For everyone looking for a machine that’s the epitome of sewing made simple, the Brother CE8100 Sewing and Quilting Machine should be high on your consideration list.
It’s truly feature rich, while the variety of preset stitches and included feet make it an excellent choice to expand your horizons while making creative and durable quilts, clothes, and more.
Bear in mind that the features in the CE8100 may be somewhat limited if you’re an expert sewer, but the intuitive design might be just what you’re looking for to grow your craft.
Let’s take a look at all this model has to offer…
Brother CE8100: The Details
This machine’s sleek, pearl-white casing gives it a clean, sturdy look.
The CE8100 weighs in at about 10 pounds, definitely one of the lighter sewing machines on the market, and it detachable table gives you a nice, wide work area. Subtle magenta accents also add a touch of decorative flare.
A bright LCD screen on the front panel allows you to quickly punch in different stitch styles. There’s also a handy reference decal with a full table of stitching selections, which means you don’t have to keep a manual handy to match the settings to your project.
Overall, this quilting machine is a little blocky, which makes it look more dated than other models, but it’s obviously built for convenience and keeps the main functions in easy reach.
- Weight: 10 lbs
- Dimensions: 12.5 x 7 x 16.3 inches
- Stitches: 120
- Speed: 850 stitches per minute (max)
- Computerized/Mechanic: Computerized
- Bobbin: Jam resistant, quick-set bobbin
- Warranty: 25-year limited warranty
This machine includes 10 accessory feet for maximum customization options. We’ll get more into those features further down, but the full list includes:
- Zigzag foot
- Buttonhole foot
- Zipper foot
- Button sewing foot
- Overcasting foot
- Blind stitch foot
- Monogramming foot
- Binding foot (see our quilt binding guide)
- Cording foot
- Gathering foot
The Brother quilting machine also comes with four bobbins, a seam ripper, a needle set, a ball point needle, a twin needle, a cleaning brush, a screwdriver, three spool caps, an extra spool pin, an instructional DVD, a foot controller, a power cord, and a user’s manual.
These accessories are lucky for you, because this machine can be used as soon as you open it, and you won’t need to run to the store anytime soon to stock up. Just pop in the DVD and get started.
Here’s a great video on what to expect when unpacking your brand new Brother CE8100:
Brother: The Company
Brother has been in business since 1954 and they specialize in home machinery, including printers, fax machines, scanners, and sewing machines.
They have a wide range of fabric products that bring quilting, embroidery, and garment printing into the convenience of your home station. Their product line demonstrates a commitment to providing sewers with all the tools they need to create beautiful projects.
Brother also offers project designs, tutorials, and newsletters through their website, all of which provide handy sewing tips and opportunities to discuss projects with fellow sewers. I find this an incredibly important feature for anyone who wants to get the most use out of their machine. Having those kinds of resources at your fingertips helps you find the motivation to keep going and try new ideas.
With the CE8100, you can keep your creativity flowing by making use of Brother’s resources, and experiment with new stitches, projects, and challenges.
7-Point Feed Dogs
The feed system in place on the Brother CE8100 sewing machine is quite excellent, allowing you to tackle a variety of fabrics and materials — Brother says that it’s advanced enough to sew on almost any fabric, and we’re inclined to believe them after our thorough testing!
Up/Down Needle Button and Twin Needle Capability
Two other features that quilters in particular will love is just how easy it is to raise and lower the needle — just press the up/down button to keep everything in place — and the twin needle capability of the machine.
Perfect for hems and decorative stitches, just remember to stock up on twin needles!
Stop/Start Button and Adjustable Speeds
On the computer side, you’ll find a lot of options to toggle your machine to stop and start and adjust the speed of your stitching.
The stop/start function means you can do away with the old foot pedal, if you choose.
Easy Needle Threading
Another feature that will be of great benefit to beginners and more experienced sewers alike is the advanced easy needle threading system.
This automatic threader sees the needle threaded in a matter of seconds, with no pesky fiddling to contend with.
Quick-Set Drop In Bobbin
We love Brother’s Quick-Set drop-in bobbin system when we’ve encountered it on other sewing machines, and we’re glad to see it as a feature of the CE8100.
Jam-resistant, the bobbin promises to get the thread rolling with no risk of tangles. We also really like the clear view bobbin cover that allows you to spot when the thread is running down easily.
Quilters, get excited!
The Brother CE8100 quilting machine has a fantastic drop-feed function that allow you to free motion sew all over your quilt project.
Move the fabric about as you see fit, and the needle will intuitively follow.
Wide, Detachable Table
Another quilting-friendly feature to this machine is the extra wide detachable table that can be easily added to the machine to give you extra surface area on large projects.
A super bright, high-beam, LED light is installed in the arm to really shine a light on your quilt as you work too.
