Has long been a teacher of English Literature, after the retirement focused on freelance copywriting. She’s now our full-time writer since our website allows her to know more about the hobby of her lifetime – sewing.
A professional fashion designer and seamstress. Isabel has her own video blog where she shares her experience about all the aspects of sewing – from choosing suitable materials to step-by-step instructions on how to sew a summer skirt.
Last updated: March 25, 2021
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Quilting is a fabulous process, whether you’re a complete beginner, have a little knowledge, or are a fully experienced sewer. The idea of making your own quilting projects from scratch and deriving some of the most beautifully finished products to keep for personal use is a massive attraction for many people turning to this enjoyable craft. However, if you’ve been considering purchasing a machine to tackle this type of sewing, you’ll need to use the best sewing machine for quilting which specially caters to quilting, rather than a standard sewing machine type.
This is an in-depth review of no less than nine of the best types of sewing machines available for purchase on Amazon which specifically cater to quilting. By focusing on such features here like how many stitches per minute, the possible sewing speeds, types of stitches available, additional accessories, and warranty types, we highlight the benefits of each model available. There’s also a small selection of pros and any mentioned cons summarized at the end of each review as a wrap-up.
We’ve undertaken a thorough search of the market to bring you what we believe to be those better of models available, providing you with a final overall rating for each one. This is all based on our extensive reviewing experience. Presenting our findings in an informative table and in-depth reviews we’ve been able to compile a helpful buying guide while answering some commonly posed questions on these products. We’re sure that all this information combined will help you make that choice of the best sewing machine for quilting for your unique needs.
The HZL-F600 model from the renowned Japanese brand Juki is a quilting machine that is programmed with 10 sewing patterns. Easily selectable, it will allow you to quickly and easily start your quilting works with the touch of a button. The machine offers 16 different styles of buttonholes to choose from. And you can do it simply, thanks to the fact that they are programmed into the machine. As it sews both sides of the buttonhole evenly, you will always have the perfect buttonhole for each fabric.
Also, you can adjust the width of the buttonholes without affecting the size of the seam. You can then make pieces with thin or wide buttons and adjust the buttonholes according to the fabric without affecting the strength and stability. The process of inserting the thread spool in the box designed for this purpose is extremely simple. You just have to follow the threading path, which is clearly marked, and you will leave the machine ready to sew.
Another aspect that makes this equipment so versatile is its ability to wind spools of thread at the same time as it performs sewing tasks. This, therefore, saves time. This equipment includes an automatic threader that facilitates the threading of the needle with the press of a lever. The Juki HZL-F600 is a computerized sewing machine that also offers the possibility of adjusting the foot control, the contrast on the LCD screen, or changing the volume on the machine’s buzzer. You can also select between 8 different languages.
The JUKI TL-2000Qi is our choice for the Best Industrial Sewing Machine for Quilting, as well as Amazon’s choice for Best Juki Sewing Machine. This is a high-speed model which aims at providing you with that more professional of results while doing so at 1500 stitches per minute. Considered by many to be one of the better of quilting machines on the current market, this is a fully updated version with LED lights and a one pedal operation. Whether you’re looking to work on home décor items or keen on quilting apparel, this is a more practical and thoroughly comfortable choice. With an extension included to increase the width of your work area, this is also a low vibration operation due to the aluminum die cast arm and bed making this a quieter model when in action. Making use of an automatic needle threader the simplicity of this machine means that there’s one simple needle and one straightforward stitch. Light in weight at 25.4 lbs, and complete with a five-year limited warranty, this is the more superior of choices of sewing machines for those that are the more experienced of sewers. Ensuring that you can use multi-layered and weighted fabric, and material throughout, many sewers consider this a step-up machine as they move onto more intricate and complicated projects that require those more delicate details.
Customers of the JUKI TL-2000Qi thoroughly rate this machine for the more experienced of sewers, finding it a strong, study, and thoroughly capable device which delivers professional results every time.
The Brother CS6000i is a sewing machine for quilting. It is convenient for those who are just starting out in the world of patchwork! The quilting machine is a lightweight, computerized model with 60 stitches incorporated into the memory, including utility, decorative, and traditional stitches.
Perfect for sewing clothes, it has decorative objects for quilting. The CS6000i is ideal for any type of sewing and also comes with a large plastic base for preparing large projects.
Light and practical, the Brother Cs6000i is all well equipped with a pedal and LCD screen. Beginners and professionals say the Brother cs6000i computer commented that it’s a sewing machine that can satisfy almost everyone. To justify the slightly higher price, it offers many more features than other devices that can be used by beginners. Some of these include an LCD screen and a 60-point feature. It has nine different presser feet, including furniture and padding, often found on more expensive machines.
