Tuesday, May 26, 2009


~Just Perfect for a Night Table~
(Circa 1920)

Last Saturday my hubbs and I did our familiar junkin' around our town in hopes of discovering a couple of vintage finds for our home. With it being a holiday weekend we weren't too sure just what might be offered. The newspapers were pretty slim on listings for Estate Sales...still, there were a few in the more "seedy" parts of town we THOUGHT we might visit.

HTML clipboardYou know you are traveling down a questionable street when there are bars on the church windows and on nearly every porch sits a decaying sofa or recliner. Most, if not all of the ram-shackled homes appear to be beyond repair. Windows are often boarded up and many are abandoned. Still, something beckons me to visit the places of the forgotten and I can't stay away. The houses, noticeably modest, were after all, a place someone once called home. I sometimes imagine them as new and wonder just who built them and what kind of families lived in them.
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It was late in the day when my Mr. AGPMan and I walked up the crumbling steps to a weathered yellow door. Peeking inside we could tell the sale had been heavily shopped as only a few things were left. Over in the corner I spied this charming vintage Treadle Sewing Machine...


"I'll give you a great deal on that there thing, lil' lady" I heard an elderly voice say...

"Ain't no one knows how to use it no'moe...that was my Mama's Mama's Treeedle" the man continued.

"Twenty-two fifty" he said with a wide grin! "And I'll help yer fella load 'er up!"


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I knew better than to even haggle over the price. It was MORE than fair! As I was paying the old man's wife my guy and his new pal began to load up the old Singer into our SUV. We both laughed as we had to avoid running into the chicken and the rooster that were crossing the road beside us (I'm not kidding...).

"Take care of her...it was my Gram-mama's pride and joy" the old man called out!

"Just gottsta have the money!"

As we drove away from the tiny shack I couldn't help but believe these people to be the salt of the earth. Downtrodden and poor, eclipsed by education and a overlooked by society. Poverty had won out. Instinctively I knew that what a single dollar was to that old man meant at least twenty five times that to me...

Call me crazy...overly sentimental even. I don't care. I felt sad that something that had once been dearly loved and cared for ended up being sold for the cost of untensil-less dinner at the closest burger-dive.

The Cabinet owner's name was Lucy, by the way. It was written inside the drawer with the barely visible date of 1919. Her beloved Sewing Cabinet will soon have a place of honor in my home and I will care for her until the day comes when some vintage-shopping diva comes to my home and hauls her away.

Blessings to you as you find treasures once loved by the hands of those who've passed on before you...Rebecca

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A Romantic Porch said...

Rebecca, How sweet. So happy you found Lucy! I have an old "treeedle" too! BTW...my little girl finishes kindergarten on Thursday. I can't believe it. I'm frantically making a dress today for her special awards tomorrow morning! Hugs to you dearie! xorachel

Anonymous said...

Aren't those beautiful old machines just the most beautiful eye candy? I've seen so many of them and keep thinking, one day i'll grab one, paint it up and show it proudly. When the time is right, it will happen. Will you be painting her white with roses.... i'm just guessing here! *wink*

Great find.

blushing rose said...

Oh, how G'ma Maggie loved her treadle, Mother kept that machine for years to be passed to another relative later. That needle created some of the most beautiful creations for G'mas home & for us 5 kids upon occasion.

It is so sad to go to a sale & know that these precious beloved items would not be sold, if it were not of the necessity of the $$. I, too, always let them know that it will have a very caring new owner that will treasure it, as did they.

Love your Miss Lucy ... now my question is ... are you going to paint it, or leave her in her glory.

TTFN ~ Marydon

A Southern Rose said...

I know that it will have a perfect new home with you and you will treasure it. I can already see it painted cottage white with your pink roses on it. It is going to be beautiful in your home. (Knowing it's history makes it even more special.)

Lee Laurie

June said...

Hello dear Rebecca,
Don't you wonder what lovely things were made on that by the old man's G-mother? The items that were patched, the school clothes for the children, and maybe even a wedding dress.
I wanted to thank you for the lovely verse you penned and left on my post today. It was so beautiful.

Mary H said...

~Oh Rebecca~~I love these old machines and have secretly always desired one. One time I found one complete like this in beautiful condition for $145.00 and I didn't know where I would put it and didn't want to haggle with my husband for a spot and try and convince him, so I passed it up. I have never forgiven myself for that! LOL! Soooo...I am so jealous, but I will live my dream vicariously through you for now. She is a beauty!! Love you sweet friend...Mary H.

Eclectic Chic Style said...

Love the machine, but love your post even more, isn't it great the mix of people that you come across searching for treasure? I love Lucy and can't wait to see her bedazzled with your touch.
Hugs ♥ Teresa

Andrea said...

The machine is beautiful, and what a lovely story. It touched my heart. I know that the machine will always be special to you.



Lisa said...

What a lovely machine. I have (gulp) three of these. They are the last thing to go at the auctions up here in Maine. No one wants them! I have gotten one for free and the others for less then $10.00. I am actually sitting at one right now, it is my computer desk, I prop the keyboard on the extended drawer. Not ergonomic, but so cute!

The items that make me sad at auctions are the old pictures and the quilts. All those memories are just lost. Heartbreaking.

Lucy is smiling knowing that her pride and joy is in good hands, I am sure.


Barb said...

Dearest Rebecca, love your story and the old sewing machine. Precious!!

Love and hugs, Barb

Unknown said...

Hi Dear Rebecca!
What an absolutely sweet story! I could just see this all play out in my mind! And what a treasure you have found and I KNOW it will truly be cherished!

GUESS WHAT? I think my cherished Treadle SINGER Sewing Machine is just like yours....and it was my sweet hubby's grams! It resides in my Living Parlor...and has been featured many times and I am soooo sentimental about it as well. Did you have treasures found inside? mind did!

Hope you are well. I think I am on the mend at last! Teffers and all! lol


English Cottage in Georgia said...

I too love things that were loved and used. What a special purchase with came with it's much loved history.
Glad to see something named Lucy besides myself and everyone's dog :-)

Wsprsweetly Of Cottages said...

Rebecca...I could have been right there with you as I could almost hear you talking and see the old man and your husband load it into your SUV. The feeling you had when you drove away..I have had. You put it into words that I could not seem to get out! I loved this post.
Thanks for your sweet visit! (I am still in wonder that I stumbled onto you! I have followed you auctions on ebay for years..and could taste the disappointment when I was outbid. Your tiny Christmas tree pillow is on the bed in my guestroom. I never put it away! There are just some things that you want out and around you all the time. That little cross stitched pillow is one of them! :)
Smiles and hugs~

Anonymous said...

I just bought a "treedle" myself. It belonged to the lady's grandmother...they had moved it several times to different houses over the years and now the "new" boyfriend was into selling antiques. I've been working on cleaning it up and getting it sewing. I'm also refinishing the cabinet. Its such a beautiful old machine. I'm looking forward to making quilts and other things on it and teaching my daughters to use it...and maybe even my boys! There's a wonderful group called Treadleon...that not only restores bu uses vintage machines. Without their help I doubt mine would be working.

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