We're heading into that time of year when many are in search of the perfect gift. And what better gift for the sewist in your life (even if that's you!) than a vintage sewing machine?
Buying, of course, presents little problem, as they are easily found on your local Craigslist, and, with a bit more involved, on Ebay. But selling is a different matter; the competition is many and varied. I'll be looking for ways to stand out from the crowd in order to achieve the price point I place on my machines.
I'm preparing to "show off" a number of my machines at an at-home holiday event, and I'm looking forward to the reaction of those invited to what is, in effect, a "tour" of vintage sewing machines from an era of increased reliance on striking good looks and the promise of remarkable domestic achievement. And there will be cookies.
I'm placing my machines about the living and dining rooms in what I hope to be as understated a way as possible (I don't know that I could well-explain a Singer Featherweight next to the toaster, or a Vigorelli Universal on the toilet tank), while highlighting the obvious attributes of their immediate attraction. After all, it isn't every household that has need for so many sewing machines.
So which machines and why?
Well, the great names to begin with: Singer, Elna, Pfaff, Necchi. And then, all of them? No. I'm sure I couldn't find room to modestly display as many as twenty two (and counting) sewing machines. And, to be sure, some few are either repeats of the same model, or are similar enough that not all add more to the effect. But those that are recognized classics will draw their admirers if they are not often seen by members of this particular group of friends (a creative bunch), and will both instruct and amaze (well, that's my expectation, but then, these are my "babies").
So, while it's a bit early for holly and mistletoe – and none of my machines can easily be hung, even with the greatest care – the season's approach is in the air, and over a warming dinner of butternut soup with holiday cookies for dessert, I expect conversation to include a comment or two about our choice of decorations surrounding the dinner table.
I'll leave the bathroom to New Year's Eve.