Sewing machine for 10 year old learning to sew

My 10 years old daughter wants to learn how to sew. She wants to learn how to make dresses, pants, blouses, doll clothes, etc.

 I don't have a sewing machine and I don't really know much about it.

Do you have any suggestion what brand is good and what kind of machine is good.

Any information would be really appreciated.

thanks in advance!

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I grew up sewing on my mom's Singer sewing machine, which still works, 45+ so years later.  My parents gave me a Singer for my law-school graduation, and I taught my kids to sew on it.  It doesn't have electronics, as some machines do, which makes it easier to figure out and take care of.  A basic machine should work fine for the kind of sewing you mentioned.  You could talk to the folks at Berkeley Vacuum and Sewing Center, or at Joanne's.

How wonderful that your daughter wants to learn to see! My mother taught me at that age, and I still sew and mend things today - 40 years later! I have an Elna from the late 1970s, which I love; it is solid and works quite well. My mom has a similar vintage Bernina. Pfaff is also a good manufacturer, I’ve heard. I haven’t had to buy a machine in a long time, but I would recommend looking at something used/refurbished. Even if you find something at an estate sale, it can probably be refurbished at a sewing store if you choose a good manufacturer. I would avoid anything cheap and new. Singer was good a long time ago, and then they weren’t as good when they were mass produced (bobbin problems), and now I’m not sure. I would research Singers if you decide to go in that direction. Also, keep in mind that you really don’t need all those fancy stitches. Straight, reverse, and basic zigzag are all you need. Happy sewing!

Sewing is such a fun hobby! I learned on my mom's Kenmore machine; however, it appears they are no longer produced.  I heard positive things about Singer for a beginner sewing machine. If she wants to learn to make clothing, she will want a machine that does (at the very least) straight stitch, zig zag stitch, and if it does button holes, that's a nice bonus. 

This Good Housekeeping article appears to have decent recommendations for sewing machines that cover a range of budgets and uses.  Without knowing your budget, I think the Singer Nex portable machine on the list appears to be a decent beginner machine.  

Also -- I know you didn't ask for where to start with sewing projects, but to gain confidence, your child may want to start small with projects like tote bags, pillows, pin cushions.  There should be plenty of patterns online that will teach her how to follow sewing instructions and get a feel for sewing.  Then as she gains confidence, she can move to clothing. 

I hope that helps! 

Have you looked into sewing lessons? My daughter took after school classes and summer camps for many years with Marianne Henri- Sew Much Fun. mjhenri [at]

Marianne offers small sized classes at her workshop in Albany. My daughter started around age 8 and took classes through high school. She can now make pretty much anything that she wants! Marianne is an amazing teacher with lots of energy, so my daughter also learned lots about patience, creativity and precision, as well as the joy of making something yourself and then getting to wear it! 

Couple of options:

1) Have her take a sewing camp this summer!  She can learn how to safely use a sewing machine and make something fun.  She will know if she wants to continue with sewing after that.  Hello Stitch on University Ave. has kid's summer sewing camps.

2)  If you want to buy a machine, please buy through a dealer.  You get better service & knowledgable sales representatives can steer you in the right direction.  You can buy a used machine and get a little more bang for your sewing machine buck that way.  The Sewing Machine Shop in Walnut Creek is great.  Another option is Sew Images on Piedmont Ave in Oakland.

3)  For a brand new machine, Eversewn is an affordable line of small sewing machines.  It's really all you need in the beginning.  The website can point you in the direction of a local dealer.  

Good luck and happy sewing!!!

I can definitely recommend the Brother CS6000i for any beginner; it's about $200 (this is the low end for a good sewing machine) and is very easy to figure out, but has plenty of fun bells and whistles along with the important basics.  I learned on one and used it happily for more than 10 years.  Great machine for clothes and crafts, not bad for quilting.  Higher end machines may have somewhat faster top speeds, fancier feed systems, and additional convenience features, but you really can't beat the features of the CS6000i for the price.

If for whatever reason you'd rather start with a mechanical machine, not computerized, I'd look at the lower-priced Janome models.  It's a well-made, reliable brand; they have about eleventy million different models with very little logic to their names/numbers, so just google some reviews of "best sewing machines for tweens" or "for beginners" or the like, and you'll see some options.