Do you follow Bonnie Hunter of Quiltville? If so, you know that she is a keen and devoted collector of sewing machines. How many machines do you own? I have four, but only one that I actually sew on - a Bernina. The others are merely "decorative". One is an old treadle in a lovely cabinet which I had refinished and it turned out beautifully. It sits in my front foyer. (I'll show pics of it another day). The third is an antique toy hand crank sewing machine, made in Germany. Again, I'll show it at another time.
Today I really want to tell you about machine #4. Several weeks ago, on Bonnie's birthday (Jan. 23) she showed an antique Singer treadle machine she had purchased, adding to her (significant) collection of vintage machines. She was so pleased that the decals were in such perfect shape and showed close up photos of them. Several days later as I stood working at my ironing board, I glanced down at my fourth machine which I had picked up for $20.00 a few years back at a local antique shop. It is missing one of the slide plates and is not in a cabinet; it sits in my studio on an old wooden box which is stamped with "Grown and Packed in California, USA 60/70".... I'm guessing grapes? apricots? Who knows... fruit of some sort, for sure... Anyway, back to the machine. What really caught my eye at the time was the perfect condition of the decals on the machine. There was not one bit of wear. They were perfect, but for a little dirt/grime/crud... So, as I stood looking down at it, I realized it is exactly the same machine Bonnie was showing!!! When I checked out the serial number (JA719602), it is actually one year older than Bonnie's machine, made in 1924. It will soon be 100 years old!! So, inspired by the great job Bonnie does at cleaning up her antique machines and getting them working, I figured I should put a little effort into cleaning this one up. I used nothing more than a soft cloth and sewing machine oil, and a toothbrush at one point. Oh yes - and lots of "elbow
grease". So - here she is. She's a Singer 127. Isn't she a beaut? I can't sew on her unless I can find a slide plate which fits, and a bobbin - from what Bonnie says, it is called a "long bobbin" which goes in the "vibrating shuttle". Actually I'm not interested in getting her into working order, as I have no cabinet for her, nor room for one. I'm happy to just have her sit and keep me company. But I thought you might enjoy seeing her, in all her new (clean) glory! Aren't the decals wonderful?
"Priceless things matter not for their value, but because they offer us an enduring reminder of stability and permanence." ~ Barbara Taylor Bradford, Power of a Woman