Saturday 9 July 2016

My Old New Sewing Machine

I’ve mentioned that my sewing machine died so many times these past months, that I thought I’d let you know that I have a new one! Well, I’ve actually had it for several years, as my parents gave it to me, and my Gran had given it to them before, and she’d got it from an aunt or something… As you can guess it’s not exactly new in any sense of the word. It’s a Singer treadle from 1924 by the serial number, and though it hasn’t been in use for a very long time, it only took a new driving belt and some oiling to make it run perfectly.

 I actually love sewing on this machine much more than I’ve ever done with any electrical machine I ever tried. True, it only sews straight seams, but I can work around that problem. It comes with the instruction manual, several types of presser foots (including ruffler, binder and tucker) that I have to learn, and even a one year repair guarantee slip, dated 1 September 1936, that I suppose was included when it was bought – family history claims it came into the family around that time.

Sewing on a treadle is a bit different from sewing on an electrical machine, but I find that in some ways – like speed - I have more control with the treadle, and the other things, like coordinating the turning of the balance wheel with starting to treadle, are soon learned. I’ve started sewing a patchwork quilt for the new baby, and I sat at the machine for much longer than I would have had the patience for with an electrical machine. The breaking of my old Husqvarna, which I never really got along with, might have been a blessing in disguise.


  1. Oh, she is really pretty! And what a treasure to own in the family for so long. I sew on a 1916 Singer treadle, that I bought from a friend of my sister. I prefer her (I call her Merryl) to any other machine except perhaps one (a 1960s-70s Dürkopp industrial named Tillie, which is great, too, but not better). The feeling is so much nicer than on a modern machine, especially the sound! I just can't stand the plastic sound of todays home sewing machines. Though I sometimes think treadling is a bit slow, it gives you more control and I have no fear of sewing in my fingers.

  2. Couldn't agree more about the sound - one reason I dislike modern sewing machines. This one has a lovely sound.

  3. oh my god, it's singer! this is the first machine that I used back then when I learn how to sew. it's a beautiful piece of art, now my gramma keeps it on her room :D

  4. What a lovely sewing machine and how nice of your family to gift it to you! I hope you have countless hours of fun with it!

  5. I'm hoping someday perhaps to use an old machine. I don't really like using sewing machines; they annoy me for some reason, and nobody understands why I prefer (except for how long it takes) to sew by hand. I like the idea of not needing electricity, as well, since that saves on having cords hanging out all over a room. Maybe I should venture to try one from Craigslist... but I'm not sure if I would risk that it wouldn't work or would need repair I couldn't get for it.


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