns, speeds, and settings on the device. Also, we included reviews of different products, to help customers decide which sewing machine is the best available. Our analysis also accounted for the materials the sewing machine can handle, and ease of use.

Average Price and Where to Buy the Brother HC1850

The Brother HC1850 is available on sites like Amazon and Walmart among other online retailers. It is available on the company's website as well. The price of the sewing machine is $175 to $250, depending on where consumers purchase it.

The Best Sewing Machines Available

When comparing the best stitching and quilting machines, the Brother HC1850 is one of the many models available. These are a few top competitor models to consider when deciding which sewing machine to purchase.

Sale
SINGER | Quantum Stylist 9960 Computerized Portable Sewing Machine...
  • SINGER COMPUTERIZED SEWING MACHINE: The SINGER Quantum Stylist 9960 portable sewing machine has loads of ease-of-use...
  • AUTOMATIC NEEDLE THREADER: Threading the machine is so easy that you can have the entire machine threaded, from the...
  • BEST SEWING MACHINE: The SINGER Quantum Stylist 9960 sewing machine has 600 Built-In Stitches including 5 Alphanumeric...

The computerized Singer sewing machine features over 600 stitch patterns. It also has an extension table and automatic pilot mode. The device is portable and easy to transport to different workstations. 


It also includes basic and decorative stitch patterns for owners to choose from while stitching. It has five alphanumeric settings and 13 one-buttonhole design settings as well. 


Mirror imaging and stitch elongation features are also present on this sewing machine. The machine is high speed, capable of achieving 850 stitches per minute. It features an automatic needle threader.


Free-motion quilting and applique settings set this machine apart from competitors. 

Reviewers indicate the device looks great and has some great features. However, it falters frequently, and customer service isn't helpful.


The owner claims after troubleshooting and restarting the machine, several stitching patterns weren't accessible. This machine costs $300 to $350. The machine has a 4.1 out of 5-stars rating on Amazon.

Pros

  • There are several different decorative stitches available

Cons

  • Product doesn’t come with a quilting tray

Quality

Price

Rating

$365 to $400

Juki HZL-LB5100 Computerized Sewing Machine
  • Juki HZL-LB5100 Computerized Sewing Machine The Juki HZL-LB5100 Computerized Sewing Machine is so easy to use with a...
  • •100 Stitch Patterns •LCD Screen •Auto Needle threader •Variable Speed Override
  • •7 Point Feed Dog System •Variable Speed Override •1 Step Button Hole •Easy to start on thick Fabrics •Needle...

This computerized sewing machine is easy to use and has many simple user features for beginners. It is compact, and lightweight, making it easy to transport. 


The machine features an LCD screen, over 100 stitch patterns, an auto needle threader, and variable speed settings. It has a seven-point feed dog needle system. There is a variable speed override setting, to adjust for different fabrics. 


A bright LED light turns on when owners begin stitching. This feature allows owners to work in darker conditions. It has a standard zig-zag foot and satin stitch foot. The machine can sew up to 700 stitches per minute.


It also includes a DVD to teach owners how to operate the basic features. A five-year warranty on mechanical defects and two-year electrical warranty come with the machine. 


The reviews for this machine are positive. However, one reviewer notes it's not the quietest machine while operating and is louder than several competitor sewing machines. 


The price of the device is $312 to $350. The Amazon rating for this machine is 4.7 out of 5-stars.

Pros

  • 16 Professional/industrial style quality buttonholes

Cons

  • A bit slow … maximum speed 900 stitches per minute

Quality

Price

Rating

$312 to $350

Sale
Brother Sewing Laura Ashley CX155LA Limited Edition Sewing & Quilting...
  • This model comes complete with a full set of accessories, including 11 sewing and quilting feet, and an extra wide table
  • Features a large, backlit LCD display for easy viewing, an advanced needle threading system, adjustable speed control,...
  • 100 built-in stitches, including 8 one-step auto-size buttonhole styles, plus 55 alphanumeric stitches for basic...

