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Tools & Supplies

Mystery Sewing Machine Attachment

Jul 20, 2010
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What is this? Does it attach to a sewing machine?

We found this old sewing attachment when doing some office “house cleaning.” It’s been kicking around for years, moved from one place to another. We don’t want to toss it, but we can only guess what it’s for. I’m sure at one time someone at Threads actually used it, but we can’t determine its purpose. We suspect it has something to do with bias tape. We’re not sure if it’s an attachment for a sewing machine, or maybe for another type of sewing tool. Whatever it is, it looks as if it would be helpful when used properly.

Do you recognize this item?  If so, let us know.


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  1. User avater Msbuniquer May 4th

    Yes, it is a bias binder, I also worked in a sewing factory many years ago and used such an attachment. This binder is very handy to work with if you own an industrail machine. This one looks heavy duty. It screws to the sewing machine at throat plate. There are binders made for the home machine as well. If you have a binder enjoy it, it's fun to use and make binding fast and easy.

  2. MSTHANG50 August 8th

    It is an attachment for sewing on bias tape, I worked in a factory where I used one. it fit on a industrial single needle sewing machine.It can also be used for a folder.

  3. MargieP August 3rd

    I think that thing-a-ma-bob is used for attaching binding to something.

  4. Tereese August 1st

    Yes I know what this attachment was used for, it aided in applying bias folded tape to edges of garments. I used to use one in a blouse factory when I worked during summer vacations while I was in High School. It was a "god send" and
    I could produce so fast with this atachment, I used to receive bonus' in my paycheck.


  5. Kaiti July 28th

    this tool used a screw to hold down to the top of throat plate it folded the fabric for heming. possibly you could use bias, but i feel it was used for heming

  6. sandydandy July 28th

    I just picked up an older white sewing machine today at goodwill. In the manual this is a bias tape attacchment.According to the manual you can fold the bias binding and apply it to the edge of the fabric in one operation.It also edges the folded binding to the edge of like pockets or something.You can also two tone the binding. This can also be used with hand cut bias. The attachments didn't come with the machine so I am going to look for them.The machine is a white 793. It does decorative work. I found out on the internet this machin is heavy duty.The machine is in good condition. right now I am in the process of cleaning andoiling it.I love to fool around with these older machines. What I am going to do with all these God only knows.

  7. User avater susmand July 28th

    Yep, it is a bias binder attachment. The long slat is where the screws go to attach to the bed of the machine. I wouldn't necessary say it is for an older machine - I have on very similar that I use on my Bernina 730 Artista. The material feeds in flat with right side towards the flat side of the slot on the attachment and as it is fed, it folds over onto it self so you end up with double folded bias tape at the point of your needle - great for binding blankets and quilts!

  8. debbido July 27th

    This is used to bind the edge of fabric as in bias tape. As a piece of flat fabric is fed in, the edges are folded in and then over again wrapping the raw edge of another piece of fabric. In the commercial world, it can be on a straight stitch or chain stitch machine. I have one that fits on my Babylock coverstitch machine that I use all the time. They come in different sizes to better fit your need.

  9. skeezz July 27th

    This is a bias binder, it slants off to the side for easier feeding of the fabric and the binding; It's easier visually also to work with


  10. User avater orsinimedici1951 July 27th

    On secoond thought, it looks like it could be a cording foot.

  11. User avater orsinimedici1951 July 27th

    Could it possiibly be a rolled hem foot that has been bent and damaged, thus disguising its' original form??? It looks mishapen and I can't quite see how it could line up with the needle in its' present shape.

  12. ricster July 27th

    This is a bias binder used on straight stitch machines, like a featherweight or an older white. It can bind seams and edges while turning under the raw edges of the binding and folding it as it sews. Love this attachment, I have one for my Bernina and I love to do Hong Kong finishes on jackets.

  13. rmwm July 27th

    It looks like something used for bias tape to me and looks like it attaches to the machine.

  14. User avater teariana July 27th

    Wow what a cool attachment. From what I can see from the pic it looks like it is for 1/8" either stitching on the binding or the binding itself. I am not at all familiar about any of this but just wanted to add my 2 cents, :). When I was younger there were a lot of cool attachments out there. From what I have read in the previous comments I hope the trend is to get back to some of these as there is no electronic equivalent available.

  15. goldflinch July 27th

    This device attaches to the throat plate of the sewing machine and is used to feed binding under the presser foot. It can be used with prefolded binding, or with binding that will be folded as it is applied.

    The one that I have is used on an industrial machine, and can be used without a special foot.

