Readers, I received the most wonderful gift in the mail yesterday! It's a vintage 1920's Singer Model 20 toy sewing machine. It's in great condition and sews a beautiful chain stitch. Thank you, reader Mary!
From what I could gather from my initial online research, this model was originally manufactured around 1910 and remained in production -- albeit in slightly more streamlined form -- up until the 1970's. Many of you may know these later toy machines as the Singer Sewhandy. They frequently show up on eBay.
These were handcrank machines, all metal, and were built to last.
From the top, the stitch looks like regular straight stitch, but the underside reveals the chain design that would look terrific as decoration on a Western shirt yoke.
I've made a short video of me using the machine. I hope you enjoy it!
It's hard to believe toy sewing machines were once so beautifully engineered and solidly constructed, when you consider that today they look like this.
In closing, have you ever used a toy sewing machine? If you have more information to share about these wonderful old toy Singers, please do. (BTW, what's the best way to ensure that a chain stitch never unravels?)
You can view additional closeup shots of the Singer Model 20 here.
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, in addition to sewing for private clients. Welcome to the warm and whimsical world of Male Pattern Boldness, where the conversation is sewing, style, fashion, fabric, and more!