Welcome to Kamala Embroidery


Brother SE400 Computerized Embroidery and Sewing Machine With USP Port

My Brother SE400 Embroidered a T-Shirt

Hello, I’m Kamala and the happy owner of a Brother SE400 Sewing and Embroidery machine. I love to share my passion for embroidery and everything I’m learning along the way.

Reviews and Comparisons to Help Choose an Affordable Embroidery Machine

If you’re trying to decide which machine is right for you, check out my reviews and comparisons where I share all my experience and research. If you already know you love the Brother SE400, check it out on Amazon. I bought mine at Amazon and usually find the best prices there. But the discount prices change daily so check out the Tuesday, June 30th, 2015 sale price right now by clicking here. After buying, be sure to come back and check out my tutorials. They’ll help you get started.

Tutorials, Tips, Q&A, Helps for the Beginning Embroiderer

If you already have a Brother SE400 or one of the other Brother 4×4 inch machines, you’re in for a real treat. But, I must warn you — embroidery is so much fun, it’s addicting. Browse through the posts in the categories to the right. The tips and tutorials you’ll find there are tailored to the SE400 because that’s the machine I have, but many of the techniques, accessories, and supplies will work with any embroidery machine.

Thanks for Visiting – Come Back Again Soon!

I just love my Brother SE400, and I hope I can help you find the right machine for your needs and budget too. And if you do decide to buy the SE400 or one of her sister machines, I’d love to share what I’ve learned about getting started with it. Be sure to stop back by. I’ll be adding more tutorials, tips, news, and videos all the time.

You can also stay connected with me by clicking the LIKE button on my Facebook Page: Kamala’s Embroidery on Facebook.

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Our Readers Respond ...

  1. Brittany says

    When trying to upload a new design through USB, no new designs will show up. It will show that there is used storage, but there is no design on the screen for me to get to. I’ve tried restarting my computer, machine, and even uninstalling and re-installing my Embrilliance software and remaking the designs. Any suggestions?? I’ve become desperate.

  2. Kari says

    About halfway through embroidering the thread gets stuck in the needle plate, fabric bunches up , and thread gets stuck like a birds nest. I switched the needle and moved it to sewing and the needle broke. Help! Thx

  3. Kari says

    I was embroidering and I’m not sure what I’m doing wrong but about halfway through the thread keeps getting caught in the needle plate like a birds nest. I keep getting it out and it keeps happening. I changed it over to sewing and needle broke. Help! Thanks

  4. chelsea says

    Does the thread I use to monogram or applique matter? I ordered a bunch of “embroidery polyester thread” from amazon, i have had issues ever since i bought the machine (same time i bought the thread) my thread bunches up underneath my fabric every single time, sometimes it will skip about 10 stitches, help please!!!

  5. Shaihla Tarannum says

    Hi Kamala, I recently bought SE400 and no sooner I started sewing (as a first step to get hands-on on the machine and planning to move to embroidery later) I got stuck as the carriage got stuck. Not sure why it has got stuck and not moving either forward or backward. Went into settings, scanned through reference guide, websites, youtubes etc. but could not find any solution to it. Really don’t know if this is an issue with the machine or some setting has gone wrong. Request your help and guidance in the matter. Thanks in advance for your help!


  6. Shelley says

    I recently purchased the se400 and am using Sew What Pro to make monograms. I purchased a nice font, but today when “building” my monogram (using 2″/3″/2″ letters) it told me it was too big for the hoop. I didn’t want to use smaller letters, but not sure what to do. The initials had two ‘M’s’ so it is a wider letter. Any suggestions? ( I was able to use this size for another monogram with slimmer letters.)

    • Kamala says

      Hi Shelley, The maximum embroidery area of the SE400 is about 3.9×3.9 inches.This is the largest design that can be stitched at one time. It has nothing to with the hoop size, but is a physical limitation of the machine. If there is space between the initials, you may be able to stitch them separately. Please read the numerous comments on this site about this. But for monograms this large you really need a bigger machine. It even seems too large for a 5″x7″ machine.

  7. brittany says

    Hello. I have the SE400 as well. Everything I begin sewing, the thread gets stuck and will only sew and get stuck in knots it won’t sew the fabric unless I pull it through myself and even when I’m finished it looks like knots on the bottom side.

  8. GloriaM says

    I recently acquired an SE400 and I need to make a name patch for my vest. I bought the black twill material, and the fabric stabilizer. My question is how do I make the letters tighter together? When I embroidered the first try, the letters were the right size but too far apart from each other. Any and all help would be greatly appreciated.
    Thank you

    • Kamala says

      Hi Adriane,
      It’s not a serger. You can use the zigzag stitch or you can sort of fake it with the optional side cutter foot. It will cut and finish the seam, but you won’t get the same finished look you get with a serger that requires multiple threads.

  9. Anai says

    I have a Brother Project Runway Limited edition sewing machine. My mechine is in perfwct condition but theres one problem that i cant figure it out and hope you can help me . When i place everything and begin to sew it won’t leave the thread behind . What can i do i feel frustrated.

  10. Jennifer @ Dimples and Tangles says

    Hi Kamala! I was embroidering a large letter for a monogram that I downloaded, walked away while it was sewing, and didn’t realized that about 1/2 way through the bobbin got messed up. So, only the first half of the letter is complete. Do you know how to adjust the machine to start back at a certain point so I can complete the rest of the letter?

  11. Kate says

    How do you switch between thread colors on the Brother SE400 during appliqué? I was working on my first design and when I went to switch between colors, it brought me back to the beginning of the design and I couldn’t get to the second part of the design where I needed to switch between colors. Do you know? Is it just the file or the machine?

    Many thanks in advance.

  12. Joe Ackermann says

    What program could I use that I could type in the words and numbers that I want, then save it to a pes file so I can download it from the computer to the se-400? I want to make a quilt, but put in the countries and dates with a logo.

  13. Intrebare ghici says

    cu siguranta informatiile pe care le-am gasit la voi pe site ma vor ajuta sa imi termin proiectul!

  14. Esther Medina says

    Hi, I love your blog. I just got my Brother se400 and also bought the PED-Basic software. My windows 7 64bit pc however does not “see” the card. It seemed to install okay even had led light on card reader blink when it was “supposedly” downloading the pes file to the card. However, my Brother also does not see the card. When I click on the card icon it just goes back to the warning about the carriage moving and goes right back to the main embroidery screen.

    Has anyone else had this problem? I tried calling Brother but tech support was down and now it’s the weekend. I will call again on Monday if I don’t figure this out by them. I was so anxious to use the card. It is a hassle to bring the machine next to the pc.

    Thank you.

  15. Tiffany says

    I am so glad I found your blog. I have recently decided to try out embroidery and all your machine reviews and comparisons really helped me figure out just what I wanted. I also prompted your site on my blog post today when I talked about my new machine. You can check it out if you are interested here: http://craftingisatalent.com/2014/07/embroidery-tempt-me-tempt-me/ I know I will be back often now that I found you to read tutorials and learn about this new branch of sewing I just discovered.


    • Kamala says

      Hi Tiffany,
      Thanks so much for the kind words and mention on your blog.
      Wishing you all the best in your crafting and embroidery.

  16. Kate Gonzalez says

    Hi, I am new to machine embroidery. I have an SE 400 and want to embroider a short sentence. I figured out how to use the fonts on the machine but they are too big even in “small” size and I cannot figure out how to put a space inbetween the words. I downloaded a mini font but don’t know how to use it. I am just stuck and frustrated. Do I need to purchase software to do this? Or will my machine use the mini font… thanks, Kate

    • Kamala says

      Hi Kate, yes, there’s a lot to learn about machine embroidery so it can be overwhelming and frustrating in the beginning. Just take a deep breath and go step-by-step. It’s good to start with the built-in fonts and designs before thinking about software or downloaded designs before you know how to use the controls, how to hoop, use stabilizer, position properly.

      Use the underscore character ( _ ) to put a space between words. After you select the “Small” size, you can make it a bit smaller with the Adjust and Size controls. See page 143 in the manual for instructions. This still might not be enough. Even a “mini” or “tiny” font might not be enough if your sentence is too long to fit in the 3.9″x3.9″ maximum embroidery area.

      In that case you have to stitch the sentence in two or more pieces. The built-in fonts have an extra stitch that helps you line up the pieces. See page 146 in the manual.

      About the downloaded font. It will have a separate embroidery data file for each letter. The SE400 can only stitch one file at a time which means one letter at a time. You can do this and line and space them up manually, but this is tedious. The best way is to combine the letters with software. But I wouldn’t try to learn software until you learn how to use the machine.

      For more about lettering, see my post How do you make a 3 letter monogram with a larger middle letter?.

      To learn how to get your downloaded designs into the SE400, see my tutorial: How To Download Designs To The Brother SE400

      Hope this helps get you started. Practice simple things on scrap fabric because everyone makes mistakes in the beginning. That’s how we learn.

  17. Gina H. Jarrell says

    I have had this machine for 1 year. Just decided to take it out of the box . LOL, It was a anniversary present . I am new to sewing and well yes i can say i am just way overwhelmed. I know why i left it in the box so long. Hopefully with your website, i can learn to use this wonderful machine.

    • Judy Abernathy says

      Don’t be afraid of it, read that big manual, and try each and everything they show you. If it’s a new foot, find that, put it on the machine and try it out. You will learn faster by doing. Also, try watching YouTube videos. Do a search on “Brother SE400″ and you’d be amazed how many videos come up. It’s a fun machine, so have fun. You’ll love it like all of us do. Good Luck.

  18. dasboy says

    Is SE-400 good for making initials on cuff or mens shirt’s? Has any one tried it?

  19. Sandra says

    Can any one out there tell me how large the font is on letter writing please.I don’t want to buy if it’s not what I am looking for. Thank you