Sunday, June 24, 2012

The Singer 201-2 and me

I had many goals for today.  I accomplished two of them.  One was to mow another pass around the field at the top of our ten acres.  The other was to play with the ruffler on my Singer 201-2.   I was rather hoping that I could use the ruffler to make pleats for a very pretty clutch.  The ruffler works very nicely to make pleats, but the bite is too shallow and won't work for this application.  Nice try, though

So as long as I had the 201-2 out  I thought I would start on my daughter in law's birthday present.  Max said that I should make her a big tote bag with a zipper.  I actually bought some fabric earlier this year just for this project.
She likes green

BUT before I cut into this fabric, I wanted to make a prototype.

Zippers and I don't get a long that well.  I have never perfected a straight seam when I sew the zipper in place.  I worked all afternoon on getting it just right.  I worked so hard, I didn't take any pictures.

I did take some pictures when I first started.  This one, of the machine sitting in its base that I built, shows just how messy my sewing loft is.
It is even worse now.

I know that I have a lot of machines.  Some people think I have a scarey number of machines and some people are worried about me.  I am not worried about me.  I cannot stand the mess around me.  I could not be a hoarder because I am bothered by the mess.  Not so bothered to stop sewing today and clean up.  But bothered enough so that this week I vow to organize that loft.

The 201 is a wonderful machine and this one is my logo.  I love how it sounds
I worked away with it and everything was going fine until all of a sudden the stitch was all wrong.  It was just awful.  I could not figure out what was wrong.  I changed the bobbin, no better.  It seemed to be fine and then when I would really put the "gas" to it, it would get all phooey.  I spent two hours trying to figure it out.  Yes, I changed the needle, yes, double checked the threading, both top and bottom.  Finally, I oiled the race and got another new bobbin and moved the machine from the folding table to a regular sewing machine stand.  Something I did fixed it.  I think.... I hope......


  1. Can I send you the 70 cents for a new bobbin tire, its so sad...

    1. I laughed when I read this .... you are so right. I did not notice. It is old and cracked and even though it works fine, I will change it out the next time I take off the hand wheel. I don't have any gray will have to do....

  2. I have been sewing for 45 years (started on a Jones treadle at age 11) and still get weird sewing days when you do all those things to rectify bad stitiching and it just goes right again with no reason??? But surfing around I have found some brilliant insights and as I suspected for some years,after discovering the was tension and spin affect knitting machines, the thread you have to use in a certain colour is probably the culprit, because it is too tightly spun, or old and little things like that make a big difference to the machine.

    1. Joan,
      Thanks. I finally figured it out. The initial problem was the bobbin; it had layers of different threads (all light colors) and when it got to the end of the one layer it went wacky. then I was using lousy whit thread in the top. I think the race needed some oil, too. But the most important change was putting the machine on a stable work surface. It now sews beautifully. I have it mounted in a bonafide singer cabinet. I think this cabinet came from a class room. It is sturdy and has four drawers.

  3. My 201-2(her name is Elizabeth too) ALWAYS lets me know that she wants a good cleaning/oiling by doing the same thing.