120 Built-In Stitches
You’ll find one of the greatest advantages of the Brother CE8100 model in the staggering array of stitching options included.
There are 120 unique built-in stitches, including decorative, quilting and utility stitches.
This makes for exciting embroidery projects that don’t require the stitching time and expertise of decorating your fabric by hand. One of the best features to play around with!
The CE8100 also includes 8 different one-step automatic buttonholes — ideal for garment makers! We think you’ll love the buttonhole and button sewing feet included too.
Brother CE8100 Sewing Machine Review
Designed to Sew on Every Fabric
One of the things we truly love about the Brother CE8100 is the fact that it’s incredibly versatile — especially when it comes to the types of fabric it can work with.
The advanced 7-point feed dog system is secure and ensures a smooth feed, regardless of what material you’re using.
Plus, the large number of feet that Brother include with the machine means that you can do a whole load of experimentation!
Easy to Use
One of the most important aspects we look at when reviewing sewing machines is how easy they are to get working straight out of the box.
We know that we’re not the only people who don’t want to be faffing around for hours trying to thread a tiny eye of the needle.
We’re pleased to report that the Brother CE8100 is very easy to use and beginner-friendly.
The easy needle threading system plus the Quick-Set drop-in bobbin ensures for an easy thread experience with minimal risks of jams or tangles.
Additionally, the stop/start button is a great alternative for anyone who struggles a little with a foot pedal and the adjustable speeds allow you to find your footing easily.
Great for Quilters
As you should be able to tell from the name, the Brother CE8100 sewing and quilting machine is designed for quilting.
And it delivers in spades.
From the free motion quilting, the 7-point feed dogs, the huge array of quilting stitches and the large work area, most quilters will find this perfect for their needs.
At only 10 lbs, the CE8100 is very portable — and thanks to the fact that the wide work table is detachable, comes up pretty compact too.
We’ve seen this machine at a lot of the quilting meetups we’ve been to, and know that many people use it as their ‘travel’ sewing machine with a more heavy duty one in their craft rooms at home.
If you like to travel often with your machine, or simply don’t want a huge quilting machine taking up weight and space in your home, the Brother CE8100 sewing machine could be a good bet for you.
We think this sewing and quilting machine offers a high level of value for money.
While it’s by no means the cheapest sewing machine on the market, it’s a reasonably high quality machine that’s very versatile and allows your skills and experience to grow with the machine. It’s not the most feature-rich machine we’ve used — and it doesn’t have quite the power we’d normally go for — but we think it’s priced very reasonably considering its capabilities.
Definitely not Heavy Duty
Of course, the flipside of having a super light and portable 10 lb sewing machine is that it simply won’t have as much power and strength behind it as some more heavy duty machines.
Although it’s good on practically all fabrics, including quilts, we don’t fancy the Brother CE8100’s chances with multiple thick layers.
Additionally, the bobbin winder will occasionally suffer from the lack of heft and strength in the machine: be careful not to rattle it out of place or cram it with too much thread.
Versatile but not Specialist
While we love that this machine can do a lot with a little, there are some features that you may find don’t work quite as well as they would on a more expensive and higher quality machine.
Think of this machine as a jack of all trades, master of most, and be practical and patient when learning how to use some of its more exotic features.
For example, you’ll need a much more powerful machine to be able to confidently backstitch or monogram, so if you’re interested in those options, you should give other models a closer look.
A Little Loud
Again, thanks to its comparatively light weight, the Brother CE8100 is a bit of a rattler as it doesn’t have the weight to stabilize the machine down.
It’s certainly not the loudest sewing machine we’ve ever used, but late night sewers may need to think about some level of sound-proofing if you share a house!
For beginner and intermediate sewers and quilters, the Brother CE8100 is a great machine that offers you a high level of versatility, plenty of room for experimentation and overall great value for money.
Advanced sewers may find it a little basic, and some of the features may not be quite specialist enough for people working to a very high standard of work, although some may find this the perfect machine to travel with thanks to its super portable weight of only 10 lbs.
Where to Buy the Brother CE8100
The CE8100 isn’t the most popular and widely bought of the Brother sewing machines, but you’re still able to buy it in various places online.
Check these stores for starters:
And, of course, it’s available on Amazon too — where it comes with a bonus foot pack!
Have you tried the Brother CE8100 sewing machine yet?
Not sure if this is the model for you? Browse our latest sewing machine reviews.
Brother CE8100 Review
Good for Beginners?
Craft Sewing Specs
Value for Money
We think the Brother CE8100 sewing and quilting machine is great for beginners and intermediate sewers who want to hone their skills and experiment with craft sewing and quilting.
It’s not a heavy duty machine, nor is it advanced, but it’s certainly versatile and portable and offers great value for money.