I am a 44-year-old Mum, have a diploma and an honours degree in fashion & textile design and have recently put my career on hold to be a full-time mother.ย  I am gradually building up a stock of machines and materials so that when my son starts pre-school I can revisit my earlier training and take commissions for my line of fine linen and cotton separates for babies and children which merge traditional details such as pintucking and whitework with clean, modern lines and practical versatility.

In the meantime, I have discovered a fresh, curious and fascinating distraction in the clever contraptions invented to coax complicated actions such as zig zags, ruffles, hemstitching and buttonholes from a simple straight-stitch sewing machine and it is these, together with my projects, that I want to share with you.

Blog content copyright HA Lewington 2010

14 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Richard Clement
    Jul 23, 2020 @ 23:05:56

    Would you know where I might be able to purchase a copy of “Pattern Making by Paper Folding” by Miss F. Heath, c. Jan 1, 1891. I’m having a difficult time trying to find a copy of this book. Thank you.


    • Offspring
      Jul 24, 2020 @ 11:16:07

      Hi Richard, I’m so sorry, I wish I knew! Mine is the 1910 edition. I did see another copy on eBay a year or so ago so whilst I don’t know whether that was an earlier copy or one of the later ones they do turn up occasionally. It’s not unique in covering the subject though; Jane Fleming’s “Garment Making”, the Kingsway books by Gertrude Fearnside, “Needlework for the Junior Schools” and “Needlework for the Senior Schools”, “Manual of Needlework and Cutting Out” by Agnes Walker and “Cutting Out for Student Teachers” by Amy K Smith use it too. ๐Ÿ™‚


  2. Angela Parry
    Oct 23, 2018 @ 20:49:28

    Hi search the web I’ve come across this site, all very interesting. I have a 431G Singer machine, the foot control has packed in. I’ve dismantled it , tried to clean it but when doing so I found the carbon discs inside the ceramic holder had disintegrated, so I’m desperately trying to find some to but, or, a replacement foot control I have the lead. Can anyone help.?


  3. Mary Dyer
    Jul 26, 2018 @ 20:28:23

    Hello, I inherited a 1950s (probably) Bernina sewing machine. I took it to our local Bernina shop where it was tuned up. I have all of those fancy stitches I can use. I don’t how to use them or even which one is a straight stitch! Could you point me in the direction of an instruction booklet of sorts?

    Thank you for your time.


  4. Amy Neiman
    Jul 16, 2017 @ 00:45:46

    I purchased a Bernette serger on Ebay and the spool holder was removed and wrapped separately (appropriate because it’s fragile) but I cannot figure out how to reattach it. Could you possibly post a photo or email a photo of the back of your Bernette? My email is amylneiman@gmail.com


    • Offspring
      Jul 16, 2017 @ 10:09:15

      Hi Amy, your model may be different but mine attaches by two deep-set screws down through the spool holder casing down onto the back of the machine casing. I will send a photo to you by email. I hope it helps you sort it out; it’s a great machine and mine is still very much going strong, well repaying my investment in it.


  5. lorilidesign
    Jan 09, 2015 @ 00:45:41

    We love your site and information!!

    We would like to subscribe to your email newsletters, please.
    laurie_wallick@yahoo.com. Also, do you have a Facebook page.


    Lorili Design, Inc.


    • Offspring
      Jan 10, 2015 @ 17:37:23

      Thank you, Laurie. I hope to add some more content to the blog soon and still live in hope that I might one day be able to find sufficient time to make and sell something rather than just writing about the processes…! Thank you for your interest and I’ll certainly let you know if I start a Facebook page. ๐Ÿ™‚ xxx


  6. Googoojue C
    Aug 11, 2014 @ 14:19:35

    This is a great little site you have, choc full of information. Good luck with your endavours. Enjoy your little guy before he gets big, big, big! ;o)


    • Googoojue C
      Aug 11, 2014 @ 14:20:26

      oops, sorry for the typo! ;o) tried to edit but not sure how… have a good day!


      • Offspring
        Aug 11, 2014 @ 16:20:29

        Thank you so much for your kind comment! The little lad is growing fast and I find I have much less time for sewing than I hoped but today I’m doing a labour of love; carefully darning and reinforcing the fragile silk of a favourite embroidered jacket. ๐Ÿ™‚

  7. Pella
    Apr 14, 2012 @ 07:14:51

    What a fascinating collection of machine gadgets you have!


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