Saturday, August 16, 2008

Second Hand Rose

White sewing machines aren't as *glamorous* as their Singer cousins but this little beauty has won my heart. She's a 1916-17 White Vibrating Shuttle Treadle Sewing Machine in the original twig cabinet.

I know they are a dime a dozen but this one is rather special. It was a gift from a work colleague and I have had the privilege of seeing it in its original setting - a 1919 Arts and Craft house designed by the owner. She was among the trailblazing women to obtain a degree at Sydney University in the early 1900s and pursued a career as an Engineering Draughtsman.

This machine hasn't seen active service in nearly 50 years and is looking a little tired and neglected...but with the right care I hope to bring her back to life again. I seem to have all the attachments, five bobbins and most of the instruction manual. I also have the original purchase docket from Anthony Hordern's Palace Emporium (think Sears) dated November 1917 showing that it cost the princely sum of 7 pounds, 17 shillings and sixpence!

I certainly have my work cut out for me and will chart my progress here. It would be wonderful to get her working again and machine piece a quilt on her.



  1. I'll add you to my google reader & will be watching your progress. I hope you'll check out my blog here also.

  2. Ann,

    You are on a great start to your blogging.

    There are a couple of websites you may be interested in, for history as well as cleaning instructions.

    This is one I peruse often.

    The Needlebar this site has three sections: Mainsite (history, manuals, etc), forums, gallery.

    Your machine is a beauty. It is great you have the original bill of sale. Helps with the history. You may think its a dime a dozen, but to be honest, the personal history you have of that machine makes it very unique.


  3. She's certainly a beautiful machine, I love how it also has all it's other 'bits' too.

    What a great idea for a blog, it should inspire you to keep your momentum going!

    Cheers, Jen :o)

  4. That's okay Ann, you don't have to do the 6 random things if you don't want to! Or just do the 6 random things and only tag a couple of people, in the end it's just a nice bit of fluff.

    Oh and I forgot to mention to you that I have done some Japanese sewing patterns before. Thankfully they're pretty easy to follow and I've had a lot of years experience making clothes for myself too, otherwise I'd never attempt one of these patterns! :)

    Cheers, Jen :o)

  5. HI Ann

    I LOVE your sewing machine, the gold work on it is beautiful, I'm sure you will get many hours of enjoyment from it, I love just looking at my old machine, its on the lounge room and when I'm sitting on the sofa doing my stitching i just stare at my machine,


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