Thursday, October 12, 2017

Plush Felt Kitty Craft using Fashion Discs

I have decided from time to time I will be showing a few little projects I have done with my Slant-O-Matics. These will be anything from simple crafts to Halloween costumes to formal wear.

Here is one of my projects: Plush Felt Kitties.

I made these little guys for my niece's birthday. They are a fun way to actually use those fancy stitches the Slant-O-Matic is so good at.

If you are interested in a tutorial it can be found at

I used the Singer Fashion Discs to do the kitties' stripes. Pretty adorable.

503A For Parts (Or so I thought)

I was out of town visiting my sister and came across a VERY ragged Singer carrying case at her local thrift store.  I peeked inside only to find a decrepit 503A, my favorite model of all the Slant-O-Matics. It was missing the hinged top of the cover and didn't have a cord or foot pedal. The case was broken and had no clasps. The machine was filthy and grimy and dusty. It did, however have a cam inside, disk number 0, which I think is the best disk to have and worth a few dollars by itself. They were asking $10.00 for him. A great deal for a parts machine, I thought. I bought it, not believing it could be functional because it was so beat up, and thinking I would keep it around for parts just in case my own 503A ever needed organ donation.

I brought the poor guy home and took a better look at him. He was splattered with what appeared to be spaghetti sauce and a good amount of dirt. I gave him a good scrub. He polished up very well. (Of course I did not take a before photo, darn it). I cleaned the inside, put in a bobbin, threaded the machine, and plugged it in using the cord for my 503A.

The machine fired right up and made a smooth, even, beautiful stitch the first try. I didn't even have to adjust the tension. Nothing. It was just perfect.

So of course he's not going to be for parts.

He's a survivor.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Singer 301A

As I've mentioned before my Singer Slant-O-Matic 503A is my favorite machine. I have a confession for you. I've been using another machine.

My lightbulb burned out my my precious 503 and I was forced to use another machine for a bit until I replaced the bulb (which really isn't that hard as it turns out. The bulbs are readily available at JoAnn's for less than $3.00 and are really easy to replace). I am a late night sewing person so the lightbulb is really very key so I had to use another machine for a while. I pulled out my Singer 301A, also a slant needle machine like the Slant-O-Matics. The 301 was the first slant machine. Mine is from 1956 and he's a beauty. (I'll post a photo of him soon. Promise).

I found him on an online classified ad. The seller wanted $60.00 for him plus all his accessories. I'll admit, I was first drawn to him only for his accessories (which work on the other slant machines; you just have to remember they're made for a straight stitch machine). He was decked out with just about every original accessory he would have come with: his original trapezoid case (which is awesome in itself), a buttonholer, automatic zigzagger with the original 4 cams plus an additional 4 optional cams, all of which are in their original boxes with original instructions. He also came with his original manual, which was the old one with the black cover, his original green accessories box packed with feet, and 6 original vintage bobbins. I wanted his accessories but had also wanted to try out one of the original slant machines. And at $60.00 that can't be beat.

I gave him a quick test drive and he was amazing. Very smooth. Very quiet. Very cute. $60.00 later the adoption was complete and he was a member of my (ever growing) sewing machine family.

The 301 is sometimes called the big sister of the little Singer Featherweight sewng machine. Like the Featherweight, the 301 is a portable machine but it's a bit bigger. The 301 is a 3/4 size machine, which means it's lighter and more portable. Lighter compared to other solid metal machines, that is. It still weighs in at about 16 pounds plus the accessories and case. There are tables for the 301's but mine is strictly a portable machine; I keep him savely tucked in his case when not in use. He's a straight stich only machine, which of course means there's no zigzagging with out the automatic zigzagger attachment. I have found that my current sewing projects (mostly super small doll clothes) do not require much zigzagging and the straight stitch machine fills my needs well.

The bobbin winder for the 301A is on the front of the machine. It's really pretty genius. You push the bobbin up against the handwheel and that is what fills the bobbin.  In theory I guess you could be filling a bobbin while you were sewing. If you really wanted to.

Anyway, when theh lightbulb on Sinclair (my delightful 503) went out I dragged out the 301A, set him up, and have been using him for a while now. It's great because he's so portable I can sew anywhere in the house without much trouble setting him up. I can sew at night in the living room, which is way from the kiddies, and not worry about waking them.

There certainly are times when a zigzag machine are key. I haven't yet tried the zigzagger or buttonholer on the 301A yet but will let you know what I think of them when I do. It's so simple to switch from straight stitching to zigzag on the 503, 401, and 500 machines that I go to them when I need zigzagging capabilities.

But I am really liking my 301A.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Awesome Antique Singer Sewing Sign


Check out this gorgeous present my mom gave me for my birthday!!!

It's glorious.

It's a vintage tin Singer Sewing litho sign.

I did some research on this beauty. There weren't many clues but I came to the conclusion it was made before 1928 because the company that made the sign shut down that year.  I compared the machine, which I believe is a Singer model 66K. Judging by the hair and clothes of the girl in the logo it's probably from about 1905, which means it's not only super cool but also super old.

Turns out it was a calendar. The little arms on the front would hold the calendar parts.

I was thinking I could duplicate the calendar pages and have it be a calendar again but I have an even cooler use for it: It's a magnet board. It's tin so the magnets stick right to it. That way I don't have to use any tape or mess with it's finish at all. It's perfect.

I've decided to keep my project ideas on there. It hangs on the wall right above my Singer Slant-O-Matic 503A where I can see it when I sew.

I've been collecting odd vintage sewing bits to be magnets. There will be more to come about that. You're going to love it.

"For Every Stitching Operation." Awesome.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Singer Accessories Tin

As you know, I love going to thrift stores and rescuing Singer Slant-o-Matic sewing machines but I also love picking up accessories to add to my ever-growing collection. Whenever my mom goes to her local thrift store she always keeps an eye out for anything vintage sewing related for me.

Check out this little gem she picked up for me! It's an accessory tin, about 2.5 inches by 6 inches. A real beauty! Based on its red and green zig zag design it is from the late '50s to early '60s, just like my favorite Slant-o-Matics.

It has all the dings and dents that come with being 50+ years old, which only add to the vintage delightfulness.

In all my research I have never come across another tin with this design!

It's a real find.

And the best part?

It only cost $1.00.

Friday, August 31, 2012

ANOTHER Sewing Machine?

Dodge, my delightful 4 year old, said something hilarious the other day.

I had brought home yet another machine to add to my ever-changing collection.

I hauled it in and put it in the hall (with the three newest machines in my menagerie. I saw him looking at them all, thinking. Finally he said, "If we get any more sewing machines we won't be able to walk around the house and they will CRUSH us!"

Hmm. Maybe 9 sewing machines is a little excessive...

...but only maybe.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

More Singer Sewing Book

I have been pouring over the delightful Singer Sewing Book - A Complete Reference Guide to Sewing. I came across a great section on your appearance while you sew:

I love this.

Powder? Lipstick?

When I sew I'm lucky to be out of my PJs.