Home of the Sewalot Site


By Alex I Askaroff


For antique and vintage sewing machines



Machines for Sale



Our Collection






New Stories


Fault Finder



Sewing Machine Fault Finder                     Sewing machine Tension Problems

Harrods Sewing Machines

  Main Index                           Skylark Country



                Alex I Askaroff

Alex has spent a lifetime in the sewing industry and is considered one of the foremost experts of pioneering machines and their inventors. He has written extensively for trade magazines, radio, television, books and publications world wide.




See Alex Askaroff on Youtube






Few people today realise that the grand store of Harrods sold just about everything that one needed including the humble sewing machine. I love the phone number at the bottom of the advert, Kensington 542. They sold a range of sewing machines from many of the major suppliers except Singer who had so many stores in London that Harrods did not try and compete.

Also Harrods had 10 sewing departments from suits to skirts, milliners to blouses. If you had the money Harrods would fit out your wardrobe in style.

I picked up this rare instruction cover from an old customer who had it in her drawer.

Harrods sewing machines

Pre 1914 Frister & Rossmann had a reputation for the finest sewing machines and Harrods would only stock the best. Of course after 1919 no one bought German goods so Frister & Rossmann lost there best clients, such is life.

I have a in-depth history of Frister & Rossmann for your perusal. They sold the American Willcox & Gibbs and German Vesta sewing machines. These were only 2,19s in 1928 compared to 11,11s for the ever popular British Jones sewing machines.

The other sewing machine that Harrods famously sold for a couple of years was the enigmatic Art deco Ideal Sewing Machine.

After The First World War Harrods had planned to drop Frister & Rossmann machines and replace them with the new Vickers sewing machine. However demand for the F&R remained high (people were unaware that F&R had made armaments) and so they kept both suppliers.

The Vickers sewing machine retailed in 1917 at Harrods for 4. Four weeks average wages

Harrods sewing machines supplied in 1928

I know for a fact the Harrods sold just about everything from lion cubs to the kitchen sink. I have a Victorian water hand-pump in my garden from them. You know the type you see in the old western, outside the stage-coach shack with they kid pumping water just before someone turns up, usually Red Indians!

One sewing machine model that was sold by Harrods under their own brand name was the Harrodia sewing machine, a limited edition sewing machine.

Books by Alex Askaroff


  Well that's it for this page. I do hope you enjoyed my work. I spend countless hours (well not in this case) researching and writing these pages and I love to hear from people so drop me a line and let me know what you thought: alexsussex@aol.com

Fancy a funny read: Ena Wilf  & The One-Armed Machinist

A brilliant slice of 1940's life: Spies & Spitfires

Alex's stories are now available to keep. Click on the picture for more information.


 Skylark Country




 Home            Index                Books by Alex Askaroff



Sewing Machine Fault Finder                     Sewing machine Tension

CONTACT: alexsussex@aol.com  Copyright