Best Portable Sewing Machines – Modern, Lightweight Sewing Gear

Are you so addicted to sewing that you just wish you could do it anywhere, all day long? Are you on the lookout for a sewing machine that you can carry around and works great too? Worry no more, for we have all the answers!

You know what they say – a stitch in time saves nine! Keeping a sewing machine with yourself while traveling can come in handy and help you keep up with your sewing projects. However, it can be tricky, since good quality, conventional ones are usually large and bulky.

Whether you need a sewing machine to take to sewing classes or one that you can take along while traveling, buying a typical heavy one won’t be the wisest decision due to issues in transportation.

Lucky for you, lightweight ones do exist, and we have listed here only the best portable sewing machines with the best prices, multiple features, and most importantly, highest customer ratings!

Our Top Picks

ProductDimensions
(H× W × D)
WeightBuilt-in Stitches
Brother XM2701 Lightweight Sewing Machine17.8 x 7.6 x 15.1 inches15.7 pounds27
Brother CS6000i Feature-Rich Sewing Machine16 x 6.7 x 11.4 inches13 pounds60
Singer Quantum Stylist 7258 Computerized Sewing Machine14.5 x 7.5 x 12 inches14.6 pounds100
Singer Simple 3232 Portable Sewing Machine15 x 7.5 x 12 inches12.25 pounds32
Janome Handheld Electric Sewing Machine8.8 x 3.6 x 2.2 inches9.6 ouncesUnknown
Singer Start 1304 Beginner’s Sewing Machine13 x 7 x 11.5 inches7 pounds6
Janome Lightweight Jem Gold 66013 x 6 x 11 inches11 pounds8

Brother | XM2701 Lightweight Full-Featured Sewing Machine

With a bobbin that is jam-resistant, a built-in needle threader, 63 stitch functions, 27 built-in stitches, well-lit work area, 25-year limited warranty and free lifetime technical support, what more could you ask for?

An innovative product by one of the best brands in the market, the XM2701 sewing machine by Brother International Corporation is packed with attractive features that will appeal to beginners and pros alike.

Choose from the plethora of built-in stitches, from zigzags to blind hems and decorative ones. Sew neat buttonholes and change sewing patterns by using any of the 6 included sewing feet.

Perfect for all kinds of sewing and quilting purposes, this all-in-one mid-range product is a safe bet if you’re looking for a top rated sewing machine. Even if you’re a beginner, you’ll surely learn how to use the features of this product, thanks to the instructional DVD and bilingual manual that are included in the package.

Pros:

  • User-friendly. Say goodbye to common sewing hassles like needle threading and jammed bobbins
  • Convenient sewing features including 63 stitch functions
  • Suitable for all, beginners and professionals
  • Good value for money if you’re looking for a top rated sewing machine on a budget
  • LED-lit working area

Cons:

  • Usage is not recommended in countries where 120V AC is not supported, even with a voltage adapter
  • Weight is a bit heavier although still portable
  • Few complaints about durability and breakage of parts

Brother | CS6000i Feature-Rich Sewing Machine

This award-winning sewing machine is surely one of its kind. Forget plain old models with their monotonous functions! The CS6000i is a game changer by Brother, world renown manufacturers of high-quality sewing machines.

It allows you to stitch in 60 different patterns which are built-in. Experiment with any of the 7 single-step buttonhole styles, and enjoy the convenience of the quilting table included in the package.

The CS6000i takes portability to the next level, thanks to the hard carry case included in the package. With its automatic needle threader, LCD display stitch selector, and speed adjusting features, you can now design, create and repeat with convenience and flair. Unleash your inner talents with the CS6000i and its oversized quilting table perfect for a hassle-free quilting session.

The super bright sewing area is well-lit and allows you to work on the darkest of fabrics without straining your eyes. A threaded needle is just a touch away! The lever on the side when touched will automatically make the machine thread the needle.

