The 9 Best Embroidery Machines

REVIEWED AND RANKED IN CHESHIRE (UK) MAY 2018

We talked to 20 sewers, tested 15 different embroidery machines, and read hundreds of online reviews to find the best embroidery machine in the UK today. Our tests revealed two winners: Janome Horizon Memory Craft 2000 and Brother SE 400.


While the Memory Craft 2000 offers a unique feed mechanism, allows you to compose your own designs, and provides multiple hoops in the package – the Brother SE 400 offers internet connectivity, has a backlit LCD touchscreen, and is flooded with automated features. 

Hence, if you’re looking for a machine for large-scale embroidery, the Memory Craft 2000 is your best bet. Conversely, if you want better quality and more control over your designs, the Brother SE 400 should get your nod.

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Products Comparison

  • Core Detail
  • Technical Details
  • Pricing and Shipping
 Brother F440E Embroidery Machine
100%
£899.00
read more
 Janome Horizon Memory Craft 12000
88%
£3727.68
read more
 Brother FS100WT Free Motion Embroidery
86%
£399.00
read more
 Brother Innovis 800E Embroidery Machine
100%
£1299.00
read more
 Janome Memory Craft 350E Embroidery Machine
100%
£795.00
read more
 Janome Memory Craft 500E
100%
£1499.00
read more
 Janome J3-24 Sewing Machine
90%
£199.00
read more
 Janome 1600P QC
100%
£899.00
read more
 Brother SE400 Combination Computerized Sewing
100%
£245.18
read more
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Brother F440E Embroidery Machine Top rated
Janome Horizon Memory Craft 12000
Brother FS100WT Free Motion Embroidery
Brother Innovis 800E Embroidery Machine
Janome Memory Craft 350E Embroidery Machine
Janome Memory Craft 500E
Janome J3-24 Sewing Machine Lowest price
Janome 1600P QC
Brother SE400 Combination Computerized Sewing
Product Title Weight Built-in designs Stitch speed Warranty (years) What we liked What we didn't like Manufacturer

Brother F440E Embroidery Machine

100%

10.6Kg

138

650

5 (electrical), 3(mechanical)

Brother

Janome Horizon Memory Craft 12000

88%

17.2 kg

338

1000

N/A

Janome

Brother FS100WT Free Motion Embroidery

86%

8.34 Kg

N/A

N/A

3 years

Brother

Brother Innovis 800E Embroidery Machine

100%

16.8 Kg

138

850

1 year

Brother

Janome Memory Craft 350E Embroidery Machine

100%

10 Kg

100

650

25-year

Janome

Janome Memory Craft 500E

100%

17.3 Kg

160

860

2-year

Janome

Janome J3-24 Sewing Machine

90%

6.0kg

100+

N/A

2-year

Janome

Janome 1600P QC

100%

14.5 kg

0

1,600

2-year

Janome

Brother SE400 Combination Computerized Sewing

100%

6.2kg

70

400

25 year

Brother Sewing

x
£899 more
£3727.68 more
£399 more
£999 more
£795 more
£1499 more
£199 more
£879 more
£245.18 more
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Product Reviews

1

Janome Janome Horizon Memory Craft 12000

88%

Want a machine which lets you connect it to your computer or PC? The Janome 12000 offers the same, and many other useful features.


Its unique feeding system, called the AcuFeed Flex, feeds the top and bottom layer of the fabric at different speeds for better embroidering. Then there is its Stitch Composer, which allows you to make your own designs.

 

Taking advantage of its Linear Motion System are the new hoops that Janome has included in the package of Memory Craft 12000. For instance, to do sleeves and cuffs, a standard square-sized hoop is included. Also, if you want to quilt, it has a 12’’ by 9’’ hoop and for everything in between, its 9’’ by 9’’ hoop would come handy.


Finally, this machine has a ZigZag width changing pattern which allows you to change the patterns with your knee, so your hands remain on the fabric.


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2

Brother Brother F440E Embroidery Machine

100%

The Brother F440E computerized embroidery machine offers a huge embroidery area of 18cm x 13 cm with 138 built-in designs and 140 built-in embroidery patterns in the package. It also lets you make your designs unique by providing 11 adjustable fonts.


