Best Sewing Machine for Fashion Design Student – Top 7 in 2021

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Whether you have enrolled in a college or university choosing fashion designing or want to try it out at home, a good-quality sewing machine is necessary. But most of the good-quality machines cost a lot of money.

So, I have done some research and found the best sewing machine for fashion design student that is within your budget. These are industrial-grade but affordable models so that you don’t have to choose a used one from Craigslist.

All of the selected products are durable and capable of withstanding rough uses for years. They are perfect for those who are experimenting and looking for something to use till the end of the fashion designing courses.

Now, have a quick glance at my top-picked products.

1. Brother SE600 – Best Overall

With 80 unique designs, 103 built-in stitches, a large hoop area, a computerized control system, and lots of other fantastic features, SE600 can be the best sewing machine for fashion student. It is a mid-range model which is affordable to most of the new designers. You would love its brightly lit work area and automatic needle threader. Read my full review below for more info.

2. Juki TL-2010Q – Runner-Up

When it comes to reliability, durability, high sewing speed, and an industrial sewing machine, you can’t find a match for Juki sewing machines. This model is expensive considering the budget students can manage. But the features it offers are more than enough to complete fashion designing projects. The machine has a wider handling area with maximum predetermined stop positions for your convenience. I have done a detailed review of this heavy duty

3. Brother CS7000X – Best Budget

Brother is very popular among students for its good-quality products and reasonable prices. You don’t have to take my words for granted. Check the link and see for yourself. Thousands of customers love it for its large working area, lots of built-in stitches, and easy-operating mechanism. Whether you are new or experienced, it can help complete your sewing projects perfectly.

4. SINGER Quantum Stylist 9960 – Most Built-in Stitches

The singer is one of the oldest sewing machine manufacturers with a good reputation. The Quantum Stylist 9960 is a popular computerized sewing machine in their lineup with lots of features that are necessary for fashion design students’ sewing tasks. The automatic needle threader, 13 built-in 1-step buttonholes, easy operability, and good stitching speed are some notable features of this singer sewing machine.

5. Brother XM2701 – Most Popular

Being lightweight, compact, and packed with useful features, Brother XM2701 is one of the most popular sewing machines for fashion design students. It comes with 27 built-in stitches, 6 sewing feet, a 3-piece needle set, and many more. You can set the machine easily by seeing the instructional DVD that comes with the package.

6. Janome 2212 – Affordable

Besides the best budget model, here is another affordable sewing machine from Janome. Due to a low price point, it has some demerits but the machine is capable of supporting learners with various projects. you can easily adjust the width and length in this model. Also, you can perform free-motion quilting, sewing, and embroidery in this 110V professional sewing machine for designers.

7. Brother XR9550PRW – Top-rated

Due to 165 unique built-in stitches including 8 styles of auto-size buttonholes, I had to give Brother XR9550PRW a place in this review. This quilting machine is one of the best fashion design sewing machines preferred by lots of students. The LCD screen with easy-to-understand markings and operating system make it suitable for beginners. This sewing machine has a protective hardcover and 8 sewing feet so that you can use it for years.

How to Choose the Best Sewing Machine for Fashion Design Student?

When it comes to choosing the best sewing machine, several factors are needed to keep in mind. After completing the review part, I have decided to describe all of them in the simplest way possible. Let’s begin.

Computerized or Manual

Obviously, computerized machines have more benefits than manual ones as one can easily operate them and do complex designs easily. It also offers precision and reliability. It is possible to even download patterns from the internet and sew them on your workpiece on modern sewing machines.

With an LCD touchscreen, the sewing machine can be operated with fewer buttons. As a result, a compact model can offer lots of features without compromising anything. But the fact is that these machines are costly. While researching, I found a model from Brother with all those benefits, and it is my top-pick sewing machine for fashion design students.

Stitching Features

The number of built-in stitches and stitching speed is the main focus in this part. When it comes to stitching patterns, different machines offer various outlines. However, you don’t have to worry about all of those. Check whether the model you have chosen has straight stitch, zig-zag stitch, and buttonhole stitch or not.

On the other hand, there is speed. In the beginning, no one needs lots of speed. As you improve your skills, you need more stitching speed to finish large projects in a short time. So, don’t invest in a slower model. Fortunately, all of the listed products in this article have good speeds.

Accessories

If you read the descriptions of Amazon listings, you will know that lots of machines come with lots of accessories and attachments. Not all of them are useful for fashion design students.

For example, zipper feet, button attaching, and buttonhole feet are some necessary features for the students who are planning to construct garments. Also, a detachable table, free arm, dust cover, or hardcover are some helpful accessories to get with the package.

