Brother XM1010 Review – Is it Worth It?

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The Brother XM1010 sewing machine is a lightweight, full-size sewing machine.  Of the full-size Brother machines, it is one of the lightest and smallest you will find, making it one of the most portable sewing machines as well.

A very basic sewing machine, it also comes in as one of the cheaper Brother sewing machines and is budget-friendly.

It’s fairly beginner-friendly also but does not have as many stitches or as many automated features as the Brother XM2701 sewing machine.  It also won’t “grow” as well with you if you’re planning to increase your expertise later and take on more complicated projects.

If you only want to do simple sewing projects and mending, then this may be the sewing machine for you.  As a reliable Brother machine, it is best suited for occasional sewers or those who do not need or want more than the most basic features.

Read on to find out if this Brother XM1010 sewing machine will fit your sewing needs.

Brother Sewing Machine, XM1010, 10-Stitch Sewing Machine, Portable Sewing Machine, 10 Built-in Stitches, 4 Included Sewing Feet, 25-Year Limited Warranty

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Full Brother XM1010 Sewing Machine Review

Let’s first talk about the basic specifications for the Brother XM1010. 

Specs Overview

Dimensions 12.1” x 15.4” x 5.8”
Weight 10.8 pounds
Stitches 10 built-in stitches
Sewing Feet4
Maximum Sewing Speed750 stitches per minute
Feed dogs6 points
UL/CSA Listed Voltage110V
Warranty25-year limited

What’s Included If You Purchase?

Brother Sewing Machine, XM1010, 10-Stitch Sewing Machine, Portable Sewing Machine, 10 Built-in Stitches, 4 Included Sewing Feet, 25-Year Limited Warranty

  • The sewing machine unit itself along with power cord and foot controller
  • 4 Presser Feet
  • 3-piece needle set
  • 4 bobbins
  • Darning plate
  • Instructional DVD as well as operation manual in English and Spanish

Do You Need to Purchase Additional Accessories?

Not at first.  You will, of course, need to supply your own thread and fabric. 

Two extra things that I’d personally choose to have would be a twin needle and protective carrying case.   

I also like to have a large supply of bobbins, and I do wholeheartedly recommend purchasing only Brother brand bobbins.  This machine uses Class 15, SA156 bobbins.

What Does It Look Like Out of the Box?

Brother Sewing Machine, XM1010, 10-Stitch Sewing Machine, Portable Sewing Machine, 10 Built-in Stitches, 4 Included Sewing Feet, 25-Year Limited Warranty


The machine features a smooth white body with a metal interior (not a heavy-duty machine, though).  There is a very small accessories compartment on the front of the machine.  You will only be able to store the basics here.

The right front of the machine has a purple floral accent surrounding the stitch selection dial and reverse lever.  It adds a feminine touch but might be a little too floral for some.

Functional Appearance

Brother Sewing Machine, XM1010, 10-Stitch Sewing Machine, Portable Sewing Machine, 10 Built-in Stitches, 4 Included Sewing Feet, 25-Year Limited Warranty

Stitches are selected with a dial on the right of the machine.  This dial is right on top of the reverse lever, which you will need to backstitch at the beginning and end of projects.

Tension is manually adjusted with a dial on the front of the machine. Stitch width and length can only be adjusted with the stitch selection dial.

The left side of the machine has a manual thread cutter, and the back of the machine has a molded carrying handle.

Overall, the footprint of the machine is very small, so you do not have to give up much desk or sewing table space for it.

Getting Started on the Brother XM1010 Sewing Machine

This sewing machine is basic enough that you should be able to read the instructions and start sewing immediately after.  It is important to read the user manual first so you’ll know how to correctly set up the machine as well as use the machine.

Watch A Video of the XM1010 Sewing Machine in Action:

YouTube video

More Brother XM1010 Features

10 stitches

The 10 stitches included in this machine cover most of your bases with the range of straight, zigzag, blind hem, stretch, and satin stitches.  This isn’t a ton of stitches, but you should be able to complete most projects with the 10 stitches.

4 presser feet

  • Zigzag Foot – everyday presser foot used for most projects
  • Button Sewing Foot – sew a button on
  • Buttonhole Foot – make the hole for the button
  • Zipper Foot – use this to sew a zipper on

The feet are easily swapped with a lever.  You won’t be doing anything fancy with this limited selection of feet, but you’ll be able to sew basic stitches with the zigzag foot, attach a zipper with the zipper foot, and sew on a button with the two button feet.


