Sunday, June 1, 2014

sewing standstill

going on since I bought the lawn mower.  Go figure.  I've been puttering in the garden and trimming trees and bushes and mowing when I'm not asleep or taking care of grands and adult children.  I cast a doleful eye over to the sewing table from time to time, but I haven't managed to clean the entire room in a month, much less arrange my hair and put on lipstick to sew.  If you haven't read that advice from the 50's then you missed it, but I do need to feel like stuff is done before I enjoy sewing.

I DID, however. feed my sewing machine acquisition disorder with two new vintage machines this week.  Here they are in their dirt-encrusted non working glory:

This is a singer 306k, from the 50's.  So far I can barely get the wheel to turn with my hand and so can't see how it will stitch.  It takes special needles, and I broke the bobbin case.  The motor whines but doesn't move anything.  I'm thinking this was Singer's first zigzag.  I think it's kind of cute, but it's on the back burner after this one:
This is a Singer 401A, and it does straight stitch with a sluggish motor action (shovel out a few decades of dirt and lubricate well and it should be much more lively).  This was another of Singer top of the line machines and I've been reading lots of good things about it.  I've been wiggling and coaxing the zig zag function but it still hasn't come quite to life yet.  It also has quite a few decorative stitches built in.  Dual needle capable, meaning you can buy a double needle or just insert 2 regular needles into the holder and sew.  I don't think it will steal my heart completely from my 201-2, but I'm excited to see the old timey decorative stitches. 
As I'm writing I'm believing I'm working my last night shift before 3 nights off.  I won't look at my schedule until Monday afternoon to keep living the dream anyway.  I'm hoping to at least clean the 401 thoroughly and figure out if that will bring back the zig-zag or find if I have a broken spring or something in the head.  I don't have a slant shank foot, so I'll still have to order one before I can really sew.  All these parts are amazingly cheap and easy to find online.  And not to difficult to repair yourself!  These two make numbers 5 and 6 of machines I have acquired that didn't work, and I have successfully restored 4 to good working order.

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