What’s more, you can take help from the diagrams on the CS6000i as a guide to bobbin winding and threading your machine. Select the kind of stitch you want from the LCD display by the push of a button, and get sewing at the speed you prefer.

Also included with this top-rated portable sewing machine is an accessory pouch with handy sewing tools, accessory sewing feet for different kinds of stitches, a power cord, a bilingual user’s manual and a 25-year limited warranty.

Pros:

  • Adjustable speed controls
  • Oversized detachable quilting table included for larger projects
  • Easy to use, just follow the instructions manual
  • Good price for all it has to offer
  • Lightweight and portable
  • Suitable for both beginners and advanced users
  • Quiet

Cons:

  • Not any significant cons, except some users, have problems with loose thread tension

Singer |Quantum Stylist 7258 Computerized Sewing Machine

If you’re on the lookout for one of the best portable sewing machines, the Quantum Stylist 7258 takes the cake! Design and create extraordinary pieces with this state-of-the-art computerized sewing machine having 100 built-in stitches.

Choose any of the 9 basic stitches, 76 decorative stitches, 8 stretch stitches or 7 buttonhole stitches with the simple push of a button. Although the stitch lengths and widths are set by default, you can always customize them according to the unique requirements of each project.

With the Quantum Stylist 7258, there’s no hassle of bobbin jamming due to its top-loading bobbin that is designed to be jam-proof. Automatic functions of this efficient machine include reverse stitching, automatic clutch for bobbin winding, and for the facilitation of a straight stitch an auto tie-off feature.

With its 6-second threading feature, this premium portable sewing machine can save a lot of unwarranted time and effort. You can also pre-program the position of the needle (up/down) once the machine stops. Enjoy the perfection that comes with the perfect single-step buttonholes, 6 of which you can choose from. An LED bulb with a 100,000-hour lighting capacity brightly illuminates your workspace without heating up.

The Quantum Stylist 7258 has been designed with utmost consumer’s convenience in mind, from its wide array of stitching features up to its clear bobbin cover that helps monitor the amount of thread remaining.

Additional helpful perks include instructional threading diagrams that make threading the needle a matter of seconds, 25-year warranty, an LCD screen for adjusting stitch length and width, and a detachable storage compartment.

An ideal buy if you’re in search of a versatile machine that can help you craft different styles of quilts, decorative items or fashionable clothes, the 7258 is a top favorite of sewing professionals who love a relatively portable device.

Pros:

  • Packed with features for a wide variety of professional sewing functions
  • Portable
  • Adjustable sewing speed, with a maximum 750 stitches per minute
  • Stitch length and width are customizable with simply pushing a button
  • Limits eyestrain due to bright LED illumination and convenient needle threader
  • Easy to use with detailed instruction manual

Cons:

  • The products with their North American power supply can cause electrical damage if plugged into other countries’ power outlets

Singer | Simple 3232 Portable Sewing Machine

A compact yet effective buy from one of the leading manufacturers in the industry, the Singer 3232 isn’t heavy on the pocket and gets the job done as well. This is a go-to option especially if you’re a beginner who can’t handle the complications that come with sewing machines having advanced features.

Furthermore, it is travel-friendly, thanks to its lightweight which makes it easy to carry to sewing classes.

The Singer 3232, although apparently simple, is equipped with a variety of features and accessories that will definitely come in handy in your sewing or quilting projects. Choose from any of the 32 built-in stitches, inclusive of 19 decorative ones, to create masterpieces out of fabric.

A single-step buttonholer, needle threader, and heavy-duty metal frame are all built into this machine for convenient usage.

Threading the machine is just a matter of seconds with the 3232. Thread all the way to the needle’s eye from the spool, with the help of the built-in needle threader. Time is precious, and the 3232 respects that by giving a speed of 750 stitches per minute, so that you can get done with even large projects in minimal time.

Sewing thick fabrics is no longer a chore, thanks to its presser foot which can be lifted to a higher level. Once you’re done with a series of stitches, you can always reinforce your stitching with the reverse option – the automatic reverse button will make the 3232 start sewing in the opposite direction!

