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When it comes to conserving space, a small embroidery machine will keep you from growing out of your sewing corner. It will also keep you from overextending your budget.
I don’t know about you, but between my embroidery machine, sewing machine, Cricut Maker, AccuQuilt, and craft supplies, things are getting cramped fast in my craft corner!
Thus, I’ve put together reviews of the 5 best small embroidery machines for home use to help you find a new machine that will embroider fabulous creations and not crowd your creative space!
Small embroidery machines have small maximum hoop sizes and thus embroidery fields.
The smallest embroidery machines have a 4″x4″ maximum hoop size, and you can even purchase a more petite hoop option if desired.
For instance, I have a 1.5″ x 2″ hoop I use when embroidering tiny designs on small items like onesies or toddler t-shirts.
The great news about compact embroidery machines for home use is that they are much more affordable than large hoop machines.
And, they still have computerized LCD screens that allow basic onscreen editing, standard functions like automatic thread trimming, and features like built-in designs and fonts.
The more money you spend, though, the more deluxe features included with your home embroidery machine. However, an affordable, small hoop embroidery machine can still do so many things for you.) Just check out all the things I’ve embroidered using a 4″x4″ hoop!)
One thing to note, though. If you plan to regularly embroider larger than 4″x4″ designs, save yourself the hassle of splitting designs and rehooping in between and invest in a larger hoop embroidery machine.
The Best Small Embroidery Machines
While the Brother PE535 is one of the best small embroidery machines, the Brother SE600, which is a combination sewing and embroidery machine, is also the same size despite the added function.
Now, to help differentiate machines, here’s more information about the most petite embroidery machines available that won’t cramp your craft space any more than necessary.
I’ve listed the USA model numbers, but similar models are available in other countries under different model numbers.
One of the smallest and best cheap embroidery machines available is the Brother PE535.
The 4″x4″ hoop is large enough to stitch most small embroidery designs, such as embroidered logos on shirts.
Just because it’s small, though, doesn’t mean you are limited. I regularly use embroidery software to split designs to stitch several sections together to create much larger designs.
Features present on these small Brother embroidery machines include an automatic thread cutter and a quick-set, top-drop bobbin, which is just a fancy way of saying this machine is easy to set up.
All Brother embroidery machines also include an advanced needle threader, which is pretty sleek. It’s a definite improvement over the Brother self-threading sewing machines. I’ve hated the automatic needle threader on my Brother sewing machine for years, but I’ve loved my embroidery machine’s advanced threader!
The 80 included designs with this home embroidery machine aren’t the most unique, but you can import any design you wish via the USB port on the side of the machine.
6 English fonts come in small, medium, or large for monogramming or adding names to items. Luckily, there are thousands of free and paid embroidery designs available online for purchase and an unlimited amount you can create should you purchase additional embroidery software.
Once you’ve imported your design, you also have many options for on-screen editing. Change thread colors, rotate the pattern, change the size, mirror the image, and more! Then, stitch your design quickly with the buttons on the front of the machine.
Overall, this is a great machine and one of the best embroidery machines for beginners looking to stick to a budget.
And, one alternative to the Brother PE535 is the Brother PE550D, the “Disney version.” The main difference between the two is the PE550D has a Disney faceplate and includes an extra 45 Disney designs. (Learn more about all the Brother Disney embroidery machines if you, too, love Disney!)
Brother also has the updated PE545, which is quite a bit more money but includes WiFi design transfer and compatibility with the Brother Artspira app.
|Embroidery Designs||80 included|
|Stitch Options||103 stitches, 10 buttonhole options|
|Maximum Sewing Speed||710 stitches per minute|
|USB Connection||Built-in USB port|
If you want a small embroidery machine but do not want to have a separate sewing machine around, consider a combination sewing and embroidery machine.
The Brother SE600 is such a combination machine, meaning it has everything the Brother PE535 has, but it also sews. I own the Brother SE625, the almost identical twin of the Brother SE600. The only difference is it includes a gold faceplate and has an extra 200 designs on CD.
In terms of the additional sewing features, you’ll find 103 stitches with 10 automatic buttonhole options and 7 sewing presser feet.
The sewing features are a big step up from the most popular Brother computerized sewing machines.
