For Anne’s 4th birthday we got her a sewing machine and I did a lot of research beforehand to find the best sewing machines for kids.
It took me about 5 minutes to rule out all of the machines designed just for kids. You know the chain stitch style you find in the toy department…they really just don’t work so don’t even go there. I want to teach my child that sewing is fun and functional – not frustrating. It turns out the best sewing machines for kids aren’t necessarily made for kids.
We ended up going with the Janome Portable Sewing Machine which you can find on Amazon for $70 in 4 different colors. If you are a prime member you also get free 2 day shipping 🙂
*I am an Amazon affiliate but this review is 100% my own opinion
We’ve had this for a couple months now are loving it! First of all it is a 1/2 size machine so it is very small and lightweight. Overall it’s less intimidating for a child than a full size machine and it’s easy to store when not in use. It is definitely much slower than my machine and I’m comfortable with my 4 year old using it with limited supervision (I’m in the room but don’t have to hover)
My favorite feature by far (which I didn’t know about until it arrived) is this wonderful presser foot! The way it’s shaped it would be incredibly difficult to get your finger under the needle which was a big safety concern I had. I’m not saying it’s impossible but it definitely gives me a lot of peace of mind. We of course still teach sewing safety but I’m glad to have this chunky presser foot blocking her precious fingers just in case.
The machine includes 10 basic stitches including a straight stitch, basting stitch and a zig-zag. It’s plenty for a beginner and I like the easy-to-read dial. My toddler can quickly switch between the letters and understand which stitch she is picking. No bells or whistles but for a child it’s perfect
We’ve used this machine to sew through multiple layers of fabric (including fleece) and it did quite well. One of our early projects was a dolly sleeping bag and the machine did fine with a layer of cotton and a layer of fleece. When it got time to sew all the layers together it was manageable on this machine but it did begin to struggle a bit. Granted a child won’t be sewing through that much fabric very often
The only real draw-back to this machine is it doesn’t have a light. My toddler isn’t used to sewing with one so she does fine with a lamp but a light would’ve been nice. I imagine if she continues sewing and really takes it seriously we’ll be getting her a full size machine with more features when she’s 9 or 10 but I think it will be awhile before she outgrows the functionality of this machine
When she’s done I put away her machine and fold down her whole station. The little chair slips between my desk and the wall and the table only sticks out 2.5″ when it’s folded so it’s not in my way. I also installed the little table all on my own (9 months pregnant!) and I’m proud to say it’s very close to level 🙂
Hope that helps you and your little one in your sewing adventures! In our opinion this is the best sewing machine for kids.
Check out the rest of my sewing room here: