Sew What?

If you know us, you know we LOVE a really good estate sale.  What makes a really good estate sale, you ask?  Many times, for us, it is getting to see what a really passionate collector managed to accumulate.  We love someone who is really committed to what they collect, and sometimes an estate sale is the only way that collection comes out of the closet. Heck, we don’t even have to buy much to have a really good time, just seeing what’s there is loads of fun.  BUT, if what they liked and what we like overlap, boy, do we do the happy dance!  Recently, we attended a sale of a lady who apparently REALLY liked sewing things, and I don’t mean just a tiny bit.  Take a look and enjoy with us!

We started in the garage:

And while this was not really a part of the collection, we had to laugh.  Just in case you can’t tell what it is, we did turn it over:

Who wouldn’t “Whistle While They Worked” with a duster like that?

OK, on to the meat of the sale.  This woman was really into sewing machines, and I mean REALLY:

Check out that oddball one in front!  There were many Singers; here is a nice old one in a case:

Weren’t things so much prettier back then?  Of course, you probably didn’t have time to notice as you were pumping away on that treadle!

Maybe this is more your style:

Still a treadle, but have you ever seen one like that?  Don’t miss the butterfly-looking treadle piece.  It was actually shaped like two footprints, but together they made a rather nifty butterfly.  This case had the older wooden cover instead of the machine folding down underneath.

For a really odd-looking beast, take a look at this one:

It was still a treadle, but worked front to back.  I kinda like the big sewing area to hold the fabric.  Here is the tag for this one:

At that price, no one was jumping too fast on it, but then again there were several spool cabinets, and they went so fast it made your head spin at prices in the $400 to $600 range!

If you think full-size machines just take up too much space, there was a Singer Featherweight (sorry, no pix of that one, Google it, they are cute) and plenty of toy ones!  Take a peek:

I really wanted the one with its original box, but was not feeling flush enough to shell out the 90 bucks they wanted for it.  I did succumb to this one in the $60 range:

Dang, it’s cute, isn’t it?  It’s about eight inches tall.  I haven’t had the time to thread it up and see how it sews, but I am sure it was supposed to, and everything seems to be there.  What a toy!  This was only the tip of the iceberg.  We didn’t take an exact count, but I am pretty sure there were over 50 sewing machines in this house!

As if that wasn’t enough, there were all sorts of sewing accouterments:

Including a plethora of pin cushions, needle books, spool cabinets, dozens of pairs of vintage scissors, sewing machine attachments, and much much more!  I picked up a couple of small things, but mostly behaved after plumping for the tiny machine.  I did buy a pretty pair of scissors, this fun 1920’s sewing book, and an old-fashioned scissor sharpener:

I actually was glad to find the sharpener, they really do work, and the scissors are pretty as well as nicely made.  They cut like a dream.

Deb found a few fun things, too:

The collector really liked needle books and had a bunch that I’ve never even seen before.  I think maybe the atomic one is more recent, since it’s 98¢, but the one above it has to be from the 1930–1940 range with the style and car.  Of course, they still had 90% to all of their needles inside.  I’ve got to stop buying these, but I keep finding them, and I really like the graphics.

I have lots of these, too:

The little traveling sewing kits are just so fun.  There is something about miniatures that I find appealing.  The long narrow sewing kit had never been used.  Can you see all the threads that are still woven in their cool original pattern?  The round kit had a cute flower cross-stitched on its lid, and inside had wooden spools, a thimble, scissors, and really old safety pins.  I love it when it’s still mostly intact.

This last thing was for my husband, and cost a whole dollar:

He reads and collects comics, but not really Archie, or ones primarily aimed at teenagers.  I thought he might like this one for the atomic bomb connection to the 1950s.  And, maybe he might identify with the bratty brother in the background.  He did like it, although he has never heard of that title before.

There were some other fun things in the sale, too.  At least she used some of her machines; there were some lovely quilts:

This was an extra darling Sun Bonnet Sue variation.  She also seemed drawn to old-fashioned linens.  There were some very elegant vintage fashions from the late 1800s.  Deb was particularly fond of this apron:

It was pretty unusual, I mean, who makes a corset apron? It was priced at more that she wanted to pay.  In general, this particular company prices things on the high side.  Gosh, we are cheap!  Even at those prices, you have to give in once in a while, and if we were made of money, we would probably do it a whole lot more often.  We also both fell in love with this awesome enameled kitchen table:

How pretty is that?  You would never even need a tablecloth to dress it up!  We enjoyed watching the eventual buyer fall madly in love with it too, so we know it will have a good home.

All in all, we had a blast and were there for a couple of hours.  Of course, part of that was standing in the never-ending line to pay, another drawback for this company, but we always get a chance to chat with some nice people, and see what treasures they found, so it isn’t too onerous.  We just thought that it would be fun to share some really great things this week, but don’t worry, I am sure we will be back to our regular old cranky selves by next time

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6 Responses to Sew What?

  1. What treasures. The needle books are always great fun. I also love the graphics. I think the “Atomic” kit is my fave.
    Enjoy the weekend,

  2. Barbara Forde says:

    I love all the vintage sewing kits and needles. I probably would have spent more that I needed to had I been there. Great finds.

    • kathy & deb says:

      Oh, it was so hard! There were really cool engraved scissors, scissor holders, buttons, etc. We could have spent a lot more money if we weren’t careful and disciplined.

  3. Inger E Karlsson says:

    Love all the vintage sewing machines and props! I’m sure I got the exact same sewing machine as the one you bought, as Christmas gift more than 60 years ago. Loved it but wasn’t allowed to use it myself, just with help from mom and she never had time :o(

    • kathy & deb says:

      Oh, how frustrating! Do you still have it? It’s never too late to do those things that we missed out on so long ago! Thanks for sharing; we’re glad there are folks out there interested in the same things as us.

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