There are many different types of embroidery machines for shirts and hoodies, and picking the best embroidery machine may be difficult no matter your skill level.  The T-shirt embroidery industry is big, and T-shirt embroidering is very detailed!

In this article, I will review some of the best embroidery machines for shirts available in 2021 and help guide your selection based on the features you prefer in an embroidery machine.

I'll conclude by showing you some of my best tips and supplies for designing amazing t-shirt embroidery designs without spending days on trial and error.

Features of T-Shirt Embroidery Machines & Your Own Goals

A good T Shirts Embroidery machine for shirts is not a tough question to answer.  This depends on your end goals and the nature of the project.

Are you only an occasional embroiderer of baby onesies?  Are you looking to start a home embroidery business?  Here are some features that you should consider before buying an embroidery machine.

Firstly, I. Combination vs embroidery-only machine

With the combination machine, I can sew and embroider.  Besides embroidering or monogramming shirts, I can also sew other DIY projects using my machine.

An embroidery-only machine, on the other hand, is only for embroidery.  If you don't plan on sewing or possess a separate sewing machine, you'll have to give up sewing.  (I recommend the Brother XM2701 as a great, basic machine to complement your embroidery machine.)

Combination machines are space-efficient, since there's only one machine, not two.  However, the biggest con you will encounter is the price increase if you plan only to embroider with your 2-in-1T-shirt embroidery machines differ greatly in their embroidery hoops, and that may determine which machine you choose. machine.

The second. Hoop size and embroidery area maximum

Most t-shirt embroidery machines use a larger embroidery hoop, and it may determine the choice of machine.

Each embroidery machine has a maximum hoop size and a slightly smaller maximum embroidery area.  This hoop size allows one design to be stitched at a time. 

A machine with an embroidery area of 5 1/4" x 7 1/4" cannot stitch a larger design in one pass.  If your design is large, you will have to split it using software the If Using a repositionable hoop, divide your design into sections and stitch each section one at a time.

Most embroidery machines come with a 4"x4" embroidery field, and sizes increase from there.  You will benefit greatly from a larger hoop size if you intend to embroider large areas.

Consider at least a 5′′x7′′ hoop to save time rehooping.  Rehooping isn't the end of the world, but it can be time-consuming to get everything just right.  It is not necessary to invest in a huge hoop size if you only plan on embroidering small logos or patches onto t-shirts for your company.

It is recommended that even if you select an embroidery machine with a large hoop size, a smaller hoop should still be available to you.  A behemoth hoop is impossible to use for small shirts or onesies on toddlers.  

Three. Embroidery machines with multi-needles vs. manual thread changes

Would you like to create shirts for your children or grandchildren as a hobby, or would you like to start an embroidery business at home?  Even if hobbyists don't need the most sophisticated machine, time is money for commercial stitchers.

Single-needle embroidery machines struggle to stitch multi-colored designs densely.  

Multi-needle machines are unlikely to be an option for budget-minded t-shirt machine embroidery enthusiasts.  If you plan to sell your designs commercially, a multi-needle embroidery machine might make sense.

Using a multi-needle embroidery machine, you can set up several colors at once without having to change threads manually.

Four. Free Arm Embroidery

If you want to embroider shirt cuffs or pockets, but can't get them single-layered in an embroidery hoop, you need to find an embroidery machine with a free arm.

The small embroidery needles are most common on machines with multiple needles. This makes it SO much easier to embroider those small spaces like cuffs, pockets, and onesie slits.

In addition, there are a few single-needle embroidery machines with free arms, though they are close to the price of budget multi-needle embroidery machines!

Five. Speed of stitching

Your embroidery project will take longer to complete if your T-shirt embroidering machine is slow.  Fast embroidery machines work faster, but they are more expensive.

An embroidery machine can stitch a standard 4′′x4′′ single-color monogram or applique in around 5 minutes of stitching time.  Changes in multiple threads a For a I can spend up to an hour embroidering a single large design that has dense stitching and must be rehooped into multiple sections.

I don't mind this since I embroider for fun and not profit, but for someone wanting to start a commercial embroidery business, a slow, single-needle machine won't get them started but won't allow them to scale if they become popular.

Sixth. Jump Stitch Trimming: Automatic vs. Manual

Having to manually trim jump stitches is my second least favorite part of embroidery (my first is hooping stretchy fabrics).  Because sometimes I trim more than just the jump threads.  You need good eyesight and dexterity to trim those little things!

Many designs you purchase will minimize jump stitches, but if you auto-digitize your design instead of manually digitizing it, you'll end up with more.

It is a huge time saver to have a machine with automatic jump stitch trimming if you are involved, multicolor designs.  However, this isn't a feature that is available on most entry-level t-shirt embroidery machines.  In most cases, the thread is trimmed automatically after each color, which is convenient.

Best Embroidery Machine for Shirts and Hoodies – Reviews

You are more likely to find good deals if you go to your local retailer rather than shop online for Bernina, SWF, Ricoma, Melco, Babylock, Tajima, or even high end Brother machines.

Additionally, you'll have the chance to try out the machine in our store before making the purchase.  Put one of your designs on a test shirt, along with some stabilizer, and take the machine for a spin.

Here are a few affordable embroidery machines you can view online that are less likely to be found in a sewing shop where you can try them out.

My favorite embroidery machines are Brother because they are affordable and have excellent quality.  In addition to offering great quality, Janome sewing machines are still fairly affordable.  Despite Singer's incredible sewing machines (especially their heavy-duty ones! ), their embroidery machines in the last 10 years can't compete with the other brands.


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