History

History

In 1964, a group of engineers and managers from a Japanese enterprise thought it would be a good idea to redesign the industrial overlocker under production at that time for private use. They wanted to make the machine smaller and lighter so that it could be used easily at home. The group presented their concept to the enterprise but this was turned down. However, they were so convinced of their plan that all of them handed in their notice and set up their own new company to design and build the machine of their dreams.

This was the birth of the baby lock brand, the first home overlocker on the market. In 1993, the baby lock engineers developed the unique jet-air system. This system, which is now standard on all baby lock machines, threads the loopers by means of compressed air quickly and easily. At the same time, it was no longer necessary to stick to a defined threading order. 30 years after the invention of the brand's first overlocker, baby lock launched another revolutionary product – the Imagine – in 1997. Thanks to the unique, patented automatic thread delivery (ATD) system, this is the first overlocker that does not require any tension adjustment. Normal overlockers create the stitches by compensating the tension of the threads that are pulled. The thread tension is adjusted by a thread tension controller as well as needle and looper thread take-ups.

This new innovative overlocker creates stitches by pulling and setting down the amounts of thread required for a stitch. The Imagine then delivers these threads to the needles as well as the lower and upper loopers to create a perfect stitch. Apart from the tension dials, users of this machine can also forget all the trouble connected with setting the "perfect" tension and the confusion about which tension dial should be turned.

In 1997, Mr Sakuma, the inventor of the baby lock overlock machines, said in a speech before US dealers at the baby lock Tech trade fair: "A lot of people have said my invention was 'Sakuma's magic'. But I don't believe this. Over the years, I have experienced many successes and failures. As a result, a large bloom has come into full flower and I can now give you, the baby lock customers all over the world, the Imagine. Experience has taught me that mystical magic is the result of many years of hard work full of trials and errors."

1956
1956

Prototype made from wood

Development of the first baby lock as a prototype made from wood

1963
1963

First baby lock as a fully functional prototype

Further development of the first baby lock as a fully functional prototype

1967
1967

EF-205 model

1 needle, 2 threads

Overlocker

The EF-205 was the first baby lock overlocker that went into series production.

1970
1970

EF-405 model

3-thread

1-needle overlock machine; with a rubberised feed dog, take-up lever for the looper threads and thread guide with "magic sliding properties"

1971
1971

EA-605 model

2 needles, 4 threads

Combined machine

Overlock and double chain stitch needles can be used individually or together for a safety stitch. The EA-605 was the first combined baby lock machine.

1977
1977

BL3-407 model

1 needle, 3 threads

Overlocker

The 4-way stitch adjustment from 2.5 to 5 mm handles fabrics from organza through to denim with ease.

1984
1984

BL3-418 model

1 needle, 3 threads

Overlocker

Apart from a built-in lamp and integrated rolled hem, this is the first overlocker that features colour-coded thread tension control.

1986
1986

BL4-428 model

4-thread

2-needle overlock machine; with useful adjustment possibilities such as stitch width adjustment and a handy free arm.

1987
1987

BL4-436DF model

2 needles, 4 threads

Overlocker

This machine features differential feed and a small lighting system.

1990
1990

BL4-838DF model

2 needles, 4 threads

Overlocker

This machine provides a new design including a quick threading system (QTS) and knee lift.

1990
1990

BL-101 model

1 needle, 1 thread

Blind stitch

This model won the 1994 Good Design award in Japan.

1993
1993

BLE-1 Eclipse model

2 needles, 4 threads

Overlocker

Thanks to its new design and the unique and ingenious jet air thread system, this model won the 1993 Invention Grand Prix in Japan.

1997
1997

BLE-1AT Imagine model

2 needles, 4 threads

Overlocker

This machine also features the jet-air thread system and automatic thread delivery system (ATD).

1999
1999

BLE-8 Evolve model

5 needles, 8 threads

Combined machine

Thanks to 8 threads, 3 loopers and 5 needles, this coverlock machine is the first that allows a combination of overlock stitches, cover stitches and chain stitches in one go.

2001
2001

BLCS model

baby lock's first plain cover stitch machine is established in the market.
A 3-needle cover stitch machine with a seam width of 6 mm / 2- or 3-needle cover stitch with a seam width of 3 mm or simple 2-thread chain stitch. Two of the machine's special features are the feed dog that drops automatically when the presser foot is raised and the high stitch precision compared to other cover stitch machines in the market, even with cross seams.

2004
2004

BLE 3ATW model "imaginé wave"

4-thread / 2-needle overlock machine; this overlocker features baby lock's ingenious jet-air threading system as well as the unique thread delivery system, and on top of all that, the fascinating wave stitch - brand new and only available on a baby lock. Though a straight seam is produced, the stitches look like a wave and thus are often used as a fanciful edge decoration or a sewing project's creative eye-catcher.

2009
2009

BLQK Sashiko model

1 needle, 1 bobbin thread

A sewing machine that imitates hand stitching

This is the first household sewing machine that can reproduce the look of traditional hand-work stitching..

2009
2009

BLE 3ATW-2 model "enlighten"

4-thread / 2-needle overlock machine; the imaginé wave's follow-up model is launched into the market and becomes a worthy successor. The new jet-air threading system, now motor-driven, a really bright LED sewing light and the new design here deserve special mention.

2009
2009

BLE-8W-2 Evolution model

5 needles, 8 threads

Combined overlock and cover stitch machine

This is the first machine with the fully automated extraordin air threading system.

2009
2009

BLE 5 desire model

4 needles, 5 threads

Combined overlock and cover stitch machine

2013
2013

BLE 1EX enspire model

2 needles, 4 threads

Overlocker

It has a larger work space and the whole range of baby lock's sophisticated features.

2013
2013

BLE 53 desire3 model

5 needles, 5 threads

Combined overlock and cover stitch machine

2013
2013

BLE-S8 Ovation model

5 needles, 8 threads

Combined overlock and cover stitch machine

It has a larger work space and the whole range of baby lock's sophisticated features.