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The 2 Best Sewing Machines for Quilting Projects for 2023

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best quilting sewing machines reviewedIs your sewing machine limiting your quilting potential? You’ve likely noticed that standard models restrict your creativity on complex projects. While any device can handle basic quilting, specialized features empower next-level artistry.

An expansive workspace accommodates oversized quilts. Lowered feed dogs provide fluid free motion sewing. Rapid stitch speeds maintain momentum across vast swaths of fabric. Automatic thread cutters slice effortlessly between patterns.

Wield enhanced capabilities granting mastery over intricate designs. The best quilting sewing machines reviewed herein can elevate your skills.

Key Takeaways

  • Evaluate power source, built-in stitches, maximum speed, and automatic thread cutting.
  • Test models for ideal throat size, feed dogs, bobbin system, and accessories for style.
  • Consider buying a new machine to avoid inherited problems.
  • Add advanced tools as skills demand them.

JUKI TL-2000Qi Sewing and Quilting Machine

JUKI TL-2000Qi Sewing and QuiltingView On Amazon
You’ll love the JUKI TL-2000Qi’s fast speed and smooth stitching for tackling quilts, with its sturdy aluminum construction reducing vibration. This powerful machine can stitch up to 1500 stitches per minute, powered by a high-torque DC servo motor.

The aluminum cast arm and bed provide stability and vibration dampening for crisp stitches even at high speeds.

To accommodate large quilt sandwiches, the extension table expands the work area. Bright LED lighting and an easy-access bobbin also enhance usability. While the TL-2000Qi excels at high-speed straight stitching, creative quilters can utilize the other 200 built-in stitches for decorative effects.

With proper care and quality accessories, this machine can be a worthwhile investment for prolific quilters.

  • Very fast straight stitching
  • Aluminum casting reduces vibration
  • Auto needle threader
  • Ext table for large projects
  • 200 built-in stitches
  • Expensive
  • Heavy
  • No free motion quilting foot included

Janome 3160QDC Sewing Machine

Janome 3160QDC Computerized Sewing MachineView On Amazon
With 60 built-in stitches and automatic needle threading, this versatile machine handles everything from hems to decorative work. The Janome 3160QDC is a feature-rich sewing machine perfect for beginners and experienced sewers alike.

The LCD control panel and function buttons allow you to easily select stitches and make adjustments. The jam-proof bobbin system and automatic needle threader make setup frustration-free. It comes with a hard cover for storage and protection, along with a large accessory kit including 6 presser feet for different techniques.

You can tackle everything from basic hemming to decorative stitches and buttonholes. The machine is considered easy to use and versatile, making it suitable for both beginners and advanced sewers. It also has lots of handy features like a needle threader. Additionally, it comes with key accessories and feet, and the hard cover provides storage and protection.

  • 60 built-in stitches
  • Automatic needle threader
  • LCD screen
  • Jam-proof bobbin
  • Good accessory kit
  • Versatile
  • May need additional specialty feet
  • Limited embroidery capabilities

Can Any Sewing Machine Be Used for Quilting?

Can Any Sewing Machine Be Used for Quilting
You don’t need a fancy machine labeled for quilting to make quilts, but certain features make the process easier.

  1. The ability to drop or cover the feed dogs, so you can move the fabric manually for free motion quilting.
  2. A strong motor and quality parts that can handle quilting’s demands without overheating or breaking.
  3. A wide sewing space and harp, ideally at least 8 inches for large quilts.
  4. Adjustable presser feet, like the all-important walking foot that prevents fabric layers from shifting.

While any machine can technically work, investing in one with quilting-focused features will make the experience smoother and more enjoyable in the long run.

Do I Need a Special Needle for Quilting?

Do I Need a Special Needle for Quilting
Choosing the right needle for quilting helps everything feed smoothly. When working on quilting projects, the needle’s just as important as the mechanical machine. You gotta use a sharp needle specifically made for quilting – usually a 75/11 Quilting needle.

