Serger vs Sewing Machine – Which is Better Choice for You?

Last Updated on August 16, 2022

Serger vs Sewing Machine: It is essential for those confused between the serger and a modern sewing machine to know that these machines are quite different.

A serger is an equipment designed for the accurate processing of cuts of garments by overcasting and removing excess material. A sewing machine is a technical device for quick and high-quality sewing of various materials.

Serger vs Sewing Machine – What is the difference?

Therefore, a serger cannot replace a sewing machine, but it can become a multifunctional accessory. For novice tailors, a budget sewing machine is enough that can sew several types of stitches.

It is worth resorting to the help of a serger for large production volumes and for working with various types of fabrics.

What is a Sewing Machine?

Most people use a sewing machine to sew clothes and things that are easy to make. Indeed, this unit is multifunctional since it allows directly attaching parts and performing types of seams of different complexity.

More expensive models of sewing machines can make decorative stitches that give originality of the finished products. For beginners, a suitable option is electromechanical models with electric motors.

Typically, such devices have no more than five programs installed. But if you do not plan to switch to sewing from heavy or delicate materials in the future, you cannot change such a machine to another model for decades.

A more advanced and complete version is computer models. They have an undeniable advantage – an electronic display on which all sewing parameters are set.

As a rule, replacing the filament or switching the device’s operating mode occurs automatically. It saves time and effort. So, it would be best if you preferred so expensive models for large volumes of work.

There is also a particular type of sewing mechanism – sewing and embroidery are equally good at sewing. Such models are suitable for large enterprises, and they instead perform the function of an auxiliary device.

Moreover, coverstitch machines know how to make elastic flat seams and process the cuts when folding the edges of knitwear. Unlike electromechanical and computer ones, such models have a regular seam (it looks the same from the seamy and front sides) and are durable (carpet lock or chain seam).

However, the sewing machine usually comes with presser feet of different sizes, a waste container, an auxiliary table, and a material feeding sleeve.

When choosing a machine, it is worth remembering that there is no function of working with delicate or, conversely, heavy fabrics in budget models. If you buy it, then it is exclusively for working with light or suiting fabric.

What is a Serger Machines?

Sergers represent a separate group among devices for sewing clothes. Their primary purpose is to process tissue sections. This function is essential when working with crumbling and stretching materials.

However, some models can beautifully process the cut edge and cut it off at the same time. The price of sergers relies on how many threads they can handle.

Most budgetary models are considered to be able to work with three or four threads. The most costly is two-strand sergers. With their help, you can process the edges of chiffon, silk, and lace.

Among the sergers, there is Coverlock. These devices are an order of magnitude more expensive since they combine the functions of sergers (cut off the edges of materials) and coverstitch (cover-sewing) machines.

This option is most convenient when working with knitwear and sportswear. Unlike a sewing machine, a serger creates a unique chain stitch that can stretch with the fabric.

So, even with a slight increase in the size of the material, the visual difference will be almost invisible. There is another version of the seam that does not stretch and prevents the product from stretching.

Serger vs Sewing Machine – Difference Between a Serger and a Sewing Machine

The two devices effectively complement each other, but choosing one for operation will not save money. The fact is that each type of equipment has its principle of operation and can perform only certain operations.

The difference between a serger and a sewing machine is, first of all, that it is it that allows you to sweep the edges of parts that are prone to shedding with high quality and beauty.

Serger vs Sewing Machine


And even if you can produce something similar on a sewing machine (for example, in the “zigzag” mode), the result will not be at the level of a serger but only an imitation.


Only the serger along the way with overcasting neatly cuts the edge of the fabric. Many serger models are also suitable for sewing parts with a very elastic stitch.

Sewing Something from a Thin Fabric

It is of great importance to sew something from a thin, “capricious” fabric. Such a unit is indispensable when working with knitwear. Serger seams come in various varieties.

For example, if it is necessary to process a chiffon fabric, a roll stitch is performed, in which the trimmed section of fabric is twisted before overcasting. And so, the edges of the goods are very delicately hemmed and do not crumble.

In turn, the sewing machine explicitly focuses on joining parts, and the processing of their edges acts only as an additional function. This overcasting is carried out on a conventional machine much more slowly.


In addition, it can perform, unlike a serger, not on any fabric but only on a fairly dense one; otherwise, the material will shrink. At the same time, the sewing machine allows you to perform some types of processing that are not available to the serger.

Number of Thread

You definitely cannot do without it if you need to sew a bent edge, make darts or decorate the product with finishing stitches. You can notice the difference between a serger and a sewing machine by paying attention to the number of threads used.

If in the serger, up to five of them are often involved simultaneously, then all operations on the sewing machine are carried out using two working threads.

Read More – Mechanical vs. Electronic Sewing Machine

Which is Better Choice for You: Sewing Machine or a Serger?

Learning to sew is easier on an electrically powered sewing machine, with a small number of programs (up to five). In this case, you can safely refuse additional accessories since not all of them will be needed during the operation.

Serger vs Sewing Machine

If you plan to improve your skills, choose a model whose parts are easy to replace on your own, and if you wish, you can buy missing accessories.

A serger should be given preference if you do not plan to sew directly, but you will often have to overcast the edges of the products. For example, hem the sleeves or trim the legs.

Usually, such devices for home use are bought by owners of non-standard figures who have to customize ready-made clothes on their own. Professional sewists often do otherwise – they buy a model that combines the functions of a sewing machine and a serger.

Can a Sewing Machine Replace a Serger?

The serger performs trimming, stitching, and overcasting of knitted fabrics or fabrics that peel off quickly. If we talk about the work of a sewing machine, then it sews the details of the goods, some models can embroider and make serger stitches, but it cannot become a full-fledged replacement for a serger because it only imitates its work.

Serger vs Sewing Machine

And you can also highlight the fact that sergers can process fabrics with two, three, and five threads, unlike a sewing machine that only works with 2-threads. Professional tailors and sewists prefer to use two devices at the same time.


Women are always trying to look beautiful and stylish with the help of various jewelry and accessories in their clothes. Now there is much beautiful clothing available for women.

But either they are expensive, or they are sewn mainly for women with model parameters. Women have solved these two problems by opting for self-tailoring.

Therefore, they need to choose between two units: a sewing machine and a serger. The differences between sewing machines and sergers lie in their work performed.

In this article, we have answered the question, what is the difference between a serger machine and a sewing machine, and what is better to choose. We hope you will find our write-up helpful and worthy indeed.

Read More – Overlocker VS Sewing Machine