Sewing

I took out my trusty sewing machine a couple of days ago with the intention of finishing off some cotton pants I cut out before I went to Bali in 2009. I’ve always enjoyed sewing; the creative part is so readily seen and then being able to wear the ‘creation’ is fun too.


I learned to sew at school, and although I don’t do nearly as much these days, I have sewn many things over the years. I am a stickler for using the correct methods and was mortified when I couldn’t remember how to stitch a bound buttonhole. I needed to have a couple of buttonholes for the drawstring to keep the pants up. The internet to the rescue … but I wish I still had the text book we used at school. I think mine must’ve fallen to bits because I can’t find it anywhere.


For years I used an old Singer sewing machine that had belonged to my grandmother and then passed to my aunt who passed it to me. This machine had a personality and it was a difficult personality! Nevertheless, I loved my Singer and it was useful because where we lived in the Zambezi Valley there was no electricity. When we moved to the farm near Salisbury I borrowed my mother’s Singer and that was equally difficult to work with! As a child I used to sit under the table when she was sewing and push the foot switch for her until the dreadful day when I pushed too early and the needle went through her finger nail. I can’t remember how she freed herself and the pain must’ve been excruciating.


My sewing machine now is an Elna Lotus* and it is about 43 years old. I bought it soon after the model was released. There was a demonstration model at the Royal Salisbury Show in (I think) 1968 and I fell in love with it. Of course, in those days, before credit cards and so on, I had to save for it and each month I’d take my £5 to the shop until I had paid off the required @font-face { font-family: “Cambria”; }p.MsoNormal, li.MsoNormal, div.MsoNormal { margin: 0cm 0cm 0.0001pt; font-size: 12pt; font-family: “Times New Roman”; }div.Section1 { page: Section1; } £50 or 60. The price included some lessons on the machine and I was eager to learn all about how to use my gorgeous purchase.

For my little girl I stitched dresses for her, pajamas, hats and dungarees. I sewed dresses for my mother and a suit for my sister. I sewed culottes (very fashionable in those days) for myself with a matching lined jacket. Curtains, cushion covers and whatever else was needed could be produced on the Elna Lotus.
*1968 Lotus – a truly innovative concept. The first compact household sewing machine due to its reduced size and weight. The protection flaps replaced the carrying case and formed a sewing table when opened. The accessory case was built into the top of the machine. Selected by the Museum of Modern Art in New York for its “Design Collection”.
Advertisements
Sewing

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s