Vintage sewing machines.

I have two vintage machines and would love more; there are plenty around and surprisingly cheap but I am resisting the urge – although I would like a treadle machine, a few years ago the power was out for a week and life became a bit boring, I thought at least I could sew (and do leg exercises at the same time).

The oldest machine is a 1950s Singer, it’s supposed to be portable but is incredibly heavy, it has a handle on top of a plywood case but there is no way I would carry it by such a fragile cover.

It still has its key and the case is in good condition, needs a polish.

The machine needs a good clean, I’m ashamed to say that I’ve had it for about a year and haven’t done that. The cord has perished so it needs new flex, I’ve manually turned it and it moves beautifully – surprisingly, this machine has a drop in bobbin like modern ones. It is knee operated.

My other machine is a 1970s Singer Capri and it has been loved and well looked after.

The vinyl case is in good condition and the zip still works perfectly.

It has a free arm, tray and instruction manual, I have used this and it is great to sew on, it’s powerful and has adjustable foot pressure, I had a brand new machine like this (not this model) in the ’70s and I thought it was just wonderful.

This one has a four-step buttonhole and the feed dog drops for button sewing.

I know I won’t be able to resist buying more vintage machines, it’s inevitable…


  1. Careful there! You could end up like me. Last count I have twenty-five sewing machines and two sergers.
    We live off grid, so I purchased a 1938 Singer 15-88 treadle for when we are not generating power. The model 15 has reverse for back tacking, which I find useful. Most treadles that I come across don’t have reverse. Here is a site for dating your Singer sewing machines.


    • Thanks for the reply, I do have a bit of a hoarder instinct and could easily keep buying machines – I envy your collection. a 1938 machine would be special. I started sewing on my mother’s very modern 1950s treadle machine and it had the backstitch lever, I can see the convenience of it and perhaps they should incorporate that in modern machines. I have two sergers, bought as usual, when they were on sale. Thanks for the Singer link I’ll check my machine, Regards, Will.

      Liked by 1 person

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