Tag Archives: Singer 221 Featherweight

Our new baby


If you pick up a heavy portable sewing machine by the handle on top of the case, sooner or later the inevitable will happen – as it did to a poor bloke in Croydon recently when he lifted his lady wife’s Singer 99 off the kitchen worktop and turned towards the kitchen door with it.  Alas, no sooner was the machine clear of the worktop than the case parted company from the base, and the 99 hit the deck.  And cast-iron Singers don’t bounce too well, especially when dropped onto expensive Italian floor tiles, which in turn don’t take kindly to having sewing machines dropped on them …

And so it was that when I returned home the other day, Elsie was expecting me to come in with a bit of a wreck of a 99 to add to the spares pile.  What she wasn’t expecting was a rather nice 221 Featherweight as well, which frankly I hadn’t been expecting to buy on account of them usually going for silly prices.  A lot of people seem to think that because a pretty 222 with all its bits and bobs usually goes for £300 or more on Ebay, the 221 should be expensive too because after all a 222 is only a 221 with a free-arm base.

What the dreamers don’t seem to realise is that the Ebay price of the 222 is driven by the demand for good ones in the US of A, where it’s a huge cult thing with Cindy and Jolene and Mary-Lou and all the other quilter ladies because the 222 was never sold there when new.  The 221 was, though, which explains why there isn’t a similar demand for them.  Quite the reverse, in fact – you often see optimists in the States offering 221’s on Ebay UK at prices which are decidedly high even before you add the £50 or more it’d cost to Fedex one from Asscrack, Alabama to Scunthorpe, Lincs.

Anyhow, I managed to find a nice enough one at a realistic price, so I bought it because (a) we didn’t have one and (b) I thought Elsie might like it.  Which she does.  I took it out the case, put it on the kitchen table and there was an “Ooooooh, look at that” followed by a “That’s nice” .  Then a pause.  Then “That one’s mine” …

Here’s a couple of pictures of our new baby with one of her bigger sisters …

Picture of Singer 221 Featherweight with Singer 99

Picture of drive end of Singer 99 alongside Singer 221