Going Old School- my Grandma’s sewing machine

Although I’ve often wanted a new sewing machine, I’ve always had a soft spot for old things (and great deals) and that spilled over into my sewing machines too. A hand-me-down treasure or a garage sale find of a solid old machine was good enough ($25.oo for a machine AND an amazing sewing table? Sold!)- and I’d use the machine and get the last bit of life out of it before moving on to my next treasure. A sample of my past babies:


This past year, however, I ended up with two new treasures. First of all, I finally bought myself a brand new machine. A Singer Quantum Stylist 9980. I love it. The thread cutter alone gives me a huge thrill, not to mention all the amazing stitches and the button holes. (Oh the button holes) It’s also powerful enough to sew right through you’re forefinger… but that’s another story….

My Baby – Singer Quantum Stylist 9980

Not long after that, in the fall of last year my elderly grandparents moved in with my parents. While helping them move, my Grandma gave me her sewing machine. It was the one she purchased just after they got married. The machine dates back to 1948. It came in its original case with a bunch of accessories and even the original instruction manual. I remember sewing Barbie clothes on it as a little kid. My Grandma said it still worked really well, but I was just thrilled to have it and would have kept it in any condition. (I may have a bit of a problem with that…)

So for the last 6 months it sat on a shelf while I sewed away with my new machine – until last week when I had a little thread cutter incident. I’m not sure exactly what happened, but there was a thread jam, and some rubbing noises, and when I took it apart to check, the little blade in the thread cutter popped out. The lady at the sewing machine store said she had never even heard of that happening (great) but that they would put a rush on it for me. And it’s covered by warranty so it’s cool.

In the meantime though, I’ve been getting a little antsy. The repair could take up to 2 weeks and I’m part way through several projects. Yep, that’s how I roll. So a few days in, I hauled out one of my oldies to do some simple seams. It was terrible. I don’t know how I used to work on it – see, now I’m spoiled. So I put that one aside to send to charity. Then, for fun, I decided to get my Grandma’s machine out. To my huge surprise, it sewed wonderfully. And it even has a ruffler foot, a hem attachment and some funky looking button hole dies. It was fun to spend an afternoon sewing on my Grandma’s old machine. Even when my baby is back, I’m going to keep her old machine out where I can use it now and then.

And with my last old beast of a machine going off to charity, I’m down to 5 sewing machines – wait, that’s good for me! My new machine, my grandma’s machine, my serger and two pretty cool old decorative machines.


They don’t make ’em like they used to. 🙂


(the oldest Nuhn girl)



9 thoughts on “Going Old School- my Grandma’s sewing machine

  1. I have a Singer that’s very similar. It’s called the Featherweight but you can imagine how heavy it is, especially compared to a modern machine of the same size. How lovely to see one enjoyed and in use.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Gosh, your Grandmothers machine is beautiful. I would never give something like that away either. I totally get this obsession with collecting sewing machines. I am a newbie so I only have one machine but I am definitely lusting after a serger so I reckon the addiction is underway!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I was given a 1930s hand cranked Singer that I use from time to time – works really well. Your post made me think I should use it more often. I am doing a 1930s sewalong, so really should get it out for that.

    Liked by 1 person

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