A Sewing Machine For Beginners

Okay, so the last time I actually sewed something was in 8th grade. I haven't really touched a sewing machine since then, but seeing all these cute projects has me really itching to buy a machine. I don't want anything too fancy that will include all the bells and whistles. I just want something that I can do a straight stitch, a zig-zag, a fairly simple button hole, and something that won't have all the tension and jamming problems I won't know how to fix.

I know there are typical problems with any sewing machine, especially a cheap one, but I won't know how to seriously troubleshoot my way out of a mess, and there's not a sewing machine shop in town (that I can locate). The only problem is, it seems like the good machines that run smoothly and don't have a ton of problems are the ones with a million stitches and settings, and they cost an arm and a leg. I would absolutely be willing to pay that much for a good machine if I knew I would use it like a mad woman. I don't see that happening. I want to be able to do little projects here and there with a straight stitch. That's it. Machines that will fulfill that request all seem to be a pile of junk! Help me out here!

Do you know of any affordable, beginner machines that won't make me tear my hair out or want to throw it across the room? Please comment below!


Lauren @ YoungNester said...

I'm a newbie too and have a simple Singer. I also enrolled in a "Know Your Machine" class at Hancock's fabrics and highly recommend it if you have one around you! It was $35 for 3 hours but totally worth it!

Kara @ Nest Candy said...

Thanks Lauren, I will have to check it out! My skills (simple as they are) certainly will need some refreshing. :)

Vanessa said...

I am in the same boat as you! So many wonderful, crafty, fun projects I'm seeing online have me drooling! And, like you, I haven't touched a machine since home ec class in high school! Wowza! :/

If you find one, be sure to let me know!

P.S. I'm your newest follower!

Rachael Larsen said...

I went through the same thing! I wanted to get a Bernina (like we had in Junior High) - but I couldn't justify spending $600+ on a sewing machine until I was actually good at it. I ended up getting a Singer Athena from HSN on a really good deal. I've been really happy with it, but I'm not going to lie - I secretly hope it dies in a few years so I can get a nice one.

Kara @ Nest Candy said...

@Vanessa - I will be sure to let you know what I find.

@Rachael - You crack me up. I hope your sewing machine doesn't die but someone just surprises you with a new machine instead. That way you can have a good machine and a backup machine! I need much much more practice to get anywhere near your level of talent on the sewing machine.

Emily said...

Hey friend,
I have been looking for one too!! I have seen this one posted all over the internet for beginners. "Singer Esteem II Sewing Machine - 2273" Its only about $150 tops. It is simple and sounds like it has good directions for beginners. And Singer is a really good brand. Oh and Katy (my sister) could down and give us a crash course in sewing. She is a mad woman when it comes to sewing! Here is a website I found handy http://www.sewing-machines-for-beginners.com/singer-esteem-ii-2273-sewing-machine/

Julie said...

Although I personally prefer Bernina, I own a top of the line Singer embroidery fancy schmancy does everything machine courtesy of my Husband as a Christmas present. I can't really complain too much about it ;)
My advice to you is to stick to a name brand even if the cost is higher. You don't HAVE to use all the stitches. (As long as I've been sewing, I haven't used most of them.) But they come in handy for crafting things.
Cheaper no name machines are going to have those problems, and even if you don't want to go all out and use the machine all the time, you will thank yourself for having one around to mend with if nothing else. I use mine more for creating, but also mending altering and crafting stuff.
Singer has several machines of varying levels of skill and cost, but I wouldn't buy the lowest end one. I think they have one at Walmart that would do very nicely for a first machine, you'll have to go and see what your branch carries.

Kara @ Nest Candy said...

Thanks Julie! I was hoping you would comment. :) I am glad to see that the comments are working for you now. Thanks for the advice! I'll let you know what I find out.

Vanessa said...

just curious...what did you end up going with?