My mother always told me that the first step to any successful endeavour is to have the best tools. This is true for when you’re making pottery, it’s true when you’re making stew, and true for sewing. Of course, one of the critical pieces of equipment is the sewing machine – and getting the best is important.

With that in mind, just what constitutes the “best” sewing machines? Well, here’s some advice from your friends at Sew Covered.

Brands like Juki, Janome, and Brother are at the top of the market in terms of durability and quality. Older standbys like Singer and Bernina are still around, too. Each brand has its own specialities, areas that it shines in compared to others.

Singer’s great advantage is the consistency of speed. The brand also makes some of the best ones for long-term use.

When you’re sewing, you want to know that the speed is consistent. You don’t want the speed of the needle to suddenly spike as you work. No telling how much damage that would cause to your project. Apart from having the most stable speed of all brands, Singer is also known for quality work.

However, the best machines from this brand tend to be somewhat lacklustre compared to competitors.

If you want a machine that will last for decades, Singer is also reliable in this area. If you don’t want the fancy features or just want a machine you can use for typical repairs or small projects, invest in a Singer. You’re unlikely to ever need to buy another machine.

Juki sewing machines offer a range of features at a good value.

If you’re comfortable with electronic interfaces or are willing to experiment with a lot of controls, Juki machines offer opportunities. The high-end models seem to have controls and options for everything, so you can adjust things to your heart’s content.

The control options allow for all sorts of great ideas and executions. The learning curve in understanding a Juki machine can be a challenge, but worth it for all the options it provides.

Even the lower-priced ones offer a great deal of customization and control. Though they’re not as good if you’d rather not do the tweaking.

Bernina machines tend to excel at embroidery. The way they’re designed makes them stand out here more than other brands.

For beginners, Brother and Janome are both good choices. They’re both reliable and don’t have too many options or functions to confuse those who are new to the hobby. They’re also solid choices, but they might not be good in the long-term.

Brother is also a solid manufacturer for mid-range options. These are the ones that let you move into more frequent projects, rather than just the occasional dabbling.

Bernina’s high-end machines are investments. If you want to become a professional, a Bernina is highly recommended. They might be expensive, but they pay off with longevity and professional-level utility.

If you’re teaching children, most brands have safety features. However, as mentioned earlier, Brother and Janome’s low-end models are great for people just starting out.