Thursday, December 6, 2012

Treadle Fun

As a little girl I used to love playing with the treadle of Mom's sewing machine. My brother's and I could spend hours sitting on the floor in front of it, pumping it up and down, pretending to be doing all sorts of things.

Our children have enjoyed playing with it too. Sailor and Rosebud have grown out of that phase and Sunbeam is at the verge of doing the same. She still plays with it occasionally, but bigger and bigger chunks of time pass between her taking a few minutes to play there.

Last week Buddy discovered the treadle and it seems to hold a big attraction for him. He scoots over to it and tries his best to pump it. So far his efforts only pay off a small percentage of the time, but he keeps trying.

I still love my treadle sewing machine and don't see me ever making the transition to an electric model. Not only do I like using it to sew, I'm also happy how the children have been able to get the same enjoyment out of it that I used to as a little Amish girl.


  1. Precious! :) I have always had an attraction to the older model sewing machine. I tried to bid on one at an auction once, but lost by about $20.

  2. I inherited my Grandmother's treadle machine that she taught me to sew on when I was seven. Long story short, while hubby and I were packing for our move from Nebraska to Washington, my Dad offered to store it for a few weeks until the big move so it wouldn't get damaged. My stepmother took that opportunity to sell it and buy herself a new sewing machine. She was forever telling me to sell it and get a new one as she considered it worthless except for the money it would bring.
    I'm still brokenhearted about it as there were so many, many memories attached to that sewing machine.

    I have an electric machine that hubby bought me for our first Christmas together for $69.00 from Sears. That was 34 years ago. I use it all the time and it works just as well as it did brand new. No computerized machines for me and I'd love another treadle machine.


  3. My cousin owns my grandmother's treadle machine - and she uses it regularly! I have the electric one that took it's place. Both machines are in great shape, get used regularly and have a whole host of tales to tell. Since my cousin only has one son, she will pass the treadle on to me when she can no longer use it for my daughter to have.

    Such a blessing to have such gifts!

    Betsy - so sad about your treadle! It's amazing how much power the "almightly $" can have!

    Thanks for sharing this photo and story!

  4. My late granny had one and I loved playing on it as a small child. Though my granny loving progress, got rid of it once she got an electric one!

  5. Go Buddy! I remember my Mom's treadle machine, (the one I learned to sew on) and as a little one, I would sit there and push 'n pull till I got it going really fast! (I thought) and then just let it go flying. Amazing! A couple of times though, the belt was still connected to the machine and my mom would come down the hall, yelling .... "Stop! You're going to break the needle!" I never did, though :-) I only remember having to change the needle once. Threading the needle was always an adventure and threading our bobbin (a long thin spool) was even MORE of an adventure! I got pretty good at it when I was 11 and in 4H (when I made a dirndle skirt.)


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