Sunday, July 11, 2010

The herd

It got too hot to eat, let alone cook. But it's much better than last year, when it was also too hot to move, breathe, or think. This summer has not yet been too hot for me to indulge my other obsession.

In the cabinet on the right: the first treadle I bought, from the goodwill bins. It's a White, and runs most beautifully. I think it dates from about 1917. Sewing machines like company. In the center cabinet is another White, which I got because I had become obsessed with treadle operated machines. The second one is cosmetically in great shape, and also runs extremely well, but I think the older one is a little lighter to operate.

On the leaf of the right hand cabinet is a Singer. I don't know much of anything about it yet, cuz I just bought it on Saturday afternoon. But it seems complete, if rather stiff. It came in the cabinet on the left. So why is there another machine in the cabinet? Because that beige machine is a clone of my mom's machine, which I learned to sew on. After I bought it, I learned that it was the last model Singer produced that was designed to convert to treadle power. So obviously I needed a Singer designed cabinet. Which happened to come with this machine head that I'm very excited about because it appears to take modern needles and the same type of bobbin the beige machine does.

Then there's my serger. That's the thing on the chair. Very high tech, it intimidates me a bit. But it does that thing you hem t-shirts with, and it sews, trims, and finishes  a seam in one pass, which is a big timesaver. I don't like computerized machines, but when I need one, I really need one.

There's another machine that didn't make it into the picture. I've more or less retired it- it's the one I bought with my very own money back in 7th grade. I saw a classified ad in the Ann Arbor News, and called the lady, and then Mom took me to the bank where I withdrew my 100 dollars. Or maybe Mom paid the lady with a check, and I paid Mom. I don't remember. It's a Necchi, which is a more or less defunct brand. At the time I bought it, the White company had owned out the brand for some time; I'm not sure Necchi branded machines are even produced any longer. I hear that really old Necchi machines are serious pieces of equipment. Mine, not so much. Early on, it was great, but it's got nylon gears, which I've broken twice over the years, and it was never meant for heavy work, so I've warped the main drive shaft. Currently it's functional, but that's about it. I keep meaning to take it to goodwill, but, you know...we've been together since seventh grade. I made some of my favorite things on it. But christonacrutch, I really don't need 6 sewing machines.

I name my sewing machines. The vintage ones, anyway. The Whites are Lizzy and Jane, and the beige Singer is Anne. I thought the Singer that came with the cabinet was going to be Marianne, but it doesn't look like that's its name. I'll have to get it functional, and then we'll see. God, I hope she isn't Emma.

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