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Engineering: Sewing Machine Timeline

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In 1755, Charles Weisenthal, a German immigrant who lived in England patented “a needle to be used for mechanical sewing” (“The Origins of the Sewing Machine” 1). No one tried to use this machine and no one knows if it could be used for sewing.

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In 1790, Thomas Saint, an Englishman, patented a sewing machine that had “an awl that makes a hole in leather and allows a needle to pass through” (“The Origins of the Sewing Machine” 1). People who tried to use the patent failed to produce the machine. No one knows whether Thomas Saint constructed the machine or used it.


In 1818, in the USA, John Knowles and John Doge invented the machine that made good stitches but it could work on short pieces of material (“The Origins of the Sewing Machine” 2). The machine was very complicated and it needed a lot of time for resetting. The inventors tried to copy hand movements and it makes the machine very complicated.

In 1851, In the USA, Isaac Merritt Singer patented a lockstitch sewing machine. It was very different from machines created at that time as there was “a straight eye-pointed needle and transverse shuttle” (“History” par. 3). The machine also had a table where the cloth was placed and there was a wheel that moved the needle. This was the first machine of that kind and it became the basis for all machines created later.


In 1921, Singer developed a new “Portable Electric” sewing machine (“History” n.p.). The machine had an electric motor and was very convenient for users. It could be used at home and many women bought it. It was also powerful and could help to produce different types of clothes.

In 1953, the company Toyota introduced its first “home-use zigzag sewing machine, TZ-3” (“History of Toyota Sewing Machines” n.p.). It was easy to use and it was “beautiful” because the founder of the company, Mr. Kiichiro Toyoda believed that machines for home-use must be “functional yet beautiful” (“History of Toyota Sewing Machines” n.p.). People could make more types of clothes at home and they did not have to buy a lot of clothes.


In 2000, Toyota introduced a new home-use overlock machine. It was convenient and easy to use. It helped to create lots of types of clothes. Of course, it was electric and it had a lot of options.

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In 2001, Singer introduced “the most advanced home sewing and embroidery” machine (“History” n.p.). It had an automatized re-threading system. It is very professionals and it is convenient to use.


The sewing machines have developed for more than three century and they are still changing. First, inventors tried to copy hands movements when they created their sewing machines, but in the 19th century, there was a revolution and a sewing machine (which is similar to the modern machine) was created.

First, they were a bit complicated and not very convenient to use but these machines had more and more options. The 20th century was the time when more options were introduced (machines became electric), and the machines became very effective. Now, people have electric sewing machines that can help to create different types of clothes and people can produce millions of items at factories (or they can buy a machine and sew for themselves).

Works Cited

History. Web. 

History of Toyota Sewing Machines. 2011. Web. 

The Origins of the Sewing Machine. Web. 

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"Engineering: Sewing Machine Timeline." StudyCorgi, 26 Jan. 2022,

1. StudyCorgi. "Engineering: Sewing Machine Timeline." January 26, 2022.


StudyCorgi. "Engineering: Sewing Machine Timeline." January 26, 2022.


StudyCorgi. 2022. "Engineering: Sewing Machine Timeline." January 26, 2022.


StudyCorgi. (2022) 'Engineering: Sewing Machine Timeline'. 26 January.

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