Lost and found

I found a sewing machine! Dumped in the street! Well, a bush actually…



Some of you may have already seen this on my instagram I was walking to the bus stop early yesterday morning on my way to work when I noticed something big shoved into a bush next to a car dealership. Down this particular street I’m quite used to seeing all sorts of rubbish (literal rubbish, not just nonsense) of all sizes (normally massive – think dirty mattresses, half a fridge etc) – it’s a pretty regular occurrence that things get left outside so I don’t normally pay a lot of attention, but as I approached this big, off-white rectangle I realised it was a sewing machine! With a pedal still plugged in! It was shoved in to the undergrowth back to front, but as I picked it up I spotted the Singer logo on the front corner, so I swiftly turned on my heel and took it home. As I was already running late when I’d headed to the bus stop I had to drop it off in the middle of the front room and then make a dash for the bus again.

The machine is a Singer Samba 1, also known as Singer Samba 1 7502 or just Singer 7502, and as it turns out, it was never sold in the UK. I spend a little while searching online trying to find out more information, but really struggled to find anything at all, although I found a few available on Italian, Dutch and Spanish selling sites, so I contacted Singer directly who confirmed it was not a UK model. In my internet browsing I had found a manual for the model, but it was written in Italian, German and Dutch only so I’ve contacted Singer Italy to see if they can give me any more information. My sister also helpfully did some Googling and we have deduced that the machine was manufactured in the early 80’s, and the label on the side states it was manufactured in Italy, but we can’t get more any more specifics. Hopefully Singer Italy will reply soon!

I tested the machine when I got home and surprisingly, it actually worked! You can check out the machine working on my instagram (link in side bar >>>).The plug is a bit sticky and dusty so it all needs a good wipe down, and the bit on the end of the spool pin to keep the thread in place is missing, but that’s easy to replace so I’m not worried. It’s a drop-in bobbin which I’ve never used so I will need to find that manual again and have a go at threading the machine. It’s so quiet! Much quieter than my trusty Elna! As far as I can see it only does a basic straight stitch and a zigzag stitch, but apart from the buttonhole function on my Elna that’s really all I use so it might be worthwhile getting the Samba serviced properly and then keeping it for emergencies. Going to need a de-stash to make room though…

I shared my find on online social media and so many people echoed my sentiments – why would anyone throw a perfectly good sewing machine away?! It needs a bit of TLC but it’s a great machine for a beginner as it’s not complicated, and being mechanical rather than a digital machine, much easier to fix if something goes a bit wrong. I do need to test how it sews so I’ll do that over the weekend, but so far it seems fine!

If anyone knows anything about early 80’s European model Singer sewing machines (very specific – perfect Mastermind specialist subject) please let me know in the comments!

The secret is OUT! Plus, a competition (yay!)

I am very pleased to announce that I am now a Cali Fabrics blogger!

OK, so I’ve actually known for ages but I didn’t want to share until the new blog team was officially launched on Monday. Some of you might have already seen my mug on the lineup (and I was rumbled a few weeks ago by Meg from Pigeon Wish) but the first few posts went live this week so the secret is out!

Cali Fabrics, based in San Francisco, have created a new team of over 20 sewists from around the world to make lush clothes and blog about the great range of fabrics and trims Cali Fabrics offer.

I actually saw a post on instagram  a couple of months ago seeking new bloggers to be part of the blogger team, so I thought ‘why not?’, fired off an email and was lucky enough to be picked! I’ve read a few of the profiles for my fellow blog team members, some of whom may already be familiar faces, but I think I might be the only UK based sewist, so I will be providing my British opinions on the fabrics posted across the Atlantic (along with anecdotes about tea and cake, probably).

Having received my first parcel from the States, I am currently working on my first make for the blog. Naturally I chose a complicated pattern (more on that in my post…) so it’s taking a bit longer than planned, but while you wait for my posts as I furiously stitch away, why not check out the other people on the team and check out the first few posts! I will be posting both on the Cali Fabrics and here too.

More importantly – Cali Fabrics are currently holding a competition to win a $100 gift certificate to spend in store! Check it out here – gotta be in it to win it! (90’s catchphrase optional of course…)


Please note: the Cali Fabrics blog team and I have been provided different fabrics in exchange for our participation and our honest reviews. All opinions expressed  in my posts will be my own. Where supplies were purchased elsewhere, this will clearly noted with alternatives available at Cali Fabrics given where possible.