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This Brother XM2701 sewing machine is a great beginner sewing machine with enough features to get you started without a lot of hassle. After you’ve gotten acquainted with the machine and your skill level increases, the machine will “grow” with you for quite some time. While not recommended as a primary workhorse sewing machine for a very experienced sewist, it will function great as a second sewing machine.
The automated features of this machine, as well as the affordable price point, make it a great value for a beginner sewer or even a child learning to sew for the first time.
Additionally, this Brother XM2701 lightweight full-featured sewing machine is very portable and works well for sewers who want to take their machine traveling or to classes.
So should you buy the Brother XM2701 for yourself? Read this XM2701 review to find out more about this Brother sewing machine.
What Kind of Sewing Machine Should a Beginner Buy?
For a newly dabbling sewer, I recommend getting a high-quality beginner sewing machine that will make sewing fun rather than stressful. My very first sewing machine many years ago was the cheapest machine I could find, and I absolutely hated it and hated sewing. The bobbin jammed, the tension was never right, and I could never get it to sew straight stitches no matter how hard I tried.
Once I later purchased a better quality machine with some beginner-friendly automated functions and more features, I found I loved sewing so much more. I looked forward to sewing projects, and my skill level expanded considerably!
If you’re going to spend the time to learn to sew, don’t buy a machine where you spend that time fighting with a poor quality machine. That being said, if you’re not sure sewing is going to be your “thing,” don’t go all out and buy the snazziest, most expensive sewing machine you can find either!
Why Purchase a Brother Sewing Machine?
Brother Industries is a multi-national company originating in Japan. In business in the United States since 1955, this electronics and electrical equipment company is also renowned for printers, computers, and much more.
They released their first computerized sewing machine in 1977, and as of 2017, they have produced more than 60 million sewing machines!
They are known for their production of consistently high quality, flexible, and reliable products. The products are also incredibly affordable considering how technologically advanced they are. Across the board, Brother International provides a 25-year limited warranty for all sewing machines and phone technical support for the life of the machine.
In-Depth Brother XM2701 Sewing Machine Review:
First, let’s start with all the quantitative information.
Overview of Dimensions and Other Specs
|Dimensions||5.9 x 15.3 x 12.1 Inches|
|Stitches||27 built-in stitches, including one automatic buttonhole|
|Stitch Length and Width||4 mm x 5 mm|
|Maximum Sewing Speed||800 stitches per minute|
|UL/CSA Listed Voltage||110 V|
|Warranty||25 year limited warranty|
What Comes in the XM2701 Box?
You will receive the following items:
- The sewing machine unit itself along with power cord and foot controller
- 6 Presser Feet
- 3 piece needle set and 1 twin needle
- Extra spool pin
- Three bobbins
- Darning plate
- Oval screwdriver
- Instructional DVD as well as operation manual in English and Spanish (Check out the XM2701 manual and quick reference guide.)
Do You Need to Purchase Additional Accessories?
Probably not. You will need to supply your own thread and fabric. If you want a carrying case, you can purchase a Brother universal hard case or sew your own fabric cover. If you find you need additional bobbins, this machine uses Class 15 bobbins (SA156). I recommend the Brother brand bobbins. On my own Brother sewing machine, I made the mistake once of buying the cheap, off-brand bobbins from Hobby Lobby. Never again!
What Does It Look Like Out of the Box?
The machine features a sleek, white plastic body with a small accessories compartment. The right front of the machine boasts a blue background where the stitch options are displayed surrounding the selection dial. There is a floral, paisley print that adds personality to the machine.
The back of the machine has a built-in molded handle to allow the user to easily transport the machine.
The footprint of the machine is small, so you will not have to give up much desk or sewing table space for it.
Machine Dials and Stitch Selection
Stitch selection is done by turning a dial on the right of the machine. There are also three dials on the top of the machine that allow for manual adjustment of tension, stitch length, and stitch width.
A reverse lever allows the sewer to change sewing directions when starting or stopping sewing. The left side of the machine has a manual thread cutter.
Getting Started on the Brother XM2701 Sewing Machine
Since this machine is beginner-friendly, you should be able to start sewing almost immediately. While you can read the quick-start guide and get things set up in no time, I highly recommend reading the manual from front to back. This will save you a lot of time and heartache later on. As a beginner, I made a lot of silly mistakes that could have been prevented if I had just taken time to learn more about my machine!
Check out a quick video of the XM2701 sewing machine in action:
Brother XM2701 Sewing Machine Review of Features
The features of this sewing machine for the price point of under $100 are what make it so great in my opinion.
The 27 stitches (and 63 stitch functions) included in this machine cover most of your bases with the range of zigzag, decorative, quilting, blind hem, and more stitches. There is also one style of automatic one-step buttonhole stitches that can be used on all types of fabrics.
How many presser feet, and what can they do?
Between the wide stitch selection and the impressive presser foot selection, your bases are covered for most basic sewing and mending projects. Here are the included feet, although you can always purchase extras.
- Zigzag Foot – general everyday sewing foot for straight and zigzag stitches
- Buttonhole Foot – create automatic buttonholes; the same size every time!
