Embroidery is an awesome hobby, but it’s expensive! Finding an affordable machine can be a challenge, but in this article, I’ll give you my top picks for the best low cost embroidery machine to get you started in embroidery.
Best Low Cost Embroidery Machine – Top Picks
Brother PE550 – $439.99
If your main concern is cost, the Brother PE550D is one of the cheapest embroidery machines around. There are a couple things you should know before deciding on this machine though.
While the PE550D is a perfectly capable machine, it only has a 4″ x 4″ embroidery area. This is a great size for doing pocket logos on shirts, or embroidering on things like bucket hats or dad caps. However, this limitation can quickly hamper your creativity.
Honestly, I’d recommend saving a bit more and purchasing a machine with at least a 5″ x 7″ embroidery area, which will allow you to complete a much wider variety of projects. But, if you only plan to do small embroidery work, this machine is definitely a great and budget-friendly pick.
This machine includes a USB port for uploading your own custom designs, a small touch screen with design editing options, lettering fonts, an automatic needle threader, and includes 45 free Disney embroidery designs.
Brother PE800 – $899
If you can up your budget some, the Brother PE800 is a much better choice in my opinion. This machine features an upgraded 5″ x 7″ embroidery area, which will allow you to work on a much wider variety of projects.
This is one of Brother’s most popular models, and it’s recommended far and wide as a beginner embroidery machine. It’s easy to use, offers a decent size embroidery area, and it’s still affordable.
This machine offers 7 embroidery fonts, a USB for importing your custom designs, an automatic needle threader, a jam-resistant bobbin, and step-by-step tutorials right on the touch screen!
As a bonus, since this machine model is so popular, there are tons and tons of tutorials on YouTube where people will show you how to use the machine, making it a great pick for new embroidery hobbyists.
Eversewn Sparrow X2 – $949.99
Looking for an embroidery machine that also doubles as a sews? If so, the Eversewn Sparrow is an affordable combo machine to consider. It features a 4.75″ x 7″ embroidery area, and it comes in just under $1,000.
This machine includes some cool features too, including app for iOS or Android you can download to manage your embroidery designs on a phone or tablet. This allows you to use the on-screen editing functions on a more comfortable screen of your choice, rather than a built-in screen which tend to be tiny on cheaper machines.
You’ll also get an automatic needle threader, 120 built-in sewing stitches, 130 free embroidery designs, WiFi connection capabilities, and upper and bobbin thread sensors.
Another interesting feature is that this machine reads most machine embroidery file types. If you’re not yet familiar with this concept, most machines have their own proprietary format. However, this machine will allow you to use pretty much any popular file type.
That means if you find free designs you want to use on the internet, there’s no need to convert them to another file type like you might have to do with another machine, which is pretty cool!
Other ways to save on an embroidery machine
Factory refurbished machines
Buying a factory services machine can be a great way to get a better quality embroidery machine for less money. These are machines that have been traded in to the dealer when a customer upgrades. The shop then services the machine and re-sells it used to a new customer.
You can even find machines like this online if you know where to look. Sewing Machines Plus frequently stocks these refurbished machines, and you can get a great deal this way.
Obviously, refurbished machines are not always available. You may have to be patient if you want to pick one up this way, but it can be a good way to save money on a machine if you don’t mind used equipment.
Craigslist/Facebook Market Place/Ebay
It’s also possible to get a deal on a machine if stakeout places like Ebay, Facebook Market Place, or Craigslist. However, you have no way of knowing how the machine has been maintained, and you’ll need to carefully inspect the condition of the machine before buying anything. It can also be quite the waiting game, because used machines tend to get snapped up quick. You may be able to get one cheaper than dealer used prices this way though.
In closing, while finding a decent low cost embroidery machine is tough – it’s not impossible. While a huge embroidery area and having all the bells and whistles is nice, you don’t really need them. You can get started with a more bare bones machine and upgrade later should you feel the need.
Tanya is a stay at home mom who blogs online to earn a bit of extra income from her hobbies. She also loves working on projects which she can involve her two kids in and teach them the valuable life-skill of sewing.