Most people who own the Brother cs6000i love the fact that it is super easy to use. Its ease of handling makes it ideal for beginners who want to focus more on the fabric than on operating the machine.
What we liked:
Has a built-in free arm
Includes an LCD screen
For quilting and patchwork
Strong, resistant and silent;
Sews multiple layers of fabrics
What could be better:
Inconsistent line tension
JUKI HZL-F300 – Best Automatic Controlled Sewing Machine for Quilting
The Juki HZL-F300 gets our thumbs up for the Best Automatic Controlled Sewing Machine for Quilting. This is primarily because this model has a selection of automatic features which make sewing that little bit easier and indeed quicker during every task. There is an automatic needle threader, which merely requires just the one-touch, an automatic thread cutter, and no less than 16 automatic controlled electronic sensor buttonholes as standard. An intelligent lightweight machine, you can access a total of 105 stitches here and all at a high speed of 900 stitches per minute. The concept of this machine is to encourage you to be able to use it in a more simplified way with its free arm access. Combining a five-year limited warranty, Juki claims to be a leader in industrial level sewing, therefore placing all their knowledge, expertise, and design capabilities into a robust and reliable model such as the HZL-F300, ensuring professional results in fast time. There is also the option to purchase an extension table for this particular model, should you wish to extend your workplace even further in an instant. This machine allows you to sew through a wide range of thickness in your material choices with ease to create some of the most perfect stitches and comes with a five-year limited warranty.
Customers of the Juki HZL-F300 love the many features this powerful model offers them in abundance, highly recommending the automatic threader. It’s also considered a quiet machine in operation and could be regarded as a perfect entry level machine.
The Ever Sewn Sparrow 30s is our choice for the Best Sewing Machine for Quilting Beginner. This is an exceptionally beautifully looking of machines with a decorative design, making it the perfect center piece for many a sewing room! At just a mere 15 lbs. in total, this offers an average of 850 stitches per minute alongside a selection of 310 stitch types. There’s also a wonderful 15 needle position to select here. 32 of these stitches are utility types with 84 decorative and two full alphabets. Better still, there is a wonderful memory function which you can access at any point which allows you to save any of those individual stitch combinations you create when working over periods of time. There’s also seven presser feet and even an extension table included with this purchase. Other features here include an automatic thread cutter, an automatic needle threader, and a drop in bobbin function. Displaying a fantastic and clear LCD digital screen for improved functionality, this is an easier to use of devices in terms of its functions as well as its ergonomic design. Finding your specific stitch pattern is just as easy with the use of a pull-out stitch library in the shape of a refence card. Aimed at an array of sewing levels, the company behind this machine believe in creating a fun environment in which to quilt, which they believe the Sparrow 30s fits into perfectly.
Customers of the Ever Sewn Sparrow 30s find this a stunning machine overall which works with the minimal amount of fuss and looks fantastic in the home.
The Brother SM3701 is our choice here for the Best Lightweight Sewing Machine For Quilting and is from a respected and long-standing brand. This is a convertible model which offers a total of 37 stitches and works at speeds of 800 stitches per minute. Once again, another lightweight model at just 12 lbs, this is a free-arm/flatbed convertible machine that has extra quilting features for those taking on heavier duty quilting tasks. Offering an automatic needle threader, as well as a drop-in bobbin, and auto bobbin winding motion, there is also a one-step auto-size buttonholer. This machine also allows reverse stitching with the use of a simple push button action and lets you take control over the stitch width and length. Furthermore, when you purchase the Brother SM3701, you instantly receive seven accessory presser feet, a cloth carrying case, an extended user manual, and even a quilting table whereby you can extend the many tasks and jobs you perform and produce a more professional finish every time. This machine also has an integrated handle which makes it ideal for transporting. With an astounding 25-year limited warranty attached, this model encourages you to use a variety of fabrics, illuminating your workspace with its built-in light as you work and offers a practical built-in thread cutter as standard.
Customers of the Brother SM3701 find this an entirely comfortable machine to use and claim it to be smooth in operation. It’s stated as being an excellent purchase for a beginner, offering great value overall.
