Wednesday, 27 April 2016


Machine came home today, I named her Claudia after the lady I purchased her from. Claudia said the machine was circa 1927 - I just liked the fact it was a treadle.

I have been busy last night and today looking up information to find out more about her. I also spent almost 3 hours this afternoon, just gently wiping everything down to get the first layer of dust and spider webs off.

So, what do I know, and what have I found out:

*My machine has a fiddle base
-The 'fiddle' shaped base was phased out about 1891 (or 1895 - depending on the web page), as was the big Singer Logo cast under the machine.

*It is model VS2 - Vibrating Shuttle, and one of domestic machines, I think.
Singer did not have the model number anywhere on the machine, so I am only guessing what it is from what others have said / written. I posted a query on a FB Vintage Machine page and a reply was the first model 27 type machine was a VS2 on a fiddle base - that's what I have. It was replaced with model 27 on a rectangle base, and later became 127. So I have the older style VS2. It is a full sized machine, 35-38cm. It has a circular chrome stitch plate covering the feed dogs and 2 split chrome slide plates that run from back to front that covers the shuttle mechanism. They are caked with dirt and will not budge, so a lot of gentle cleaning will be involved. VS2 was introduced in 1887.

*The faceplate is plain.
The faceplate on early models were polished plain plates, while older models are embossed with a ‘grapevine’ pattern. I will have to look up dates to see when this changed. All the crome parts are very dirty and will need a lot of cleaning.

*I think the decals are the Victorian design.
Most of the decals I see on VSM are very ornate. I now can easily recognise the Sphinx and Lotus designs. Apparently Singer did not name their decals, it is the collectors that have named them.These decals are very worn and little of the original gold remains. I don't think I will replace them, as it machine is old, and the worn decals simply show there age.

*My cabinet is a five drawer table with a coffin case
It has the Singer badge on the sides. I will be restoring the gold on the emblem. I will have to find out how to restore the cast iron. I think that will be an outside job.

*Serial Number 10 033 684
Singer dates 9 810 000 - 10 629 999 as 1891.
Singer Sewing Machine Models dates a machine 10356980 as April 1891.
If that is true, mine must be early 1891.
* The drawers have the original diamond Singer emblems - underneath all that dirt.

There is a lot of work to do, and I will be happy to do it.

The Coffin top laminate is peeling very badly. One piece was already off, and laying on the top. I'm glad the ladies in the LQS decided to leave it with the machine. Although I carefully cleaned each piece, I did break off another piece of laminate from one of the drawers. Both pieces are now safely in a drawer with one tiny shuttle (with thread on it).

I'm not sure what the object is in the photo below, I think it may have something to do with the shuttle. More research is needed. 

Tuesday, 26 April 2016

My First VSM

I have always wanted an old treadle machine. I am in a VSM (Vintage Sewing Machine) FB group and love looking at the machines that others have restored. Now it is my turn. Today - 26 April 2016 - I purchased my first VSM. I am so excited and can't wait to bring it home tomorrow. Of course, I will spend the next few weeks researching it and finding out all about it. It was advertised as a 1927 machine, but I have my doubts as I think there are so many inconsistencies, but of course I am definitly not an expert, so researching will be fun - I hope.

I will post some photos when I get it home :)

Sunday, 17 April 2016

New Mystery Quilt

I am in many Facebook quilting groups and love to see what others are making. I also love making mystery quilts,  so when 'Just Us Quilters' started posting a new mystery quilt, of course I had to make one.

What I like about Just Us Quilters is that the pieces are large, so the quilt will come together quickly. This one started with a log cabin - my favourite block.

It also required as a focus fabric a print which had many colours. I had purchased a brightly coloured fabric way back in 1995, in Cairns, that was perfect for this mystery.

Part 2 was large half square triangles, using the focus fabric and white (or light coloured).

Part 3 was a simple four patch.

Part 4 was combining part 2 and part 3 to make this large block.

Now, I wait for the next part to be released, in the early hours of tomorrow morning, my time.

Thursday, 7 April 2016

Farmers Wife #11 Bea

Another hand stitched block. I guess by now you have guessed that I am not doing the blocks in order of Angie releasing them. One can only do what one can while travelling.  I am 'playing' catch up by going through the book and doing each block that has been released in numerical order.
This 'basket' block was also easy while hand piecing and sewing, and surprisingly quick to do.
You can find Angie's tutorial here.

My thought on the letter "Only Twenty-Four and a Queen" 
by Queen Bee, December 1935.
  Queen Bee writes about wanting nice things and getting sad because she doesn't have them. To resolve her feelings she puts on her best dress and a happy attitude and all her housework doesn't seem so bad.
Mood can have a very big influence on attitude and how others perceive you. 
What makes me feel better when I'm feeling down? Sewing, listening to John Farnham, being with the grandkids, spending time with family. 

Do small things with great love and joy in your heart.

Farmers Wife #42 Heather

This was another hand stitched block while travelling. The good thing with hand stitching is that it is easier than getting the Elna out and machine piecing while travelling. I have not trimmed this one yet, but still very happy with the way it turned out. You can find Angie's tutorial here.

My Thoughts on the letter "Just Pass it on" by Mrs F.P. November 1938

Mrs F.P. talks about how grateful she was to have a neighbour who recognised when she was overworked and who would 'borrow' her small children and return them fed, bathed and ready for bed. All the neighbour wanted in return was for Mrs F.P. when her children were older, to return the favour to another young mum.

I feel blessed to have friends who know me well enough to recognise when and what I need, and provide it. 

Appreciation is a wonderful thing: It makes what is excellent in others belong to us as well.  ~ Voltaire

Farmer's Wife # 86 Priscilla

Sorry for the break in blog posts, we have been touring this wonderful country  of ours. Such a good release from the stress of work life.
While travelling we called in to see my auntie, and she re-kindled my old hand sewing habits. #86 Pricilla was the first block in the Farmers Wife Sampler that I hand stitched. I must say I did enjoy it. I hand stitched a few other blocks but then found it would be easier to cut the pieces using template plastic. So off to Spotlight.

I didn't find Pricilla difficult, maybe because I was hand stitching.
See Angie's tutorial here.
My thoughts on the letter 'Dishes with Fairytales' 
by More Fun in Dishes  Dec 1938
As a child my sister and I would take turns in wiping the dishes, we didn't like or dislike it, it was just something we did. I'm not sure if my brother helped, I have no recollection of him helping, but maybe he did. More Fun in Dishes would entice her brothers to help with the washing up by telling them fairy stories. Her brothers thought washing up was girls work, but in the end they wanted to help so they could hear the stories.

When my own children were young, they never had the joy of washing or wiping up. We had a dishwasher! Once when we lived in Canberra we went to my cousins home and our girls actually fought about who was going to wipe up - now they are older, they no longer do that LOL.

Quote: This home runs on LOVE, LAUGHTER, and sweet tea.