Posted by: michelenel | 14 November, 2013

Welcome home Countess…..

After a couple of years visiting another member of the family, my first sewing machine has arrived back home!  It was amazing to see her again and I was overcome by the warm, fuzzy feeling I got when I lifted the cover.  It shouldn’t be surprised by my feelings of fondness because this was the very first sewing machine I owned and it was bought for me by hubby the year we were married; 1980!  Apart from it doing the usual curtains, crafts and clothing for the family, this machine was a true workhorse and sewed hundreds of blanket jackets that my mom used to sell and then dozens and dozens of amazingly beautiful tutu’s for myself, the family and other ballet dancers who needed the for advanced ballet classes and performances.  I am not sure how many of you have ever used or even seen a tutu, but let me tell you, these are a real challenge and if properly made (and mine were because I was taught by the costumiers at the Cape Town ballet company) they require hundreds of meters of tulle to be gathered and sewn onto the costume.  I became a dab hand at this after so much practice, and my little Elna Contessa was a superstar every stitch of the way!


Then when I turned 30 I bought (sorry, hubby bought!!) me a new Pfaff that became the new love of my sewing life and poor Countess got relegated to the odd job and the general on-loan machine for all and sundry.  Now she is back and is a very welcome addition to the sewing machine collection and will never go away again because after 33 years she deserves to be loved and respected for all her hard work.

After a thorough clean and maintenance she is working as well as can be expected for an old dame, but she is perfect for the newbie sewers that are learning to quilt on Saturdays.

And look here you youngsters; Pfaff, Vicky the Husqvarna Designer and Vi the Husqvarna Orchidea; you treat the matriarch with the respect she deserves after all those years of faithful service; after all she has probably out-sewn all of you put together!


  1. Wow… I hope mine is still going strong in another 24 years time! Sadly my Nan’s (treadle turned electric) went missing and my Mum’s blew up… that’s why I get all the family sewing jobs now!

    • Like you, I also get all the sewing as none of my siblings sew. I am also really keen on getting an antique treadle to enhance my collection. 😊

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