Machine: 1951 Singer 201K Treadle

In 2005 I inherited my maternal grandmother's Singer treadle sewing machine. My grandmother had never used it much, so it had spent much of its life stored in a packing shed in their orchard. It became rusty, and dirty from the fine soil of their fruit tree orchard. Sometime in the early 90s my mother's Pfaff had some issues, and while it was being repaired my mother brought the treadle over to our house and oiled it up, I recall us all marveling at the fact that it still worked. After a brief period of use, my mother put it in her foyer and my brother promptly stored his sneakers on the treadle.

It then came to me, and I moved it across the country with some other furniture I had inherited. I regarded it as something sentimental but decorative. In 2010 my parents were visiting and had to make some repairs to a sail on their yacht. My mother looked at my Lisa, and said, "Oh, I might break that, where's the treadle?" So it was wheeled out, and impressively, still ran fine, even before my father oiled it. Sail repairs done, it was wheeled away again.

Come September 2016, I was on my Lisa working on some free machining and wanted to add some top stitch. The Lisa wouldn't play ball. Even after a service, the top stitch issues were so frustrating that it put me off my sewing for a little while. It was then I thought about the treadle, stored in the garage outside my laundry. I raced downstairs to check it out - if it could sew sails, it could definitely do top stitch!  I soon ascertained that it was a September 1951 Singer 201K Centennial (#EG893178), and that the 201 was considered Singer's finest machine! I was beyond chuffed, and plan to try and clean it and use it again.

1951 201K Centennial Treadle.

I have the following for my 201K:

  • The Hemmer Foot #120842
  • The Adjustable Hemmer #35931
  • The Bias Binder Foot #121464
  • The Tucker #36583
  • The Seam Guide #25527

Planned: Cleaning and restoration, and maybe an experiment with a darning foot. :)


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