Friday, 9 March 2012

Dragons and Singers

I had a wonderful surprise this week. Look who arrived all the way from Canada!

 I'd really admired  (ok - coveted!) the gorgeous folk art dragon my dear friend Shell of The Raspberry Rabbits had bought from the talented Deb Paxton, of Paxton Valley Folk Art.

Unbeknown to me, Shell ( who really is one of the loveliest people I know) had arranged for Deb to make me my very own Dieter! He arrived so beautifully packaged and with a sweet little Easter heart ornament from Deb. To say I was thrilled is an understatement!

I've profusely thanked them both, as you may imagine -  and make no apologies for doing it again here!

Dieter's arrival was very timely - we've had a traumatic week as my new great niece and her mummy were both very poorly following the birth and have been in hospital all week. I'm really glad to say little Emily Alice and her mum are now both doing well now and came home yesterday - so Dieter is really doing his thing as a good luck dragon!

I had another bit of good fortune too  - well done Dieter! I have my mum's old Singer machine, in its original case - but the key had sheared off in the lock and we couldn't get inside. One of my students brought her hand machine to my class and I was so envious!  She very kindly asked her wonderful husband ( who is a practical whiz)  if he could  sort out  the lock for me - and he did! When we opened the case the machine was in terrific condition. She was still well oiled and working perfectly (and this is the honest truth); she hasn't been used since 1968/9 when my mum got her first electric machine! We've polished her up and I'm stitching a cushion panel - and really enjoying it! For simple sewing,  I just don't think you can beat these old machines- plus you can sew outside when it's warm too!

As you can see I have all the original  parts, case, extension table and sewing tin with its accessories!

Now I know these machines aren't worth much today - and you  often see them  for sale, but to  me she is priceless and quite a beauty. (I'm not at all biased!)


She's a Singer 28K made in 1939.She has this beautiful embossed plate on the back of the machine, which I love. Andy traced her through the serial number, and we found 20,000 of these machines were made just before WWII.

Under the sewing tin, I found the original receipt from January 1940!

I wonder how our modern electric machines would fare if they had been packed away for 44 years? I suspect they  may not react quite so well - and wonderful as they are, they don't really have the same charm, do they?

So  I now have three machines - my  mother would never believe it! This one is absolutely my favourite though and I'd never part with it.

I haven't had much time for practical creation this week -  but our bird feeders continue to  be in a frenzy of activity as spring approaches,  so here's a quick sketch of a wren, which I hope to use later as part of a design.

 May the bluebird of creativity land on your bird feeder! x


  1. My mum used to have one of those that I used to use when I was much younger (pre-teens, probably, back in the early 80s). Brings back memories and I wouldn't have any trouble getting it to stitch slowly enough to not scare me!!

    Glad to hear your family are OK.=)

  2. Jules, so glad Dieter arrived safely and also that he is working hard to bring you and your family good luck, so glad that your niece and her babe are home and doing well! Your Mom's sewing machine is a beauty! They certainly don't make them like that anymore and what a wonderful thing to be able to use your machine to create and know your Mom's hands did the same, truly a gift. Your wren sketch is beautiful, we saw and heard our first robin of the year here yesterday so Spring is truly on it's way, hooray!

  3. Hi Jules - Dieter is so handsome - what a happy surprise to receive! Your mom's sewing machine is really beautiful. I love all the detailing on those old machines. I'm glad your niece and great niece are doing better. Beautiful wren sketch too, I'm looking forward to seeing your design. Have a lovely weekend!

  4. Hi Jules
    I learnt to sew on one the same and had it until I was nearly 50 when I was given an electric one.
    I made all my childrens clothes with it and even made myself a summer coat.Seeing your photos brought back many long forgotten memories.I love your little bird drawing.

  5. Gorgeous - both the Dragon and the Singer!

  6. I have an old sewing machine, just like you, but I never made something that sweet, than your little dragon.
    Too cute!

  7. So glad you liked him Jules!
    Ok that machine.....OH MY GOSH! That's soooooooooo gorgeous!

  8. Hi Jules! Long time since I've visited and its great to catch up on what you've been doing. I love the bird drawing, you are clever.I have some old sewing machines too, they are beautiful aren't they. x


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