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Introducing Betty, My New Singer Featherweight

Introducing Betty, My New Singer Featherweight | Red-Handled Scissors

Ladies and gentlemen, please allow me to introduce Betty, my new Singer Featherweight sewing machine!

Betty was made on November 5th, 1936, and is a Singer Featherweight 221. She’s an AE series machine with a lovely scrollwork faceplate, and was just one of 15,000 machines made in Singer’s Elizabethport, New Jersey factory on that day.

Introducing Betty, My New Singer Featherweight | Red-Handled Scissors

My Singer Featherweight may be 77, but she’s looking pretty darn good for her age, and I love that she clearly came from a home where she was used regularly and was well cared for. When stitching with Betty, I’d like to think that I’m continuing a tradition of joyful sewing!

Introducing Betty, My New Singer Featherweight | Red-Handled Scissors

Scrollwork on the faceplate. (Sometimes referred to as “Egyptian scrollwork” by Featherweight enthusiasts.)

Introducing Betty, My New Singer Featherweight | Red-Handled Scissors

Introducing Betty, My New Singer Featherweight | Red-Handled Scissors

Betty has her original type two carrying case, which still has the key!

Introducing Betty, My New Singer Featherweight | Red-Handled Scissors

Pull-out accessory tray with bobbin holder that fits over the machine.

Introducing Betty, My New Singer Featherweight | Red-Handled Scissors

Introducing Betty, My New Singer Featherweight | Red-Handled Scissors

Here she is, with bed fully extended!

Introducing Betty, My New Singer Featherweight | Red-Handled Scissors

Back view.

Introducing Betty, My New Singer Featherweight | Red-Handled Scissors

Introducing Betty, My New Singer Featherweight | Red-Handled Scissors

Introducing Betty, My New Singer Featherweight | Red-Handled Scissors

More scrollwork love.

Introducing Betty, My New Singer Featherweight | Red-Handled Scissors

For years, I’ve been searching every thrift store and antique shop that I came across for a Featherweight, and I am so, so excited to finally have one in my studio. It’s like a sewing gal’s dream come true!

A huge thanks goes out to my wonderful husband, who made Betty an early Christmas gift when I found her on Ebay after a particularly disappointing antiquing trip when I’d spotted a Singer Model 99, and was then heartbroken to find that, once I got a closer look, it wasn’t the Featherweight that I’d been searching for.

Anyone else feeling the Featherweight love?

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9 comments

  1. Lora says:

    Yes! Am feeling the Featherweight love! Just got my own nearly-flawless machine about three months ago. She’s a bit younger than your Betty, and I like to believe she was born on my first birthday since she’s from early 1957.

    I have the original case, too, but must admit I’m jealous of your key.

    Hope you love working with her as much as I’ve loved getting to know mine. It is obvious why they have a cult-like following.

  2. Britt-Inger says:

    I must say hello to Betty. I understand that you are happy and Featherweights are outstanding old ladies. I have two in my house and I love to make them help me sew the piecing in my quilting work.
    I met the first Featherweights during a quilt retreat in US, as they are not so easy to find in Sweden and fell in love and started to search for one when I was at home. I found Henrietta six years ago at the Swedish ebay and she was a very cheap lady. After a visit to the sewing machine tech, she is a very happy lady and make adorable stitches.
    Martha is the name of the other lady, she is a Featherweight 222, a little heavier and a strong lady, but Henrietta is still my favorite.
    Do you know, that there is a very good group at Yahoo, the Featherweight group, that is very good to join as a new Featherweight owner? What Graham doesn´t know about Featherweight isn´t worth a dime.
    Good luck with your new darling
    Britt-Inger in Malmö, Sweden

  3. Kathy in Plainwell says:

    Have had a lot of sewing machines & Sergers…. learned to sew on an old Singer treadle that had been motorized by my grandfather.Then a Singer in 1967. Then a Pfaff 1571 when Josh was a baby around 1983. Replaced her with a new Pfaff Quilt Expression 4.0 last year. But the best score was a 1952 Featherweight at the garage sale of a friend a couple years ago for $300 in pristine condition. Last summer I helped an elderly friend from quilt class find one and she was in heaven. It’s such a joy to stitch with this happy little girl. Have fun, Haley!

  4. Caroline says:

    She’s absolutely beautiful! Congratulations on your wonderful new present. May you have many years of wonderful friendship. Your pictures are of great quality and show just how remarkable Betty is.

  5. Jessica says:

    She looks almost like mine (but mine looks more worn). Your case is perfect (mine survived a fire and protected the contents)! Enjoy her–she’ll sew through anything!

  6. Brian Black says:

    This looks an awful lot like Mom’s Singer that folds away into a little table. I’ll have to check the date on that. She’s 94 and I think the machine belonged to her mother.

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