Sunday, September 30, 2012

Toy Sewing Machines and Learning to Sew

I didn't learn how to sew on a toy machine, but my mother did.  She had a metal hand-crank machine when she was a child, that was later destroyed by her nieces along with the dollhouse her grandfather made her.  I learned under the watchful eye of my mother on her big sewing machine... which I use the just-newer model today.  My mother's sewing machine is a Pfaff 1222.   (The picture is one currently on sale on ebay)  My Dad bought it for my mom in about 1974, but it had been on the market for a while then--my machine, a 1222E, was state-of-the-art in 1965, and the 1222 predates it.  The 1222 and the 1222E were the last all-metal sewing machines that Pfaff made.  The only plastic bit in the whole thing is the gear assembly that controls the fancy stitching... which we've had to replace in my mom's old machine. 

While I did just fine learning to sew dolly clothes on a real machine, I wasn't all that interested at Gracie's age.  And, well, I've sewn through my fingers enough myself to no be wary of giving a four-year-old a powered machine... and like most new-model sewing machines that don't cost an arm and a leg, toy sewing machines just aren't all that functional--it's a case of newer not being better.

Since Mom's first machine was a hand-crank, I started looking around for one and I've discovered some weird things in my search.  Like a toy tractor made from a vintage sewing machine.  (That one almost made me cry!)  and sculptures made from toy machines. (After the tractor, I wasn't shocked anymore!)  And then there's the true toys that don't actually function.  While the actual toy might be good for, say, Nicole or Lizzy, it would just frustrate Grace.  Because she wants one that works, dangit!  So since Christmas is coming, I'm going to keep looking.  I'm hoping for a nice, simple, metal, hand-crank sewing machine in good condition.  I figure that hand-crank will keep her out of trouble when I'm not there to watch.

And, well, if I can work a kick wheel, I'm fairly certain that I can learn to use a hand-crank machine to teach her.  Next birthday, I'll find an 18-inch doll for her so that we can learn to make dolly clothing.  I guess slow but sure is the way to go... in the meantime, I do have baby doll clothes patterns we can work with... and the best part of dolly clothes is that they use up some of my scraps!

So wish me luck... so many seem to think that old=valuable.  And well, with things like metal toys, they last virtually forever!

No comments:

Post a Comment