Budget

The last thing to keep in mind is the budget. Some of you might disagree with me saying it should be the first priority. But do you think that investing in a sewing machine without the features that are required for your courses is a good idea?

So, set your requirements first and choose accordingly even if it means increasing the budget. Those who are capable of gathering a thousand bucks without any problem must buy a Juki machine because they are the most reliable and durable ones.

For a budget range between $500 and $700, your first choice should be Brother, and the second is Singer. Brother also offers several models that are below $300 bucks. Read my full review of the top 5 products from the list and order one.

How Did I Pick?

best sewing machine for fashion design student

What sewing machine do fashion designers use? There are hundreds of sewing machines that are suitable for fashion design students. Usually, they use industrial models that cost around a thousand bucks or more. However, lots of students can’t spend so much money in their first or second year.

So, I have researched and found some affordable sewing machines for fashion designers. Ranging from around $100 to $1000, you will find various models with different capabilities. For this reason, you don’t have to buy any used machine, where it is possible to get new ones spending almost the same.

Just in case if you’re in a hurry….

Check these two best models from my review unit. You won’t regret it later. 

Top Pick: Brother SE600

Brother SE600 Sewing and Embroidery Machine, 80 Designs, 103 Built-In Stitches, Computerized, 4" x 4" Hoop Area, 3.2" LCD Touchscreen Display, 7 Included Feet

  • Built-in Stitches: 103
  • Stitching Speed: 710 SPM
  • Auto-Size Buttonholes: 10 styles
  • Weight: 26.24 lbs.
  • Dimension: 21.18 x 15.51 x 16.54 inches

Runner-Up: Juki TL-2010Q

Juki TL-2010Q 1-Needle, Lockstitch, Portable Sewing Machine with Automatic Thread Trimmer for Quilting, Tailoring, Apparel and Home Decor

  • Built-in Stitches: 1
  • Stitching Speed: 1500 SPM
  • Auto-Size Buttonholes: Zero styles
  • Weight: 25.4 lbs.
  • Dimension: 25.7 x 14 x 18 inches

5 Best Sewing Machine for Fashion Design Student: My Honest Review

Here, I have talked about 5 top-picked models from the list above. The other two models don’t have any significant features or benefits to mention separately. Check out the quick overview section right after the intro and the comparison table below to get a better idea.

ProductsDesignsBuilt-in StitchesDisplaySpeed (SPM)Weight (Pounds)Price
Brother SE600801033.2” LCD Touch71026.24$$$
Juki TL-2010QN/A1None150025.4$$$$
Brother CS7000XN/A602” LCD85013$$
SINGER Quantum Stylist 9960N/A600Not Specified85018.2$$$
Brother XM2701N/A70Yes75018.96$$
Janome 2212N/A12None100015.6$$
Brother XR9550PRWN/A165Yes85019.42$$

1. Brother SE600 – Best Overall

Brother SE600 Sewing and Embroidery Machine, 80 Designs, 103 Built-In Stitches, Computerized, 4" x 4" Hoop Area, 3.2" LCD Touchscreen Display, 7 Included Feet

Key Features:

  • Built-in Stitches: 103
  • Stitching Speed: 710 spm
  • Auto-Size Buttonholes: 10 styles
  • Weight: 26.24 lbs.
  • Dimension: 21.18 x 15.51 x 16.54 inches

Brother SE600 professional sewing machine is the successor of SE400 and the best sewing machine for the money. SE600 is the best sewing machine for clothing designer due to its improved build quality, more features, and convenient design. Let’s see more about this dual-purpose machine in this detailed Brother SE600 review.

Stitches and Designs

You have already known that the computerized sewing machine comes with 80 built-in stitches. It even allows custom design imported via USB 2.0 port. There is an LCD touchscreen which makes it easier to configure and operate. Moreover, Brother sewing machine SE600 has 103 built-in stitches including 10 styles of auto-size buttonholes which is helpful for various projects.

Work Area

It has a decent embroidery area measuring 4” x 4”. You can break a large design into small blocks and get it done easily with its computerized system. If you feel that the hoop size is not enough, you can always buy a larger one. It comes with 7 sewing feet so that you can get creative. However, keep in mind that there is no walking foot making the embroidery machine harder to do quilting or sewing denim.

Operability

The bright LED light in the work area, easy threading with the help of a lever, and simple menu navigation are the reasons for SE600’s popularity. Seeing all the options may startle you in the beginning. But give it some time, read the manual, and you will be good to go in no time.