It has a 3.7’’ LCD touchscreen which allows you to rotate, resize, mirror, and change the direction of its stitches. You could also use the touchscreen to zoom, flip, drag and drop your designs which you can upload to this machine via USB. Then there is its adjustable speed feature, which allows you to increase its speed all the way up to 650 stitches per minute.



Automation is another strong point of the Brother F440E. Apart from providing an automatic needle threader, it offers an automatic thread cutter as well as automatic thread tension which the machine will adjust on its own.


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£899 from Amazon

*At the time of publishing the price was £899.00

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3

Brother Brother FS100WT Free Motion Embroidery

86%

Not impressed with the expensive price tag of Brother F440E? Or want to buy a machine which sews and quilts in addition to embroidering? The Brother FS100WT delivers on both counts.


Despite costing half as much as its counterpart, it provides 100 stitches with an automatic needle threader to help with the needles and a bobbin with a drop feed mechanism. It has a start/stop button as well as a slide speed control using which you can adjust its speed with your hand.


It allows the addition of monogram with its monogramming foot, and you could embellish your designs with the 7 feet included in the package. To allow sewing buttonholes of different sizes, it has a 7x1 step buttonhole as well.


You won’t have to manually select stitches for this machine, as its screen offers a “quick touch” selection option using which you could also adjust the length and width of your stitch. You could add tags or names to your projects with the 1 lettering style that it provides in the package.


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£399 from Amazon

*At the time of publishing the price was £399.00

4

Brother Brother Innovis 800E Embroidery Machine

100%

An embroidery only machine – which means you cannot sew or quilt with it – the Brother Innovis 800E is ultra-expensive. Justifying the price tag are the 138 built-in embroidery designs which are included in the package.


Then there are the 6 embroidery fonts whose properties you can tinker with via the color LCD touchscreen of this device. The screen also has design editing features which allow you to reposition, resize, rotate, and combine your designs.


Two features, in particular, make the machine easy to start and run: a quick-set bobbin and an automatic needle threader. The latter is complemented by the 160 x 260 mm embroidery area of this machine, which makes it adequate for professional use.


Meanwhile, a removable grid is also included in the package which, when combined with the embroidery frame, helps users position their design on the correct part of the fabric. Also provided is the adjustable speed feature which allows increasing the device’s speed up to 850 stitches per minute.


Its LCD touchscreen display will guide you throughout the embroidering process by telling you which color thread to put next. The machine also has a safety feature which informs you if/when the thread runs out or if the top thread snaps.


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£999 from Amazon

*At the time of publishing the price was £1299.00

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5

Janome Janome Memory Craft 350E Embroidery Machine

100%

The Janome Memory Craft 350E comes with a built-in embroidery system which offers 100 embroidery designs and 3 built-in fonts. Its software will tell you the embroidery design for each fabric and its stitch indicator will help in the selection of best stitch for each task.

The machine’s large touchscreen offers on the on-screen design editing feature. You could use it to rotate, resize, or flip your designs. It also has the design tracing feature using which you can trace any design to its source.


The machine is easy to operate thanks to its automatic thread cutting. It has a bobbin thread sensor and an automatic needle threader to save both time and effort. And while its embroidery speed of 650 SPM might not cut it with professionals, its top-loading hook bobbin makes the Memory Craft endearing for beginners.


Finally, apart from offering the usual USB port for importing/exporting designs, the Memory Craft 350E also supports flash cards. To top it all off, the machine comes with a 25-year warranty.


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£795 from Amazon

*At the time of publishing the price was £795.00

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6

Janome Janome Memory Craft 500E

100%

While it belongs to the same Memory Craft series, the Janome 500E is a different beast to its 300E counterpart. For starters, it costs twice as much, though, while you’d be paying more, the Memory Craft 500E offers 160 embroidery designs and 6 monogramming fonts to sweeten the deal.


