If you’ve been sewing for awhile you’ve probably heard about sergers. And you may be wondering what a serger machine is and what it does. You may also be wondering what the difference is between a serger and a regular sewing machine.
This post is about serger vs sewing machine and what you need to know about them. But, you don’t have to have a serger to sew great sewing projects.
Sewing machines and serger sewing machines are different. They both are used in sewing, but for different preposes.
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What is a serger?
When you’re learning to sew and you come across a reference to a serger. Your first question is what is it, I know that was my first question.
They combined three functions in one, stitching a seam, trimming excess seam allowance and finishing the raw edges of the seams.
Sergers or overlock machines are used to finish the raw edges of the seam allowance. A serger can help you to get a professional finish on your sewing project.
A serger uses three or more threads sources to stitch with. And sergers will cut the fabric as you stitch, the cutting blade will cut the excess fabric on the seam for a perfect seam finish.
And a serger has one stitch, the overlock stitch. Sewing machines don’t have this stitch. Like sewing machines sergers have a presser foot.
What is a sewing machine?
A sewing machine is important for sewing. What a sewing machine does is it stitches the pieces of fabric together.
The number of stitches depend on the sewing machine model. A basic sewing machine may only have a few different stitches, while others have more decorative stitches and different stitches for button holes.
The two stitches just about any sewing machine can make are straight stitches and zig zag stitches. And you can use a regular machine to finish the edge of the fabric like a serger, using a zig zag stitch.
Sewing machines use the top thread and the bobbin thread to create the stitches. You can make all kinds of different projects with a sewing machine. Like making clothes, piecing quilts, and more.
What’s the difference between sergers and sewing machines?
There are a few differences between sewing machines and sergers. Since they are different machines they do have different uses.
To me the main difference is what they’re used for. Sergers are used mostly for finishing the fabric edges for professional seams, while a standard sewing machine is used for sewing fabric together, finishing the edge of your fabric, and decorating fabric with fancy stitches and more.
Another difference is the stitches themselves. A serger only has the one stitch, while a sewing machine can have many different types of stitches.
While sewing machines have bobbins, serger don’t. But, sewing machines only have the top and bottom thread, and serger can have up to five threads for a very durable seam.
Do I need a serger?
They are a valuable sewing tool to have, but you don’t have to have one to start your sewing journey. While a lot of seamstresses may have sergers, you don’t have to have one. In fact I don’t have a serger right now, I may invest in one in the future. Because right now I don’t need one.
Because let’s be honest, sergers can be expensive. Especially, if you want to buy good quality one. Now, if you don’t mind spending the money or find a good used one instead of a new machine and sew with a lot of stretchy fabrics. A serger would be a good investment and great addition to your sewing room.
A traditional sewing machine can be used to finish your seams. But, a overlocker machine maybe a better option for some, like if you do a lot with knit fabrics or want more professional-looking edges.
But, any of the type of sewing machine out there will be able to do basic sewing tasks. As your skill level increases you could invest in a better sewing machine with more kinds of stitches instead of a serger.
Is sewing easy? That depends on what you want to sew and your skill level. But, sewing can be easy. If you’re a beginner it’s a good idea to start with simple easy sewing projects. But, first you need to practice sewing straight stitches with a scrap piece of fabric.
Is serger thread the same as regular thread? No, serger thread is a little different than sewing thread. For one thing serger thread is weaker than regular sewing thread. Because sergers use multiple spools of thread at a time to make the stitches. While sewing machines use just the top and bobbin thread to make stitches. But, the sergers stitches are just as strong because of the number of threads used. So, they are different threads.
Are there different types of sewing machines? Yes, there are all kinds of different home sewing machine out there to choose from in the sewing world. Some with a few different stitches and some with hundreds of stitches, and some that even do embroidery. There are also industrial sewing machines. But, a home sewing machine can sew layers of fabric and thicker fabrics as well as lightweight fabrics. And there are different prices of sewing machine, so you can find a sewing machine for any budget.
What sewing machine should I buy? There are three things to consider when buying a sewing machine. Your price range, what stitches you want, and the brand of sewing machine you want to buy. To me it’s important to have at least one buttonhole stitch and a variety of other stitches. And the brands important to, I have a Brother sewing machine and I really like it. But, there are other great brands, like Singer, Janome and more. And there plenty of sewing machines out there in all different price ranges.
Check out my other sewing posts
- Perfecting Your Sewing Patterns with Tracing Paper.
- Ideas on How to Store All of Your Sewing Patterns.
- Different Types of Sewing Buttons You Can Use.
- Eight Different Types of Scissors to Use for Sewing.
- The Five Best Sewing Clips to Use for Sewing.