Tip: Make sure that you have installed the bobbin in the right way stabilizing its backing completely covering the hoop. Otherwise, your bobbin would run out more frequently and not work.

The Good

Brother SE600 operates quietly and smoothly. If you compare the operating difficulty with the SE400, you will find it easier. The precision and stitching quality is fantastic. This sewing machine ensures stitching through almost 10 layers of quilting fabric.

The Bad

Due to low stitching speed, it can’t perform sewing process as fast as other industrial machines.

Summary

The ease of using embroidery features, and finishing complex projects in a short time make it the best sewing machine for fashion students. Apart from the slow speed and old built-in designs, you won’t have anything else to complain about. Order this perfect sewing machine now with full confidence as you can’t get these many features for such affordable pricing.

2. Juki TL-2010Q – Runner-Up

Juki TL-2010Q 1-Needle, Lockstitch, Portable Sewing Machine with Automatic Thread Trimmer for Quilting, Tailoring, Apparel and Home Decor

Key Features:

  • Built-in Stitches: 1
  • Stitching Speed: 1500 spm
  • Auto-Size Buttonholes: None
  • Weight: 25.4 lbs.
  • Dimension: 25.7 x 14 x 18 inches

I have decided to do a Juki TL-2010Q review instead of another popular model industrial sewing machine named JUKI TL-2000Qi. Both have lots of similarities but TL-2010Q has been released more recently with some upgrades.

This heavy duty sewing machine has a speed control slider and a thread pre-tension disc. 2010Q is expensive, and one of the best Juki sewing machine but worth the investment for the accessories that come with the package.

Quality

What I mean here is the build quality and stitch quality of Juki TL 2010Q. It is a solid metal build ensuring the highest durability of any other models on the list. As there are no electronic components, you don’t have to worry a lot about maintenance or failure.

Due to these premium quality components, it can provide very precise and an even stitch length making it the best sewing machine for making clothes. It doesn’t lose your stitch settings even when the power goes out. Quilting thick fabric or denim is no issue in this machine.

Sewing Speed

Another thing professional love about this Juki portable industrial sewing machine is the stitching speed. 1500 spm is the highest that you can get spending around a thousand bucks. When you are sewing at top speed, you won’t feel any vibration or interruption due to its aluminum die-cast arm and bed.

Thread Cutter

A minor but impressive feature is its automatic thread cutter. You can do it using the foot pedal. It is a normal pedal like the others but pressing it towards you activates the cutting option. Overall, it is a highly reliable machine that is also known for its amazing performance in free motion quilting.

Tip: You may find it difficult to figure out the needle threader of the quilting machine. Watching the instructional videos can help you with the issue.

The Good

This one from Juki stitches so evenly, smoothly, and quietly that you would fall in love in no time. It can provide great control over free-motion quilting. Its heavy duty metal frame can work as fast and reliable industrial sewing machine that can stitch through thick fabrics easily.

The Bad

It has no auto-size buttonhole, LCD screen, or preset designs making it hard to do complex designs in a short time.

Summary

For zig-zag or other fancier stitches, you can get a more affordable model from the list. But for large sewing projects with heady-duty performance requirements, this is the best sewing machine for fashion design students. It is expensive but worth the investment.

3. Brother CS7000X – Best Budget

Brother CS7000X Computerized Sewing and Quilting Machine, 70 Built-in Stitches, LCD Display, Wide Table, 10 Included Feet, White

Key Features:

  • Built-in Stitches: 70
  • Stitching Speed: 850 spm
  • Auto-Size Buttonholes: 7 styles
  • Weight: 18.96 lbs.
  • Dimension: 16.26 x 6.65 x 12.21 inches

In this Brother CS7000X review, I have shown why it is the most popular model and manages to be the least expensive sewing machine on the list.

Speed and Quality

The sewing speed is indeed not as much as the previous one. But 850 spm is quite good enough for beginners. Considering the price 5 times less than the runner-up model, getting more stitching features and customizable options is really impressive.

Practical Design

Large and bright working area, LCD screen, jam-proof drop-in bobbin, and automatic threader make it a practical sewing machine for beginners and professionals.

Portable and Convenient

One of the main benefits of having a Brother CS7000X sewing machine is its portability. Also, you would love the fact that it stops stitching and makes a beeping sound whenever something goes wrong. One very frustrating feeling is when the bobbin runs out but not realizing it immediately, and it won’t be the case for this low budget sewing machine.

Tip: If you are facing issues with tension, you should check the bobbin and make the threading properly.

