A Complete Guide on Sewing Machine?


Let us look at the simplest method of stitching. A needle with a thread will pass through the fabric and be inserted again on the other side to create a simple stitch. The first sewing machine was designed to emulate this type of stitching framework. However, the first machine proves that the stitching process can be efficiently completed through a manual form. The threaded needle is being held by the pincers. The machine pushes the needles through the fabric, and another pincer will pull it from end to end. Those are just the simplest part; setting up the entire machine would be a struggle.


Who Invented the Sewing Machine?



Like our automobiles and computers, there have been several attempts to develop a sewing machine that will make the laborious process simple and convenient. Below are some of the notable personalities who made the early versions of the machine.


Charles Weisenthal

 sewing business

Charles Weisenthal first addressed the initial problem. He is a German national that is living in London. This invention was financed by the British nobles. In 1755, he created a machine that was initially intended for embroidery. It comes with a needle that has two sharp points. It allows the pincers to push it from side to side to create a basic stitch. It means that turning the needles is no longer necessary. However, Charles Weisenthal failed to consider the tightening of the thread. He noticed that as the line of stitching progresses, the needle becomes shorter, reducing the fabric's tension.


Thomas Saint

 Sewing machine

It was in 1790 when a significant breakthrough happened. It started the realization that the needle does not necessarily have to go all through the fabric to create a stitch. The man who made this happen is a cabinetmaker. When he was not occupied with designing his cabinet, he would be busy inventing his favorite hobby. However, the patenting process at that time works differently. To be approved, you will have to present the complete ideas. The patent was issued to Thomas Saint on July 17. However, there was a significant flaw in the system of patenting. The patent clerks were tasked to file the patented object in a specific category. The invention of Thomas Saint was filed under bookbinding. The design stayed hidden until William Newton Wilson discovered it after 100 years. He was a sewing machine manufacturer who had an interesting hobby of researching history.


By the time it was discovered, many people had already become a millionaire from the design of Thomas Saint. William Newton Wilson had suffered from the lawsuit of Singer. He was later given compensation after he successfully proved that the submitted patent by Singer should be deemed worthless. He then created a replica of Thomas Saint's machine based on the submitted patent. Though Thomas Saint is highly credited for designing the sewing machine that contains all the attributes of today's sewing machine, there is no proof that he built a sewing machine.


Barthelemy Thimonnier

 sewing machine

In 1830, a tailor named Barthelemy Thimonnier developed a machine that came with a hooked needle. It has created a basic form of chain stitch. According to the other historians, the machine is originally created for embroidery, but the truth remains that it functions by joining the fabric. This creation should've revolutionized the industry. However, due to the fear of the local tailors that this machine would end their job, they stormed the facility, destroyed the invention, and burned it to ashes. He decided to leave the town with his family. 4 years later, he would develop an improved version of the machine.


Elias Howe


Elias Howe left his home in Massachusetts when he was just 16 years old. He worked as a machinist in creating nautical and scientific instruments. With his experience in the textile industry, he was able to make his version of the sewing machine. However, he encountered different problems due to a lack of financial support. He showcased the completed machine to different places, but no one took an interest. Until one day when a corset maker named William Thomas bought the rights of his machine for £250.


Note: If you wonder why Merrit Singer is not included in the list, it is simply because he did absolutely nothing. He is simply a seller of the sewing machine.


How Does Sewing Machine Work?


It isn't easy to imagine our world without a sewing machine. Like the other innovations introduced in the last 300 years, the sewing machine makes a laborious and time-consuming task simple and fast. Thanks to the mechanized sewing machine, different manufacturers can produce a significant amount of quality clothing at only a fraction of the original cost. People can now enjoy access to durable and finely-stitched garments that were once considered a form of luxury.


Analyzing the Automated Sewing Mechanism


The stitching system of the sewing machine is relatively simple. Though the entire device is complex and detailed equipment, it basically relies on the motor, pulleys, and gears to function efficiently. When you start examining the various parts of the sewing machine, you will realize that it is one of the most innovative and sophisticated tools ever invented.


A sewing machine can be compared to your vehicle. They are available in different types of made and models, and their performance and price can vary unpredictably. It comes with electric designs that are perfect for infrequent use, and there are heavy-duty electronic machines that can be connected to the computer for commercial and industrial use. The textile industry utilizes different sewing machines that stitch a particular part of their product.


However, similar to our vehicles, the sewing machine is designed based on a single concept. If the core system of our car is the combustion engine, the heart of the sewing machine is known as the loop stitching mechanism.


The Loop Stitching Mechanism


The loop stitching system is different compared to the manual approach. To make it simple, the manual approach requires the thread to be attached to the needle's eye while the sewing process requires thread and the needle to pass through the fabric and attach them. While the process may seem easy to complete manually, it takes a bit of complexity for the machine to tackle this task successfully.


To accomplish this, the machine needs to discharge the needle on the other side of the garment and release it on one side. The machine would then pull the entire thread across the garment, reverse the needle, and conduct the whole process reverse. A simple machine would find this process too complex.


Instead of doing this entire task, the machine would simply pass its needle halfway through the cloth. The eye of the machine needle is located at the pointy side of the needle rather than on the other end. The needle would then be attached to the needle bar driven by its motor using a set of cams and gears. Once the needlepoint passes within the fabric, a small loop on the thread will be pulled on the other side. The framework on the machine will catch this loop wrap it around the other thread.


Chain Stitch


Different machines have different types of loop stitching mechanisms. For instance, a chain stitch that is the simplest type of mechanism will create a loop using the same thread length.  


The fabric positioned in the metal plate will be firmly held into position by the presser foot. At the start of the stitching process, the needle will pull the loop through the fabric. The looper synchronized with the needle will grab the loop before the needle pulls upward. After the needle was drawn out of the cloth, the 'feed dog' will push the cloth forward. This process ensures that the stitches will be held in place. One of the primary benefits of the chain stitch is that it allows the task to be completed quickly.


Lock Stitch


If you are looking for a more durable stitch, the lock stitch provides a sturdy solution. The most important part of the lock stitch mechanism is the bobbin assembly and shuttle hook. The bobbin is the part of the machine composed of a thread and positioned at the center of the shuttle. This is being rotated by the motor and should be synchronized with the needle.


The initial process is similar to the chain stitch; however, instead of attaching the loops jointly, the machine will connect them to a separate thread coming from the bobbin. Once the needle penetrates the fabric, the shuttle will hold the loop. It will pull the loop on the thread, which creates a durable stitch.


As you can see, the concept behind the sewing machine is fairly simple. However, once you analyze the system of the sewing machine, you will understand how complex this machine is. Learning about the mechanism of this simple machine is necessary if you are planning to start a sewing business.


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