This high-quality portable sewing machine comes with a variety of sewing accessories as well, from sewing feet of different kinds to a quilting guide, needles, bobbins and a screwdriver. You can always make use of the 25-year limited warranty in case of any problems you face with the product.

Also included is an introductory DVD, an instruction manual with a guide to different stitches, a power cord, a foot control, a dust-shielding cover and a darning plate.

Pros:

  • Good for beginners
  • Easy to use and thread
  • Lightweight and portable
  • Automatic reverse option for stitch reinforcement
  • Affordable

Cons:

  • Problems with jamming and tension faced by some users
  • Fewer features as compared to other modern advanced machines

Janome Handheld Mini Sewing Machine

Portable sewing machines are not just meant for serious seamstresses now, they can make great gifts for kids too! Thanks to the Handheld Mini Sewing Machine by Janome, another manufacturer of buyers’ favorite sewing machines, your kids can learn to sew at an early age.

Even you can take it along on your journeys to mend any unexpected rips or tears. This portable sewing machine is quite versatile, suitable for working on a variety of projects from doll skirts to repairing real-life clothes.

Made with superior quality white ABS plastic, the Janome Handheld is a great choice if you cannot stand ‘cheap’ material. It can work on a wide range of fabric of different thickness, from silk to denim. Powered by 4 AA batteries the mini sewing machine is portable in the true sense, not even needing a power outlet for electric supply.

Whether you’re buying one for yourself to have at hand in case of emergencies, or to please a child by providing them a productive pastime, this sewing machine won’t disappoint. With only a nominal price and outstanding customer reviews, you can be confident that this product is well worth the buy.

Pros:

  • Works great for beginners and even children
  • Compact design, light parts make it portable and easy to carry
  • No power cord or outlet needed, just 4 AA batteries (not included in the package)
  • Easy to use with no complicated settings required
  • Good to look at – the mini design makes many think it’s cute
  • Can carry out all necessary basic stitching functions
  • Pocket-friendly, suitable if you are on a budget
  • Built-in light included for clear vision while working

Cons:

  • Threading the needle can be difficult since it doesn’t have a needle threader
  • May have difficulty working on very delicate fabrics
  • Not enough options for advanced sewing projects
  • Finger guard not included for the safety of young sewers against pricking

Singer | Start 1304 Free Arm Sewing Machine

Whether you’re a professional seamster on a budget or a beginner wanting to learn the art of sewing, Singer’s Start 1304 is a wise choice, combining all essential features in an affordable package.

It is especially the best sewing machine if you’re looking for a super light one that covers all the basic stitching functions as well.

The Start 1304 has 6 of the most commonly used stitches built into itself. Select the kind you want with the accessible stitch dial. A 4-step automatic buttonhole feature ensures you get the perfect buttonholes every time, while a detachable storage section can keep all your sewing accessories at hand.

The machine ensures safe bobbin winding through disengagement of the needle bar when winding is in process. Moreover, the feature is automatic in the sense that once the bobbin is full, it will cease to turn. A built-in reverse stitch can be activated by the automatic reverse button to reinforce the previous stitch.

The Singer Start 1304 is a free-arm sewing machine that comes with many complementary handy sewing accessories and tools. It can support twin needles for parallel stitches and includes three presser feet.

This is one sewing gear you can easily keep with yourself on the go since it’s as light as 7 pounds! Enjoy the luxury of having your device at hand, whenever, wherever, due to the convenience that comes with its portable design. Although the product is quite simple to use even for beginners, the included user guide may help if you get stuck at any point.

