Finding the Best Sewing Machine for Dressmaking

A budget sewing machine is useful for learning to sew, but experienced dressmakers need a full-featured machine. The best sewing machine for dressmaking should offer reliable stitching and come with helpful accessories.

Here is a closer look at how to find the right sewing machine, along with several recommendations.

  1. SINGER Quantum Stylist 9985
  2. SINGER Quantum Stylist 9960
  3. Brother SE600
  4. Brother PQ1500SL
  5. Janome HD3000
  6. Janome Memory Craft 6500P
  7. Juki HZL-F600
FINDING THE BEST SEWING MACHINE FOR DRESSMAKING
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    Comparison Table

    Model Name Weight Auto Needle Threader Built-In Stitches Stitches Per Minute Button Hole Styles
    SINGER Quantum Stylist 9985 Sewing Machine 20 lbs Yes 960 850 13
    SINGER Quantum Stylist 9960 Sewing Machine 18.2 lbs Yes 600 850 13
    Brother SE600 Computerized Sewing Machine 14.33 lbs Yes 103 710 10
    Brother PQ1500SL High Speed Sewing Machine 24.2 lbs Yes 1 1500 0
    Janome HD3000 Heavy Duty Sewing Machine 18.7 lbs. Yes 18 860 1
    Janome Memory Craft 6500P Sewing Machine 23.4 lbs. Yes 135 1000 7
    Juki HZL-F600 Computerized Sewing Machine 21.6 lbs. Yes 225 900 16

    What is the main feature of the best sewing machine for dressmaking?

    iStock-909175834 950 x 540 Best Sewing Machine for Dressmaking

    While sewing machines come with a wide range of settings and controls, one of the most important features is the quality of the stitches. Inferior stitches may come undone easily. Some machines may also jam easily when trying to deliver complex stitches.

    To find a machine capable of producing reliable stitches, look for a powerful motor, easy tension adjustments, and convenient speed control. These features improve the quality of the stitches while giving advanced dressmakers more control over the machine.

    Along with quality stitching, it helps to have a variety of stitches to choose from. Some of the top computerized models include hundreds of stitches.

    Having a large selection of stitches allows you to perform a wider range of alterations. For example, an overlock stitch helps deliver reliable hemming.

    What else should you look for in a dressmaking sewing machine?

    The quality of the stitches is important. However, you may also want a sewing machine with a large workspace. When working with dresses and other long garments, you have more material to pass through the machine, increasing the risk of bunching or uneven stitches.

    A large table gives you more room to keep the material straight. While most machines do not offer a lot of space, some of the top choices include a removable free arm for sewing longer materials.

    Other useful details include metal parts and adjustable needle positions. A machine with a metal chassis and frame will likely last longer compared to a machine made mostly from plastics.

    An adjustable needle position is useful when sewing zippers or hemming. When working with complicated designs, you may find it easier to reposition the needle.

    Using the features discussed, we came up with the following list of the top sewing machines for dressmaking.

    SINGER Quantum Stylist 9985 Sewing Machine

    The SINGER 9985 is a powerful sewing machine in a compact frame. It is a computerized model with 960 built-in stitches and a color LCD touchscreen display. You can easily select a stitch and set the width or length.

    The 9985 sewing machine is a top recommendation for dressmaking due to its precise stitching. It can deliver up to 850 stitches per minute and includes an automatic needle threader to reduce the risk of snags. It comes equipped with multiple presser feet, needles, a seam ripper, a lint brush, and more. 

    User Impressions

    Most customers were pleased with the overall performance of the machine, along with the wide selection of accessories. Some users mentioned having a little problem with the automatic needle threader.

    SINGER Quantum Stylist 9960 Sewing Machine

    The SINGER 9960 is another computerized model from one of the most trusted brands. It comes with 600 built-in stitches and several electronic functions to make dressmaking a little easier.

    With the 9960, you can set the machine to electronic autopilot mode. This eliminates the need to use a presser foot for speed control. Other useful electronic features include one-touch stitch selection, 13 different one-step buttonholes, and a built-in needle threader. Overall, this is a highly rated sewing machine that should offer many years of use.

    User Impressions

    Customers found the extension table useful when working with large projects, such as dresses. One issue is the complicated menu. Some users may need to carefully review the instruction manual to understand all the controls.

    Brother SE600 Computerized Sewing Machine

    The Brother SE600 is an affordable computerized sewing machine with built-in embroidery functions and a large touchscreen display.

    This machine stands out for its 4×4 embroidery field, which you can easily remove for standard sewing tasks. It also comes with 103 preset stitches, providing a wide range of design options for your dresses.

    The embroideries and stitches are selected using the 3.7-inch color touchscreen display.

    User Impressions

    The controls are a little difficult to understand at first. However, most customers enjoyed the versatility of this machine and its reliable stitching.

    Brother PQ1500SL High Speed Sewing Machine

    With the Brother PQ1500SL, you get one of the largest extension tables. The table provides an extra foot of space for laying out your material, helping to keep long seams straight. It is a dependable machine with a sturdy frame and powerful motor. 

    The Brother PQ1500SL also includes a powerful motor, delivering 1,500 stitches per minute. The thread tension dial, automatic needle up/down feature, and quick bobbin system simplify some of the more annoying sewing tasks. Easily adjust the tension and change thread.

    User Impressions

    The general response is positive, with customers praising the reliable stitching. Users also found it incredibly easy to thread. Some users reported having problems with the bobbin working properly.

    Janome HD3000 Heavy Duty Sewing Machine

    The Janome HD3000 is a compact, heavy-duty sewing machine with simple controls. Novices may find this mechanical machine easier to operate compared to some of the computerized options.

    The HD3000 comes with a Snap-On presser foot, reverse stitch lever and a built-in needle threader. These features are convenient, saving you time when switching thread or stitches. It is made from metal parts, increasing the overall durability and dependability of the machine.

    User Impressions

    Users frequently mentioned the overall quality of the Janome HD3000 sewing machine. Some users were annoyed that the machine pushes the thread from in front of the needle instead of pulling it from the back. This may make it a little difficult to thread when using the machine in low light.

    Janome Memory Craft 6500P Sewing Machine

    The Janome Memory Craft 6500P computerized sewing machine is a versatile option, thanks to its variety of stitches and automated controls. It comes with an auto-lock feature for the needle, automatic thread cutter, and automatic buttonholes.

    The MC6500P is also reliable. It has quality parts, producing 1,000 stitches per minute with greater precision compared to less expensive models.

    User Impressions

    A couple of customers complained about tension issues. However, the open layout of the front panel makes it easy to adjust the upper and lower tension.

    Juki HZL-F600 Computerized Sewing Machine

    The Juki HZL-F600 comes with many helpful features for dressmaking, including a wide variety of stitches and buttonholes. This machine can handle lightweight and heavyweight material, due to the strong motor. It uses a box feed system which eliminates shifting and shrinking when stitching.

    The computerized machine has many stitches and a large LCD screen. This model also stands out for its wide sewing table. The extended space is useful when trying to sew a large dress.

    User Impressions

    One drawback of this sewing machine is the price, even though it’s a little costly, users were happy with this machine, especially when it comes to the quality of the stitches. It delivers precise stitches with most types of material, including vinyl.

    In Summary

    These sewing machines provide the performance needed for dressmaking. Each option is durable, reliable, and versatile, allowing you to work with a wide range of fabrics and stitches.

    To select the right option, compare the features based on your specific needs. If you want the most stitches, choose the Singer 9985. For the best overall value, consider the Brother SE600 or the Janome HD3000.