5 Best Sewing Machines for Shoemaking in 2024 – (Reviewed)

Last Updated on December 31, 2023

Having the right sewing machine is crucial if you want to make your own sneakers. Shoemaking requires precise stitching, which can be challenging with a regular sewing machine. It’s important to have a machine that can handle the thickness and durability of shoe materials. With so many options available, it can be overwhelming to choose the right one. To help you make an informed decision, we have compiled a list of the best sewing machines for shoemaking.

These machines are specifically designed to handle the demands of shoemaking and will help you achieve professional results. Whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned shoemaker, investing in the right sewing machine is crucial for your craft.

Best Sewing Machines for Shoemaking

What sewing machine do you need to make shoes?

To make shoes, you would typically need a sewing machine that is specifically designed for working with leather and can handle the thick and heavy fabrics involved in shoe construction. While there are various types of sewing machines that can be used, the most commonly recommended machine for making shoes is a post-bed sewing machine.

A post-bed sewing machine features a post or column rising from the sewing surface. This design allows easier manipulation of the shoe upper and provides better access to stitch difficult areas, such as curves and angles commonly found in footwear. The post bed machine’s design and features make it ideal for shoemaking, as it provides greater control and precision in sewing.

Can you make shoes with a regular sewing machine?

Yes, you can make shoes with a regular sewing machine. While an industrial sewing machine is often preferred for heavy-duty leatherwork, a standard home sewing machine can handle projects that involve thinner leather, such as shoes and accessories.

To sew leather with a regular sewing machine, there are a few considerations:

  • Leather Needle: Use a leather needle specifically designed for sewing through the leather. These needles are stronger and have a sharper point to penetrate the material effectively.
  • Sewing Foot: Consider using a walking foot or a Teflon foot. A walking foot helps feed the material evenly and prevents slipping, while a Teflon foot reduces friction between the leather and the foot, allowing smoother stitching.
  • Adjusting Tension and Stitch Length: Depending on the thickness of the leather, you may need to adjust the tension and stitch length settings on your sewing machine. Test on a scrap piece of leather to find the optimal settings for your specific project.
  • Practice and Patience: Sewing leather can be different from sewing fabric. Take your time, practice on scrap pieces, and experiment with different techniques and settings to achieve the desired results.

While a regular sewing machine can handle most leather shoe projects, keep in mind that extremely thick or heavy-duty leather may require an industrial sewing machine with more power and specialized features.

5 Best Sewing Machines for Shoemaking

Here, we’ll discuss the 5 Best Sewing Machines for shoemaking commonly used in sneaker production or sewing shoes.

We’ll dive into the features of each machine, helping you determine the best option for your needs. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced shoemaker, we’ve got you covered.

1. The Consew 29BL: A Powerful Yet Advanced Machine

The Consew 29BL - Best Sewing Machines for Shoemaking
The Consew 29BL
Power Sourceac_dc
Is ElectricYes

The Consew 29BL is a popular choice among experienced shoemakers. This cylinder bed sewing machine has a brushless motor and offers excellent versatility. However, it’s important to note that this machine is not recommended for beginners.

Its tension settings can be challenging to master, and any misalignment or timing issues can negatively impact your stitches. If you’re an advanced sewer looking for a powerful machine, the Consew 29BL might be an excellent choice.

2. YEQIN Leather Patcher Sewing Machine

YEQIN Leather Patcher Sewing Machine
YEQIN Leather Patcher
DimensionsHand, Hand Crank
Item Weight60 Pounds
Power SourceHand,Hand Crank
Is ElectricNo

With a sewing speed of 500 stitches per minute, the YEQIN MS 2972 perfectly balances speed and control. It allows you to work efficiently while maintaining stitch quality. This machine is designed for sewing projects requiring 360-degree rotation, making it ideal for repairing shoes and other intricate projects.

You need a sewing machine that can handle the challenge when working with thick materials like leather, rubber, plastic, or even canvas. The YEQIN MS 2972 excels in this aspect. It’s strong construction, and powerful motor allows it to sew through tough materials effortlessly.

Whether you’re repairing shoe soles, attaching straps, or reinforcing stitching, this machine delivers reliable and sturdy results. The YEQIN Leather Patcher works well with various thread types to cater to different sewing needs. You can choose between nylon, polyester, or cotton threads, depending on the specific requirements of your project.

The YEQIN MS 2972 offers flexibility in shuttle selection, allowing you to match the machine to your specific needs. Choose between large and small shuttles to accommodate different thread sizes and projects.

3. Techsew 810: Ideal for Learning and Beyond

Techsew 810
Techsew 810
Power SourceCorded Electric
Is ElectricNo

If you’re looking for a machine to learn shoemaking on, the Techsew 810 post-bed sewing machine is another fantastic option. While it does come with a higher price tag, its features and capabilities make it worth the investment.

A post-bed design allows you to flex the leather and provides a smooth sewing experience. The Techsew 810 offers various useful features, like a wheel for adjusting tension and a winder. This machine is highly recommended for beginners and intermediate shoemakers if budget permits.

