Friday, September 17, 2010


Although I have a beautiful, state of the art, sewing machine that Joe gave me for my 40th birthday, I've been coveting an old Singer for some time. I've been keeping my eyes open at garage sales and flea markets for a Featherweight: a small, portable Singer that is a functional and durable antique, as well as a collector's item.

Along came a Freecycle posting offering up an old Singer. I responded, never expecting to be the first one, as most people receive updates to their cell phones and put their dibs in on good items quickly. Nevertheless, I was the first one and promptly drove to Lynn to pick up this old machine. The case is a bit banged up it will need rewiring. Otherwise, it is missing the knee lever that makes it go and the bobbin plate. No matter, I'm was still thrilled! This is my equivalent of an old car that needs to be fixed up. A labor of love.

After a bit of research online, I discovered it is from 1924, a model 99, one of which only 15,000 were made. Not a Featherweight, but the next best thing. It is portable and still functional but will need a knee lever and eventually new wires. I picked up a spare machine for parts on ebay and voila! She runs beautifully, even after 90 years.

I'm not intending to cast aside my beautiful Janome, which I love to sew with. It does everything I need it to do, and more. Technology has advanced to the point that I could never do any repairs on it, other than to remove the lint that accumulates around the bobbin. It's computerized and this Singer is more of a toy that I can play with. I can take it apart, see how it works, put it back together and it is no worse for the wear. No computer parts here!


CL said...

My great-grandmother had a Singer treadle machine which I coveted for years. My grandmother's brother's child got it. Congrats on your "find."

CowTown said...


environmental fiend said...

Very cool project! All of your sewing talk reminds me... I might be soliciting your help for something soon. :)