It comes with a large, full-color touchscreen display and has an embroidery arm mounted on the machine bed to make it easy for you to install/remove the embroidery hoops. The touchscreen has a menu icon button which gives you access to monogram, border designs, and embroidery fonts.


Apart from offering 6 monogramming fonts, the Janome 500E allows 2 and 3 letter monogramming, auto returns after a thread break and automatically centers its designs. What’s more, you can use its touchscreen to edit your designs.


Other notable features of this machine include the automatic needle threader, an advanced bobbin threader, and a programmable stitch skip feature using which you could skip any stitch. It also gives you the freedom to switch embroidery designs from multi-color to single color and vice versa.


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£1499 from Amazon

*At the time of publishing the price was £1499.00

7

Janome Janome J3-24 Sewing Machine

90%

Providing a convertible free-arm for sewing and a front loading bobbin case, the Janome J3 allows you to choose from its 24 built-in stitches. It also has a built-in needle threader which, when combined with the one-hand thread cutter and quick foot conversion, makes this machine easy to use.


The J3 also offers a lot of customization, as you can go inside its menu bar to change its stitch width, length, and other properties. The whole machine is covered by a hard case which is scratch resistant and could also withstand abuse for long periods.


While it costs low when compared to its peer, the Janome J3 could have done better on automation. For, it doesn’t have any automatic thread tension or thread adjustment features, though it buttonhole is automatic.


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£199 from Amazon

*At the time of publishing the price was £199.00

8

Janome Janome 1600P QC

100%

The Janome 1600P is a multi-fabric sewing machine with a separate bobbin winding machine. It means that at the same time that you’re sewing, you can wind its bobbin. Janome has also done away with the foot pedal in favor of the button control.


It has a massive, easy-to-locate release lever and an adjustable sewing speed which varies between 70 and 1600SPM. The tension adjustment is also manual and there are three knobs for its adjustment: two thread tension knobs and a presser foot pressure.


That said, while the tension adjustment isn’t automatic, the Janome 1600 does come with a pre-tension thread regulator. Similar ease is on offer with the Up/Down Needle button which allows you to adjust the needle’s position depending on the fabric.


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£879 from Amazon

*At the time of publishing the price was £899.00

9

Brother Sewing Brother SE400 Combination Computerized Sewing

100%

The Brother SE400 Embroidery machine is capable of sewing, quilting, and embroidering. It has a 4’’ by 4’’embroidery hoop and a touchscreen LCD display whose backlit feature makes it easy to operate even at night.


Inside the display is the option using which you can access its 67 built-in stitches, 5 lettering fonts, and 70 embroidery designs. This machine can also connect to the Internet so you could purchase or import already-purchased designs from iBroidery.com.


Also, there is the automatic, one-touch thread cutter as well as the bobbin threading feature. Just below the display is 1LED light which illuminates your working space for easy embroidering. It also has the 7-point feed dog mechanism, a bilingual user-manual, and a 25-year warranty.


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last update June 14th 2018

We want our reviews to be the most up to date on the web. The most recent update to this page on June 14th 2018

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Side By Side Comparison

  • by Janome

    Janome Horizon Memory Craft 12000

    Janome Horizon Memory Craft 12000

    check pricing
  • by Brother

    Brother F440E Embroidery Machine

    Brother F440E Embroidery Machine

    check pricing
  • by Brother

    Brother FS100WT Free Motion Embroidery

    Brother FS100WT Free Motion Embroidery

    check pricing
  • by Brother

    Brother Innovis 800E Embroidery Machine

    Brother Innovis 800E Embroidery Machine

    check pricing
  • by Janome

    Janome Memory Craft 350E Embroidery Machine

    Janome Memory Craft 350E Embroidery Machine

    check pricing
  • by Janome

    Janome Memory Craft 500E

    Janome Memory Craft 500E

    check pricing
  • by Janome

    Janome J3-24 Sewing Machine

    Janome J3-24 Sewing Machine

    check pricing
  • by Janome

    Janome 1600P QC

    Janome 1600P QC

    check pricing
  • by Brother Sewing

    Brother SE400 Combination Computerized Sewing

    Brother SE400 Combination Computerized Sewing

    check pricing

Frequently Asked Question

What is an Embroidery Machine?

