At the start of the 19th century, all clothing was made by hand. Pants, dresses, shirts, everything was stitched together using just a needle and thread. But finally, in 1846, Elias Howe changed the world. He came up with another, faster and more easier way to make clothes. Howe patented the very first sewing machine and the industry that followed made the mass production of clothing possible on a scale never seen before.
Of course, toy manufacturers couldn't stay behind and started producing toy sewing machines. After the second world war, there were lots of toy sewing machine firms and they were mainly in the UK. Unfortunately, by the late 1950’s they couldn't compete any longer with cheaper imports from Japan.
What's it worth? Take a look at this Sewing Machine price guide: sold listings for a value indication.