Best Cheap Sewing Machines For The Money - 2020 Reviews
Cover Image: Best Cheap Sewing Machines For The Money

It’s true that we have come a long way since the first functional sewing machine was ever invented, and it’s even more surprising and pleasant to see that people are rediscovering the pleasures of sewing. While buying a top-of-the-line sewing machine is a good idea if you’re a veteran in the field of sewing, there are cases where a cheaper machine might be a better option.

5 Best Cheap Sewing Machine Comparisons

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Brother XM2701
  • Dimensions: 12.1 x 5.9 x 15.3 inches
  • Weight: 12.6 pounds
  • Number of stitches: 27
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DONYER POWER
  • Dimensions: 9.4 x 9 x 5.6 inches
  • Weight: 5.4 pounds
  • Number of stitches: 12
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APlus+
  • Dimensions: 10.3 x 9 x 6 inches
  • Weight: 2.4 pounds
  • Number of stitches: N/A
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Brother RLX3817A
  • Dimensions: 17.2 x 14.8 x 7.6 inches
  • Weight: 12.65 pounds
  • Number of stitches: 17 stitches
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SINGER Start 1304
  • Dimensions: 13 x 7 x 11.5 inches
  • Weight: 11.5 pounds
  • Number of stitches: 6
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Is a Cheap Machine a Bad Idea?

Mini sewing machine, upgraded model in 2019, portable multi-function assistant at home with Light Extension Table Foot Pedal 4 Coils

The answer is: it depends on your sewing needs. If you consider any sewing machine under $100 cheap, then it’s safe to say that you can buy a cheap and reliable product. Cheap sewing machines are normally associated with the expertise level of the one “wielding” them. If you are a professional and sew for a living, then a cheap sewing machine won’t cut it, but if you’re just getting started, and you’re looking for the best value, here is what you should look for, even in “cheap” products:

  • You want a product with an intuitive design. When you’re a beginner, you don’t want to force yourself in always trying to keep a record of what each button does and where it’s located. To avoid the hassle, pay close attention to the design of the machine, but also to the number of features it comes with. More features will more likely mean more buttons and external components that you’ll have to learn to work with.
  • Cheap doesn’t mean that it should have no accessories, so opt for a machine that offers plenty of them. You want one with at least a couple of different needles, maybe a few bobbins, but also a brush for cleaning your machine. If there are some extra presser feet in there, even better.

Brother RLX3817A and accessories

  • Since you’re a beginner, there are a couple of features that you want your machine to have because it will just make your life easier if it does. For example, it is way easier for you to own a machine that comes with adjustable width and length of the stitches. This will help you tune the seams for different projects. You also want a machine with a reverse stitch, as this feature will be useful in finishing off projects. And if your machine has an automatic threading feature, even better.
  • If your room is poorly lit, you’re going to have a hard time seeing what’s going on in the needle area. The good news is that even cheaper machines now feature LED lights in the working area, which means that you will always have a clear view of the fabric being stitched

Top 5 Cheap Sewing Machine Reviews

Before we dive into the best and cheapest sewing machines that money can currently buy in this starter guide, it’s important to make one thing clear: we’ve considered “cheap” any sewing machine that has a maximum cost of $100, which means that the models you’re about to see are priced below a specific threshold.

Brother XM2701

Brother XM2701
  • Dimensions: 12.1 x 5.9 x 15.3 inches
  • Weight: 12.6 pounds
  • Number of stitches: 27
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The XM2701 will always be one of the most outstanding sewing machines in our opinion, because it is a product delivered by a veteran with plenty of experience in the industry, and comes at a price point that makes it affordable to the general public. The XM2701 might not have all the high-tech and complex features of a machine that costs hundreds of dollars, but it delivers more than you’d expect for a product at this price.

The machine has a very user-friendly design, with a beautiful floral print that makes it extremely visually appealing. It features 27 stitches that are all mentioned on the front side of the machine, so you will always have full visual information on the number corresponding to each type of stitch. The stitch selector is a dial that can easily be turned to set the stitching pattern of your choice.

With a maximum speed of 800 stitches per minute, this machine delivers a very decent stitching speed, perfect for beginners and home users that are looking to make or repair their own clothes. The area around the needle is backed up by an LED light to brighten up the workspace in low light conditions. The machine comes with a total of six presser feet:  narrow hem blind stitch, zig-zag, buttonhole, button sewing, and zipper.

Who Should Purchase This?

Brother XM2701 is a great choice for plenty of different people, really. It is a great machine for beginners, but also for more advanced sewers, good for those who want a low cost option with more than just six integrated stitches, but also for those who like to buy products made by brands with experience in the industry.

Pros:

  • Six presser feet included.
  • Good price.
  • Great design.
  • 27 stitches.
  • Jam-resistant drop-in bobbin.
  • LED light in the working area.

Cons:

  • Instructions aren’t very clear.

DONYER POWER

DONYER POWER
  • Dimensions: 9.4 x 9 x 5.6 inches
  • Weight: 5.4 pounds
  • Number of stitches: 12
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DONYER POWER brings forth a very interesting option for people who want an inexpensive, but reliable sewing machine. With 12 integrated stitches, the machine is perfect for basic to intermediate projects, and could definitely be a great deal for beginners looking to get adjusted to how to operate a sewing machine.

