Saturday, August 6, 2011

I'm Sew Excited!

Through a series of events over the last few weeks, I became the owner of my Grandmother's sewing machine! Meme has Alzheimer's and lives in the nursing home, but my uncle still lives in her house. He was wanting to get rid of the sewing machine at the same time I was looking for a machine! Win-win for both of us!
 Over the phone he told me it was a Singer, but when I went to pick it up Thursday I discovered it was a Kenmore. It was newer than I expected, but that's ok because I was wanted a machine that was capable of doing different stitches. It came with a nice cabinet and a stool as well.

It has 16 stitch functions! 15 more than my other machine!
 I've done a little research and found diagrams of how to thread the machine and was able to contact Kenmore and they told me the machine was manufactured in 1987. Kenmore promised to respond to any email inquiries within 24 hours and I will say they followed through with their promise, responding in less than 16 hours! I have found a few instruction manuals online, but haven't clicked the buy option yet.

I'm still not sure what this knob controls!
 Today we plugged her in and give her a test run. We discovered a washer needs replacing and can't wind a bobbin until we get the new part, but I had a bobbin already wound from my other Grandmother's machine. My sweet husband, who can fix anything, was right there helping me adjust and check it out. We tinkered a few minutes and oiled a few places and by golly, SHE SEWS! I bent and broke a few needles in the process of getting everything lined out, but fortunatly, Singer needles worked in a Kenmore machine and I was able to keep playing!

I am Sew excited to now have both of my grandmother's sewing machines! I never really remember Meme sewing like I do my Grandmama, but I know Meme was an excellent seamtress. I do know that she worked at a sewing factory when she moved to East Texas. I know that the machine hasn't been used in at least 15 to 20 years because of Meme's health issues and the machine appears to have been used very little.
This is a picture of Meme and Granddad sometime in the mid to late 80's. Granddad has been gone over 20 years and Meme's mind has been gone a long time. Alhzeimer's disease is such a sad thing. I went to see Meme last night and told her I got her machine and couldn't wait to try it out. I have no idea if she could understand me or not. Now I'm brainstorming on what I can make Meme with her machine....


  1. that is so cool! i'm glad you got it running! loved the '15 more than my old machine' comment. ha!

  2. My goodness, Janice, I'm very excited for you also! Having two grandmother's that both sewed, and now you're using their machines!

    I don't sew, but I did want to say that little knob if I'm not mistaken is for the "tension" of the thread. But, don't take my word for it. :)

    Alzheimer's is such a devastating disease. Not only very hard on the person but on the family as well. During the past few months my dad lived, I really never knew if he understood us. So, I know how difficult it is for you to visit your Meme, but try to believe that somehow she knows you.

    Happy Sewing!!

  3. What a sweet keepsake, and practical too! It looks like that one dial is for thread tension control. Try softest sewing and move the dial slightly, then note the tightness if the stitched threads. For most projects, you'll want to keep it in the middle of the numbering system. How about making her a bed caddy?

  4. Sorry for typos in my earlier post. I am in an iPad and doing the one finger hunt and peck...


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