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Embroidery Machine vs Sewing Machine: What’s The Difference?

Everything is becoming more advanced, and in my world, the sewing world, some advancements are also happening. Materials don’t change themselves, but when it comes to the machines that I use, some things deserve to be mentioned, and basically, there are things that many people like me ask.

Embroidery machines or sewing machines? Which ones, in your opinion, are the most incredible machines ever made? I am glad to say that I will write this article wholly related to them. Are there differences? Are there similarities? Well, everything has its way of working; these machines have some things that are worth mentioning and worth comparing.

Without further ado, let me start this article with the hope that I will show you the winner of the battle “Embroidery Machine vs. Sewing Machine”

Key Takeaways

  • Embroidery machines are regarded as the art form that has been established for designs and various activities. An embroidery machine allows you to insert the desired design into any material using a needle and embroidery thread.
  • Threads are used by sewing machines as well, but they do so to attach different materials or fabrics together. There are no patterns; there is only the sewing process, which enables you to construct new kinds of clothing or any other material you could need to sew.
  • Even though these two types of machines have numerous variances and similarities, you should keep in mind that at the end of the day embroidery machines are simply a different type of sewing machine.

Embroidery Machine vs. Sewing Machine – What Are They?

Before starting anything else and showing you the differences or similarities between machine embroidery and sewing machines, I would like first to tell you what they are and their main types.

What Are Embroidery Machines?

Embroidery machines are known as the art that has been created for designs and different things you can do. An embroidery machine has a needle and an embroidery thread that helps you put in any material the design that you want. If you care, I am a huge fan of embroidery.

Embroidery machines come in two types: free motion and computerized. The free motion machines require you to use the zigzag way; meanwhile, the computerized ones are controlled by a computer.

What Are Sewing Machines?

A sewing machine also uses threads, but in this case, it uses to sew materials or fabrics to one another. There are no designs; there is just the sewing process that allows you to make, in fact, create new types of clothes or whatever you may need to sew.

Regular sewing machines come in two types as well, and they are industrial machines and domestic machines. Industrial sewing machines are bigger and are known for the heavy-duty things they can help. On the other hand, the domestic machines that many people use at home.

Embroidery Machine vs. Sewing Machine – Which One is Better?

The best way to find the difference between these two types of machines is the fact that embroidery machines are types of sewing machines. Basically, sewing machines are produced way before embroidery machines, but there are still modern sewing machines nowadays. Nevertheless, both sewing machines and machines with embroidery thread serve one purpose and that’s sewing.

Now that you know this fact let me start the battle of embroidery machines vs. sewing machines while mentioning their main similarities and differences.

Size and Portability

On just one first look, you will keep thinking that these machines have no differences in size, but still, there are. Embroidery machines are a little bit bigger when compared to normal sewing machines, especially when compared to domestic ones that many people use. That also shows how sewing machines are portable; meanwhile, embroidery ones, being bigger, are not the best portable machines you can find.

Still, that doesn’t mean that there isn’t any embroidery machine that can be considered portable; some are smaller, but you cannot use them in whatever thing you want to embroider.

Durability and Versatility

These types of machines, embroidery and sewing machines, are made mostly of metal, among other super-strong materials. Made strongly, these machines don’t really have a difference when it comes to this part, as they can both stay with you for a pretty long period.

With versatility in these machines, I mean when and how they can be used. If an embroidery machine has a single needle, it can work amazingly as a simple sewing machine. In this case, a sewing machine cannot perform anything as an embroidery machine. I am pretty sorry to say that, but that’s the truth.

Needles and Threads

As I mentioned a single needle above, you should know the differences or similarities between these types of machines regarding their needles and threads. An embroidery machine uses a scarf shape needle that works in most materials you want to embroider, and it won’t cause any problem. When it comes to sewing machines, you can use different needles for different materials; plus, whenever you start a new job on a sewing machine, you should work with a new needle, which is boring.

When it comes to threads that you use in these machines, you will find them different as well. Sewing machines need tighter and straighter threads made of different materials such as polyester, cotton, or any other; meanwhile, moving along to embroidery machines, they need a more reflective thread, especially the material rayon.


I am pretty sure that many of you reading this article are thinking about this part; what kind of technology can you add to machines used for sewing or embroidery? Well, you never know.

Embroidery machines are known as technology machines. Most of them have LCD touchscreens that allow you to preview your designs. This great feature makes them a little bit complicated when it comes to their usage, but when it comes to sewing machines, you will not deal with anything technological, such as the screen.

Final Thoughts

My fellow readers, we came to the last part of this article! I would like to mention again that there are many differences and similarities between these two types of machines, but still, you should have in mind the fact that embroidery machines are types of sewing machines.

I hope that after reading this article you are provided with whatever you needed to know!

Further Reading

As this article is fully related to the differences and similarities between the two types of machines, I would like to mention two other articles similar to this one, with comparisons.

You can find out the differences between low shank and high shank sewing machines and also, you can check out the battle between sewing and quilting.

If your concern is in some materials and whether they shrink, you can find out if acrylic shrinks or if gymshark clothes shrink!

Check these articles out and stay tuned for some more!