Sunday, June 16, 2013

A New Gizmo

I love my sewing machine.  My grandmother gave it to me several years ago, after realizing that she just couldn't sew anymore. It may be my most treasured material possession.

It's a Bernina 930 -- a workhorse that I've used to sew clothing, draperies, quilts, upholstery and even a very heavy fabric awning.  It sews a multitude of stitches, many of which I have never even tried.  However, it doesn't make great buttonholes.  It makes decent 5-step buttonholes, but 9 times out of 10, I choose to hand-work a buttonhole or make a bound buttonhole.

Several times I have considered purchasing a newer computerized machine with all the fancy options, but I was mostly happy with my 930, and just couldn't justify buying a newer machine.  Then I realized that with my short shank presser foot adapter, I could use this with my 930:
Greist Vintage Buttonholer, style #1
It was patiently waiting for me on ebay for the low price of $18, which included shipping.  This model is from 1956, and it arrived in perfect shape.  It makes nice buttonholes with five little templates and even comes with a keyhole version.  I used it for the buttonholes on the waistband of my red pants.  It was fun to watch, simple to use and they came out very nicely.

The width of the stitch is adjustable and the stitching will appear thicker by running it around more than one time.  Here is the 1 1/8" keyhole buttonhole in contrasting thread:

I'm still figuring out the nuances of lining up the fabric and stitch width, but it's super fun, and I'm very pleased with my purchase. I'm a little worried that I may never hand-work a buttonhole again!

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