Sewing Equipment - Our recommendations for sewing machines, notions, furniture and more

Updated: Nov 25

I always receive lots of messages from my lovely Sewing Retreat community asking about the equipment I use. So...

Here's part 1: My recommendations for sewing equipment...

Part 2: My recommendations for pattern cutting equipment and part 3: My recommendations for course creation tools will be coming soon.

Sophie and I would recommend all of the equipment below and it's what we'd buy if we needed something new. We have tried and tested most of the equipment ourselves but not all. The equipment we haven't tried is better than the equipment we currently have and we'd buy it if we needed it.

*** Anything I am recommending is because I love it, I've not been asked to recommend these products but if you decide to purchase anything using an Amazon link I will receive a very small amount as an affiliate but this doesn't cost you more at all and it helps us, as a small business, to grow ***

Sewing Machine Recommendations

If you're new to sewing and eager to start bringing your ideas to life on a sewing machine, then here are 5 top tips to help you choose the perfect sewing machine.

1. COST - Cheaper doesn't mean it won't stand the test of time, it just generally means it's slightly louder and less smooth when sewing. Higher-priced domestic sewing machines are generally better built, have higher quality parts that will last longer, they're smoother to sew with and are quieter to use.

2. QUALITY - If you're wanting to invest in a machine for life, I would go for a good quality brand (I've had mine for nearly 20 years and it's no different to the day I got it out of my box).

3. CARE - Make sure to service them every year or so like you would a car. This will help them last longer and run smoothly.

4. THE EXTRAS - I would avoid getting sidetracked by all the fancy stitches on a machine unless this is a feature you want to use a lot. This was the mistake I made when I was 14 and buying my machine. I don't ever use the fancy stitches and I wish I'd gone for quality instead (this is partly why I don't recommend my machine).

5. THE BACK BUTTON - Make sure the back button is manual and not a touch-sensitive one. Mine is touch-sensitive and I sometimes have to stop using it as it doesn't always work properly. This may not seem an issue when you're starting out but once you've got into sewing, this is the most commonly used button and you don't want to have to stop every time you want to use it.

4 sewing machines that we recommend

1. Janome 7025

(this is the machine Sophie has and she loves it!)

Pros: Automatic buttonholes, electronic foot speed control and a range of stitches. Sophie says "I personally love my machine. I find it simple to thread and easy to use for dressmaking. I have also used it with a free motion foot before to do freehand embroidery too which worked great"

Cons: The needle threader is reported to be a little flimsy and some people's have broken. I never use mine so this hasn't been an issue for me personally.