    Bernina makes a similiar (plate) that is very useful, and that attachment requires a special presser foot in addition to the plate. It is quite expensive, but worth it if you are going to be doing a lot of binding, much more successful that the smaller binders. It is much less a headache to use, the results are much more precise, and as you would expect, you pay the difference in cost for a precision tool.

    I cannot say if other "home machine manufactures" produce this attachment as I have not investiaged it.

  16. DebiGriz July 26th

    Hi! I have an old Singer 185 machine, and this looks a lot like the attachment for sewing bias tape. Mine has the foot attached. So your guess could be right.

  17. cre8dezines July 26th

    It has already been stated in the comments that this is a bias binder attachment for a sewing machine.
    I thought I would add that it will also work on a serger/coverstitch machine. I have a generic set of these in several sizes and use them to bind with bias and also to make straps either on the sewing machine with twin needles or on the coverstitch with two needles. It will work with wovens and stretch fabrics. Stretch, such as lycra and stretch velvet take a little practice to get consistant binding or straps. Also note that stretch fabrics won't need to be cut on the bias as woven fabrics will.
    The upper piece on the binder that has the rectangular opening is where the screws will go to attach it to the machine. One needs to adjust the binder to sit right in front of the presser foot so that the bias strip is fed directly into the presser foot.

  18. Diane173 July 26th

    I believe the attachment is for a sewing to install bias tape to edges of fabric. Diane Taylor

  19. User avater mastdenman July 26th

    It's a binder. It applies bias binding to an edge. I have a couple of these.

  20. grannyfrog July 26th

    I believe this is an attachment for making pleats on the sewing machine. My mother's old machine had one.

  21. meadows5504 July 26th

    This looks like a bias binder attachment. feed the bias into the tube and it turns both edges in, folds in half over your fabric and sews it down.

  22. User avater froglegs1 July 26th

    It is a binder attachment. I have two of these. Each sews a differant width of binding to a raw edge. These attachments are wonderful, they do such a good job.

  23. KathleenSews July 26th

    I had a "mystery attachment" with a patent number engraved on it. I found out what it was by searching the U. S. Patent and Trademark Office web site, where information on many patents are available.

    In case your are curious, it was an eyelet maker for straight stitch machines.

  24. btjohnson56 July 26th

    It looks just like a bias tape maker attachment for a sewing machine. I think that I'm right! YES?

  25. janniede July 26th

    It is definitely a bias binder applicator device used in combination with an adapted foot (not shown), Pre- folded bias binding is fed through the upright portion of the plate and is stitched to the fabric to be bound as the binding emerges from the upright tube.

    They come in specific sizes according to the size of the binding used. Their primary use is with industrial machines and the plate is screwed to the sewing machine, after being positioned carefully. Fantastic tools!

    There are other models which will fold a flat bias strip and apply it.

  26. kbbear July 26th

    it's a bias tape adapter used to make binding.

  27. summer331 July 26th

    i think this is an easy one! tho i may be wrong. i think this is a bias tape maker - attachment. i think for a sewing machine - but possibly for a serger.

  28. User avater loislev July 26th

    This is a double fold bias tape maker to stitch a bias fabric on the outer edge of a project. Years ago it came with most home sewing machines but not now anymore. People got away from making their our bias tape when it was readily available per-made for purchase at the store. Now it's an extra accessory you can purchase for your serger/coverstitch machine usually used with a chain stitch or coverstitch. You now can purchase it and use it with your serger/coverstitch machines and the BabyLock Sashiko machine also. People are now able to use it with some of the newer sewing machine again.
    It's the convince of making your own bias tape so it will coordinate with your project. As you make the bias tape it can be stitched to the project at the same time, which it also very convenient.

  29. summer331 July 26th

    i think this is an easy one! tho i may be wrong. i think this is a bias tape maker - attachment. i think for a sewing machine - but possibly for a serger.

  30. PlainJaney July 26th

    This attachment is for a serger I believe. It is either a belt loop folder or a bias binder.

  31. Crazyaboutsewing July 26th

    This is a bias binder. It appears to be generic but many machines do have specific binders for their model. I love my bias binders and have one generic and one for my Berninas.

  32. Nadean July 26th

    looks like a seambinder that you feed through the slot and sew it on the curve of you pattern.

  33. rmv July 26th

    That's a "swing away" type binder. There's a demo on youtube for it.

  34. cornelia1 July 26th

    it is an bias tape binder for a industrial machine I had one of my own, a husqvarna fro 1955 or 1958.
    sorry for my bad english writing. i am from holland

  35. quiltinqueenie1 July 26th

    That was for the sewing machine. It screwed onto the bottom plate of the machine and it was used for sewing your own home made narrow seam binding or cording on to what ever you were sewing it on to. Hope that makes sense. I have not seen one in years.