Pros:

  • Super light hence easily portable
  • Simple design with no complicated settings required
  • Easy to use, even for beginners
  • Preset stitch length and width, so no guesswork involved
  • Good value for money

Cons:

  • Advanced stitching options not included

Janome | Jem Gold 660 Lightweight Sewing Machine

If you’re a beginner looking for a lightweight machine to take to sewing classes, the Jem Gold 660 is one of the best options available in the market. Crafted with precision to ensure maximal ease of use, the Jem Gold 660 has many attractive features that make it a worthwhile buy.

The machine boasts 8 built-in stitches, including a 4-step buttonholer and all essential stitches necessary for some serious sewing sessions. A dial is present to select your desired stitch when turned, with preset stitch length and width which is non-adjustable.

Reinforce your stitching with the conveniently placed reverse lever on the machine. Measure your material by making use of the precise markings made on the needle plate. Keep your bobbin thread in check, thanks to the transparent bobbin cover.

The jam-proof design of the Jem Gold 660 will avoid unnecessary interruptions in your sewing endeavors. Equipped with an automatic needle threader, a snap-on foot, a standard sewing machine lightbulb, a conveniently placed storage compartment and handy sewing accessories, this machine can be your favorite sewing class companion.

The free arm of the Janome Jem Gold 660 can come in useful when sewing pants, cuffs or collars. Whether you have a quilting project or you’re about to craft a new dress, the Jem Gold can help you achieve awe-inspiring outcomes. With rave reviews online and its budget-friendly price, this is surely something we recommend you to try out for yourself.

Pros:

  • Lightweight and portable
  • Suitable for beginners just learning to sew – perfect for taking to quilting or sewing classes
  • Easy to use
  • The pedal is good for controlling the speed
  • Limited built-in stitches

Cons:

  • Does not allow free motion
  • Some customers complain of noise

After getting such a detailed insight on only the best portable sewing machines, we’re almost certain you’ve made your decision on which one you’re going to purchase.

However, for readers who are still confused, we have a guide which explains what to look for when buying such an item. Read on to find out!

Shopping for a Portable Sewing Machine? Here’s What to Look for!

If you’re investing time and money into buying a portable sewing machine, it only makes sense that you do some research beforehand to know the do’s and don’ts of it.

To save your time surfing the web for desirable sewing machine features, we have listed all that you should be looking for in the text below.

Lightweight

Weight is the key feature you should be paying attention to if you’re in need of a portable sewing machine. The ideal weight should be less than 15 pounds since anything above that is generally considered too heavy to be easily portable.

If you’re planning on traveling frequently with this machine, this will be the single most important feature on your checklist!

Usability

Machines with complicated options and controls may not be easy to use unless you are an absolute professional with good knowledge of how to operate them. However, such machines can offer more customized results than the present ones.

Hence it all depends on your sewing skills – see for yourself if the sewing machine you are considering actually has all the features you will be using. For beginners, preset machines offering basic stitches can suffice, while advanced users may prefer those with a variety of stitching options and controls.

Useful features like good lighting, speed adjustment, automatic needle threading, jam proof bobbin etc also indicate a machine that is easy to use. Moreover, ‘quiet’ machines that are not overly noisy should be preferred.

Stitching Options

One thing to look out for is the number of different kinds of stitches a machine has to offer. If you’re only a beginner or only need a sewing machine for mending or repair of clothes, you can choose one which has only the basic six stitches built in, instead of investing in an advanced machine.

However, for professional use, you will be needing a machine that can offer multiple kinds of stitches. Presser feet that come with machines are also a bonus to look out for.

Customer Feedback

The reputation of a brand is important when you consider purchasing any of its products. You can check out customer reviews online to get to know what problems you might be facing with the machine you are considering buying.

Some Final Words…

Since you now know the nitty-gritty of high-quality portable sewing machines, consider yourself ready for picking out the best product that suits your needs. Catch up on all your sewing projects on the go with any of the above top-rated machines!

Just set a practical budget before you make a purchase so that you can narrow down your options and avoid lavish spending. Happy shopping!

How To Operate a Mini, Portable Sewing Machine

Here’s a short tutorial on how to operate a mini sewing machine:

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