Brother SQ9185 Review: Is It Good Sewing and Quilting Machine?

If you're looking for a sewing machine that's easy to learn, easy to use, and can function in a variety of ways – you’ll want to pay attention to this Brother SQ9185 review.

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The Brother SQ9185 is a versatile machine and a proven performer. It's packed full of features that provide for quite a selection of your sewing, quilting and decorative stitching needs.

You can also do basic monogramming on this model - although I wouldn't buy it for that specific feature since it’s limited to one font only. It is a neat additional feature to have, however, for personalizing gift items, for example.

How Many Stitches Are Available?

If you’re looking for variety, this model provides a complete set of stitches - 130 different stitches in all that includes eight separate styles of buttonholes that can be created in a simple, one-step process.

Stitch Length and width

Maximum stitch width measures about 5/16 of an inch, or 7 mm to be precise.

The maximum stitch length is just under one-quarter of an inch (5 mm).

Is Brother’s SQ9185 Sewing Machine A Mechanical Model - Or Is It Computerized?

This one is a computerized model. As such, the Brother SQ9185 is capable of doing many things quite easily. It puts variety and control in your hands - and it’s an easy machine to get used to.

There's a LED display showing you relevant information such as the type of stitch the machine is set to use.

But even though it's a computerized, you still have to adjust the tension manually, on your own. 

Does It Have A Reverse Stitch?

Yes, it has a reverse function which helps reinforced the stitches with two or three stitches at the start and end of the seam to secure it. 

What Are The Features Most Worth Noting on the Brother Sewing and Quilting Machine SQ9185?

Lightweight

It's a fairly quiet machine. And weighing in at 9.9 pounds, it's relatively lightweight and therefore easy to move from home to your class, or sewing group - and back again. 

It's also solid enough to be stable on any level tabletop - a big plus when doing detailed sewing work, and you don't want to miss any stitch.

Feed dogs

You can drop the seven-point feed dogs on this machine and do free motion quilting or other freehand work.

Speed and Control

When you're on a roll, you can speed up and get your project completed faster with its 850 stitches per minute maximum speed.

But on edges and heavy fabrics, you’ll want to be able to go super slow and focus on exactly what's you're doing - to get it just right.

Being able to maintain complete control of your sewing speed can be an important factor, and this machine has a speed control slider for three different speed options.

However, some sewists are used to using a pedal and prefer the control it provides regarding speed and overall control of the operation of the machine.

What Is The Brother Sewing Machine SQ9185 Best Used For?

There’s no doubt; this Brother is a well-rounded machine capable of performing most sewing related tasks handily.

It’s a useful and practical device to own for sewing clothes, making crafts, creating quilts, and performing alterations.

This is all also a good choice of a machine on which to teach children - or beginners of any age - how to sew in a variety of stitches. 

At its slowest speed, it putters along very slowly, making it easier for children to learn on.

It's not often that you get this kind of variety and versatility in an affordable home sewing machine.

Is the Brother 130-Stitch Sewing and Quilting Machine Capable Of Sewing Any Material?

I wouldn't suggest that this machine could handle any material. But it can manage a variety of materials quite well including denim, light leather, nylon, and other fabrics.

It's quite capable of sewing thick work pants, making outdoor cushions, creating stunning quilts - and plenty more.

Of course, it's essential that you choose the right needle for the job and you slow down when working on something like the thick inner seams on denim jeans.

What Kind Of Feet Are Provided With The Brother SQ9185?

There's quite a variety of feet provided as standard equipment.

Some of these include quarter-inch quilting foot, walking foot, buttonhole foot, overcasting foot, button sewing foot, zipper foot, blind stitch foot, zigzag foot, and monogramming foot.

What About The Manual And DVD?

What is particularly useful is the accompanying DVD and owner’s manual every buyer gets. Brother has made the DVD specifically for this sewing machine.

This one is focused, unlike the packaged accessories of some manufacturers who include information on their entire line.

Many buyers consider the manual to be a useful bonus as well. It's clear, direct, easy to read and understand.

It's written in plain English, so even a beginner can comprehend the ideas discussed without any difficulty.

Again, that’s not the typical experience most people get when purchasing a new item. If you’ve ever tried assembling “do-it-yourself” furniture - you know exactly what I mean.

Is Brothers SQ9185 Sewing Machine Adaptable?

Yes, it is. For example, you can increase its usefulness by sewing a basting stitch.

 You would do this by increasing the stitch length for a straight stitch to the longest length available and then simply decrease the tension.

Another example of the adaptability of this model is when you use invisible thread. Just adjust the tension to find what works best with the fabric you're handling at the moment.

With the correct tension, you should have no problem using invisible thread on this machine.

Optional Accessories Add Functionality 

Whenever you purchase a new sewing machine, there are usually a lot of additional parts and pieces. These are often necessary components if you want to be able to use your purchase for a wide variety of sewing applications.

Brother doesn't disappoint in this regard with the bounty of accessories it provides as standard equipment.

You can always purchase additional upgrades as needed. But there are plenty of practical things you can do with this model right out of the box. It Includes a handy quilting guide for sewing evenly spaced columns and rows of stitches.

But one thing that is not included is a carrying case. However, there is a universal carrying case made by Brother that is available, and it fits the SQ9185.

But you would have to purchase the cover as a separate item. It may be a viable option for you if you plan on moving it from one location to another frequently.

Who Would You Say This Machine Is Not A Good Match For?

It's not for you if you want to do custom monogramming or embroidery. It’s just not that kind of machine.

And if you're looking for a machine with all metal parts, you should look elsewhere. Also, if you need a presser foot with pressure adjustments - then this machine is not for you.

What Do Buyers Most Like About The Brother SQ9185?

It's easy to use - that’s one attribute that stands out about this machine. The fact that the operating instructions are well-written and easy to follow means it’s less intimidating than other models might be.

It’s also a machine that’s easy to thread with its semi-automated needle threading function.

Another advantage mentioned by buyers is that the walking foot is included. This accessory is often sold as an extra with other machines, so having it there as standard equipment is a bonus.

This model of the Brother can also handle thick layers of multiple fabrics. It provides a larger work area too - which is helpful when working on bigger projects like quilts.

This Brother sewing machine offers plenty of functionality in a portable unit. It also delivers a professional look on finished stitches - and that’s important to crafters and sewists who take pride in their work.

What Don't Some People Like About It?

Some users feel that the SQ9185 from Brother would be even more useful if it had a larger area between the needle and the outer arm of the machine.

That would require a complete overhaul by the engineering team - so it’s highly unlikely to happen.

Most machines in this price don't have bigger area than this. So I wouldn't consider it as a deficiency in this machine.

There's a light provided that comes on automatically as the machine turns on. The plus is that it’s an LED light - so it should last several thousand hours. But some users say the light is not that bright enough, but it's better than nothing.

The Verdict

The Brother SQ9185 is reliable and versatile performer capable of delivering a variety of professional-looking stitches. As such, it’s a solid option as a replacement all-purpose, home sewing machine.

It’s also an excellent choice for apparel projects, crafting projects, quilting projects, and alterations of all kinds.


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8.2

Portable

8.5/10

Easy to use

8.5/10

Speed

8.5/10

Quilting

8.0/10

Mongramming

7.5/10

Pros

  • Many presser feet
  • Large extension table
  • Stitch chart
  • Beginners friendly

Cons

  • LED light is not that bright
  • No metal parts
  • One font for monogramming
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