When it comes to Singer, even avid sewing-machine collectors tend not to mince their words. “They were not great innovators,” says Harry Berzack, who owns about 500 sewing machines of various makes and models. But one thing everyone agrees on was Singer’s unprecedented ability to get its machines into the hands of customers. “They were unbelievable marketers,” Berzack says.

That may be why collectors of antique and vintage sewing machines have so much fun collecting Singers—there are a lot of models to choose from. One of the earliest was the Turtleback from 1856, which was only in production for a few years but paved the way for Singer’s New Family machine, which was introduced in the 1860s before being renamed the Singer Model 12. The machine came in hand-crank and treadle versions, and featured decorative gold details on its jet-black body.

An Improved Family machine followed in 1879. This machine is considered a breakthrough because of its oscillating shuttle, but the next year an even more significant development occurred—Singer put an Edison electric motor in one of its machines, a foreshadowing of things to come.

By 1890, Singer had a staggering 80 percent of the world sewing-machine market, and by 1891, that early Edison prototype was being offered to the public. Other models from this era (there were 40 at the turn of the century) include the Singer 48 K, which was manufactured at the company’s plant in Kilbowie, Scotland (the factory would be renamed Clydebank).

The Singer 66 is also of this vintage. It was introduced in 1900 (its portable cousin, the 99, arrived around 1920) and remained in production until the 1950s, which makes this probably the most ubiquitous Singer model available. Another Singer machine that’s popular with collectors (as well as seamstresses and tailors, for that matter) is the Featherweight, which was introduced in 1933 at the Chicago World’s Fair.

Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

Sewing Machine Collector

Sewing Machine Collector

Geoff and Norma Dickens' reference site on vintage toy sewing machines from the late 1800s. Browse the images alpha… [read review or visit site]

Sensibility Vintage Images

Sensibility Vintage Images

An extensive collection of photos and ephemera illustrating changing fashion styles from 1795 to 1959. Includes por… [read review or visit site]

Clubs & Associations

Discussion Forums

Other Great Reference Sites

Most watched eBay auctions    

Rare! Antique 1940 Blue & White Singer Featherweight Sewing Machine NrBeautiful Singer 221 Featherweight Sewing Machine, Case W/ Key, Accessories Vintage Singer 221k Featherweight Portable Sewing Machine Extras Feet Rare WhiteVintage Singer 20 Childs Small Miniature Sewing Machine Base Repaired.Vintage 1960's Singer Featherweight 221 -k Sewing Machine & CaseVintage 1953 Singer 221 Featherweight Sewing Machine With Carrying CaseVintage Singer 221k Featherweight Sewing Machine W/ Case And AccessoriesWhite Singer Featherweight Sewing Machine Model 221k With Green Case Vintage Red " S " Singer Featherweight Freearm Sewing Machine 222 K Jan 1961Vintage Singer Featherweight Sewing Machine Cat. #3-120 In Black Case Works Nr1960 Singer 222k Featherweight Free Arm Sewing Machine 250 VoltsVintage Singer Featherweight 221 Portable Sewing Machine No Case/footpedalSinger 201 Sewing Machine Heavy Duty W/accs, Book Leather CapableVintage 1934 Singer Featherweight 221 W/case & Foot Pedal1964 Singer Featherweight Portable Model 221- Sewing MachineSinger Sewhandy Model 20 Childs Vintage 1950s Sewing MachineSinger 221-1 Feather Weight Sewing Machine Orig Case Accessories 1953-55Vintage Singer Sewing Machine Featherweight 221-11953 Singer 222k Featherweight Sewing Machine +case Freearm Rare Serial Ej269891Vintage Singer Featherweight 221 Sewing Machine With Case Portable AntiqueNov.1934 Singer Featherweight Ad 782105 221 Sewing Machine W/case & Extras Ga81Pretty Original Singer Hand Crank La Vencedora Decals Antique Sewing Machine Singer 221-1 Featherweight Sewing Machine In Case Pedal & Cord Working 1953Vintage 1956 Singer 221-featherweight Sewing Machine W/ Carrying Case & ExtrasVtg Singer Featherweight Black Sewing Machine # Ag854848 Box & Buttonholer NrVintage Singer Featherweight Sewing Machine Scroll Face W Case Attachments KeysVintage Singer Featherweight Sewing Machine- 3-120 Includes CaseServiced 1953 Vintage Singer 301 301a Black Sewing Machine Prism Decals C VideoSinger Featherweight Sewing Machine Model 221 K 5. Rare Tan Color. Works!Vintage Featherweight Sewing Machine 221 With Case + Attachments 1946 Runs GreatVintage 1951 Singer Sewing Machine 201 Cenntenial Runs And SewsVintage 1946 Singer 221 Featherweight Sewing Machine With Carrying CaseBeautiful 221 Singer Featherweight Sewing Machine + Tons Of Brand New Extras! NrAwesome Vintage 1951 Singer 221 Featherweight Sewing Machine W/ Carrying CaseVintage Singer Treadle Sewing Machine Cast Iron Base, Table Legs, 1879 Pat DateFeatherweight Vintage Singer Sewing Machine 3-120 - With Pedal And CaseWhite Singer Featherweight Sewing Machine Model 221k With Green Case Vintage Singer Featherweight 221-1 Sewing Machine 1946Singer Model 301a Sewing Machine W/ Original Case - Excellent / WorkingSinger Featherweight Sewing MachineVintage 50s Singer Featherweight Portable Folding Sewing Machine Card Work TableVintage 1954 Singer Featherweight 221 Sewing Machine With Case No ReserveSinger Featherweight 221k Sewing Machine For Parts / RestorationExcellent Singer Featherweight 221 Sewing Machine 1950 Near Mint Quilting Dream7 Vintage Singer Sewing Machine Attachment Boxes 6/attachments Vintage Singer Featherweight 221 Sewing Machine W/case Access. Cat 3-120 PerfectGreat Singer 221-1 Featherweight Sewing Machine,super Clean,case,attacmnts,1951~singer 221 Featherweight Sewing Machine ~ 1938 ~complete With Manual ,boxVintage Singer Featherweight 221 Sewing Machine Foot Pedal ControllerVintage Singer Featherweight 221 Sewing Machine Bobbin Hook Loop GuardVintage Singer Featherweight 221 Sewing Machine Carrying CaseVtg 1921 Portable Singer Sewing Machine W/ Wooden Carrying Case Works No ReserveVintage Singer 301a Sewing Machine W/ Trapezoid Case & Accessories 1956Vintage Singer 221 Featherweight Sewing Machine W/ Case And Accessories** Singer 20 ** Centennial ** Toy Sewing Machine ** With Clamp & Stork Scissor *Vintage Singer Featherweight 221 Sewing Machine Carrying Case1936 Singer Featherweight 221 Sewing Machine For Restoration Manual Accessories 1950 Singer Featherweight Sewing Machine - Beautiful ConditionVintage Black Singer Model 301 All Original W/case Manual Recently Serviced 1936 Singer Sewing Machine - Model 15-91