This sewing and quilting machine features an extension table, backlit LCD, and advanced needle threading system. There are eight, one-stop buttonhole settings, and it can stitch up to 850 stitches per minute.


There are 55 alphanumeric stitch patterns owners can set. Variable speed settings, anti-jam capabilities, and basic monogramming functions make this sewing machine great for all skill levels. 


Fabrics feed through the machine smoothly, utilizing the seven-point feed dog system. One reviewer claims changing the needles on this machine was difficult and time-consuming to do.


The needle placement is awkward, making it difficult to adjust when replacing with a new needle. The price of the machine is $180 to $200. This machine has a rating of 4.4 out of 5-stars on Amazon.

Pros

  • Perfect for beginners

Cons

  • Design creates lack of visibility

Quality

Price

Rating

$180 to $200

Sale
Janome JW8100 Fully-Featured Computerized Sewing Machine with 100...
  • Computerized Sewing Machine with Easy Threading, Top Drop-In Bobbin and 7-Piece Feed Dog System
  • 100 Built-In Stitches, 7 Auto Buttonhole Styles, Memorized Needle Up/Down, Interior Metal Frame
  • Convenience Features like Start/Stop Button, Speed Control Slider, Locking Stitch Button, Reverse Lever

This Janome machine comes with 22 accessories, an extension table, and has about 100 stitch pattern settings. It includes seven buttonholes, and convenient start/stop button. 


The sewing machine features easy threading and easy top-drop in the bobbin for quilting and thicker materials. The memorized needle, up/down system and interior metal frame, are both durable. 


The machine also has a memory function. Owners can save their favorite settings, and use these regularly when sewing on this machine. The adjustable thread tension is great when working with different materials.


A backlit LCD screen is easy to operate and makes it simple to choose the perfect settings when sewing. There are 20 basic, 18 quilting, and 28 home decor patterns owners can set on the sewing machine. 


One reviewer notes issues with the foot peddler on this machine. They also indicate that after contacting customer service, they learned the 25-year warranty doesn't protect the foot peddler. 


The cost of this sewing machine is $240 to $300. The rating for this product is 4.4 out of 5-stars on Amazon

Pros

  • Easy to thread

Cons

  • This machine is not great when sewing through multiple layers of fabric

Quality

Price

Rating

$240 to $300

Necchi EX30 Sewing Machine
  • Choose from 30 built-in stitches, including 3 one-step buttonholes--all accessed through direct stitch selection. The...
  • Enjoy advanced features like a Start/Stop button, automatic thread cutter button, built-in needle threader, and...
  • You'll also love the included 16" x 11" extension table. Now you have the space you need to handle even your biggest...

For those who are looking for a professional or commercial grade machine, this is a great option. It is pricier than other sewing machines but has several great features that set it apart.

It includes two plastic, 10-piece Neechi bobbins and two packs of assorted needles. The product has a top-load gathering foot, concealed zipper foot, and top-load ditch quilting foot.


Owners can choose from many different quilting and sewing styles on this machine. 

The machine can quilt, sew, and is great for home DIY projects also. It has three, one-step buttonholes.


There are also 30 built-in stitching patterns owners can set while sewing on this machine. The bright LED lighting makes it easy to see in dark conditions while working. 


There is an up-close magnifier, allowing owners to see what they're doing while stitching on the sewing machine. This feature helps increase visibility and accuracy in their work, especially on difficult stitch patterns. 


There are many advanced features on this sewing machine. It has a start/stop button and automatic thread cutter button. There's a built-in needle threader and memorized needle up/down setting. 


The maximum stitch length is five millimeters, and the maximum stitch width is seven millimeters. It includes a spool hole stabilizer plate and automatic buttonhole foot with the sewing machine. 


The price of this machine is $800 to $900. This item has not yet been rated on Amazon.

Pros

  • Top loading full rotary hook bobbin

Cons

  • None so far

Quality

Price

Rating

$800 to $900

Eversewn - Sparrow 20 - 80 Stitch Computerized Sewing Machine
  • 80 stitch, computerized sewing machine
  • LCD Display, Drop-in Hook System
  • Start/stop button, LED sewing light, Needle stop up/down

This computerized sewing machine has a total of 80 different stitch patterns owners can set. It features a drop-in hook system. The device also has an LCD screen, making it easy to adjust settings while working on it. 