An embroidery machine is a device which creates different patterns on fabrics to beautify them. Not only that, but an embroidery machine could also be used to personalize, decorate, or embellish any item.


There are two types of embroidery machines available on the market: domestic and industrial. The major difference between the two is in stitching speed and embroidery area. For instance, while the domestic embroidery machines have a workspace of around 4’’ by 4’’, their industrial counterparts could go all the way up to 8’’ by 12’’.


As for the speed, any machine having an embroidery speed of 400 SPM (stitches per minute) is enough for household use. And while the sky is the limit for the speed of industrial machines, most of them don’t go above the 1,000 SPM mark.


What should I Look for When Buying Embroidery Machine?

There are five major features which you look for when buying an embroidery machine, with the first being their embroidery area.


Embroidery Area

Embroidery area is the space which the machine could embroider in one go. If you are a home-based embroider who does embroidery as a hobby, a 4’’ by 4’’ embroidery area should be more than enough. Conversely, if you are buying it for professional use, an 8’’ by 12’’ embroidery area would suit your needs.


Built-in Alphabets

Built-in alphabets are a must-have whether you are buying a machine for home or professional use. Otherwise, if your machine doesn’t provide it, you may have to buy the same alphabets separately, which means you may need to pay more.


Colored Display and Touch Screen

Thirdly, we recommend going for a machine which offers a colored display with the feature of touch-screen. Such machines allow you to divide the screen in half so that you could compare designs while embroidering. They also have a zoom-in feature which allows you to take care of the minutest of details.


Sharing

Never buy an embroidery machine which doesn’t allow easy sharing. In the past, if you wanted to import designs, embroidery machines required attaching USB stick. However, the best embroidery machines nowadays come with built-in Wi-Fi interceptors which allow you to import and export designs from the internet.


Warranty

Finally, the best brands provide a 25-year warranty on their machines. Not only that but when/if the machine goes rogue, these brands have trained technicians which save you worry and time by getting your machine back on track. Therefore, ALWAYS purchase a machine from a well-known brand. Examples include Brother, Singer, and Janome.

What Features make an Embroidery Machine Easy to operate?

While these features would make life easy for you, machine providing these features will also cost more than their counterparts.


Variable Speed Option

Some parts of the fabric – such as their corners – require more precision and slower speed than the others – like its central body. Having a variable speed option would allow you to easily adjust the speed of your machine. Otherwise, you might have to manually tone it down.


Automatic Thread Tension

This feature is a must-have if you want an embroidery machine for professional use. By taking the thickness of the fabric in consideration, it automatically adjusts the thread tension to provide your designs a constant flow. Machines with automatic thread tension have fewer thread breaks and are less prone to puckering.


Automatic Thread Trimming

No embroider loves trimming all their threads by hand, and it is safe to assume that you aren’t different. Machines with the thread trimming feature clip all your threads automatically, hence saving you time and effort.


Automatic Needle Threader

While some machines offer an automatic needle threader, others provide a magnifier to make the job easy. Once again, this feature is not compulsory, but it would make your work easy.


Archable Fonts

Want to make your designs unique? One way to do that is having a machine which allows you to curve your fonts, hence making them Archable. You could also combine Archable fonts with other designs of yours to give them a layer of uniqueness.


Embellishment Capability

Looking to add some sequins or beadings to your design to make it look stand out? Embroidery machines which offer embellishment capability allow the same.


Embroidery Speed

How much embroidery speed you may need depends on your experience in the field. Measured in stitches per minute (SPM), an embroidery speed of 750 SPM is more than enough for beginners, whereas a 1200 SPM is generally recommended for professionals.


Safety Feature

If your embroidery machine has a safety feature, it will operate in one of these two ways when its bobbin thread is about to run out. Either it will turn off the machine or it will notify you in advance. Regardless of its operating mechanism, a safety feature is a must-have if you want your design to be consistent.


What are the Pros and Cons of Embroidery Machines?

