Monday, July 07, 2008

Well, I have a sewing machine

I've been mulling over getting a sewing machine for a while now. I used to sew a bit, and have one stored away at my father's, but of course that's useless to me. Recently, I've been thinking more and more that it would be useful to be able to make some of my own clothing again. I put off buying one because, honestly, the knitting is taking up enough time as it is.

But a couple of weeks ago, The Limey and I were doing our usual charity shop crawl (apparently Woking is big enough to support half a dozen of them, but not...oh, say, a fishmonger's...or a greengrocer) and he spotted an old Singer. When asked for the price, the lady running the shop said, Oh, well...I don't know if it works, so I couldn't charge you more than GBP7? We took it home.

After taking it apart and spending a few days cleaning and oiling it up...

...We have ourselves a sewing machine:

It works beautifully and perfectly. All the parts are there. And, in fact, we got replacement bobbins at the Singer sewing shop in town that fit perfectly. Only slightly a surprise, because with the machine's serial number, which is helpfully put on a plaque right on the machine:

We can look it up on the Singer website, which we did. And found that it had been made in 1899.


That would explain why it's completely manually powered. And, according to The Limey, that explains why it still works so well just with a general clean-up.

So it only goes forwards and backwards, and has no fancy stitches programmed into it. And, uh, yeah, buttonholes? Not so much.

Still, it is a joy to see it run. It's smooth, quiet, all perfectly made to fit together *just so*. The Limey is in awe of the engineering.

Now, off to buy fabric. It's good John Lewis is having its summer sale, huh?


laughingmuse said...

It's gorgeous! My mother has an old Singer that her mother had, and it's the same kind of deal - one stitch, get it going by hand, etc., but that thing is a workhorse and has lasted a loooooong time. Congrats on your find!

jacqueline said...

wanna sell me your old sewing machine in SF?

Ger said...

Lien, what a really beautiful machine. I hope you get many happy years sewing with it. And it LOOKS beautiful too. Looking forward to seeing your fabric now.

knittin gin said...

That is a thing of beauty! I'm so jealous!

Ilix said...

That is a thing of beauty.... I have alwasy wanted my sewing machine to be a thing of beauty.... guess I will have to keep searching! Thanks for sharing!