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What embroidery machine to buy?

elenaevent | Posted in Machine Embroidery on

Hello colleagues!<!—-><!—-> <!—->

What  embroidery machine to buy? I need a good quality machine something between domestic and industrial. I am going to embroider samples of the silk scarves and I can get an order in the future, so I look for something more professional, but not a huge machine.


  1. Pattiann42 | | #1

    You should check the prices of the home models and pro models.  Will your business support the price of a pro model?

    The number of hours and stitches put on the machine will determine if a home model's warranty will cover using it for business.

    If possible, you will need a stitching area (area within the hoop) that will accept the largest design you intend to sew. 

    If the design is larger than the stitching area, it will have to be split and the fabric re-hooped the number of times necessary to stitch out the splits.  This may be two or more splits.

    1. elenaevent | | #2

      Thhanks a lot for the info. The scarves will have small simple designes (like drawings)  - up to may be 4 inches maximum. I got a quote from Amaya - about 15K - and I do not think it is something what I need. I know from my own experience sewing domestic machines are not the greatest for quality stiches... So I can not afford 15-20K machine, what should I buy?

      1. Pattiann42 | | #3

        Are the designs digitized and ready to stitch?  If so, which format?  If you could see the home machine stitch out the design I think you would be very happy with the results.

        It is all in the digitizing - all embroidery machines have the same basic functions, then come the frills.

        I have a $500 machine that stitches just as well as the $8,000.

        I have Brother and Babylock.


        1. elenaevent | | #4


          Thank you, thank you for the discussion. Do you mean you have stiching Brother and Babylock? Woudl you reccomend any embroidery machines to see and check out? And yes digitizing program is another buy, again I do not know which one to buy. I will have drawings from the designer 3"by3" or may be 4" and I will have to digitize them. Any help on that?

          1. Pattiann42 | | #7

            I started out with the Brother/model pe150/4 x 4 stitching area.  Moved up to Babylock Ellegante.

            Both the Ellegante and Viking Designer SE are around $8,000.

            Check into having your designs digitized for you.  There are sites on the Internet, or there may be an shop in your area that does embroidery that will digitize your design.

            Learning to digitize is not an easy process and takes time to learn.   Software for this starts at about $600.

            Visit dealers and see what they have in the way of embroidery machines and if they have classes to learn the software.


          2. elenaevent | | #10

            Thanks a lot.

          3. MaryinColorado | | #11

            You are welcome.  It's a big decision, just like buying a car.  It sounds to me as if the software is going to be important to you.  You may want to create your own designs.  Good luck in your search.  Mary

          4. MaryinColorado | | #9

            I've been machine embroidering for over 10 years now.  I didn't buy digitizing software because it seemed so archaic and cumbersome.  After researching this for years, I broke down and bought the Pfaff 4D Suite.  It is incredible!  It is very user friendly and I am having great fun learning it all.  I took a free basic class, now am going to two differnt clubs a month to learn all it can do.  There are a variety of other classes offered on it at my dealers too. 

            The Husq/Viking 4D is the same thing in a different box pretty much so they run the classes togeather.  It will easily convert designs to almost any machines formats. 

            I have the Husq/Viking Designer 1 and the Rose and love them both.  I do plan to have the dealer transfer my D1 to accomodate the memory stick, just in case floppy disks become extinct one day.  Mary

          5. MaryinColorado | | #23

            If you go to the websites for the embroidery companies, some of them have tutorials on the software.  I have the Pfaff 4D Suite, the tutorial on http://www.husq/viking/usa.com and pfaff/usa.com are both excellent and there are also video overviews on what all can be done with it. 

            I have the Husq/Viking Designer 1.  The going price around here for the Designer SE is around $3,000 right now.  Keep your eyes open as many will be trading up for the new machines this summer. 

            You could get a great price on thier gently used machines and many dealers offer an extended warranty.  I did this 10 years ago when I bought the gently used H/V Rose sewing/embroidery machine which is still going strong and stitching beautifully in both categories.  The feet are interchangeable on most of their machines.  Mary

            OOps, sorry, didn't mean to be redundant, guess I'm repeating myself.  Fibrofog from the fibromyalgia strikes again...time for a nap. 

            Edited 3/8/2008 3:03 pm by MaryinColorado

          6. elenaevent | | #24

            Thanks a lot. I guess the dealer is a big deal. WHen I went to Husq dealer the rep  was not very friendly and it turned me off right away.  HOw eles can I buy a machine form a certain brand if I do not like a local dealer, and usually it is only one in a big town like Toronto. I e-mailed to brands directly, never got the answer. Elena.

          7. MaryinColorado | | #25

            If you go to thier website, such as http://www.husq/viking.com or http://www.pfaffusa.com there is a place to insert your zip code to find the dealers in your area.  Other than that, I don't know.  There are alot of dealers in my area but they are dwindling.  I wonder if you spoke with an employee or the owner? 