Brother Sewing Machine, XM1010, 10-Stitch Sewing Machine, Portable Sewing Machine, 10 Built-in Stitches, 4 Included Sewing Feet, 25-Year Limited Warranty

You will be able to sew buttonholes using the four-step buttonhole stitch and the included buttonhole foot and then button sewing foot.  Four-step means the buttonhole is created manually in stages rather than automatically in one step as is the case with many other comparable sewing machines.

Manual Features

This machine does not have several of the automatic features of most other Brother sewing machines.  The needle has to be threaded by hand, which can be difficult for those with less dexterity or poorer eyesight.  Stitch selection is made with a dial, and only through this dial can stitch length and width be controlled.  And as just mentioned, making a button-hole is a four-step manual process.


Brother Sewing Machine, XM1010, 10-Stitch Sewing Machine, Portable Sewing Machine, 10 Built-in Stitches, 4 Included Sewing Feet, 25-Year Limited Warranty

This sewing machine features a top-drop, quick-set bobbin with a clear protective cover allowing for easy visualization of the bobbin.  Though the bobbin is touted to be jam-resistant, I’ve definitely jammed my bobbin before as a beginner.  The beauty of the top-drop bobbin is that you won’t have to worry about the hassles that come with a front-load bobbin.


One of the main advantages of this sewing machine is its lightweight frame and portability.  It is a perfect second sewing machine to travel with or a perfect primary sewing machine for a beginner to take to sewing class.  It also doesn’t take up a lot of space if you don’t have a craft room and have to store it in a closet or small space.  (Hello, starving college student days!)

Well-Lit Workspace

The LED-lit workspace decreases the need for an additional overhead light and makes sewing on dark fabrics easier.  While some Brother XM1010 sewing machine reviews complain about the light quality, most reviewers find it works just fine.  If you have issues, the low light can be remedied by having an auxiliary light to help.

Built-in Free Arm

A fairly standard feature for most of Brother’s more basic sewing machines, the built-in free arm allows users to sew cylindrical items such as sleeves and shirt cuffs.


  • Portability: This is arguably the biggest advantage of this basic sewing machine. With a built-in carrying handle and small footprint, it can move with you.
  • Affordable price: For a good price, this sewing machine will perform basic skills and is backed by the Brother 25-year limited warranty.  (Make sure to read the fine print of the warranty.  The chassis is covered for 25 years, but the rest of the sewing machine is covered for much less time!)
  • Perfect for occasional sewers: This machine works best for people who will embrace the very basic features and want something very simple for small sewing and mending projects.


  • The lack of automated functions makes this machine less beginner-friendly than some.
    • As an eye doctor, one of the most common complaints I hear when people need to update their reading glasses is that they are no longer able to see to thread their sewing machine. An automatic needle threader would definitely help with this complaint!
    • A one-step automatic buttonhole function is definitely my preference and is generally simpler.
  • The foot pedal takes some getting used to at first as a beginner.
  • You will have to purchase your own hard protective case if you’re wanting a cover.  Or you can make your own soft case. When my girls were growing up, a hard case was necessary to protect my sewing machine.

Comparing Brother XM1010 vs XM2701

Brother XM2701 Sewing Machine, Lightweight, Full Featured, 27 Stitches, 6 Included FeetShop on Amazon! 

If you’re trying to choose between these two, I’d recommend the Brother XM2701.  Why?  For a very small increase in price (at the time of writing this), you’re getting a whole lot more in features.

  Brother XM1010 Brother XM2701
Stitches 10 27
Presser Feet 4 6
Buttonhole 4-step, manual 1-step, automatic
Automatic Features Some Many more

Unless you’re really looking for portability and simplicity, I’d say take a look at my XM2701 sewing machine review and see if you think that may be a better fit for you if you’re looking for a Brother beginner sewing machine.

I’ve also written an entire post on the best Brother sewing machines that might be helpful in your search for your new machine!

Brother XM1010 Review – Conclusion

I wholeheartedly recommend this sewing machine for two kinds of people.  First, someone who wants an inexpensive, basic second sewing machine to carry around or to perform their basic sewing tasks.  And second, for a beginner sewer who doesn’t want to make a large financial investment upfront in case they decide sewing is not for them.

If you don’t fall into one of those groups, you may be better served by the XM2701.  It has more automated features to help out beginner sewers and more options to allow you to expand your skills.  This XM1010 sewing machine is very basic and thus very budget-friendly. However, you do need to remember that you get what you pay for.

Brother XM1010 Sewing Machine Review

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