The Janome JW8100 is our choice for the Best Sewing Machine For Free Motion Quilting as this is sold as a computerized and fully featured sewing machine. Offering a wide variety of additional accessories as well as features, this model benefits from easy threading access, a bobbin that can be dropped in from the top, and seven-piece feeding systems. At an astounding speed of 1000 stitches per minute, this very lightweight model has a selection of 100 stitches all built in and ready to choose from, as well as seven buttonhole auto styles. With a memorized needle action throughout working over a metal interior frame, there are also many more convenient and thoroughly practical areas of this model. Here you access a start and stop button, a reverse lever, a control slider for speed, and a button for locking your stitch. A free arm model, the Janome JW8100 also offers plentiful accessory storage, is thread tension adjustable, and has a fantastic memory function. As if that wasn’t enough as a bonus, customers of this machine also receive a dust cover which is hard-sided, two feet comprising of an even and quarter inch size, and an extension table which is extra wide in measurements! A modern and good-looking machine visually, this is an excellent product for working on those more extensive projects, such as quilts. Aimed at both those starting out in sewing and indeed the more experienced of users, this has a 25-year limited warranty attached.
Customers of the Janome JW8100 love the many features that they can access in this machine, with it claimed to be an overall simplistic sewing machine.
What we liked:
Super quick speed
Many additional features
Strong metal frame
Free arm model
What could be better:
Ability to sew through thicker material questioned
The SINGER Heavy Duty 4452 is our choice for the Best Heavy-Duty Sewing Machine for Quilting. It also gets Amazon’s choice for the Best Singer 4452 Heavy Duty Sewing Machine. This boasts a vast selection of features that work to encourage creative and elegant results. This is perfect for clothing, quilting, all manner of crafts, and home décor projects. With 32 built-in stitches, six of these are basic, seven are stretch, and 18 are decorative. There’s also one fully automatic one-step buttonhole. The automatic needle threader makes setting this machine up effortless. Offering a speed of 1100 stitches per minute, you can be assured of not only sewing through most fabrics with ease but rather at a swifter pace than most standard sewing machines. Lightweight in construction the accessories that come with this machine include a soft dust cover, an even feed walking foot, a non-stick foot, a clearance plate, a pack of needles, and a variety of smaller items included in the accessory tray storage compartment. This is described as a workhorse of a machine and is heavy duty in design. One of Singers best sellers, it comes with a whopping 25-year limited warranty and encourages a much more straightforward sewing process, ensuring skip-free sewing every time enhanced by an easy to load bobbin system with clear cover for drop in.
Customers of the SINGER Heavy Duty 4452 find this thoroughly impressive and a fantastic heavy-duty machine that is durable but equally equipped to cope with a variety of fabric types.
Our final choice on the list and the second Janome model reviewed here is the Janome 2212, which is our Best Budget-Friendly Pick Sewing Machine for Quilting. It also gets Amazon’s vote for the Best Janome Sewing Machine. An entry-level machine, this is claimed by Janome themselves to be amongst one of the easier of sewing machines on the market that almost anyone can use within an instant – while deriving some brilliant overall sewing results in the meantime! A lightweight design at just 13 lbs, it offers a small amount of 12 stitches but does so at a fantastic speed of 1000 stitches per minute. Featuring a dial pattern section that is easy to turn, you can also access a four-step buttonhole here. The drip feed element ensures free motion sewing as well as easy quilting, and there is the ability to adjust stitch width and length. With a great warranty offered on this machine, it’s straightforward to set up and use, and there’s a reverse lever to lock stitches in as well. When you purchase this model, you automatically receive a useful accessory pack including a dust cover, zipper foot, seam ripper, screwdriver, needle set, foot control, bobbin, blind foot, buttonhole foot, and an instruction manual.
Customers of the Janome 2212 highly rate this as a great starter model as well as for those with extensive sewing experience. Its ability to power through the bulkier and heavier of material type is also widely appreciated as is its continued ease of use.
What we liked:
Great beginner machine
Simple to use
Drip feed system
Great accessory pack
What could be better:
Shorter cord is irritating for many
Smaller than many expect
Things to Consider
We hope that by reading through these detailed reviews, you’ve now got a clearer idea of the best types of sewing machines for quilting that are available for purchase on the current market place. Now that you’ve had a chance to look through nine of these products in detail, why not have a read through the following extensive buying guide? This is a thoroughly researched and completely helpful addition where we aim to elaborate on those features discussed above, examining in more detail what we consider to be those more critical of elements when it comes to choosing that best sewing machine for quilting.
Creativity to the max – why to invest in a quilting machine
Some people often wonder whether there’s indeed a need to purchase a rather specialized sewing machine, such as the ones reviewed here which encourage quilting, or whether they can simply make do with a standard sewing machine type? The truth is that to some extent, you can use a standard sewing machine to quilt on, but you will soon find yourself tremendously limited in terms of its capability. This is especially true if you have plans to quilt continually or are moving onto different fabric types and want to expand your quilting projects. A standard sewing machine will only allow you to work on the most basic of quilting jobs.
