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Singer 403 Stant-O-Matic

Oh my! I scored big time on this little beauty.  My latest scavenging acquisition is a 1951 Singer 403 Slant-O-Matic.  Would you believe only 25 bucks from the Period Costume department sale at Greenfield Village?  I did have to spend a tiny bit more in parts, but now she’s purring like a kitten.  I’d love to keep her but she’s a gift for my mother.  Mom may have a few memory issues but she still loves to sew and this machine will be sweet and simple for her.

I also have to give a shout out to The Sewing Machine Man in Wyandotte who helped me put the new parts in.  The very best garage shop I’ve ever seen!


swedish tracing paper
Yes, I’m digressing again on craft subjects. Hope you don’t mind. My first love being sewing, I just can’t stay away from it. On my last post I neglected to mention why I seriously can’t live without Birch Street’s Swedish Tracing Paper. It came in handy this week when a friend asked for a heavy cotton slip in black fabric for winter wear. I used a new cotton slip that she just bought as a basis for my pattern. By pinning this very pliable tracing paper to the slip I was able to trace out the seamlines. After unpinning, I took a few minutes to true up the tracing lines and now I have my own pattern to work with.

It also came in handy recently when I procrastinated on JoAnn Fabrics Butterick sale. The pattern pieces to the right became my solution to enlarge (by two sizes) a 99 cent sale pattern that was no longer in stock in my size. Silly personal issues include being short, disproportionate, and one of those woman who have been gaining and losing the same 5 lbs. over and over again for years. So, when it comes to those expensive patterns like Folkwear , I don’t cut them out, but rather trace, alter, then cut out pattern on tracing paper. As you can guess, all of this hardly ever makes for “sew a dress in an afternoon”.


It’s been a few years since I’ve made it to the annual American Sewing Expo in Michigan. This past Friday my sister and I sped off, Frappuccino’s in hand toward Novi. That is after I spent about an hour looking for my wallet for the gazillionth time. Ironically while I was searching every nook and cranny, my sister found 40 bucks stashed away in her tote bag from so long ago she doesn’t remember.

Anyhoo, although I didn’t spend much here’s what I bought: a very vintage looking heavy-weight cotton from Material Girls, miniscule sewing needles, darling Little Woo Swing Cardigan from  Patterns by Figgy’s, I can’t live without Birch Street’s Swedish Tracing Paper, and (my favorite purchase) a booklet titled “Creating Darts in Dartless Patterns” by Lorraine Henry.

I just have to make mention of the most beautifully arranged booth I’ve ever seen. Drumroll please… and the winner is… Nifty Thrifty Dry Goods! Their booth really did have the feel of a old time dry goods store. Counters and shelves were arranged by color with their “goods” arranged in old-timey mason jars and such. Oodles and oodles of new and vintage ribbons, buttons, appliques, trims, and beads. Simply outstanding!