  36. chicagoquilts July 26th

    This is definitely a bias binder attachment. I was researching them last night. This one looks like it will fit a Brother or a newer machine. The attachment position on my machine does not work for some of the newer attachments. But on u-tube there were a variety of demos on how to use this type.

  37. JacqKnits July 26th

    Not sure what machine it is for, but this attachment takes a bias piece of material and shapes it into a bias tape. Then another attachment sews the bias tape onto a different section of fabric. It is really nice the way it works. You need to practice to get all the pieces together but it once you have it all together you can really make the bias binding/joining fast. Jacqknits

  38. kaychan July 26th

    Looks like a bias tape maker for a coverstitch machine to me.

  39. hotdotyuki July 26th

    It is an attachment used usually on commercial sewing machines. It is a double fold bias binder, so there is no need to have a bias folded to attach on an edge, just a length of bias cut the width of the widest opening. It is usually screwed on with a machine screw on the bed of the sewing machine in front of the foot so the needle sews the inner edge of the folded bias. It comes in various finished widths from 1/4". Larger ones are even used to bind edges of blankets but are made with a separate foot and feed attachments.

  40. mdearden July 26th

    It looks very much like modern binding attachments that are used with a cover stitching machine. Two screws attach the binder to the plate of the cover stitcher. This allows side to side adjustments and placement of the needle / needles on the binding material.

  41. Threadslady July 26th

    I purchased one of these just a few years ago for my Baby Lock Serger. I have also used it on my Bernina sewing machine. It is an expensive accessory, the packages still has the price on it of $75.00. It makes a very nice finished bias binding put on in one step. You insert a strip of bias cut to the correct width and it folds and stitches it.

  42. LorTwi July 26th

    This looks very much like my bias binding tool; this part is screwed to the machine and there is a separate one-toed presser foot that works with it.

  43. CookPhyllis July 26th

    I have just read the responses and just want to add to them. I have a book "The Sewing Machine Attachment Handbook" by Charlene Phillips. I looked through it and did not find this
    item any where in the book. I am glad that so many people
    responded and you have found the answer. Phyllis

  44. User avater danish317 July 26th

    This piece is and industrial bias binding folder, and yes it does attach to a machine. It attachs to the right off the footplate and is adjustable. They come in different sizes depending on the width ov bias tape. It looks like one I use but is missing the screws that go through the slot and attach it to the machine.

  45. User avater sewphy July 26th

    If you check out the "Summer Stripes" picture that I posted last year, the periwinkle vest with the green binding was made entirely with a bias binder foot like the one in the picture. I cut and sewed the pieces in a particular order to cover all the intersecting seams along the way. It was a really fun project and no hand work at the end! My attachment also has a special "one sided presser foot" that snugs up to the edge of the bias binding guide. It is one of my favorite attachments. It is also a great way to make reversable garments.

  46. User avater stressedchemist July 26th

    It's a bias binder to finish and edge with bias binding by machine.

  47. clem80 July 26th

    i have a professional cover stitch machine ,that one of the
    attachment use to put binding on arm or neck holes also can be use to bind other things.i also have one simlar that came with another machine same .

  48. KimsIdleHands July 26th

    It is definately a bias binding attachment.
    I use a Bernina and it is very close to the one I use. It is only missing the special foot and the screws to attach it to the sewing bed.

    Thanks for the opportunity to help.

    Love your tips and hints.

  49. marihaf July 26th

    that is a bias binder attachment. It creates and attaches bias bindings to garments.


  50. Xteacher July 26th

    It is for applying bias binding and was made for the Singer Featherweight machine. The pic shows it not assembled correctly.

  51. vonderinsel July 23rd

    I believe it is used for attaching bias binding to the edge of fabric. It was screwed to the machine so that it lined up with the sewing foot and needle.

  52. Hojean July 20th

    This is a "folder" for attaching bias tape from a roll onto armholes or necklines, or other edges. This looks like the kind we had in the garment factory where I worked for 19 years. Sometimes we had some extra metal soldered onto these folders to make them longer and of course there were many different sizes, depending on the style of the garment and the width of the binding needed. The roll of binding usually hung on a rack beside the machine and fed into the folder very easily. The folder was held in place by a screw through the slot, so the distance from the edge of the garment could be adjusted.

  53. dilly_dally July 20th

    Bias tape maker was exactly my thought. If it attaches to a machine (maybe to apply it as it is made) it is missing part of it!


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