Looking for a new machine but finding yourself umming and ahhing over the cost and features? Or maybe you're wondering how much you’ll actually end up using it? It’s the dilemma that we’ve all been through; are machines with hundreds of stitches really better than those with a well-chosen select few? Well never fear! We’re here to settle all your worries and to bring you the best sewing machines on a budget.

Advertisement

In this article, we’ll run through seven of the best cheap sewing machines on the market. They range in price but all come in under £200 with the most affordable being just £85! We’ve also added the pros and cons for each of these cheap sewing machines so you can find the one which suits you best.

Get ready because after you’ve seen our collection of cheap sewing machines your bank account is going to be a little lighter!

2022’s best budget sewing machines

1. Brother LS14s Sewing Machine

  • Best for budget-friendly sewing

Pros:

  • Great price - one of the lowest-priced big-name machines on the market
  • Drop in bobbin - makes tangled threads easier to spot,
  • Free arm for trouser hems and sleeves

Cons:

  • No needle threader - although that’s to be expected at this price point
  • Limited stitches - 14 in total
  • Not ideal for heavyweight fabrics

Our top pick for a super budget-friendly sewing machine by a big-name manufacturer. The Brother LS14s is packed with features for beginner sewists or those who sew semi-frequently. If you fancy dipping your toes in the dressmaking water or just need a machine for occasional trouser turn-ups – this is the model for you.

The wallet-friendly price point makes this an especially great machine to buy if you’re not already a seasoned sewist. It has ample features and a nice lightweight design. If you find it hard to stick to hobbies then this £85 machine is a safe buy. Overall this machine gets the thumbs up from us!t’s great for fashion students, teens, and beginner sewists.

More like this

2. Singer M1605 Sewing Machine

  • Best for occasional use
  • Buy your Singer M1605 from Hobbycraft

Pros:

  • Super simple machine layout - no confusing dials or buttons
  • Lightweight - easy to carry to your next sewing class
  • Great for kids or beginners

Cons:

  • Pre-set stitch length and width - meaning you are unable to select a custom stitch length/width
  • Doesn’t allow for skill growth
  • Limited stitches

This compact, lightweight machine is ideal for absolute beginners or those who need the very minimum from their machine.

TIt does have a limited choice of stitches, although for some this may be a positive. Machines with lots of stitches can be confusing especially when they appear to have no useful function!

The inability to change stitch length and width may be a drawback for some, but this means there’s little room for error. Three preset straight stitch lengths and three zigzag widths mean your options are laid out in front of you.

We’d recommend this machine for absolute beginners who are happy to upgrade to a machine with better specs in a year or so. Thanks to the affordable price, this sewing machine would also make a great gift for kids.

3. John Lewis JL110 Sewing Machine, Aqua

Pros:

  • Fun colour choices
  • Good stitch selection
  • Full size machine

Cons:

  • Not great for heavy-weight fabrics
  • No needle threader
  • Front-loading bobbin makes it harder to see thread tangles

The JL110 from John Lewis has long been a popular pick amongst sewists in the dressmaking world. Its fun colour choice and great functionality make it a cheap sewing machine that’s worth every penny.

The JL100 is manufactured by Janome for John Lewis, meaning you get two household names rolled into one. The machine is quite heavy but that should reassure you that you’re getting a solid metal chassis and a machine that will last for years to come. The main downside is the front-loading bobbin which is hidden behind a drop down panel at the front of the machine. This means thread tangled occur, it can often take you a while to discover them. It’s also harder to see when you’re running low on bobbin thread, so it’s best to keep a few pre-wound bobbins next to your machine as you sew.

Overall this is a great machine for beginners and intermediate sewists alike. It’s cheap, cheerful and will stand the test of time.

4. Brother AE2500 Sewing Machine

  • Best for top features

Pros:

  • Good stitch selection
  • Fun design - but only available in pink
  • Twin needle capacity - great for topstitching hems

Cons:

  • No needle threader
  • Not as portable as some lighter machines
  • May struggle to sew thicker fabrics

Given its price point and features, this is one of the best cheap sewing machines on the market. With 25 stitches to choose from (including stretch stitches and overcast stitches for finishing raw fabric edges) this is a strong contender for the top of your gift list!

The machine has a drop-in bobbin, making it easy to see when errors have occurred or when you are running low on thread. The machine is also quite sleek in its design with a lovely pink floral design.

An interesting feature of this machine is the backstitch lever as it's positioned above the needle. This makes reaching up while you’re sewing simple and your free hand remains in your peripheral vision.