Starting with the former, an embroidery machine has many benefits. For starters, it rules out the chance of personal error that is so common with hand embroidering. With the machine doing all your work, your designs are consistent and reliable with embroidery machines.

Second, if you are to work on a large scale, embroidery machines allow you to produce more stuff in less time. In other words, you could produce batches of products. Also, since the best embroidery machines – like the Brother SE 400 – allow Internet connectivity, you could import designs from all over the world.

What’s more, almost all embroidery machines offer the feature of lettering fonts, so you can use them to make your work look unique. Similarly, as we saw in the Brother F440E, embroidery machines with touchscreen display allow you to zoom, flip, resize, and drag your designs, hence removing any chance of a mistake.

Turning our attention to their disadvantages, doing embroidery on a machine stifles creativity. Since most designs of embroidery machines are pre-made, there is very little, if any chance that you could give your design a touch of your own.

Also, while the best embroidery machines are no doubt better than their manual counterparts, they are ultra-expensive. So you need a lot of up-front investment to take advantage of their features.


What is the Best Embroidery Machine? Why is it the best?

Of all the machines that we reviewed, we found the Janome Memory Craft 12000 to be the best. In addition to boasting a huge workspace, it has included multiple hoops in the package.


Then there is the AcuFeed Flex feeding mechanism which feeds the top and bottom layer of fabric at different speeds for a smooth and more streamlined design.


What’s more, to give you more freedom, it has a Stitch Composer feature which lets you design your own stuff. Add magnifying glass and LED light to the package, and it is easy to see why we regard this machine so highly.


What is the Best Domestic Sewing Machine? Reasons?

If you need a sewing machine for domestic purposes, we recommend the Janome J3-24. In addition to being inexpensive – a pre-requisite for any household machine – the J3 offers 24 stitches in the package whose length and width you can adjust from the LCD display of the machine.


It also has a built-in needle threader which, when combined with the one-hand thread cutter and quick foot conversion, makes this machine a must-have for domestic purposes.


What is the best industrial sewing machine? Why is it the best?

The Janome 1600P QC is the best sewing machine for industrial purposes. It has a hard, scratch and vibration resistant cover which prepares this machine for years of abuse. To let you handle fabrics of different thickness, it has a variable speed control feature.


Also, to make sure that you don’t speed too much time in its startup, the machine has an independent bobbin winder which you can adjust while carrying on with sewing. Similar utility is on offer with the Up/Down Needle button which, depending on the portion of fabric, will take your input to adjust the needle accordingly.


What is Best Commercial Embroidery Machine? Reasons?

If you ask us, we recommend purchasing the Brother Innovis 800E for all your commercial embroidering needs. Not only does it have loads of embroidery designs – 138, to be exact – but the machine offers utility features like automatic needle threading, needle cutting, and thread cutting.


If that isn’t enough, it has an LCD touchscreen display which will guide you through every step of the embroidering. More importantly, it has a safety feature which comes into play whenever the thread snaps or when it is about to run out.


Lastly, its color LCD touchscreen allows you to give a layer of uniqueness to your designs with its myriad features. Take, for instance, its design editing feature. It provides the freedom to resize, reposition, combine, and rotate your designs so that you know what exactly will be the final outcome.


What is the Best Digital Embroidery Machine? Reasons?

For those of you who want to import/export designs over the internet, the Brother SE400 is their best bet. Being able to connect to the internet via Ethernet cable, this machine allows you to import/export designs from all over the worldwide web.


That said, it would be wrong if we say that this machine is nothing but digitalized. Instead, as its automatic needle threading, needle cutting, and a backlit LCD display shows, the Brother SE 400 has combined the benefits of digitalization and machine embroidering.


What is the Best Embroidery Machine for Monogramming? Reasons?

The Janome Memory Craft 500E is the best embroidery machine for embroidering. It offers 6 monogramming fonts which you can resize, repeat, or zoom with its LCD display. Also, if you think these fonts aren’t enough, you could import more via a USB stick.


What’s more, to give your designs a layer of uniqueness, it allows 2 and 3 letter monogramming. And if anything goes wrong in your design, it would automatically center the design to rectify your mistake.