These are stronger to pierce through the thicker layered fabrics. Normal sharps can bend or break when quilting, leading to skipped stitches, thread breaks, and frustration.

Quilting needles easily handle the demands. Their sharp point penetrates without dragging. The larger eye and scarf accommodate thicker threads like 30wt cotton. Pair it with the right presser foot, like a walking foot or 1/4 inch seam foot, for professional stitches.

If using a long arm, opt for 90/14 Titanium needles that won’t flex under high-speed stitching. Invest in quality needles so you don’t fight your machine on those big quilting projects.

What’s a Walking Foot and is It Essential for Quilting?

A walking foot evenly feeds fabric layers as you quilt, making it a blessing for beginners yet not absolutely essential. Quilters new to the craft often struggle with layers shifting unevenly, resulting in puckers and tucks.

A walking foot helps grip and move all layers in sync, preventing this headache.

Most machines come with specialty presser feet like a walking foot or 1/4” quilting foot. While extremely useful, these feet aren’t mandatory. With practice guiding the fabric, adjusting tension, pins, and patience, you can create beautiful quilted works without them.

Opt for a machine with strong included stitches, feed dogs, and accessories to start. Then upgrade to fancier feet as skills progress. A walking foot makes quilting easier but isn’t an essential beginner must-have.

Focus first on building technique, then add extras like specialty feet to increase convenience and open creative options.

Tips for Choosing the Best Quilting Sewing Machine

Tips for Choosing the Best Quilting Sewing Machine
Moving on from walking feet, let’s explore how to choose the best quilting machine for your unique needs.

Evaluate available power sources – electronic, mechanical, hand crank – and your space and mobility.

Analyze built-in stitch options, maximum stitch speed, automatic thread cutting, and the overall feel.

Test drive models to find the one with the perfect throat size, stable feed dogs, bobbin system, and accessories for your style.

Trust your mastery and experience to guide you. Quilting machines differ so intently try before buying.

Your creative spirit knows which machine will unlock your full potential.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What size throat space do I need for quilting?

You need at least 7 inches of throat space for easy quilting. This provides ample room to maneuver the quilt while stitching intricate designs. Remember, measure twice, cut once. Invest in a quality machine with sufficient throat space to unleash your creativity.

How important is stitch regulation for free motion quilting?

Free motion’s allure lies in creative freedom. But frustration ruins bliss if stitches look wonky. Regulation’s a blessing, making work gorgeous. Still, with practice you’ll gain mastery, liberating yourself from depending on electronics.

Should I buy new or used for my first quilting machine?

You simply must splurge on a brand new quilting machine for your first! Nothing beats that feeling of ripping off the plastic and taking your shiny new toy for a spin. Embrace total creative freedom – no inherited problems or limitations. This is your machine, your art, your liberation.

Do I need a serger in addition to a quilting machine?

You don’t need a serger for quilting. Focus first on a quality quilting machine with features like a large workspace, feed dog adjustment, and specialty feet.

How much maintenance does a quilting machine require?

Yes, your quilting machine does require regular maintenance to keep it sewing smoothly. Think of it like getting your vehicle tuned up – occasional tweaks and cleanings ensure everything is in tip-top shape for those long hauls.


So quilter, you’ve come to the last stitch in our article on choosing the best machine for your craft.

This journey began by laying out the top two models—the sturdy, high-speed JUKI and the user-friendly Janome. We explored how any machine can quilt, but special features truly help your project take shape.

Your equipment matters, from quality needles to handy feet that keep fabric feeding smoothly. An extension table gives your masterpiece the space it deserves. Ultimately, invest wisely for the long haul in a machine that sews up your dreams.

Though the options seem endless, you now have the know-how to select a prized quilting partner.

Avatar for Mutasim Sweileh

Mutasim Sweileh

Mutasim is the founder and editor-in-chief of, a site dedicated to those passionate about crafting. With years of experience and research under his belt, he sought to create a platform where he could share his knowledge and skills with others who shared his interests.