In addition, the start/stop button, the needle stop up/down, and LED lighting are nice features on this machine as well. There are a total of 10 quilting patterns, and 49 decorative patterns owners can set on the sewing machine. 


The maximum stitch width is seven millimeters and the maximum stitch length four and a half millimeters. The machine also features six one buttonhole settings to choose from on the device.


It is capable of achieving up to 850 stitches per minute at the fastest speed settings. The machine is sturdy, weighing nearly 20 pounds. However, it is bulkier, and it isn't as transportable as other sewing machines in a similar class. 


One reviewer notes the quality of the sewing machine isn't as good as anticipated. They indicate for some fabrics it isn't sturdy and often moves when sewing. This design flaw causes errors in artistry and quality. 


The price of the machine is $280 to $300. The Amazon rating is 4.6 out of 5-stars

Pros

  • Alphabet stitches allow for monogramming

Cons

  • So many features may be overwhelming

Quality

Price

Rating

$280 to $300

Is the Brother HC1850 the Best Quilting Sewing Machine

There are several great quilting sewing machines available for people of varying skill levels. The Brother HC1850 is the best all-around machine for beginners, novice, and advanced quilters alike. It is lightweight and transportable. 

It has several great features, and hundreds of quilting patterns owners can set. 

The quilting speeds are quick and efficient, and the needle threader features several variable settings. Owners can rely on the bright LED backlit screen. This lighting makes it easy for them to use the machine in any light conditions. It can also handle thicker material fabrics, with monogramming functions, to complete various quilting projects. And, it is the most affordable machine on the list. 

The Juki HZL machine is an excellent option for those who want a higher-quality, professional-grade product. It features over 100 stitch patterns, LCD screen for easy adjustments, and standard zig-zag and satin stitch settings. It is efficient and is capable of sewing 700 stitches per minute. The sewing machine also comes with an introductory DVD to teach owners how to optimize their experience. 

Regardless of your skill level, there are several great quilting sewing machines available. These are a few of the best options for all budgets, and quilters at any stage of their quilting journey. 

Serger vs Sewing Machine: Comparing 2 of the Best Sewing Machines of Today

serger vs sewing machine

If you have a torn or otherwise damaged garment, or if you would like to make some clothing or a costume, it's incredible useful to have a sewing machine. Another invaluable tool to have in your arsenal is a serger. Both are used for sewing, but they serve different functions. In this article, we'll take a look at how sewing machines have evolved and at the role the serger plays in sewing overall. We'll compare serger vs sewing machine, looking at the pros and cons of both. Finally, we'll help you decide whether you should invest in a serger or if a sewing machine alone will meet your needs.

History of Sewing Machines

In the year 1755, Charles Fredrick Wiesenthal invented the first mechanical device intended to "aid in the art of sewing." It was simple, but it was the first step in mechanizing the sewing process. Until 1755, all sewing was done by hand. Garments had to be meticulously cut from fabric, put together in the right pattern, and then sewn together using a single needle and thread. Because of this, sewing was time-consuming, tedious, and could be very hard on the fingers. Seamstresses used thimbles to protect their fingers from constant needle pricks, but they still suffered from cramping and calluses over time. Hand-sewing also severely limited the amount of clothing that could be produced. It would take hours to produce a single dress or a pair of pants. Leather items like saddles and bridles, and heavy canvas goods like ship sails, were also sewn by hand. The invention of the sewing machine revolutionized all of these industries.

From 1790 to 1829, several kinds of sewing apparatuses were invented with varying degrees of success. However, in 1829, Barthelemy Thimonnier invented the first widely used sewing machine. He was issued a patent in 1830 and started the first company that mass-produced army uniforms. Over the next 15 years, various inventors would come up with different elements that make up the modern-day, American lockstitch sewing machine we have today.

