Choosing the right sewing machine is a difficult topic in which to give advice on, simply because it is about personal choice and preference. There are so many different brands and levels of sewing machine, ranging from mechanical, electronic to computerized. Here is a brief example of the latter three -
• Mechanical – This example of a sewing machine offers the fashion sewer the bare basics of what a machine can do. These types of machines may only be capable of sewing straight lines, whilst some do offer decorative stitching such as zig-zags. They usually have large hand worked dials to change settings.
• Electronic – This version of a sewing machine (as the name suggests) takes all that is good of a manual machine, adds electronic components and allows the user more options such as decorative and utility stitches such as button holes etc. I would always advise beginner sewers to start with this type of machine.
• Computerized – As the name suggests, this type of machine contains a microchip and memory and is at the cutting edge of fashion sewing. These machines, which vary from hundreds to thousands of pounds / dollars, offer the user a multitude of choices in decorative stitching, more components to aid quicker sewing, more choice of button holes styles, easier thread of the needle and even cut the thread for you.
I would ALWAYS recommend to any beginner sewer whenever and wherever possible to test run as many machines as possible. This will only help to find the one that best suits you, your needs and the kind of projects you want to do.
The video below may prove helpful in giving you an insight into the different capabilities and classes of the modern sewing machine.