The features found in a specialized quilting machine however work to improve the craft by offering such benefits like wider tables, more customized options, easier threading procedures, and ultimately ensure a stronger thread tension throughout. The more dedicated of these machine types allows you to create customized quilts and ensures consistent stitching. Ultimately, they work to the often more increased thickness, width, and length of materials that are usually needed for quilting. Therefore, if you want to increase your overall enjoyment and get some superb results in the meantime, a sewing machine that is primarily designed for quilting is the perfect choice for you.
Make your quilting more effective – helpful advice
To help ensure you get the most effective of quilting sessions, here are a few simple tips:
Attempt a sketch of your quilt and try it on paper beforehand
Clear yourself the maximum of workspace and set up any accompanying tables
Make sure you’ve got the correct thread and needle sizes
Aim to use the same colour in both top and bobbin
Try practicing on real quilts for better effect; better still, practice daily for increased improvement
Develop a good attitude at every sitting
Baste properly, ensuring all layers are completely smooth and flat to start
Try pressing your seams to strengthen your quilt throughout each sewing session
Aim to incorporate your walking foot to utilize the many designs you can create with it
Have fun during every quilting session!
If you have just started… Basic quilting tips
When it comes to getting your sewing machine reading for quilting, get used to setting it correctly for this type of crafting:
· Oil the machine: This ensures a smooth machine to start
· Position the machine in the right place: Place it on a stable and flat surface where you will not only have enough room to maneuver but will also be most comfortable throughout your sewing session.
Consider lowering your SPM: Most quilters like to start off with a low spm to ensure a better overall finishing. This means lowering the current spm, especially if your machine is a sewing machine, which will tend to work at high spm rates.
Choose the right foot: Quilting will need a specific foot to be able to cope with the thicker material.
Lower your feed dog: This will allow you to hold your material better and increase the quilting efficiency of your machine.
Decrease your stitch length: The smaller the stitch, the better it looks and holds on the quilt.
Shut off the thread cutter: Do this before you quilt and trim the threads only when you have finished; not during.
Apply the stop down needle: This will stop the machines progress while the needle remains in the quilt – perfect for turning.
Select your stitch plate: For quilting, this will mean using a one-hole stitch plate as you will be using just one needle throughout.
Keep an eye on your foot pressure: Work this to the density of the cloth you are using, each time.
Turn off the fix switch: Again, when quilting you won’t need this as it will just create knots in your thread.
Begin quilting: Now you are adequately prepared to start quilting!
Consider following features to purchase the best sewing machine for quilting
We believe that when selecting the best sewing machine for quilting, there are a number of practical features that you need to look out for and consider before handing over your money. Each model that we have reviewed here is chosen for its ability to offer you the absolute best of properties when it comes to quilting. In the following buying guide, we attempt to expand on such features a little further.
The stitch per minute of a sewing machine indicates how quickly you can get the job done. You won’t necessarily need a high rate here for quilting, and more so if you’re a beginner to the craft, but for those more industrial of quilting tasks, the JUKI TL-2000Qi offers the highest rate here of 1500 spm. Otherwise, the average spm is around 850.
As for the number of stitches, this may be more of a personal preference, but the more available the more you can incorprate into your own unique design. The average machines offer around 100 different stitch types with further variations available – but most important is how they fare with stitch length and stitch width adjustment. These models here range from just the one stitch, that is the JUKI TL-2000Qi, to a staggering 310 stitches from the Ever Sewn Sparrow 30s .
Quilting requires a larger area than general sewing tasks and therefore it’s advisable to look for a larger table length and indeed wider arm area. The more expansive here, the more room you have to allow the fabric to flow freely, making the crafting method more natural in the process. Those models that offer an extension table will cater to such requirements, or look towards those machines, such as the Juki HZL-F300, which give an option to purchase such a product to match the model type.
Size and weight
The size of the area you intend to place your sewing machine in may dictate your purchasing decision. With the addition of an extension table or wider arm length may come the need for more increased room for movement here. However, just as important is ensuring that the surface you want to place your machine on can hold the weight of your chosen model – and do so safely. Though some sewing machines have a reputation of being heavy and awkward, all these reviewed models are brilliantly lightweight, with the Brother SM3701 weighing a mere 12 lbs.
Do you need automatic needle threading?
Automatic threading, though not essential to quilting, most definitely makes every project much easier and hassle free every time! These reviewed machines have such a facility and we believe it’s an area which not only works to save you time and ensure the quilting process runs a lot smoother, but it also works to reduce the strain on your eyes which comes from the consistent need of having to manually thread a needle. You may find this process a life saver when working on bigger and ongoing quilting projects!
How sturdy is your sewing machine?
It goes without saying that you’ll require a sturdy sewing machine when you quilt, or indeed perform any sewing task, to get a straight and accurate stitch with each movement. A machine that vibrates is not an option here if you’re to produce quality sewing projects – so look for those that have a sturdy overall frame. The SINGER Heavy Duty 4452 is a great example of a good workhorse of a model, due to its strong metal framework, but still allows you to move it around with ease if necessary.
Arms and feet
For the best quilting experience, we encourage you to select a machine that offers a long arm, as this provides you with the bigger of work spaces. This means you can take on those larger of quilting projects and access a bigger frame in the process. Regarding feet, a good machine will offer you a choice of foot options ranging from quarter inch, walking, darning, or free motion. The use of such choices will all depend on the project you are undertaking but to be sure of a wide choice, look for those models, like the ones reviewed above, that give you a greater selection.
Some sewing machines are renown for being quite noisy when you work on them, but this may not be practical for the room or area which you’re using it in, neither will it result in a good session if you have to put up with a loud noise throughout working on your project. All these machines are claimed to be quieter in operation, and those computerized of models certainly seem to be better at emitting lower levels of noise when in use.
Finally, you may want to look out for any advanced features such machines can offer you. Though this may be a more personal decision as to exactly what you’re on the look out for, such choices here usually include the ability to handle a variety of tasks, alongside that of quilting, including improved computerized elements, extendable tables, and memory functions as standard.
If your selected sewing machine is initially quite costly to buy, or you are planning on working on it for long periods or regular occasions, you may want to carefully consider the warranty that is attached to your purchase. This will assure you additional peace of mind should you encounter any problems with its operation or indeed parts and require a quick solution. All these models offer superb guarantees, with the Brother CS6000i, Janome JW8100, and SINGER Heavy Duty 4452 all delivering a 25-year limited warranty.
Maintenance is a key – how to take care of a sewing machine
Service your machine – Without a regular service, you risk a poor performing machine and possible bigger an indeed costlier problems later down the line. Look at servicing the machine and its parts yourself or hire a professional to do this for you.
Though there isn’t an essential need for a special maintenance or service type with a sewing machine for quilting, it is thoroughly recommended if you want to keep your machine in good working order and to last you for many wonderful years to come. The type and indeed amount of time you have your machine serviced or maintained really comes down to how often you use it – as well as the type of work you tend to undertake more than often on your device. As with all sewing machine types, the amount of fabric from cotton plus various threads and strands can often lead to a build-up of lint, which will affect its ability to function and operate properly if left unchecked. Similarly, if you’re using a machine which has been sitting idle or in storage for some time, a quick initial service is a good idea before use as the lubricants of these machines can dry out over time.
Though it isn’t, strictly speaking, essential to have to purchase an entirely different machine to quilt on, if you’re looking for better quilting results each time, unfortunately only a sewing machine which is designed to incorporate quilting tasks will deliver improved results. Those sewers who only attempt quilting on an occasional basis may be better off sticking to a standard sewing machine, but if you’re looking to quilt on a regular basis, the right machine type here will enable you to utilize a bigger work table, access the right types of feet needed for quilting, offer you precession feeding – which is crucial when quilting, give you a larger variety of stitch types, and overall provide you with a higher speed. This is all alongside a whole host of additional accessories which will ensure a better quilting job each time. If you’re serious about quilting, a quilting machine type is an essential buy here.
In our opinion, the best sewing machine for commercial quilting here is the JUKI TL-2000Qi. This has our vote for the best industrial sewing machine for quilting as it is ergonomically designed to offer an increased sewing area and work space, therefore allows you to work on those larger of projects with ease. Ultimately, it offers a more professional result each time which it does so through its increased stitches per minute, of 1500, and is aimed at those more experienced and professional of sewers – particularly those who perform the more intricate of sewing tasks, such as commercial quilting for example.
Hopefully, this informative review has provided you with a clearer idea of what these machines offer for quilting projects, and much more besides. We feel that combining the notes and details on each product reviewed here, alongside utilising our buying guide to its fullest, you’ll have everything you need at hand to select the best machine for your individual needs.
Our top pick, and Editors choice, is the Juki HZL-F600 as it offers an all-round sewing experience with everything you need to get you started immediately, every time. Second best on the list is the JUKI TL-2000Qi as this is a durable industrial sewing machine which we believe is the perfect companion for quilting fans. Our third choice of models reviewed here is the Brother CS6000i as this machine allows you to customize its offerings, producing more personalized results.
If it’s the best sewing machine for quilting that you’re after