Saturday, July 25, 2015

Visiting Julia

It's not too often that I've visited sewing machines from my past. In fact I have never revisited a sold sewing machine but I had the chance this past week. One of the dearest machines I ever bought was a Necchi Julia, so sweet and pink in her dandy 1960's cabinet. She came fully loaded and really needed nothing so I got to sew enough on her to decide I didn't need to keep her but didn't mind owning her for a period of time. About a year ago she went home with a good friend and I was happy to find someone who really did sew and would put her to good use. Once she made it to her new home the cabinet was refinished and she was moved in permanently. I did hear bits of a story about Julia getting dropped but she handed it well and nothing important was lost or broken.

While on vacation for a week, we stopped in to see Julia who moved again but is pretty happy in her new digs. Here's a few photos of her new home:
Nice space for the Necchi Julia
and here she is opened up:
Still looking good after all these years
There was a problem, though: she didn't get used very often and one reason was her somewhat cramped new space. When the leaves of the cabinet were opened up they bumped into a treadle cabinet. It was a pretty basic Singer treadle cabinet so I asked what the machine was like. Machine? Inside the cabinet? She didn't know because it was only bought for the antique look. Since learning about vintage sewing machines the owner said she's now interested in seeing what was hidden inside. We wheeled it out and opened up the top leaf to find a very well used Singer 66. She was never going to use this treadle, having treadled before and knew it really wasn't for her so maybe it should be sold. Would I help get it into shape? Would I! It wouldn't be a fun vacation without a sewing machine adventure so I pulled the head out and the cabinet to come upstairs and out to the garage for a cleaning.

Singer 66 - dated 1925
 After cleaning up and getting a little bit of oil into her, it now worked fine even with the old leather belt that was still intact. The bobbin winder tire broke while cleaning and there was a need for a spool pin but other wise she was looking used but proud. The wood cabinet got some paste wax and she almost glows now:
Singer 66 in treadle: not bad for 90 years old!
We found the missing parts so she is complete and ready for a new home, too.  It's my hope that Julia will have space to be opened up and used as she was meant to be used. These vintage sewing machines sure can be pretty but like so many things they are tools that work best when they are used often.

Now I'm off to pick up two sewing machines in another state as part of my vacation. Will the fun never end? Stay tuned!

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