The Good

After using the machine a few times, anyone can get a hang of it easily. The automatic buttonhole maker, lightweight construction, and one-push easy operation make it convenient for beginners. Also, with several stitch options along with lots of computerized perks, you can do all sorts of basic sewing.

The Bad

It is not capable of stitching thick fabric like other semi industrial sewing machines on the list.

Summary

Lots of people consider it as the best sewing machine for design students due to reasonable pricing considering the features and performance. Compared to its very popular predecessor model CS6000i, it has more built-in stitches, and an improved design. So, this one obviously aces in the budget category.

4. SINGER Quantum Stylist 9960 – Most Built-in Stitches

SINGER | Quantum Stylist 9960 Computerized Portable Sewing Machine with 600-Stitches, Electronic Auto Pilot Mode, Extension Table and Bonus Accessories, Perfect for Customizing Projects

Key Features:

  • Built-in Stitches: 600
  • Stitching Speed: 850 spm
  • Auto-Size Buttonholes: 13 styles
  • Weight: 18.2 lbs.
  • Dimension: 17.25 x 8.25 x 12 inches

Reliability, the highest number of stitch designs, and several useful accessories are the reasons, Singer could make a special place in the hearts of a fashion designer with this computerized sewing machine. Due to its hundreds of built-in designs, it is the best sewing machine for costume design.

Durability

Getting all those premium features and specs without spending more than 500 dollars seems unrealistic sometimes. But Singer has made it possible which is really helpful for students and learners. Its heavy-duty metal construction makes it last longer than most of the competitor machines.

Easy Operability

Overall, singer sewing machine comes with lots of features and an easy quilting mechanism. Seeing lots of built-in stitching options may seem puzzling at first. But reading through the manual will make your life easier. Despite having hundreds of different designs and options, you can control everything easily with its computerized system.

Tip: Some may face problems with threads being cut without any reason. You can solve it by using a command strip on rough edges.

The Good

Quantum Stylist 9960 is a very powerful, quiet, and reliable sewing and quilting machine. It has lots of customizable options along with the highest number of stitching options. The 110V operating voltage makes it perfect to use anywhere in the US. You can rely on its performance for years without requiring major maintenance.

The Bad

It has some basic design issues. For example, you can’t clean out any lint underneath the bobbin case. Also, there is no way to adjust the brightness of the screen.

Summary

As a student looking for something to perform quilting, embroidery, or something else, this is the best automatic sewing machine for fashion that offers lots of accessories and adjustable features.

Brother XM2701 Sewing Machine, Lightweight, Full Featured, 27 Stitches, 6 Included Feet

Key Features:

  • Built-in Stitches: 27
  • Stitching Speed: 800 spm
  • Auto-Size Buttonholes: 1
  • Weight: 12.6 lbs.
  • Dimension: 12.1 x 5.9 x 15.3 inches

Compact design and lightweight construction make Brother XM2701 a highly portable sewing machine. As an affordable model, there is nothing much to expect but the design options are still more than the runner-up model.

Built-in Designs

With the help of its 27 built-in stitches, you can have the basic patterns along with decorative and quilting ones. The big knob on the top right portion of the machine lets you choose the pattern you like. Its one-stop buttonholer is also very helpful for making buttonholes quickly and precisely.

Easy to Use

It has a built-in LED light to ensure a bright workplace so that you can work at night. Brother XM2701 also offers an easy threader, and an automatic bobbin winding system. The drop-in bobbin mechanism is easy to set up.

Tip: Left-handed people should be aware of this model as the controls are right-hand-oriented.

The Good

With the help of this sewing machine, you won’t have to through away any cloth. It is easy to set up and use. With the instructional DVD that comes with the package, a beginner can figure it all out very easily. It is the most lightweight and portable machine on the list.

The Bad

This machine is not so quiet as the others. Also, the LED light is not very bright making it harder to sew at night.

Summary

Brother XM2701 is one of the best sewing machines for beginners with very clear instruction videos. Having a low budget with very little knowledge about such products, it can also be the best sewing machine for fashion students.

Final Words

Now, which one do you think the best sewing machine for fashion design students? I think that Juki should be your first choice in case of having no issues with the budget as it is one of the top industrial sewing machines. Otherwise, it would be wise to go for the top pick model from Brother which is the best mid-range sewing machine.

Whatever you choose, make sure that the machine has all the features that you need for experimenting or completing the projects. If you have found an even better model than my reviewed ones above, I will be glad to hear from you. Otherwise, you can trust my decision. 

About Zoe Craig

Zoe Craig is an expert on Fiber Science & Apparel Design, also a freelance writer with five years of writing experience. She works in product development and customer experience for fashion start-ups.

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