Friday, 30 December 2011

My Sewing Machine - Vintage Bernina 700

 I proudly announce, my sewing machine!

There is a long story behind this machine, but here I just plan to add a summary for my memory's sake.

This is my late and much missed Grandmother's machine. Abba (we couldn't get our baby tongues around Abuela, Grandma in Spanish) was tall and beautiful, had a history of making her own clothes and studied fibre arts continuously. I can imagine her whizzing up beautiful clothes, she lived through the Mad Men era afterall!

 One day, more than 15 years ago, she gave me her machine. You can see her name on the box. She asked me never to take the name label off. So I never did. She passed away about 13 years ago. And one of the best things I have to remind me of her is this Bernina 700.

Have I used it much? I did at the beginning, I made curtains and a dress (which disappointingly failed to fit the recipient!). I made bolsters for a close friend's wedding anniversary.  Recently I upcycled a beloved quilt into cushion covers to keep it alive and useful.

However, this machine has also endured long years of waiting in an attic. Why? Because I got married and moved abroad, with just a car full of essentials. Thankfully family friends offered to keep hold of my Bernina. My mum had a few chances to get her hands on it, but none panned out.

Flying with a sewing machine:

Then this summer I was in London for a course. I decided I was not going to fly home without this machine. So a friend gave me a set of wheels that I could strap it to and I got it through Heathrow security, right to the gate as hand luggage! I have to admit when I was at the gate I lost my nerve (I was thinking about lifting this thing up into an overhead compartment - it's heavy!) and asked the steward to put it where they store prams and buggies. Which kindly he did!

In Hamburg airport I didn't know where to pick my machine up and got told off by a grumpy lady at the desk who said it was very irregular and I should have paid to have this item transported. Oh dear! Well, it turned out fine when I walked down between the luggage belts and found a pile of buggies and prams and my Bernina.

Next my machine was whisked off for a service at the Hamburger Nähmascinen-Haus in the Lange Reihe, Hamburg (after all it hasn't been used for 5 years and I've never once oiled it!).

Now she's home and safe. What shall I sew first?! I'm very excited...

What are you whizzing up on your machine?

PS. Are you into buying handmade? Yes? Then you should check out the amazing stuff in the Etsy Stock Take. If you sell your craft on Etsy, please come and join in :)

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