Let's discuss some common mistakes you will want to avoid before we get into a discussion about the 5 steps.
Mistake #1 – Not knowing why you are buying
There are so many models available that it is important to know why you want to buy one. If you are unclear about why you want the machine the number of choices can become overwhelming.
• You will make a different decision if you are looking for a machine for decoration rather than for sewing.
• Are you interested in collecting rarer models or just want an inexpensive functional machine?
• The price you are willing go to pay will be directly affected by the reasons you are buying.
Mistake #2 – Thinking that newer is better
When it comes to sewing machines, it's hard not to want the latest bells and whistles. Today's plastic wonders offer computerized embroidery, stitching in all directions, and more decorative stitches than you could ever use. But unless you are doing specialized sewing you'll find that you will only use a few of these features. Most of the rest will just sit there unused for the life of the machine.
The same goes for Singer machines. All the vintage machines sew a great straight stitch but as technology improved they also offered additional capabilities, however, there was a point in the mid-20th century where Singer’s quest for low price impacted the quality of the machines that they made. Models made after that point are no longer the are extremely durable and easy to repair machines that you are looking for.
Mistake #3 – Buying From the Wrong Seller
The price you pay for a vintage Singer Sewing Machine will be greatly influenced by who you buy it from and how much time an effort you are willing to put into restoring it.
• You can get a wonderful machine for a great price if you buy from an individual seller who is just trying to get rid of the machine and does not understand its value or is doesn’t know how to restore it. However, you need to have invested some time in getting to know the model you are looking at and be prepared to invest in some tender loving care to restore it.
• If you are uncertain about your ability to restore a machine you can still purchase a machine for a reasonable price from someone who has done the work for you such as a sewing machine repair shop. You won’t get the best price but you will get “peace of mind”.
• Buying from somewhere like EBay appears to be a simple way to get a machine but you will be unable to assess the machine, you will have a difficult time negotiating a low price and you will have to pay shipping which can be really expensive.
You may have passed up the opportunity to purchase one of these machines in the past because you didn’t know how useful they were or you were uncertain if they still worked or if you could bring them to working condition without a lot of expense.
You are not alone. Thousands of these wonderful machines are thrown away because people do not understand that they are still incredibly useful. You probably know someone who inherited one of these machines from a family member and did not know what to do with it. Hopefully they did not throw it away but more than likely it is sitting in storage somewhere when with a little Tender Loving Care (TLC) it could become a valuable addition to someone’s studio.