None of these inventors patented their work, so the first person to put all the elements together into one machine was John Fisher. However, two other inventors, Elias Howe and Isaac Merritt Singer put together very similar machines at nearly the same time. As often happens in history, a messy battle over patents ensued. Although Howe actually won the legal battle, resulting in Singer having to pay a hefty sum for the use of patented parts and technology, it is Singer whose name we remember.

The next several years of sewing machine history saw different inventors trying to add or change things to improve upon the original design. Each person tried to patent his contribution, and lawsuits over who was the original inventor of what piled up. This culminated in the Sewing Machine Wars. So many people were making contributions to the invention that it was nearly impossible to sort out who had invented what part of the machine first. Realizing they were getting nowhere by working against each other, the key players called a truce and formed something called the Sewing Machine Combination. Together, they issued licenses for sewing machine production until the patent expired.

Since that time, the sewing machine has been changed and improved upon many times over. Tweaks were made to the positions of the needle, the method of feeding the fabric and thread, and the type of stitches used until the most efficient machine was achieved. The invention of the sewing machine took the production of clothing out of the hands of housewives and turned in into an entire industry. Millions of jobs were created by the new clothing industry.

Now, almost two centuries after the first sewing machine was conceptualized, we've come full circle. The modern sewing machine, as well as the serger, have allowed sewing to come back into the home. Anyone with a little time on their hands can learn to sew and make professional-quality items. Having both a sewing machine and a serger can you help you in that process.

Serger vs Sewing Machine: How Are They Different?

The history of the serger parallels the history of the sewing machine. Like any of the many changes to the sewing machine, it was created to fill a need. Serging, or overlock stitching the edges of seams and hems, is a way to create a neater, stronger, more flexible finish than can be achieved with a sewing machine alone.

How Does a Sewing Machine Work?

A traditional sewing machine uses a loop stitch to sew pieces of fabric together. It has one needle with an eye in the end where thread is run through. Traditional sewing machines use one roll of thread and one needle, with the exception of some models that are capable of two-needle sewing. In order to form the loop stitch, a bobbin is housed underneath the presser foot and plate. The whole machine is controlled by an electric motor that is run by a foot pedal. Most modern-day sewing machines have 20 or more different possible stitches, as well as the ability to adjust the stitch length and the thread tension. All of these features make the sewing machine very versatile. However, the serger picks up where the sewing machine leaves off.

Pros

  • Easy to thread
  • Easy to wind the bobbin
  • Sews on the left or right side of the needle
  • Has features sergers do not
  • Can sew an entire garment alone
  • Great for beginners
  • Non-electric models available

Cons

  • Time consuming
  • Hems and seams take longer
  • Hems and seams aren't as neat
  • Fabric may fray
  • Doesn't work as well for non-knit fabric

How Does a Serger Work?

A serger uses anywhere from 3 to 8 spools, or cones, of thread and just as many bobbins and needles in order to create an "overlock" or over the edge stitch that creates secure seams and hems. A serger, using multiple lines of thread, can create a hem that prevents fabric from unraveling. Unlike a regular stitch, a serger stitch is flexible. This allows fabrics like knits to continue to stretch without the seams breaking. A serger will also cut off the extra fabric left at the edge of a seam, known as the seam allowance, creating a flatter, neater seam. A serger can make neat rolled hems and has many other practical uses while sewing. Here are some examples of what a serger can do:

  • Create a flat, finished edge before hemming
  • Simultaneous cutting and sewing
  • Works much faster than a sewing machine
  • Always looks professional
  • Can do piping and gathering

Pros

  • Faster
  • Much stronger seams
  • Cuts while it sews
  • Hems, seams and creates decorative touches
  • Looks more professional

Cons

  • Fewer stitches available
  • Cannot be used for all projects
  • Requires some training and practice
  • Harder to thread or prepare
  • Cost of buying a separate machine
  • Requires special cones of thread

Differences: Serger vs Sewing Machine

The main differences between a serger vs sewing machine are as follows:

  • Lockstitch vs topstitch
  • More prep vs less prep
  • One side of the needle vs both sides of the needle
  • Strong seams vs weaker seems
  • 1-2 spools of thread vs 3-8 spools of thread
  • Multiple bobbins vs one bobbing

In order to properly determine the pros and cons of a serger vs sewing machine, you have to spend a significant amount of time using both machines. Most beginning seamstresses will start out using a basic home sewing machine. After you've taken some time to learn how the machine works and what all the functions can do for you, then you're ready to try a specialty machine such as a serger. A serger can create seams and hems that are impossible for a standard sewing machine, as well as hems and seams that would be very time consuming with a standard sewing machine. Let's look at some of the pros and cons of each:

Which Do I Need?

