A question I often hear from my readers is regarding which sewing machine I use. Truly, when purchasing a machine, nothing is more helpful in selecting and buying a new sewing machine than the advice of a friend, so today I thought I would tell you a bit about my machine, the Brother SE-350, and some of the pros and cons of this particular machine.
I was lucky to inherit this machine from my mom four years ago when she purchased a new machine of her own. Purchased new, the current model of this machine (the SE-400) will run you around $350.
After a number of years of consistent use, this machine still works really well. I have pushed it to its limits in stitching up a number of sewing-intensive projects, including the ruffled crib skirt for my son’s nursery, curtains for my home’s kitchen, and a slipcover for my office chair.
First things first, what do I like about my machine? I am so glad you asked!
- The top-loading bobbin is extremely easy to use, and winding bobbins can be done at the touch of a button.
- Although I enjoy the digital functionality of the machine, I like that it gives you the ability to decide between a digital/button operation or a standard pedal operation.
- There are many different stitches to choose from, and the automated button-hole function is extremely easy to use.
- The machine is lightweight and easily stored away for those without a permanent sewing space.
- Because it is a sewing and embroidery machine, this machine gives you dual functionality at a relatively low price point.
- New components for the machine (feet, parts, etc.) are very reasonably priced.
Now, a reality check. Some cons of this particular machine, as I see it:
- This machine lacks the workhorse capabilities of more high-dollar machines. When sewing through particularly thick materials, I have experienced my fair share of broken needles. I will say, though, that although it does have its limits in sewing many tough materials (including leather and vinyl), it has performed admirably for a machine in this price point.
- The beeping noise made each time the machine stops and stars can be irritating, but that default setting can be turned off in the machine’s settings.
- Occasionally, the automatic thread cutter (a great feature!) stops cutting, and the machine needs to be rebooted in order to get it to function again.
- For embroidery enthusiasts, the hoop included with this machine is fairly small, limiting the scope of the designs you can stitch.
Overall, I would recommend this machine to anyone wanting a great machine at a reasonable price. The intuitive controls and ease of use for this machine makes it suitable for beginning sewists, but the functionality and versatility of the machine makes it equally appropriate for experienced sewists, as well.
What type of machine do you use? Do you like it? Love it? Wish you could replace it?
Better yet, what is your dream sewing machine?
Thanks so much for stopping in! Feel free to add to the conversation or ask any questions you might have in the comments below.
Having grown up in a home brimming with sewing notions and paintbrushes, Amy has a deep love for all things creative. On any given day, you’ll find her knee-deep in her latest creative endeavor, with projects ranging from sewing and crafts to home decor and kid-friendly ideas. Amy believes that everyone, regardless of skill level or experience, possesses the ability to create something beautiful, and Positively Splendid was born of her passion for helping others harness their innate creative potential.
I have a singer futura ce-150 and it gives me alot of problems, however when its working great I get beautiful results with both the embroidery and regular stitching. I’m a self taught sewer and still dont understand tension and that is where I think my problem lyes!!! I do love sewing when Im not frustrated
I am new to sewing. Well, new is not accurate, i’ve only used my sewing machine maybe twice since getting it Mother’s Day 2012.
I have a brother CS-6000i
I need to take classes or just get on that thing and practice!
I would love to have an embrodery feature, but perhaps upgrading will be just the thing ONCE i finally master what i have to work with at present!
Allison D says
I have the Brother SE-400 and it’s been great. My biggest complaint though is that because it is so lightweight, it slips and slides around easily, especially when I start sewing something bigger like a quilt.
Debbie Reaves says
I have the same machine. Bought it in 2008 and have always loved it. I’ve tortured it by sewing Capri Sun bags (8 layers in some spots), ruffled burlap tree skirt, my first quilt, burlap costume, iPad covers, and many jeans have been hemmed. I did break a needle on the latest iPad pouch with about 10 layers of fabric in some spots ( bias tape around outer edges.) Phew! That baby was tough, but I went slow and this machine hung in there with me.
When I made my first quilt and did my first ever free-motion quilting, I thought I smelled hot plastic, but needless to say, it is still going strong. My only negative on this machine would be the harp space and it’s slow speed.
I would love to go to a faster machine and have been researching the Brother DreamWeaver series or Janome 8900, or the Juki 2010q (?). Can’t afford anything right now, but I’m saving and dreaming.
Sorry for writing a book, but I love talking machines. Thanks so much for sharing your machine talk.
Have a great day.
Loretta Davis says
I have a Baby-Lock machine and I love all that it can do. I make Barbie and Ken outfits and the machine has worked great, and no I would not part with it. Everything I have made has turned out exactly the way it should. I make a lot of my own patterns for B & K and they also turn out great. So there it is, I love my machine. It does have a lot of different patterns of sewing that I have not used them all – Yet. Maybe I will be able to figure them all out and then use the different patterns of sewing. Wish me luck!
I have a Pfaff 7570 embroidery machine
I have a Pfaff 7570 embroidery machine but it is hard to find places that will work on or clean this machine.
I was given a Baby-Lock for Christmas and love everything about it. I have sewn since I took Home Economics in High School (tells you how old I am). I’ve made everything from place mats to prom dress with curtains in between. Love to see young women passionate about sewing.