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I am a mother, a new grandmother, and a teacher. But whatever happens in my life, I keep sewing. I have worked as a political communicator and now as a teacher in my formal life. I have also written extensively on sewing. I have been a frequent contributor and contributing editor of Threads magazine and the Australian magazine Dressmaking with Stitches. My first book Sew.. the garment-making book of knowledge will be published in May 2018 and is available for pre-order from Amazon


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Saturday, January 29, 2011

The more things change the more they stay the same

At the beginning of the week I took my sewing machine, a Pfaff 7570, into the shop. They told me it would be two weeks before I had it back.

Two weeks! The stress of it. Now I have back-up machine. A little Janome, but I have set up with my Singer buttonholer and it does a superlative job making nice little round ended buttonholes, just the way I like them. Perfect every time and no need to rip out and restitch, ever. I didn't want to mess with that.

BTW if you want to know why there is tape on the bed of the machine in this picture I have replaced the Janome feed dog cover (you have to drop or cover the feed dogs with this attachment) with a piece of clear plastic I cut out of some packaging, with a hole in it for the needle to go through and taped it to the machine. I find the attachment moves easier this way.

So not wanting to interfere with something I had set up just right, I decided to look for a second hand simple machine to do simple sewing when my main machine was down.

And I found this, for about the same amount of money I paid 
 for my straight stitch plate:

A beautiful old Pfaff that does such a gorgeous straight stitch. When I looked at those stitches I almost cried. So beautiful where those stitches and so nice the purr of this machine in fact that I stayed up last night and took out all my topstitching in my HP blouse and redid it on this machine.

Call me crazy and you would be right.

All this reminded me that despite all the fancy machines now on the market not a lot has changed. 

A good stitch is still a good stitch.

Let me tell you a story.

A while ago a friend of mine picked up an old wooded file cabinet at an estate sale. In it he found a pile of original patent documents, including some for sewing machines. They are dated just before WWI.

He was going to throw them out but at the last minute had the good sense to remember me and gave me them to me.

Five of them are now framed and hang over my fireplace.

Here is a picture of one of the patents here. You will see that the design of the sewing machine, how the stitch is formed, hasn't really changed at all. 

 Now off for a weekend of dog walking, paper marking and shirt sewing. More on that later.

1 comment:

The Simple Romantic said...

How come that bit about 'how the stitch is formed' kinda sent a shiver up my spine?

I could just hear you saying it and then a reallllll loooong pause.

And yea, that patent picture is one of the nicer pieces of ephemera I've seen. People are going to be dragging THAT down to their desktop to mark their personal folders with.