In the end, the decision to purchase a serger vs sewing machine is a personal choice. In a lot of ways, it comes down preference. Some people prefer the look of a serged seam over that of a straight-stitched seam. Sergers provide durability but require you to switch and use another machine in the middle of a project. After you've put a lot of time and energy into learning to use all the features on your sewing machine, you will have to spend more time learning how to use your serger. Not only will you have to learn how to sew with a serger, but you must learn how to change the thread cones and how to thread the needles and bobbins.

Just like with a sewing machine, a serger will need regular care and maintenance. However, once you've learned how to use your serger, you can create beautiful, trimmed seams that will stretch with the garment rather than snap and break. Your garments will have a level of durability that you couldn't achieve from just a sewing machine. You will find that most professionally sewn clothing is serged along the seams, even if those seams are then hidden from view. Gathering and lettuce edges are much easier with a serger as well.

If you are a professional seamstress with a home-based business, you will definitely need a serger. In order to produce quality, long-lasting garments, you will need the features that a serger provides. As a professional, you should be able to master the new machine in a few weeks and be on your way to creating more inventory. In order to achieve the best possible product, you should invest in a serger.

However, if you are someone who occasionally sews for pleasure, you probably don't need a serger. It's possible to achieve most of the effects that a serger offers using your regular sewing machine. A sewing machine can do an over the edge lockstitch if needed. It also offers many other stitch types and strengths to compensate for not having the multi-thread lockstitch. Not having another machine means less running around and less changing thread and bobbins. Overall, the standard home seamstress doesn't need a serger. However, if you would like one for the convenience, it will certainly get used.

Top Sergers

We considered several of the top brands and compared price and features to offer this list of the best sergers on the market right now. Consider your own personal sewing needs when choosing which serger to purchase.

  • Brother 1034D
  • SINGER 14CG754 ProFinish
  • Juki MCS-1500
  • Janome 1000CPX
  • Brother 2340CV
  • JUKI MO644D Portable
  • Janome 8002D
  • Brother 3234DT
  • Juki MO-623
  • Brother Designio Series DZ1234

Top Sewing Machines

We compared many top brands, comparing price and features to create this list of sewing machines. Choose the best machine for your budget from this list by considering your budget and what features you need in a sewing machine.

  • Brother CS6000i
  • Janome Magnolia 7318
  • Singer Heavy Duty 4423
  • Janome 2212
  • Singer Stylist 7258
  • JUKI MO644D
  • Singer Curvy 8763
  • Singer Quantum Stylist 9980
  • Brother Project Runway CS5055PRW
  • Juki TL-2000Qi
  • Brother XM2701
  • Juki TL-2010Q

Pricing: Serger vs Sewing Machine

Sewing machines and sergers are available at a variety of price points. With the number of options available, you should be able to find a sewing machine or serger to fit your budget. Sergers all tend to perform roughly the same functions and vary by the number of thread cones, speed and durability. However, sewing machines come in a variety of models all with different combinations of features. Make sure to thoroughly consider all the features you may or may need before making a purchase. Popular brands include:

  • Singer
  • Brother
  • Juki
  • Janome

Sergers

Sergers can be found for anywhere from $200 to $600 dollars on Amazon and at major retailers. Less expensive sergers have fewer cones of thread and are not as fast. Higher priced models offer more cones of thread as well as additional attachments and features. Price points on sergers generally have more to do with durability and amount of cones of thread than different features offered, since sergers all essentially perform the same function. Serging seams is not as varied as sewing, therefore Sergers are an add-on piece of equipment to what you have. Take this into consideration when you are considering a serger vs sewing machine.

