My sister-in-law had given me a Simplicity Fashion Pro a few years ago when she outgrew it. It was a fun little machine. Simple. Plastic. Cheap. And it got A LOT of use from her and A LOT of use from me before finally giving up the ghost. With it gone, I was in the market for a sewing machine. A lot of the neighbor ladies had light little plastic machines that they could carry to and from quilting and sewing classes. And I WANTED one. But they cost $200.00 and it was going to take some time to save up that kind of money. So Mom very thoughtfully offered to let me borrow an old machine she had.
When I was about 12 we came across the old machine at a neighbor's yard sale. It was old and HEAVY in a big plastic case. There was a box with some odd feet and attachments. The neighbor, Michelle, wanted $30.00 for the lot. Thirty WHOLE DOLLARS. I remember it seeming very steep but for some reason, Mom went for it. I don't remember much about it. I used it a few times. My sister used it a few times. It was difficult to use because it didn't have a cabinet so it didn't see a lot of sewing time. It sat in Mom's sewing room, alone and forgotten.
I must admit, I was a little disappointed. I really wanted one of those new machines. But I HAD to have a sewing machine. (There's no way to live without one). So I brought the machine and the box of bits home (thinking it was only temporary) and got it out.
A Singer Slant-o-Matic 503. Very retro with its "Rocketeer" design. Very sturdy with its solid metal construction. It had lots of parts: the original attachments box, 8 fashion disks, spare lightbulb, a partial buttonholer, zipper foot, general purpose foot, spare spool pin, multislotted binder, ruffler, rolled hem foot, straight stitch plate, and case. I didn't know what any of them did or were but I began to see what a treasure it was.
I plugged the poor neglected guy in and he sewed like a dream, right off, without needing a tune up, even after all those years of not being used. I did a few test projects and I was hooked. I found a free download of the manual on the internet and began to learn more about him. Mom very generously said I could keep the machine and he and I have been best friends ever since.