Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Everything Old is New Again

I like old sewing implements.  
If I ever win the lottery one of the first things on my wish list to purchase is going to be a lovely but hideously expensive 18th century sewing kit.  I love the history as well as the beauty of sewing objects like this.  And I love that so many of them were practical items in use.  I'm not a saver myself when it comes to fine household things.  I USE my grandmother’s china and the good flatware and the exquisite tea set.  Of course I would be heartbroken if any of those pieces got broken in use but I think its more heart breaking to never have used them at all.  When I think of the many items in my mother’s house that only collect dust because she considered them too good to actually use, I feel sad.  In all the years my mother has owned those fine items, practically never has she let herself discover the joy of using them herself.  That's not going to be me.  So, if I'm ever fortunate enough to own an antique sewing kit I'm going to have a great time using it in the creation of my own pieces of history.

One antique sewing item I have been able to afford is a vintage sewing machine -  well, three of them actually.  I have a 1923 Singer Egyptian decaled hand crank, a 1937 White Family treadle and a 1952 beige colored electric Singer A300.  Of those three my favourite to use has been the 1923 Singer hand crank.  The quilt I have on my bed right now was pieced mostly on it.  I think the reason why I’m especially fond of using the hand crank is the silence.  There’s no electrical buzz, no beeps, no sound at all except for the lifting arm causing the needle to move up and down through the fabric.  There’s a zen to using this bygone technology that I don’t get using my super-duper modern marvel of a machine.  But having said that I wouldn’t give up my Janome 6600P for the world!  

Zen.  Meditation.  Internal contemplation.  
Maybe these are the things I get from my hobby of quilting and more specifically from hand piecing.  As I work the fabric with my hands my brain wanders and drifts from one topic to another like hyperlinks on the Internet.  And if I had one of those wonderful turn of the century (or older...) sewing kits it would just add to my already pleasurable sewing experiences.  

Come on lottery - Momma needs an old pair of scissors!

2 comments:

  1. I'm using my old sewing tools too. Except for some of the old needles and pins, nothing is hands off! I like my new scissoroos too.

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  2. Wow - I never thought of collecting old needles and pins! I agree with you there about not using them. And plus I'm a bit annal about my needles and pins. I pay entirely too much money for the extra sharp, extra long pins that Clover puts out because I absolutely love them.

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