A Little Restoration

March 30, 2010 § 17 Comments

Vintage Singer 319W

Quite some time ago a vintage sewing machine was given to me. It’s been sitting in the closet ever since.  I’ve been meaning to take it apart, clean and oil it and make it useful again. This week the bug to restore it finally hit.  My Grandmother’s old Singer is also sitting in my closet at the moment (another future restoration project!).  I’m really intrigued by these old machines.  I love my Featherweight!

It is a Singer 319W and one of their earliest zig zag sewing machines.  These funny levers remind me of old typewriter keys.  I don’t have any of the cams, but it would be fun to hunt them down.  I can only sew these five zig zag stitches.

Earliest Zig Zag Stitch Cams

So, needless to say, since this restoration project began not much sewing has been going on. This is what my sewing table looks like at the moment.  I’m having a hard time getting screws to move and parts to disassemble.  Surprisingly, my Featherweight maintenance book has been quite helpful.

My sewing table this week

I did, however, get bitten by the Dresden Plate bug.  I might have to move my other sewing machine to the dining room table, temporarily, so that I can work on this.

Dresden wedges

§ 17 Responses to A Little Restoration

  • Dena says:

    I learned to sew on an old Singer. I don’t remember what model it was, but it had the lever that moved up and down to backstitch and adjust the stitch length which always reminded me of shifting a car. It also used cams for decorative stitches. The buttonhole foot was a large contraption with various sized button hole templates you put in it before screwing it onto the machine… It sounded like an old plane taking off while shaking the whole house. LOL

    Love your fabric choices in your Dresden Plate.

  • DebbyMcC says:

    I’ve been able to find obscure sewing machine parts for various vintage machines and brands on eBay…I think there might a general repair and maintenance book for all the old Singers…and there are forums and groups of Singer enthusiast son the web . I have a beautiful old singer that I rescued from the dumpster when a friend cleaned out his parents’ house…I don’t know what it is except that it is a beautiful old machine with filigree and fancy decals and he was going to THROW IT AWAY! I really should investigate it sometime and see what I can do with it, I guess =-) I love, love, love your dresden pieces! Fantastic colors and fabrics!

  • susan says:

    what a gorgeous old machine! those levers are a hoot. i have never seen anything like that on one. how handy you are! i would be afraid to dissemble a machine. i need to do it on mine tho.
    pretty dresdens!

  • Renee says:

    What a glorious old sewing machine!!
    Lovely colours in your Dresdens.

  • Kathy says:

    Wonderful old machines. Do you love using them too? I love the positive feel of the old machines even if they can be a bit louder. Love the ants. Are they your background fabric?

  • amy says:

    What a gorgeous machine, Anita! Love the color! I’ve never seen those levers before either. I’ve got a small collection of old Singers (including my grandma’s old machine) that haven’t seen the light of day for a while. Uh-oh, I may have been bitten by the get out your old machines bug. I think that’s what’s marching across your background fabric. 🙂 FUN DRESDEN!

  • Becky says:

    Check out the yahoo group, wefixit: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/wefixit/
    Lots of resources there, people, files, photos. You will undoubtedly engender some jealousy with your lovely machine!!

  • AJ in AZ says:

    Beware of the old sewing machine bug. I ended up with 8 machines before I shook it off and sold them all but one, a 1919 Free Westinghouse, one of the first electrified models. It will sew through anything, albeit slowly, and I use it for car seats, coats, stuff like that.

  • What a beautiful machine! Bet it will sew like a dream when it is all up and running!

  • Alexis says:

    What a great old machine! It reminds me of my mom’s old Singer that I learned to sew on- it would have been newer, but still the same color. Your Dresden is gorgeous, too! Happy sewing!

  • sewpam63 says:

    Fabulous old sewing machine! ; ) It’s a beauty.

    And, those Dresden plates certainly are FUN!

  • pratima says:

    Seems like so much work… so nice that the manual is helping you out with this task. The clams do remind me of typewriter keys. Very cute machine!
    The Dresden is looking scrumptious… Have fun!

  • jacquieg says:

    i sure hope you can make it to fabric crush. it would be so great to meet you in person! love this machine. it’s a treasure!

  • tina says:

    I love the old machines. I wish I had more time to search thrift shops for such. You are lucky to have someone give you the thing.

  • Jackie says:

    I love your machine…the levers especially!

    The dresden plate is gorgeous!

  • Lynn says:

    I’m impressed that you can restore your own machines!!! I’ve very non-mechanically inclined and have a hard enough time with my own non-vintage Kenmore! I can do the basics, clean and oil, change the feet and needles, but that’s abt it! And featherweights are amazing!! The first quilting class I took the shop owner let me work on her featherweight. What a treat!

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