Saturday, January 10, 2015


Wow, what a weekend and it's not over yet! My last post about the value of vintage sewing machines was a bit snarky but I was feeling the sting of rejection when someone took a fair amount of my time and then decided to buy a plastic sewing machine from one of the big box stores. My heart was sore. But this is real life and we have to move on and just like real life there is always an interesting twist to make me stop and wonder. Just when I was ready to throw in the towel (okay, maybe not yet), I get a text from a very nice dad who wanted to buy each of his daughters, ages 9 and 17, their own beginners sewing machine. The whole family came over Friday night and played around on 3-4 sewing machines, deciding on the best and the worst ones:
Pfaff Hobby 301

Baby Lock Quilt & Craft
The Pfaff was a very basic sewing machine but had a great feel and we found out a very nice stitch. The Baby Lock, not so much, but it was so cute and portable it seemed to win their hearts. Since they were all the same price, only $40 each, I didn't care which ones they chose so I pointed out the strengths and weaknesses of all. I like the final comment: mom and dad are buying and owning them and they will let both girls sew on either one. I think they knew their daughters well.

Saturday was full of sewing projects and sewing machines with a pick up of a Singer 99 in one of the tan box-type of carriers. It included a buttonholer and bobbins but the bottom of the case was missing its wood! Still a very nice purchase that I can easily convert to a handcrank or not.

Next up was the delivery of the green Sewmor that included a set of accessories that I wrote about in a previous post along with a Singer buttonholer. It's always fun to meet someone you have held many online conversations with and I usually don't deliver so I don't get invited into their home. I loved the music that was playing from the '60's and it sure seemed to fit the Sewmor:

Sewmor 606 in her happy new home
From there I met another woman at my daughter's home where she delivered a Pfaff 262 that had been in her garage for many years and was missing the foot control:

Pfaff 262 right out of my car
When I took a good look at it, after our long conversation about where the foot control might plug in, I found the plug only had one cord going in (to go to the outlet in the wall) and there was an empty hole where the foot control would be wired in. Easy peasy! Just find a foot control and wire it in.

Note plug on back with opening for another wire
My daughter and I spend our time at SR Harris in their new location south of the Twin Cities and found fabric and lace insets for me to make aprons (a future blog post?). I took full advantage of her expertise in designers and what's popular in her age bracket!

Next up, I went further north and picked up a real curiosity, a Singer 75-1 that is supposed to be an overedger. I think I will have to discover what that might be. Here she is, a bit neglected but moving:
Singer 75-1 front

Singer 75-1 back
Yes, that's a whole lot of rust on the bed but I have hope for a full recovery. I think it's only missing the front plate on the left side and it's possible that it was treadled but I have many hours to spend with her before I unlock those secrets.

After that stop I had to go back to a fabric store to find a very specific print of Oreo cookies for a special order but after an hour and a half I had to admit defeat and go home. Wow, that was some day. But now I get to explore each one of those sewing machines, cut out all those wonderful aprons, and sew to my hearts delight. All is right with the world, even if people continue to buy plastic sewing machines. I know the joy, and now so do three other women, of sewing with a vintage sewing machine. Bliss.


Unknown said...

I recently inherited my mother's Baby Lock Quilt 'N Craft. I would love to know a little more about it. Can you suggest where I could find out more. Nothing found on Baby Lock Web site. Thanks in advance. Susie B

Karen said...

I tried to find out more and you are right: there's not much out there. It's a pretty basic sewing machine so I'm not sure how much you need to know: needle size? bobbins? Do you have the manual? You might want to just practice a bit and see what questions or problems you still have.