A sewing machine is a machine used to sew fabric and materials together with thread. Sewing machines were invented during the first Industrial Revolution to decrease the amount of manual sewing work performed in clothing companies. Since the invention of the first sewing machine, generally considered to have been the work of Englishman Thomas Saint in 1790, the sewing machine has greatly improved the efficiency and productivity of the clothing industry.
Home sewing machines are designed for one person to sew individual items while using a single stitch type at a time. In a modern sewing machine, the process of stitching has been automated so that the fabric easily glides in and out of the machine without the inconvenience of needles, thimbles and other tools used in hand sewing. Early sewing machines were powered by either constantly turning a handle or with a foot-operated treadle mechanism. Electrically-powered machines were later introduced.
Industrial sewing machines, by contrast to domestic machines, are larger, faster, and more varied in their size, cost, appearance, and task.