Friday, July 6, 2012

Coronado Blue

Shortly after arriving here in Saskatchewan, I realized that I was going to really miss being without a sewing machine for the entire summer. So, the hunt was on for a new-to-me vintage machine that was inexpensive and that wouldn't require a lot of work to get up and running. After stalking Kijiji for over a week, the perfect machine finally appeared:

Isn't it gorgeous?! I paid just $25 for this handsome blue machine. It's a Japanese-made machine, badged Coronado, and was "Sold Exclusively by MacLeod's Limited" (according to the round badge on the front). It came with a bunch of extra bobbins, and not much else, no manual or anything. These machines are pretty straight-forward, though, and take standard needles and low-shank feet, so I'm not too worried about it.

It's by far the cleanest vintage machine I've ever come across. The finish is nearly impeccable, no scratches or chips in the finish anywhere. The chrome is shiny with no rust or pitting. Even the case is in fantastic condition. The only things marring its perfection are two "seam guides" drawn on with permanent marker (ugh!) and this weird brownish stain on the machine bed, that almost looks like a kind of flash/burn mark. Hopefully I'll be able to remove both of those without ruining the finish. I'm open to suggestions on that!

On a side note, how do you like the green background? I chose it because it reminds me of summertime at home, with the trees all in full leafy green-ness. There's a severe lack of green out here on the prairies!

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Grandview Bag (aka RUFFLES!)

After my first attempt didn't turn out quite as planned, I made a trip to the fabric store to find something inspiring for a second try. I immediately fell in love with some pink crushed velvet, but was put off by the price tag of $24.99/meter... WAY more than I ever spend on fabric. I'm more of a half-off-$9.99/meter kind of girl LOL. After perusing the whole store, though, all I could think of was that pink crushed velvet. Finally I decided to splurge and get a meter. Imagine my delight when the employee at the cutting table informed me it was on sale for $9.99/meter, and that for members it was also Buy One, Get 2 Free. Woot! Now I have over 2 meters left and no idea what to do with it LOL I'm sure something will come up at some point, though!

So, once again, a Grandview Bag from The Boy Trifecta. I scaled down the pattern significantly, probably about 50-60%. Added a recessed zipper (excellent tutorial I always use, from U-Handbag) and lining in a pretty cotton fabric. And of course, the ruffles! I'm so madly in love with them, and with the ruffler attachment that came with my vintage Brother machine.

Here's my finished bag. I've already gotten tons of compliments and "Where did you buy that bag?" from people. Love being able to say "oh, thank you, I made it myself!"

This afternoon I'm heading back to my mother-in-law's to finish sewing my first ever garment, a top for myself. I'm making it out of a knit fabric, which I've never used before. None of my machines have a stretch stitch option for sewing with knits, so I'm using her newer Kenmore machine. If I find I'll be using knit fabrics more often, I might have to buy an inexpensive newer machine with a stretch stitch function just for that purpose. We'll see. Hopefully I'll have photos of that tomorrow!

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Brother Super StreamLiner Sewing Machine Manual

I've had the great pleasure "meeting" several wonderful people online in the last several weeks because of my new vintage Brother machine. I've had the opportunity to oogle several different "brothers" to my machine, which are identical except for being an awesome blue colour instead of a lovely pink like mine.

One thing I found when searching out information online, is that many people who manage to acquire one of these great machines aren't lucky enough to also acquire the manual. I love to see a great vintage machine being used and loved, and it's easier to do so when you have the manual! So I'm happy to provide a copy of this one. Feel free to download it, save it, print it... just please don't offer it up for sale. Special thanks to Kim from The Sassy Crafter, for providing me with the 2 pages my manual was missing and allowing me to add them to the document.

If you download the manual, I'd love to see your machine! Leave me a comment with a link!

Download the manual here!

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Vintage 1958 Brother Sewing Machine

So, my other sewing machine, a Singer 411G, was causing me some frustration. It came in a small cabinet, and I'd been on the hunt for a larger desk for it, with drawers for storage. I finally found one, the dimensions seemed right, and the person who sold it to me said it was a Singer cabinet. Turns out that wasn't the case, as my machine fit when it was in the raised position, but it wouldn't lower into the cabinet. While on the hunt for a new desk, I ran across an ad for this vintage Brother Super Streamliner. I knew next to nothing about Brother sewing machines, but I just couldn't pass up this adorable machine. And did I mention it's pink?!

It came in a wonderful desk with 3 good sized drawers for storage, as well as two metal tins full of accessories. One of the tins had about a dozen different foot attachments, including a ruffler (I've been wanting one!) and several sizes of hemmers. And I was thrilled to discover that my low-shank walking foot from my old Singer machine fits it. I'm glad I decided to keep  it instead of selling it when that old machine broke. I also got a handful of bobbins, the attachments' book, and the original machine manual.

It was pretty grimy when I got it, but I've got it all cleaned up, oiled up, and running like a dream :-) The finish is mostly in fantastic condition, with some nicks on the machine bed and some wear on the feed knob. The decals are all pristine. And I absolutely LOVE just how 50's this machine is, from the chrome detailing, to the grills, to the awesome Brother logo, to the milkshake pink colour. It looks like it should be sitting on the table of a rockin' 50's diner. Maybe I was born in the wrong decade, I think I was meant to be a teen in the 50's!

oh, and check out the neat telescopic spool pin! Slides down, and then pops back up with a touch. Fun!