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What Kind of Sewing Machine Do I Need for Leather?

Janome HD3000 Heavy-Duty Sewing Machine
Janome HD3000 Heavy-Duty Sewing Machine

Leather is one of the oldest yet evergreen fashion statements. Making custom leather garments is an interesting and pleasurable task.

Buying a sewing particular sewing machine for leather goods is not necessary, but it can make things easier.

Leather being an extremely rough texture is hard to sew on ordinary machines.

It usually gets pressed with the throat, and the needle gets stuck with the garment. You might be facing this problem when it comes to sewing leather on a domestic sewing machine.

Also, it appears to be unforgiving when you commit a mistake as one wrong stitch can create a big hole. This can ruin a big piece of garment and can prove to be an attack on your budget.

So, we are here to help you invest smartly and wisely; to get the best sewing machine for leather working. Having a particular type of leather machine could help you spend your energy in the right direction. 

Key Features You Need to Consider for a Leather Machine

Specialized leather sewing machines possess certain features which distinguish it from the ordinary machine used for domestic purposes.

Longer stitch length

If you want to get a strong and secure seam, you must look for a dedicated leather sewing machine. As leather is a rugged garment and a difficult one to handle, you need to go for specializing leather sewing machines, which give you longer stitch length choices. The optimum stitch length for a sewing machine can be in the range of 4mm or 4.5mm.

You should also look for single stitch and straight stitch options in the targeted machine.

Heavy-duty metal frame

As you know, that leather garment weighs heavy and is difficult to handle. So, you need to hunt for leather sewing machines possessing a heavy-duty metal frame. The machines which have this are heavy so they can maintain the stability of the garment, no matter how long and heavy it is.

High presser-foot

As the leather sewing machines have to adjust multiple layers of leather, so it needs to have a high presser foot. Also, it provides plenty of space for the clips and binders used for controlling the fabric. Some highly dedicated leather sewing machines comprise easy-to-glide presser feet; the most prominent feature of these machines is that they can attach the presser feet due to their snap-on features.

Metal needle plate

The metal needle plate feature of a leather sewing machine helps the leather to glide easily onto the machine. You need to search for leather machines that contain special needles for leather garments. Among these needles, the best ones are designed to sew heavy fabrics like leather.

Wide table

A wide table gives you plenty of workspaces that can easily be utilized to make sure that the leather can easily be sewn. Therefore, take it is a necessity that the sewing machine you are going to choose must come with a wide table. Only in this way, you’d be able to concentrate on different leather projects without any worries.

Domestic vs Industrial Machine for Sewing Leather

Now, this is where things get a bit complex as you won’t be able to make a decision that easier, especially when it comes to sewing leather.

The most important question asked by people is that whether they should choose an industrial sewing machine or a domestic one that can do the job?

In this scenario, let me point out some differences that make an industrial sewing machine an ideal machine for sewing leather:

Engine Difference

It is no secret that a domestic machine comes with a weaker engine as compared to the likes of an industrial one.

Therefore, a domestic machine will require more effort to penetrate inside the leather.

Contrary to that, an industrial machine already comes with a sophisticated and powerful engine. Sewing leather is like a piece of cake for such sewing machines.

So, an industrial leather machine takes the lead in this regard.

The difference in Needles

The second important thing that you need to be aware of regarding an industrial machine and a domestic one is the difference in needles.

Industrial machines possess strong needles. However, in the case of a domestic machine, the needles are relatively weak.

In short, it isn’t easier for a domestic machine to compete with an industrial machine, especially when it comes to sewing leather.

Inclusion of Extra Accessories

One of the most important features that differentiate an industrial machine from a domestic one is the inclusion of extra accessories.

That being said, an industrial machine comes with accessories like extra needles, different kinds of fabrics, and buttons, etc.

The presence of extra needles alone foreshadows the function of a weak domestic sewing machine.

So, to make it easier, getting an industrial machine will surely make your job much easier than you can even expect when it comes to sewing materials like leather.


However, one thing that might frustrate you a bit regarding the eventual choice is your budget. It all comes back to the budget you hold in your hands for sewing leather.

It’s plain and simple. That is, if you have got no worries regarding the budget, your ultimate goal should be to go for an industrial machine rather than a domestic one.

However, in case you are extremely short on budget, then I’d be recommending you choose a domestic sewing machine as it’s now a necessity no matter how much help you can get from an industrial machine.

Summarizing Things Up

So, that would be all regarding how to choose a sewing machine for leather. I hope that this guide can help you in every aspect possible as I’ve worked hard in gathering all the important features that you’d need for sewing leather.

Good Luck, and don’t forget to drop down any relevant query you have regarding the main topic. I’ll get back to it as soon as possible. 

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