Princess Machine Reveal!

4:06 PM

You're going to be so jealous! I know I'd be jealous of me. I finally painted my old sewing machine cabinet and it looks amazing!

If you've been following me for a while then you might remember the post where I introduced our damsel in distress. The cabinet was a bit banged up and defenatly not ready for the ball. With the wood being less than desirable and the machine itself not having any sort of name brand I figured it wasn't worth much and I could do whatever I wanted to it.


What I wanted was to paint it. So I took everything apart and sanded all the old finish off.



After sanding everything down, I used my new favorite tool and sprayed 2 coats of primer over everything.


Then I decided that I wanted to add a little secret pop of color. I chose yellow and figured that I could get away with just using a little $3 test pot. It was plenty to paint the insides of all the drawers.





Before I gave everything it's final coats of paint I masked off the insides to protect the bright yellow paint I had just applied. For the main color I chose to go with the darker grey in our dining room, Silver Dollar from Olympic in a high gloss finish.





After I reassembled the cabinet I took it for a test drive. Not so good, it was very clunky and I couldn't get the machine into any sort of rhythm. It seemed as if something was sticking inside the machine. So I did what any sane girl who knows nothing about antique sewing machines would do, I googled it! I found out that my machine is a Vibrating Shuttle machine, which seems to refer to the bobbin system. It looks nothing like modern bobbins at all. This website gives some great information about how everything works and some tips on maintenance (here's another helpful website). From there I attacked my machine with some WD-40 and sewing machine oil. I even replaced the little piece of felt that is supposed to keep the bobbin oiled. It wasn't too difficult, I just took a little strip of felt, rolled it up, and stuck it in the little oil well. I did have to make a few adjustments with the scissors so it would fit, but the process took maybe 2 minutes.





This area on the side was probably the dirtiest of all. It was mostly covered in some furry dust, but some of the moving parts had a thick grimy deposit on it. I'm pretty sure this is where the problem was, and once it was clean and oiled things moved much more smoothly.





Now here she is all prettied up! Oh, and just ignore the fact that I still need 4 more nobs. I got the first 2 at Anthropologie and they be expensive. Like $8 expensive. I'll get them eventually, I just want to be able to pretend I'm not spending $60 on nobs.













Here is the bobbin winding mechanism. You just pop the bobbin in there and push the whole thing back so it catches on the leather cord and it winds itself up. That little stick thing moves the thread up and down the length of the bobbin so your thread winds evenly.









Look, it even still has the key so I can lock secret stuff inside! (Like the recipt for those knobs.)

















So, have you ever used an old sewing machine like this? Do you like to trick yourself (or maybe your significant other) into not realizing how much you're spending on something as frivolous as hardware? Do old things like this fascinate you?


P.S. Just so you know, Matt is fully aware of how much I'm spending on nobs. Besides, I wouldn't blab that kind of secret here if he didn't. :)

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2 comments

  1. very nice. i hope to get my treadle close to how yours looks one day!

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