Overall this is a fantastic, cheap machine, at a price point not much higher than some basic entry-level machines. We’d recommend this machine to anyone serious about sewing clothing and homewares.

5. Singer Promise 1408 Sewing Machine

Pros:

  • Ideal for a wide range of projects
  • Simple layout
  • Affordable price point

Cons:

  • Limited stitches (8 built-in stitches)
  • Front loading bobbin
  • Pre-set stitch length/width options

The Singer Promise is another solid cheap sewing machine choice. This would be a great machine if you make occasional repairs or make simple garments.

The machine has a limited range of features but sometimes machines can be overloaded with functions you’ll never get around to using. The Singer Promise features three stitch length options and three stitch width options. This may be a dealbreaker for some, but beginners will find pre-set options take the stress out of sewing.

The machine also features stitches for stretch fabrics, a range of hemming options and a four-step buttonhole-making feature. This machine does what it says on the tin; functional and simple.

6. Brother AE1700 Sewing Machine

  • Best for homewares

Pros:

  • 17 built-in stitches
  • Drop-in bobbin
  • Good selection of accessories

Cons:

  • Heavier than some similar models at 6.65kg
  • Pre-set stitch length and width options
  • No needle threader

This machine is a great budget-friendly option with 17 stitch options. Its simple range of stitches makes it ideal for sewing homewares such as lightweight curtains, cushions, and gifts. It’s a great machine for beginners, teens or those looking to get back into sewing after a few years away from the machine.

At this price point, you can’t expect more premium features, but the offering is ample for those looking to use a machine occasionally. It would also make an ideal machine for teaching children or teens to sew; its basic offering is plenty to get you started!

Overall this is a great option for those looking to find a cheap sewing machine on a budget. Its impressive stitch count beats some other big-name machines that have less than ten stitches on offer.

7. John Lewis JL220 Sewing Machine, Peppermint

Pros:

  • Fun pastel design
  • Great stitch selection (22 stitches)
  • Built-in needle threader

Cons:

  • On the price cusp of a range of machines with additional features

Just scraping in under the £200 mark is this beautiful machine from John Lewis. The JL220 is the older sibling of the previously mentioned JL110, with a greater stitch selection and every sewist's dream - a built-in needle threader!

The design is simple, with the soft pastel colour selection appealing to a range of modern sewists who value design when purchasing appliances. As previously mentioned, these machines are manufactured by Janome, so you can be sure you’re getting a good quality machine for your money. The machine features 22 stitches which are more than enough for everyday sewing tasks. Although it’s on the more expensive end of our best cheap sewing machines round-up, we couldn’t leave the JL220 out as it’s one of our favourites to use.

If you have quite a flexible budget, this sewing machine is only slightly cheaper than a computerised machine. These machines often come with nicer features like one step buttonholes, stop-start buttons and speed control. If you think this machine would suit your needs better do check out our round-up of the best computerised sewing machines.

Gathered’s top cheap sewing machine picks

Out of the seven machines reviewed above, our top picks would be the Brother LS14s which is a sturdy machine for beginners and the Brother AE2500 Sewing Machine which has 25 stitches.

Finding the best cheap sewing machine for you

Having reviewed the best cheap sewing machines we would always advise you to research, research, research! , Read reviews and be honest with yourself when assessing your needs. Most sewists will use around five stitches repeatedly unless they are doing machine embroidery or making full use of the decorative stitches.

You may think that you need all of the bells and whistles when it comes to your next (or first!) machine, but take your time when making a decision. Once you’ve researched you can decide which is the best cheap sewing machine on a budget for yourself! Now all you need is some exciting projects to sew with your new, affordable machine.

Advertisement

Discover fun sewing projects with Gathered

Use your new cheap sewing machine to whip up your own handmade garments. Head over to our collection of the best beginner sewing patterns and stitch yourself something beautiful.

Authors

Roisin McKennaTechnical Editor

Simply Sewing magazine’s Technical Editor Roisin loves every part of the dressmaking process, from sketching to sewing the final design, and enjoys working with luxury fabrics such as silk and chiffon. She’s a sewing pattern pro with a skill for adjusting and hacking patterns to fit and for editing dressmaking instructions to make them accessible to sewists of all abilities. Before she came to Simply Sewing, the tea-drinking fabric-lover ran her own handmade Lingerie Etsy shop. She drinks a lot of tea and shares a mix of dressmaking projects and fashion history on her Instagram @roisin_handmade.

Comments, questions and tips

Rate this recipe

What is your star rating out of 5?

Choose the type of message you'd like to post

Choose the type of message you'd like to post

Overall rating

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement