About Kamala

Kamala KellyI’ve always loved all the textile arts and crafts. I started sewing doll clothes when I was 6 years old and soon moved on to making my own clothes. I loved being able to create my own fashion designs and wearing unique outfits that I couldn’t find in stores. We didn’t have much money, and sewing my own clothes saved quite a lot and allowed me to have many special outfits that we couldn’t have afforded otherwise. I even made my own wedding dress and all of the bridesmaids’ dresses. This was before home embroidery machines, and I sewed all the silk embroidery on as appliques. That was a crazy summer, but the dresses were gorgeous.

When I wanted to try machine embroidery, I had a hard time finding the information I needed to choose which embroidery machine to start with. There was a lot of information available online, but it was confusing and contradictory. I went to my closest dealer — a 40 minute drive — but all they had were large machines costing thousands of dollars — way out of my budget. I wanted an easy-to-use, beginner’s machine, not too expensive in case I didn’t get that into it, but powerful enough that I wouldn’t outgrow it too soon. A USB port for importing designs is essential for me. I finally decided on the Brother SE400 which I love. I wish it had a bigger hoop size, but I didn’t want to pay the difference in price. Also I only have a small space and my 40-year-old Elna sewing machine — which I still love — lacks a lot of modern features, so having a new combination sewing and embroidery machine was appealing.

I also love to write and started this website to share all that I’ve discovered about the Brother SE400. I hope that the results of all my hard research will help you find the information you need faster and easier. And that you find many happy hours of creativity with whatever embroidery machine you decide is best for you.

Kamala Signature

Find out more about Kamala on her Google+ page.

Our Readers Respond ...

  1. Felicia S Johnson says

    Imma cry and feign a Southern faint! I found an se350 brother at a thrift shop for 20$ by the grace of God.
    I am in the midst of setting up a superstar wonderful fantastic stylish hairbows&bowties company. I am a disabled RN who happens to have been blessed with creative hands.
    My machine is missing hoops and accessories. Im wondering if I should just sell it and get new machine… or if an expert😂😂😂😂🎀😘😘😘 could help me weigh my options buying missing pieces.
    Thank God He led me to an enthusiast wonderwoman as you.!!!!
    Please help!!!
    Prayerful, felicia

  2. Jessie says

    Thank you for creating this site. It helped me decide to purchase the Brother SE400. I have done some quilting and embroidery on it and would like to try machine applique. I cannot find much information about how to do this, what kind of thread to use, etc. Do you have any tips? or videos on this?

  3. Lisa says

    I just started using my SE400 and your site has been so useful – thank you!

    I am having a hard time embroidering longer names… So I was trying to do “Carsen” on one line and then Joanna on the next. Bother are too long for the large font – so I know I can do some and re-hoop but am having a hard time lining up and adjusting for spacing…. any tips about this?

    Also – what do folks do for names longer than 4 letters when you want it to be the larger font? I thought maybe could rotate it as the hoop is longer than it is wide – but that does not seem to be possible.

    Any help MUCH appreciated as I am new to this…..

  4. Rebekah says

    Hi Kamala! My machine keeps stitching the outline and then when it fills it in it keeps missing the outline and the stitch doesn’t reach far enough to fill the outline. I end up with a letter with outlines beside the rest of the stitching. I’ve got pictures but I don’t see an option to add them here.

    Any idea as to what it could be. I’ve successfully used this font on the same material before. The only thing I’ve changed is the thread and I’ve tried adjusting the tension to no avail.

    Please help!

  5. Phyl says

    Experienced sewer. Just had my machine serviced. Mid pattern I got error message safety activated. No tangles. Needle function fine. Any ideas?phyl

  6. Judy Rochelle says

    I just tried to do the large script letter that comes with the patterns on the SE400.
    I used navy thread with a white bobbin. The letter came out white. The color on
    the screen said cornflower blue. Was I suppose to change the screen? Do you
    have to use the same color bobbin as the top thread? Thanks for any help as I
    am a “newbie”.

  7. Elaine G says

    I have the PE500 which I understand is the same embroidery as the SE400 and SE350. I used the rectangle design that is one of the designs that came with the machine, and used the satin stitch as the border. Is there somewhere in the machine that I can make the satin stitch border wider>

    Thanks for your help.

  8. Sheri says

    I am new to the Brother SE 400. Question… If I import a font or design from one of the many internet sources, in order to effectively use it do I have to purchase an embroidery software editing program for $300+ are there any free ones that are useful?

  9. Jean McCarthy says

    I just started embroidering with my SE400. Why does the top thread keep breaking? I have read several comments about it. I am using an embroidery needle, checked that it is threaded right, am using really good thread. What could be the problem?
    I really enjoy your videos and blog!

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