I would like to introduce you to my collection of sewing machines.
I first learnt to sew on a hand operated Singer machine. My Granny did loads of sewing on her Singer treadle machine, and I loved to use that too. My Mum had an old Singer which had been converted to electricity. I have a great appreciation for something well made, and, maybe I’m biased, but I believe that old Singer sewing machines are the epitome of something well made.
So I have acquired, and hung on to a few of them.
When I acquired this machine it was in a pretty bad way. I spent time cleaning and oiling it and getting everything moving again. It now runs like a dream, and stitches amazingly. I love to work out the controls on an old machine like this. Nothing much has changed over the years, but there are always a few new (or old!) techniques to learn about. The main difference between this, and other machines that I have used, is the winding mechanism for the bobbin, and the transverse shuttle.
The model 12 was first marketed in 1865, and remained in production for over 40 years. Its very reliable design meant that it was sold in very high volumes, and was the machine that really established Singer as the market leader. This one was made in 1881. (135 years old!!) I have read that when the Singer New Family was first produced, it cost the equivalent of a year’s wages. Many people would have bought these through an instalment payment scheme, over a period of ten years. (I bought this last year on Ebay for around £40.00!)
If you have an old Singer, and want to know when it was made, look for a serial number on the base of the machine. Every one made by the Singer Manufacturing Company has a number. Find out more information about this on the Sew A Lot website - www.sewalot.com.