Tag Archives: vintage

A Swift Arrival

I had a lovely little parcel waiting for me when I got home today:

Yarn Swift/Winder

It’s a vintage Swift/Yarn Winder. I’ve been wanting one for a while, not because I really need one, but simply because they’re pretty and make things easier. I’ve been looking at the vintage ones on ebay because I’ve noticed they’re often prettier and sometimes even cheaper than brand new ones. I spotted this one last week and loved it.

Close up

I’ve never seen a swift quite like it! The arms are plastic (possibly bakelite) and I won’t need to worry about finding a surface to clamp this one to as the metal post is set on a cast iron foot which will ensure it doesn’t tip over!

Arial Shot

It was also a bargain at just £15 (+ £10 postage). :) I was surprised how small it was when I opened the box, it’s only ~9″ tall and ~6″ across so it won’t take up much space on my shelf when not in use (which may be never!). I’ve pictured it with a mini skein of sock yarn as that’s what was closest when the camera was out, but it holds 100g just fine too.

The auction only ended on Sunday, I’m so glad the seller was super quick at dispatching! :)



A Beautiful Machine

On Wednesday I spotted a beautiful vintage sewing machine on ebay. The colour was what first caught my attention, its truely gorgeous. Luckily, I won the auction and this arrived yesterday:

Teal blue metallic shininess

It’s a Cooper Sewing Machine and unfortunately I haven’t managed to find out anything about them the internet. I’ve found a company called Cooper Sewing Machines that was established in 1903 and I’m assuming they made it, but it doesn’t seem like they produce their own machines any more. Their website has barely anything about the history of the company so I might shoot an email off to them to see if they can shed any light. It seems to me that it might be 1950s or 1960s?

The seller was fantastic, it couldn’t have arrived quicker and was so carefully and expertly packed. It is in impeccable condition with very minimal wear and tear and have I mentioned the lovely colour already? Plus, it’s been serviced and is completely ready to go!


Look how shiny everything is! It has a stitch regulator with dial system, reverse-sewing, drop-feed for embroidery and darning and a self-adjusting bobbin winder.


The underside of the machine is just as shiny. This is a very well looked after machine.

Tin of accessories and it's slot

The tin of accessories sits in the slide slot.


Inside the tin I got several threads (which I wasn’t expecting!) and a few feet and bobbins. Took me a while to identify the adjustable seam guide as I hadn’t seen one of them before but the rest of them are in the handbook. I’m going enjoy using this machine so much! :)

Vintage Sewing Machine

Last weekend I popped into an antique and bric-a-brac shop and discovered this vintage sewing machine. I couldn’t resist buying it!


I don’t know much about vintage sewing machines, I hadn’t heard of Frister and Rossmann but I liked the decals, it had bobbins and a case, the price seemed reasonable to me and that’s all that really mattered.

So I’ve been doing some research on Frister and Rossmann. O. Quitmann was the sole importer from the 1920’s, after 1937 the badge changed to being marked ‘Little Britain’ so I may be wrong but I’m reasonably confident was manufactured in 1937 as it’s a model D not E. The serial number is 25867. There are a couple of good pages here and here that go into a bit of detail about the company if anyone is interested. Also, if anyone knows any more than me and can correct or confirm the date I’d love to hear from you.


Inside the the case were a couple of surprises, the first was evidence of a little visitor:
Little visitor

I’m thinking I won’t clean these off! It adds character don’t you think?

There were also the remains of the handbook, it’s only 6 and a bit pages that are very delicate but it was a nice surprise to find these inside the case when I got home.
Remains of the handbook

There were quite a few accessories in the compartment too, I’m not sure what half of them do but I’ll do some research once I’ve cleaned them up.

It’ll probably take a few weeks but I’ll post some more pictures once I’ve given it some TLC.

The only problem is that I’ve now been browsing the collectible sewing and textile section on ebay and lusting after other vintage machines and paraphernalia. I’ve inherited some of my grandparents sewing threads and other bits and bobs and I’m now thinking about how I could decorate my future hypothetical sewing room (or corner, I’d settle for a corner) with vintage sewing collectables. I’ve now got a 1930s Singer sewing machine oil can coming in the post next week…