Friends, I must ask your opinion about something (again). What do you think of hand crank sewing machines and I'm not talking toys here.
I know a lot of you won't be able to answer this question because you don't think anything about them; you've never given hand crank sewing machines a moment's thought.
But the more I wonder what the future holds as far as oil and other energy supplies go -- usually at 4 am in a cold sweat-- the more those old hand crank Singers are starting to appeal to me, like the one in my friend Johanna's sewing machine museum that I may swipe this weekend while she's out running errands. Another option would be to wait for one to show up at the flea market or to find one on eBay.
Before I even start thinking about buying another sewing machine, however, I want to run it past you, as I do all my big purchases. You're probably asking yourself, "Doesn't Peter have a working treadle?" Well, yes, I have a working treadle, but suppose I have to change locations in a hurry. Am I going to roll my treadle down to the barge, donkey cart, or mule train as I evacuate the big city? It would be much simpler to carry a portable 35 lb. Singer hand crank, don't you think? If I can't sew, how can I blog?
Have any of you ever sewn with a hand crank machine? Were you able to control the fabric with just one hand, or did you have someone crank it for you while you fed the fabric under the presser foot -- an obedient child or loyal spouse, perhaps?
Do you think of hand cranks merely as decor (as I suspect Johanna does), akin to wagon wheel chandeliers, beer barrel foot rests, or the much maligned-for-good-reason sewing machine lamp -- yesterday's invaluable tool/today's kitsch conversation piece?
Would you ever buy a hand crank yourself, assuming you don't own one already? (Weren't they popular in the UK, actually?)
Do you ever think about how you'd sew if there weren't any electricity? If Laura Ingalls could do it....
I'm a native New Yorker and sewing fanatic! I started sewing in 2009 and today make all my own clothes using vintage sewing machines and vintage patterns. I also sew for private clients. Welcome to the warm and whimsical world of Male Pattern Boldness, where the conversation is sewing, style, fashion, fabric, and more!