A stitch in time
January 20, 2015
HEIDENHAIN’s rich 100+ year history is filled with many hard-working employees who have helped to pave the way for future technological advancement. As a holder of many patents, HEIDENHAIN technology has left impressions all over the world.
Patented Perforation Machine for Embroidery
In the late 1800s, the original founder of HEIDENHAIN, Wilhelm Heidenhain, developed and patented a perforation embroidery machine that has served as a basis for some of the most exquisite embroidered cloth pieces found in the world today.
Details of this can be found in the Madeira Embroidery book.
The process started with a “master” design on paper which was then brought to the machine for the embroidery process. This patented machine perforated this paper, faithfully following the line, traced in order for the design to be stamped onto the fabric. The machine was worked by a pedal while the worker’s hands simultaneously guided the paper and the needle that was perforating holes a fraction of a millimeter in size.
Perforation was done on one or more sheets of paper at the same time, but never more than four. Needles of several thicknesses, relative to the delicacy of the drawing and type of stitches, were sometimes used on the same machine.
It was a very delicate job and one that required many years of experience to achieve a firm hand and the sight necessary for a perfect result. The embroiderer using the machine was truly an artisan.
Although HEIDENHAIN is not involved in the embroidery business today, we still take after the roots of our founder. The process of copying and producing designs off a “master” is still a core part of our products as most of our measuring scales and disks are produced under this methodology. As technology has improved through the years, we have been able to increase the speed and accuracy of these copying methods yet we still take great pride in viewing these processes as an art, thus allowing us to provide one of the best quality products available today.