- Button Sewing Foot – sew on a button
- Zipper Foot – sew a zipper
- Narrow Hem Foot – create a professional-looking narrow, flat hem
- Blind Stitch Foot – creating an almost invisible hem.
Swapping feet is easily done with a lever.
What are the automatic features of the Brother XM2701?
The automatic features of this machine are what make it so beginner and kid-friendly. Bobbin winding is done easily and automatically, and the top-drop, quick-set bobbin removes the difficulty of figuring out how to set up a front-load bobbin.
While Brother says the bobbin is jam-resistant, that doesn’t mean it’s impossible to jam. As a beginner sewer, I unfortunately jammed by Brother bobbin a few times. (Which is why I recommend you read the instruction manual before starting to sew. Learn from my mistakes!)
The bobbin case is also clear, which allows you to see how much thread you have left. No one likes to run out of thread mid-project.
When it comes to threading the machine, this is easily done following the provided instructions. Little numbers are imprinted on the machine to help if you forget. There is also a lever that will thread the needle for you so you don’t have to do it manually. I found mine to be unreliable, and the threader ultimately broke after about a year of me constantly fiddling with it.
Picking up the bobbin thread is automatically done by the machine once you start sewing. This is a win in my books!
Is the Brother XM2701 sewing machine portable?
This Brother XM2701 lightweight sewing machine is very portable. Weighing in at less than 13 lbs, it is easily transportable from one place to another. It has a built-in molded handle too that you can use to carry it.
Sometimes I want to sew in my craft room, and other times I want to sew at the kitchen table. If I want to take my sewing machine to a class or on the road, I can thanks to how lightweight this machine is.
How is the light on the XM2701?
The XM2701 features an LED light that will light your workspace. When sewing darker fabrics or needing a little extra help with your vision, this light provides help. While some online Brother XM2701 sewing machine reviews complain the light isn’t bright enough, most people sing its praises. I’ve never had an issue with the light on my own Brother machine.
What can you do with the built-in free arm?
When you remove the accessories compartment from the front of the machine, the free arm remains. This will help you easily sew cuffs, sleeves, and other cylindrical items and is a pretty standard Brother sewing machine feature.
What is the Brother XM2701 warranty?
This product comes with a 25-year limited warranty and phone tech support for the life of the product. This sounds great, but it really is a very “limited” warranty. If you read the fine print, the warranty period for parts, labor, and accessory items is only 1 year, and the electronic component warranty is 2 years. The chassis, or frame of the sewing, machine is what’s covered for 25 years.
Furthermore, if you plan to take advantage of this warranty, you will want to keep proof of purchase if you buy it somewhere other than online where you could access your digital receipt later.
Can You Quilt With the Brother XM2701 Sewing Machine?
Yes, you are able to create beautiful quilts with the Brother XM2701 sewing machine.
A few things to keep in mind though: The XM2701 sewing machine does not come with a quilting foot or walking foot to assist you. However, these can be purchased separately if you desire. Something else helpful for quilting that’s available on some of the pricier Brother sewing machine models is the detachable wide table. This helps hold larger projects. While not a deal-breaker, it is a nice perk if you’re planning to spend most of your time creating beautiful quilts.
Key Brother XM2701 Advantages
- Beginner-friendly: easy to use for new sewers but also adequate for more advanced seamstresses
- 27 stitches and 6 presser feet – most everything you will need for basic projects
- Automated features make getting started easy
- An inexpensive sewing machine that will perform better than many other sewing machines of comparable price
- Use for sewing or basic quilting projects
- Lightweight with a carrying handle allowing for good portability
Key Brother XM2701 Disadvantages
- Foot pedal takes some getting used to as a beginner. I personally prefer to sew with a computerized machine that’s button-controlled.
- A hard case is not included with the purchase. If you want one, this adds an extra $20 or so. With my two kids who have grabby hands, a hard case is necessary to protect my sewing machine.
- Brother XM2701 reviews say, at times, layers of thick fabric like leather or denim are difficult to sew. If you’re wanting to sew denim frequently, I’d recommend a heavy-duty sewing machine. If you plan to do occasional denim or leather sewing, this machine will work fine as long as you choose the correct needle and thread and take your time.
- The jam-resistant bobbin can be finicky sometimes, causing uneven stitches. Also, the needle threader component of my machine broke right after the 1-year warranty. Not a deal-breaker, but still, sad day!
Brother XM2701 Review – Conclusion
The XM2701 is a high-quality machine with a lot to offer sewers of various skill levels. There’s definitely a reason it’s one of the bestsellers on Amazon and won the 2019 Women’s Choice Award. While I recommend the Brother cs6000i sewing machine if you are looking for a digital, computerized sewing machine, I think the Brother XM2701 is the best Brother sewing machine for beginners. Its several automatic features allow for ease of use, and the numerous presser feet and stitch options cover the bases for most projects you will attempt.
The price point for how many features really is incredible. Unless you are doing some very advanced sewing, this machine will scale with your needs. If you are an advanced seamstress who needs hundreds of stitch options or a dedicated quilting machine, you know and I know that you need a more high-end sewing machine.
In conclusion, as you can see from this Brother XM2701 sewing machine review, this machine will not disappoint!