Sewing Machines

Sewing machines can be found for anywhere from $80 to over $600 on Amazon and at major retailers. There is a wide range of price points in this category. Basic sewing machines offer just a few types of stitches and may not do well with a wide variety of fabrics, whereas more expensive models offer many different stitches and lots of fabric options. Sewing machines can also be optimized for certain things like quilting or working with heavy-duty types of material such as leather or canvas. When considering what price point is right for you, take into consideration all the projects you might take on now and in the future.

Conclusion

Making a major purchase such as a serger is not a decision to make quickly. It's important to consider all the reasons for using a serger vs sewing machine, and then weigh that against the money you will spend on a new machine. If you have been using a sewing machine for some time and are looking to expand your sewing options, then a serger might be the right option for you.

A serger is meant to be used in addition to your standard sewing machine unless you are sewing exclusively seams and hems. In most cases, you will need to start with a standard sewing machine, learn the basics and work your way up to the advanced features. Once you've exhausted the possibilities on your standard machine, it's time to move up to a serger.

Once you take the time to learn how to use your new machine, you'll find that a serger works much more quickly and creates stronger stitches than your regular sewing machine. It will take your sewing projects up a level, making everything look and feel more professional. Your garments will stretch without threads snapping and your seams will be less bulky.

Overall, a serger is a worthwhile investment for the intermediate to advanced seamstress who wants to take their work up a notch. Adding a serger to your sewing room will make your work better and push you to be a better seamstress. There is a learning curve, but the time and investment will return to you in better quality work and, hopefully, more projects for your portfolio. In the serger vs sewing machine debate, neither wins. You should have both.

Is The Brother CS6000I Your Next All-Purpose Sewing Machine?

Brother CS6000I Review

If you've been looking at sewing machines online, you've no doubt encountered the Brother CS6000i. It seems to be on almost every "best of" list, from The Tool Report's Best Sewing Machines of 2018 to Good Housekeeping's list of "Best Sewing Machines for All Levels." But does it live up to the hype?

If you look at the specs, there's a lot to be excited about with this sewing machine. First, the Brother CS6000i is extremely reasonably priced. In a marketplace where you can pay as much for a sewing machine as you can for a small car, this means a lot. Also, it has a lot of functions. Decorative stitches? Check. An elongated arm for quilting and sewing sleeves, oh yes. Serging capabilities? You bet. It even has a one-step buttonholer, and if you're a garment-maker like me, that's big.

The machine does have its limitations, though, and it isn't for everyone. So before you lay down your money -- even the relatively small amount you will pay for this machine -- it's essential to know your needs and understand what you're getting.

About the Brother CS6000i

The Brother CS6000i is a mid-level all-purpose electronic sewing machine. It has a lot of functionalities for what it is, including decorative stitches, serging stitches, monogram options, and a built-in removable free arm.


Additionally, it also comes with an impressive accessories pack, including nine presser feet. It's lightweight, weighing just 11 pounds. And it recently won a 2018 Women's Choice Award for customer satisfaction.


I call it an all-purpose machine because it does a little of everything. You can embroider a little, quilt a little, serge a little -- more than enough for the average home sewist, in my opinion.


However, this is a semi-professional machine at best. If you're building a business around embroidery, quilting, or serging, you might do better seeking a dedicated machine for one of these functions.

Pros

Cons

  • Reliable and has a decent number of stitch options
  • Some people had trouble using it

Quality

Price

Rating

​$$$

Price Range

You can find the Brother Cs000I for between $150 and $200, depending on the retailer.

How We Reviewed

You can find the Brother Cs000I for between $150 and $200, depending on the retailer.

Product Specs

What makes the Brother CS6000i so special? In short, it's a lot of machine for the money. Here's what you get.

Stitching capabilities

When I called this machine "mid-level," I meant midway between a good, solid manual sewing machine and a high-end computerized machine. That means that with the Brother CS6000i, the user can manually adjust stitch length and width, like on a manual machine. However, this machine also comes with 60 pre-programmed stitches, including serging, decorative, embroidery, and monogram stitches. 