4. The Flatbed Sewing Machines: Affordable and Efficient

Juki Flatbed Sewing Machines
Juki Flatbed
Power SourceCorded Electric
Is ElectricYes

For those on a tighter budget, flatbed sewing machines are worth considering. This Heavy Duty sewing machine is a reliable and cost-effective choice, widely used by many shoemakers. While it may lack some advanced features, it offers sturdy construction and can easily handle sewing leather.

If you’re willing to explore used options, industrial flatbed Sewing Machines for Shoemaking can be found on platforms like Facebook Marketplace or through local repair shops. These machines can offer great value and performance at a fraction of the cost of new ones.

5. Tippmann Boss Sewing Machine

Tippmann Boss
Tippmann Boss
Item Weight9500 Grams
Is ElectricNo

This machine embodies the essence of old-school craftsmanship while providing the versatility needed to handle a wide range of materials.

With the Tippmann Boss Sewing Machines for Shoemaking, you can confidently sew through various materials, including leather up to three to four inches thick. It’s also suitable for nylon, canvas, urethane, plastic, and even sheepskin. This makes it an excellent choice, particularly when working with intricate shoe patterns.

One of the standout features of the Tippmann Boss Sewing Machine is its ability to deliver consistent and accurate stitches. Whether you’re sewing seams or intricate details, this machine ensures every stitch is precise, giving your shoes a professional finish.

Durability is another key aspect of this sewing machine. Constructed with rugged cast aluminum housing, it can withstand the demands of heavy use. Also, the Tippmann Boss Sewing Machine comes with a one-year warranty on all parts and labor, providing peace of mind in your investment. Furthermore, it offers a 30-day money-back guarantee, allowing you to try it out risk-free.

If you’re a master crafter seeking a reliable and robust manual sewing machine for your shoemaking endeavors, the Tippmann Boss Sewing Machine is an excellent choice. Its ability to handle various materials and deliver consistent, accurate stitches makes it a valuable addition to any shoemaker’s toolkit.

FAQ – People Also Ask

To further help, here are some answers to questions you may have about the Best Sewing Machines for Shoemaking.

Which thread is used in shoemaking?

The thread commonly used in shoemaking is a double thread lock stitch, specifically the 301 stitch. This stitch is known for its strength, durability, and ability to create neat and attractive seams. It is used to join seams in the upper part of the shoe, as well as in the sole and welt. The 301 stitch is also suitable for footwear and leather goods embroidery.

What machine does Nike use to make shoes?

Nike uses various machines and technologies in their shoe manufacturing processes. While specific details about their machinery may not be publicly disclosed, Nike is known to employ advanced technologies and automation to streamline their production and increase efficiency.

Nike has utilized the Grabit robotic system’s electroadhesion technology. This technology allows for faster production of shoe uppers compared to manual processes. With the help of the Grabit system, Nike can achieve a production speed that is approximately 20 times faster than traditional methods performed by human workers.

Nike’s manufacturing processes involve a combination of automated machinery, specialized equipment, and skilled human labor. Nike’s exact machines and technologies may vary depending on the specific shoe models and manufacturing facilities.

What fabric are shoelaces?

Shoelaces can be made from various materials, both natural and synthetic. Traditionally, shoelaces were crafted from leather, hemp, cotton, jute, and other rope-like materials. However, modern shoelaces are predominantly made from synthetic fibers.

The most common synthetic fibers used in shoelaces include:

  • Nylon: Nylon shoelaces are durable, strong, and resistant to wear and tear. They offer excellent flexibility and are commonly used in athletic shoes.
  • Textured Polyester: Shoelaces made from textured polyester have a slightly rougher texture, providing better grip when tying knots. They are known for their durability and are often used in hiking or work boots.
  • Spun Polyester: Spun polyester shoelaces are soft, lightweight, and have a smooth texture. They are commonly found in casual and fashion footwear.
  • Polypropylene: Polypropylene shoelaces are lightweight and water-resistant, making them suitable for outdoor activities and sports shoes.

The manufacturing process of shoelaces begins with a shoelace braiding machine. This machine weaves or braids the chosen material into the desired pattern and thickness. The finished shoelaces are then cut to the appropriate length and have plastic or metal aglets attached to the ends to prevent fraying.

While synthetic fibers are commonly used in shoelaces today, natural materials like cotton or leather may still be found in certain specialty or high-end shoelaces. The material choice depends on the shoe’s style, purpose, and desired attributes, such as strength, flexibility, or aesthetics.


Selecting the best sewing machine for making sneakers depends on your skill level, budget, and specific requirements. The Consew 29BL is a powerful but advanced machine suitable for experienced sewers. The Techsew 810 post-bed sewing machine is highly recommended for beginners and those looking to learn shoemaking. If affordability is a concern, the Singer Heavy Duty or used industrial flatbed machines can provide reliable performance without breaking the bank.

Before making your final decision, consider factors such as price, features, ease of use, and availability. If you have any questions or need further guidance, feel free to comment; we’ll be glad to help. Happy shoemaking!

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