The machine is equipped with two operating speeds so that you can switch from low to high when you’re looking to improve your sewing game and are ready to finish your projects faster. It is equipped with both a hand switch and a foot pedal, to make it easier for users to operate it in the way they find to be most convenient.

This little baby also includes plenty of other features that you’d want to get in a sewing machine. The working area has a LED light that can illuminate the way when needed. The reverse key is optimal for reverse stitching. The secret drawer can gold a few small accessories and bobbins. The winding function and cutting knife will surely smoothen out the sewing process.

Who Should Purchase This?

DONYER POWER brings forth a sewing machine with a nice design, good features, and a reasonable price. We’ve chosen it as our editor’s choice for the day because it comes with a positive response from the customers, plus a friendly design that will help beginners get used to its functions and operating method in no time.

Pros:

  • Good for beginners.
  • LED light in the working area.
  • 12 stitches.
  • Lightweight.
  • Set up instruction videos.
  • Two operating speeds.

Cons:

  • Not very durable.

APlus+

APlus+
  • Dimensions: 10.3 x 9 x 6 inches
  • Weight: 2.4 pounds
  • Number of stitches: N/A
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The APlus+ maybe a small machine, but it is an impressive little fellow considering the price. In fact, it might make a wise purchase if you have a small kid that’s into sewing, but you’re not quite sure if it’s just a phase. Since buying a more expensive machine is not yet an option, this could be a great starting choice.

As far as features are concerned, you can expect to get some pretty cool things from this machine. It comes with a pretty hard-to-miss extension table that will allow easier manipulation of larger pieces of fabric. It has two different operating speeds, which make it easier for people who are getting the hang of it to switch from slower to faster operations. It comes with a generous package of supplies and accessories, such as the foot pedal, four bobbins, a needle and a needle threader, and also a power adapter.

The machine comes with both a button switch and a foot pedal, to offer more versatility in terms of operation. You can plug into the outlet, but you can also use it with four AA batteries if there is no power source nearby.

Who Should Purchase This?

Sometimes, all you really want is a cheap and portable sewing machine to repair this and that and be able to move around with ease. If you need one of these, the APlus+ is straight up your alley.

Pros:

  • Automatic bobbin winder.
  • Two-speed modes.
  • Lightweight.
  • Extension table.
  • LED light.

Cons:

  • Unsuitable for thick fabrics.

Brother RLX3817A

Brother RLX3817A
  • Dimensions: 17.2 x 14.8 x 7.6 inches
  • Weight: 12.65 pounds
  • Number of stitches: 17 stitches
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We normally don’t choose favorites, but there’s something about the Brother RLX3817A that was surely worthy of our attention. It could be that gorgeous design, or it could be the quality of the machine (no wonder, it’s a Brother after all). But ultimately, the quality of the stitches and the features that come together with this machine are what matter, so let’s get to business.

The Brother RLX3817A is a machine that integrates 17 different stitches, all of which can be selected thanks to the rotary dial located on the front side of the machine. You get four different presser feet to choose from, making sure that children can see their project through by using the buttonhole foot, zipper foot, the button-sewing foot, or the zigzag foot.

The instructional CD will give your children plenty of instructions, or you can learn how to use it and teach the kids yourself, to enjoy some quality time with them in the process.

Who Should Purchase This?

This product is for all the parents out there who want to purchase a good and affordable sewing machine for their children. The Brother RLX3817A is a bit more advanced compared to the cheapest sewing machines for kids out there and has plenty of features and functions that your kids can quickly get adjusted to.

Pros:

  • 17 stitches.
  • Superb design.
  • Good for children.
  • Four presser feet.
  • Upper thread tension control.
  • Free arm.

Cons:

  • Complaints about product durability.

SINGER Start 1304

SINGER Start 1304
  • Dimensions: 13 x 7 x 11.5 inches
  • Weight: 11.5 pounds
  • Number of stitches: 6
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Equipped with six basic stitches which are more than enough for basic to mainstream projects, the SINGER Start 1304 is a sewing machine that you can rely on. You have your basic stitch, your blind hemstitch, your scallop stitch, and even your zigzag stitch.  The machines come with a stitch selector that grants quick and easy access to all of these.

The 1304 features dual spool pins that will help with your twin needle sewing needs, so that you can create amazing decorative stitches and hems. You have three presser feet that will serve for a variety of different projects, including an all-purpose foot, one buttonhole foot, and a zipper foot.

The automatic reserve button makes it easy to reinforce your stitches by sewing in reverse. The storage tray comes with a very generous bundle of accessories, like a needle plate screwdriver, lint brush, and a pack of needles.

Who Should Purchase This?

If you’re just at the beginning of your sewing journey and are reluctant about buying an expensive sewing machine, we absolutely get it. That’s one of the reasons why the SINGER Start 1304 is a viable choice for people looking to learn how to use a sewing machine, but without skipping a quality experience provided by a reliable model.

Pros:

  • Heavy-duty metal frame.
  • Three presser feet.
  • Easy to thread.
  • Generous accessories bundle.
  • Reverse stitch option.
  • Dual spool pins.

Cons:

  • Jams frequently.

Bottom Line

Evidently, the term “cheap” is very subjective. What is cheap for a certain person’s budget might still be expensive for another, so we made this round-up including only sewing machines that were priced lower than $100. The models we’ve shown you today are great for beginner to average home users, but be advised that professional sewers might require models with more features, more stitches, and capable of sewing through thicker pieces of fabric.