             There is a shop here that was wonderful, then one new employee chased away all the great employees and many of the regular customers so the dealer suffers too.

  2. Maruca | | #5

    The Viking Designer SE is a great profesional machine.  I have several embroidery machines and I love my Designer SE.

    1. elenaevent | | #6

      Hello Maruca. Thanks a lot. How much is it?

      1. Maruca | | #12

        Hi! It is around $8,000.00. Nevertheless, my dealer in Puerto Rico if you pay it cash gives you a 7% discount. I several embroidery machines, one of them is the e Innovis 4000 it is a great machine too, but By far the SE is much, much better and it has lots of features.

      2. Maruca | | #13

        I forgot to tell you that I heard they are (Vicking) bringing a new model in the summer. They told me it's going to be spectacular!

        1. Crazy K | | #14

          Oh..........and I am waiting to see what Husqvarna is coming out with.........can't wait!  I love my SE's and can't imagine too many changes but still can't wait.......if it is really awesome, I may have to trade up one of them..............shhhhh, don't tell DH!!


          1. MaryinColorado | | #22

            It's supposed to be similar to the Pfaff Creative Vision and will come out this summer.  That will lower the prices on the SE and SELE, I expect.  If I win the lottery, I'll be racing out to buy it!!!  I'd keep my D1 though as I do just love it!

            There are more tutorials available for 3D/4D software online at http://www.husqvarna/viking/usa.com and http://www.Pfaff/usa.com.  They are really helpful in learning all this incredible software is capable of.  I continue to be amazed and inspired.    Mary

          2. Maruca | | #26

            I will have to trade one of mine too, but I want the new one!

        2. elenaevent | | #15

          Thank you very much for this info. I also checked a few machines. The best demonstrator and the best machine was Janome 350 E. I am thinking to buy it but I am still researching. Pffaf did not impress me, Babylock and Husqvarna did not do a test on silk  for me, I do not know why. Janome is my fave now, but I am still not sure. No one on this forum mentioned Janome.

          1. Crazy K | | #16

            I have a Janome 9000 which is a great sewing machine but the embroidery part for me was a distaster.........mostly due to a salesperson that said I didn't need software.  She thought I would just keep buying expensive cards from her.  That, however, was not the machine's downfall.  The biggest thing I did not like was the limited sewing area.......very small.  I think possibly that has changed now, though......or possibly larger hoops are available for separate purchase.

            Cherrypops has a Janome 300E or 350E.......right now I don't remember which.  Maybe if you sent a message to her, she could help you.  I think I remember reading that she was pleased with it.

            Hope this is helpful..........


          2. elenaevent | | #18


          3. Cherrypops | | #20

            thanks kay, i did receive an email from elenaevent asking about the 350e. i'm still happy with the machine, I love going into the classroom and seeing the wall hanging i made for thomas' teacher. will find photo and upload when back on faster connection.

          4. User avater
            VKStitcher | | #17

            I have the Janome 300e--the 350e is the newer model, with a few more bells and whistles.  It stitches great, and I like that it only does embroidery.  I can sew on my other machine (also a Janome) while this one embroiders!  However, the Janome customizing software is cumbersome to use, for me anyway.  I'd like to get a different program that can do more and is easier to use.  But I do enjoy the embroidery machine.

          5. elenaevent | | #19


          6. Cherrypops | | #21

            hi vickie, i'm still very happy with the 350e. i don't use customizer much, haven't had time to use it really. i was given the buzz tools range as a gift, so gave embird a miss.

            happy stitching


          7. elenaevent | | #28


            I bought Janome 350 E. When insert USB stick with my designs saved in ,jef, it doesn't show.I heard something about reformatting. How to make it work?


          8. User avater
            VKStitcher | | #29

            Hi Elena,

            I have the Janome 300e, which does not have a USB port, it uses a compact flash card and PC card adapter instead.  Even though this is a difference between the 300e and the 350e machines, I think they may read the files in the same way.

            I have to format the compact flash card before I save embroidery designs to it.  Otherwise, the machine can't read the card.  Formatting the card creates two folders on it--EmbF5 and Ord#5.  When I save my embroidery designs to the card, I save them in the EmbF5 folder (the Ord#5 file is always empty).

            Remember that formatting the card/USB stick will erase everything that's currently on it!  If you already have designs on your USB stick, you will need to copy them somewhere else before you format your USB stick.

            The steps I take to format the card may be different from what you will need to do.  Does your instruction book tell how to format your USB stick?  I think several others on this forum have the 350e machine, hopefully they will pop in and tell you how to do this.  Janome also has a forum, http://janome.com/fusetalk/forum/,  perhaps you can ask your question there.

          9. Maruca | | #27

            Keep on searching until you find the one that suites you. I'm in love with my SE and waiting for the new model they will bring that will be on the market this summer. Good luck!

  3. Pattiann42 | | #8

    Are you in the US?

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