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About the Machines We Carry

All sewing machines are not created equally. At almost every price point, there is a wide range of quality in the sewing machines that you could purchase. You can spend $300 and get a machine that will last you 1-2 years, or get a machine that will last you 15+ years. We strive to sell only machines in the latter group.

At The Sewing Machine Shop, we only carry...

  • high quality machines that we can trust
  • machines that will sew with the quality you'd hope to find in any sewing machine
  • machines that are priced fairly
  • machines you can count on for years

Sewing Machine Frame Quality - Plastic vs. Metal

Lower-quality machine with a plastic frame. Machines like this are available online and in most big-box stores. High-quality machine with a solid aluminum machine frame. We only carry machines built like this. (This one is from Janome)

Why don't we carry most Singer products? (click for answer)

The Singer brand has been around since 1860 and is the most well known sewing machine brand in the world. Their machines used to be the best machines money could buy, but sadly, that is no longer the case.

We don't believe that most new Singer machines are built with the same quality that we'd recommend in a new sewing machine or serger. We see newer Singer machines in our repair shops almost daily, with repair issues that end up costing close to the original purchase price of the machines. They're just not built to last. It's no wonder why most of their machines only come with a 90-day service warranty.

Why don't we carry any Brother products? (click for answer)

Brother is a very well known brand with a few different lines of home sewing machines, sergers, and industrial machines. Their machines are sold in big box stores like Costco, Wal-Mart, and Target, on websites like amazon.com & overstock.com, and through a large network of smaller, brick-and-mortar sewing machine stores. The problem is, some of their machines are very nice, solid, and reliable, and some of them are not. So how do you know which models are the good ones? The rule of thumb is, “If it's sold online, it's not very good.” Brother does not allow their dealers to sell their higher quality models online. So, If you want a great quality Brother sewing or embroidery machine, you need to visit your local Brother sewing machine store.

The lower-end Brother models, the “internet models”, we see in our repair shops almost daily, with repair issues that end up costing close to the original purchase price of the machines. Most of their low end machines are built with cheap plastic parts on plastic frameworks, which bend & flex with the vibrations of the machines, causing skipped stitches, broken thread, & all sorts of other problems. They're just not built to last.

If you're looking for a great quality Brother sewing or embroidery machine, we'd also recommend looking into the Baby Lock Brand. Baby Lock is a U.S. brand based in Missouri, and they place a very strong focus on quality products. Their lower end, basic sewing machines are made by Janome, and they're great. Their computerized sewing & embroidery machines are made by Brother, and they're great as well.  Many high quality Brother models have an almost identical Baby Lock counterpart, so just let us know which Brother model you are interested in and we can recommend a comparable Baby Lock.  Also, if you're looking for a serger, Baby Lock makes the best quality and easiest to use sergers on the market, hands down.

So to answer our initial question, we don't carry Brother products for a couple reasons. One, the machines that we could sell online are cheap, low quality, and mostly plastic. Two, the nicer, more reliable machines can't be sold online.

Why don't we carry any Bernina products? (click for answer)

Good question. Bernina makes nice machines. But, they are significantly more expensive than everything else. They've kind of become the Rolls Royce of the sewing machine world. They're nice, reliable, and very expensive, but are they really that much better? We don't think so. We feel a lot better about recommending a nice, reliable machine that is more affordable instead. Also, Berninas cannot be sold online.

Bernina also has their Bernette line of sergers and inexpensive sewing machines, but none of those machines are actually made by Bernina, so there's not much point in buying them. Their sergers are actually made by Juki, so you'll save a lot of money by buying a Juki instead. The Bernette sewing machines are not as solid or reliable as other comparably priced options, and they're still more expensive.

If you are looking for a specific Bernina model, we'd be happy to recommend a comparable machine that would be a lot less expensive and that we believe would be a smarter investment. Please feel free to contact us any time.

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