Archive for October, 2012

My cousin Anita and her partner Ian recently gave me a vintage sewing machine – the Singer Featherweight – that had belonged to Ian’s mother, an accomplished quilter.

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The Singer Featherweight is the ultimate blend of simplicity, elegance and performance.

Featherweight in the 50’s had a different meaning than today – it’s a solid little machine that is lovely and heavy with gorgeous design features. It comes in a small case and when I opened it up it still has the original Singer lubricant on hand and an attachment called the ‘ruffler’ which I can’t wait to try out. It even came with it’s own sturdy little fold up table. It’s so straight forward to thread and use – and is so pretty. Mind you it only has one stitch – straight! Others may like the myriad of functions and stitches available on modern machines but this one is for me. Besides if I do need the occasional zig-zag I’ll pull out my also vintage 70’s Bernina which I guess would be considered high tech compared to the Featherweight.

After threading it up (so simple) my first stitches were perfect even though I suspect it has been a long long time since it was used or serviced. Apparently this little machine is coveted by quilters because the stitches it gives are so even.  A quick google search listed a ton of links and sites dedicated to the Featherweight – there is even a Featherweight Fanatics List.

Beautiful celtic designs on the machine…

Singer Featherweight in action

Gorgeous deco plate

My first project using the ‘Featherweight’  is a memory textile that I’m doing for my father-in-law’s family – R.I.P. Rupert Gomes. The fabric has been eco-dyed and printed using plants from my garden. I’m doing some hand embroidery and incorporating an interactive element with text of all the funny things that Rupert used to say… how about this one…

“If an egg and a half costs a cent and a half, how many hens does it take to shingle a roof with pancakes?’ Whaaaaa? Will post some pictures of the textile when it’s complete.


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