For years all my sewing was done on my mum’s sewing machine, a beautiful old Singer. It could stitch forward and backward. It had an attachment to stitch buttonholes.That was it.
I then inherited my grandmother’s machine. An even older Singer. A Singer 201k to be exact. She is now 55 years old and she is a beauty. She too only stitches forward and backward, but we have been through so much together. When we bough our house she stitched our curtains and cushions. When I got married she stitched my wedding dress and the corset tops I made for my sisters. When I had my first son she stitched the first pairs of trousers I made for him.
But sometimes a girl wants more and when I saw a Brother on offer in a local store my head was turned. It stitched a myriad of stitches, it was lightweight, and all in all it was fun to sew with. And so it was that the Singer was relegated to the corner and the brother took over on my sewing table, whizzing through all manner of projects. It is a beautiful machine, and it has allowed me to tackle all manner of new sewing projects that before this would have been beyond me. But the one thing it is not is faultless, and at two years old it decided to have a wobble and needed to be sent off for a full service.
It was then that I realised just how wonderful my old Singer is. She is sturdy. She is easy to maintain. When you take off her cover there is the most wonderful faint aroma of sewing machine oil, which to me is part of the sewing experience. And the one big thing she has is harp space, lots and lots and lots of harp space. Unlike my Brother she easily accomodates the bulk of a quilt. So while my Brother will remain my day to day machine for general sewing my Singer is taking over the role of quilter. She has plenty of life in her yet and while she may be old but she is most certainly the star of my sewing room.