You do not have the option, however, to upload stitches of your own, like you can on higher-end computerized models. Nor can you alter or edit the stitches beyond length and width. While most home sewists can probably get along fine with the stitches provided, some advanced sewists may find this limiting.

Fast and quiet

This machine gives you 850 stitches per minute, which, if you're sewing long rows for garments or quilts, is decent. Also, Top Ten Reviews was impressed by how quiet this machine is. Their test rated the sound level at 67.7 decibels, which is about the same as a dishwasher or a normal conversation.

Start, stop, speed control

Speed control is important. There are times, many times, when you'll want the speed to remain constant no matter how you press the pedal. This machine has it. Also, there's a stop/start button that will let you dispense with the pedal altogether if you wish.

Accessories

Numerous reviewers found the accessories pack to be impressive. Top Ten Reviews particularly liked the high-quality walking foot that was included. They also said that only two other models that they tested came with more presser feet.

A Few Thorns Among the Roses

No sewing machine is perfect, though, and before you buy any sewing machine, it's important to look carefully at its flaws.

Ease of use

People seem to be divided on this. When I look at the control panel, I see one that looks like that of my own all-purpose electronic machine. There are a lot of stitching options, but to me, it looks pretty straightforwardThe Tool Report agrees, calling it a great sewing machine for learners. Good Housekeeping says something similar. They rate it among their favorite sewing machine for beginners. And Consumer Search calls this machine "simple and intuitive." 

On the other hand, the four reviewers who tested the Brother Cs000I for Top Ten Reviews found that their learning curve was very steep. They even gave it a D- for ease of use, though they said that the included instructions were very helpful.

What Consumers Have to Say

Eighty-eight percent of over 7,300 Amazon purchasers gave the Brother Cs000I high ratings. The overall rating for the machine is 4.5 out 5-stars. Amazon customers praised this machine's ease of use, reliability, and versatility. 

However, there were some complaints. Their criticisms seemed to center on thread issues, including thread tension, bobbin issues, and difficulty using the automatic threading function. There were also several mentions of knit fabric causing jams. 

Consumers do not all agree about ease of use. Some called the Brother Cs000I a perfect machine for beginning and intermediate sewists, while others were frustrated by how long it took to get the hang of its functionalities.

What About the Competition?

If you're looking for a mid-level all-purpose machine for beginners through semi-professionals, you have quite a bit of choice. Here are some competitors to the Brother CS6000i.

Product

Image

Rating

Price

Brother CS6000I

Brother CS6000I

Spiegel 60609

Spiegel 60609

Singer Quantum Stylist 9960

SINGER 9960 Brother CS6000I

Janome MC-6300P Professional Heavy-Duty Computerized Quilting Sewing Machine

Janome MC-6300P

Spiegel 60609

Spiegel 60609

The Spiegel 60609is a neat little machine with a lot of fun functions. Spiegel seems to be marketing primarily to millennials with this computerized model. Its main selling point appears to be it's "social sewing" functions. 


What does that mean? It's Wi-Fi enabled, for one thing. Why would you want that? Well, you can watch tutorials and other content directly on the machine. 


There is also a "sewing cam," which allows you to film yourself sewing, and upload the video so that other users can watch. You can sync content with an app on your smartphone or tablet. It also has a USB port for easy upload. 


Aside from these somewhat gimmicky features, you also get 350 pre-programmed stitches with over 1,000 variations. There's a one-step buttonholer, and nine included presser feet. Good Housekeeping and Reviewshub like this model. 


Amazon customers seemed to love it or hate it, however. Those who liked it found it versatile and fun. Those who didn't think that the bells and whistles came at the expense of real functionality.


Overall, Amazon customers gave the Spiegel 60609 a rating of 3.2 out of 5-stars. 

This machine's price is depending on the retailer. It's widely available from many sources, including Amazon and Walmart.

Pros

Cons

  • Good stitch quality
  • No top drop-in bobbin

Quality

Price

Rating