Recent News: Singer Sewing Machines

Source: Google News

Nostalgia: A snapshot of bustling Redhill stores in their golden period
Surrey Mirror, May 23rd

at Nos 32 and 34; Dewhurst, the butcher's, at No 36; and Greenwood & Sons, leather sellers, at No 38. Ward's, the ironmonger's traded at No 40, followed by the newsagent's, Yates, and at No 44, the Singer Sewing Machine Company. This premises was...Read more

Musaffah's underground market where anything goes
Yahoo! Maktoob News, May 23rd

“I charge from Dh1 to Dh5 for cloth repairing, depending on the work,” said Mohammed Kamal, a tailor with a Singer sewing machine on a table. There were six tailors in a row in a corner of the market. Just opposite them were several barbers giving...Read more

Garage broken in to
Worcester News, May 22nd

AN electric power chair, a Singer sewing machine and tools were stolen from a garage in Livingstone Street off London Road in Worcester. The theft took place between 10.15pm and 11.30pm on May 18. Call police on 101 quoting 0122S 190515 with ...Read more

WWIpilot became the only Hun to escape a British PoW camp
Daily Mail, May 16th

to intern him, Pluschow escaped again, giving his minders the slip and boarding an overnight train to Shanghai, where he stayed in several locations under assumed identities, including 'Mr MacGarvin', a sales rep for the Singer Sewing Machine Company...Read more

5/16 * Spring Grove * Tulip Dr * Vinton
WDBJ7, May 15th

*****BIG******* Vintage Glass, Collectible Barbies, Weight Bench, Punching Bag, TVs, Antique Singer sewing machine legs, Women's Men and Girls Clothes, Elliptical, Roll away bed frame, Fall Wedding Decorations, BOOKS, Home decorations. vintage ...Read more

What's It Worth? Chinese wooden pillow, Limoges pitcher, toy sewing machine ...
OregonLive.com, May 12th

Q. This reclining figure is made of heavy, solid wood and measures 19 inches long, 9 inches wide and 13 inches high. There are no identifying marks. I bought it at a local auction. It is in fair condition, though the light colored coating has...Read more

McDonald's Should Fear Its Franchisees
Bloomberg View, May 7th

Businesses eventually adopted the franchise model as a way of outsourcing distribution. The Singer Sewing Machine Company helped pioneer the practice in the 1850s, selling the exclusive “right” to market the company's goods in a given sales territory...Read more

Singer Sewing & Vacuum Center
Southern Pines Pilot, March 30th

Singer Sewing and Vacuum Center has been providing quality friendly service for all of your sewing and vacuum needs for over 30 years. Being family owned since 1980, we've learned some very important lessons. We are proud to bring you the most ...Read more