For instance, it includes automatic reverse/reinforcement stitching and automatic thread trimming. You can also program stitch combinations and save them, which is fantastic!
Furthermore, built-in side cutter stitches work well with the Brother side cutter presser foot. This allows you to finish fabric edges, sew a seam, and trim excess fabric in one step—kind of like a “faux” serger.
The good news about storage is that the large embroidery arm is removable and stored separately. This decreases the size of the footprint of this Brother machine.
And, if you notice stocking issues for this machine, you can try the LB5000S or LB5000M, which are the Star Wars and Marvel versions of the Brother SE600, respectively. Either that or look into the Baby Lock Verve, which is Baby Lock’s very similar version.
The Brother SE600 has been updated to the Brother SE700 now, which has the same upgrades as the Brother PE545 does over the PE535.
|Embroidery Designs||100 designs|
|Stitch Options||120 stitches|
|Maximum Sewing Speed||850 stitches per minute|
|USB Connection||No, but add designs with EverSewn Pro App.|
I’m a big fan of EverSewn machines based on personal experience. They’re technologically advanced machines that offer a lot for an affordable price.
The EverSewn Sparrow X recently retired and was replaced by its newer, very similar successor, the EverSewn Sparrow X2.
Now, the Sparrow X2 still takes up a pretty small footprint despite having a large 4.75″x7″ embroidery field. It also contains 100 embroidery designs and functions as a sewing machine too.
What’s unique about the Eversewn Sparrow X2 is that design transfer can be done via WiFi using their EverSewn Pro app.
Using the EverSewn Pro app, you can edit designs on your computer, phone, or tablet. You then control the transfer and stitching of the design from your device.
I like that you can sit in another room while your machine stitches, and then it will alert you within the app that it’s time for a thread change!
Since this machine works with WiFi, you need to have reliable WiFi in your house or business, and you also need to own a compatible 64-bit smart device to take advantage of embroidering using the app.
|Embroidery Designs||138 designs|
|Maximum Embroidery Speed||650 stitches per minute|
|USB Connection||Built-in USB port|
If it’s in your budget and size considerations, the Brother PE800 embroidery-only machine is a nice jump up from the Brother PE535.
In addition to a 5″x7″ embroidery area, it features 138 designs and 11 fonts (7 in English compared to 6 on the Brother PE535.) With an embroidery speed of 650 stitches per minute, it’s also faster than the PE535 in embroidering.
It also offers the ability to combine designs on the LCD screen. This means you can use the built-in designs to add a border to a monogram, for instance, without using embroidery software. This is slightly different from the smaller hoop-sized Brother machines.
And if you’re looking for more than just embroidery, the sewing and embroidery combo version of the Brother PE800 is the Brother SE1900, which is sometimes less expensive and also one of the best 5×7 embroidery machines.
The Brother PE800 also just got an update to itself in the form of the Brother PE900, which is an awesome machine that cuts jump stitches automatically and has WiFi capabilities.
With a 5.5″ x 5.5″ embroidery area, the Janome Memory Craft 230E embroidery machine has one of the smallest hoop sizes and footprints available for a Janome computerized embroidery machine.
Because the embroidery machine’s carriage resides inside the workspace, it has less embroidery area to the left, making it take up less space.
The Janome MC 230E also includes 73 built-in embroidery designs and 3 monogramming fonts.
Furthermore, you can import designs via USB and edit onscreen like the Brother machines. Onscreen editing features include changing sizes, rotating, and mirror imaging.
There are no sewing features available for this machine and no automatic jump-thread trimming. However, the maximum embroidery speed of 650 stitches per minute is a nice perk.
Our library has a Janome Memory Craft embroidery machine for use, and these are the real deal!
If you are looking for a larger hoop size or increased features, consider the Janome MC500E or Janome MC9850, a combination machine. With these two, you’ll notice a SIGNIFICANT increase in automatic features and embroidery options.
While there really is no such thing as a “mini” embroidery machine, finding an at-home embroidery machine that’s small enough for your space shouldn’t be too hard.
As a loyal Brother and Janome embroidery machine user, I highly recommend these single-needle embroidery machine brands due to the perfect balance between quality and affordability.
However, Husqvarna, Baby Lock, Bernina, and other brands market incredible machines also. They just tend to cater toward higher-end machines that take a large footprint and have a large hoop.