Kitty – My Singer Treadle Sewing Machine

Kitty – My Singer Treadle Sewing Machine

When I was little – back in the 70’s – I remember my Nanna’s sewing room. I can still picture it now.

I used to see it most weekends.

On Oxley Island NSW.

My Nanna and Pop had a dairy farm there where my mum grew up. It was sooo much fun for my sister and I to spend time there. We used to play from when the sun was up/or before even, as we watched them milk the cows, till the sun went down and we were forced to come inside. This is what the farm looked like a couple of years ago before it was all knocked down. When this photo was taken they hadn’t lived in it for years as when they retired they built a new house where I was standing to take this photo.

The building in the foreground is the old Dairy. I helped feed many a cow whilst they were milked here. Oh the taste of creamy fresh milk was beyond description! Have you ever tasted it?! Also all the things that Nanna would bake using the fresh milk were the best!

The large red roof over the back of the dairy is the house.  In between the dairy and the house used to be a big barn. Half full of hay most of the time, Rover the dog all the time and a litter of kittens sometimes. Hours were spent running around the paddocks playing chasey as a lot of the time a few of our cousins were there and that just added to the fun!

Our favourite spot for all us kids to hang out was the Love Tree. Yes we named it. There were a couple of branches that we could sit on and bounce up and down and so many more to climb on.

More stories from the farm for another day.

Now towards the back of the house is where Nanna’s sewing room was. She used to have her old treadle Singer Sewing Machine, set up under the tall window,  that was flooded with afternoon sunlight.

There was always mounds and mounds of clothes and bed linen in there that she was either finished repairing or in the process of repairing or going to repair or sew.

Us kids would sneak in there and pull open all the draws of the machine ratting through all the bits and pieces and have so much fun pushing the treadle back and forth and back and forth until we were scooted out. 🙂

I loved her machine and as I grew to enjoy sewing myself I realised how awesome her machine really was. Now that my Nanna has passed away, and not a day goes by when I am sewing that I don’t think about her, her machine was passed on to my Aunty.

My husbando knew of my love of her machine and set himself the task to find me one that I would love and care for and pass to my own daughter. After months of looking for just the right one he found her!!

Meet Kitty!

Since my husbando gave her to me for my birthday I have undertaken lots of investigations on her and found out her history.

Kitty  is a Singer Model 66 (nicknamed a Red Eye) and was born on June 22, 1910 in Elizabeth, New Jersey. She spent most of her life in Condobolin. Condobolin is a town in the west of the Central West region of New South Wales, Australia, on the Lachlan River.

Her owner was a seamstress named Kathleen…otherwise known as Kitty!  I have spent countless time thinking about all the wonderful things they made together. I was told that she would have made work clothes, ladies clothes and children’s clothes as well as mended countless items.

After many many years she was bought to western Sydney by Kitty’s granddaughter (who took the above photo). She did some more work here and then was placed to rest in a room until Kitty’s granddaughter and her husband sold her to my husbando for me!

I have also obtained the manual for her and have plans to further restore her to her former glory.

Although, as you can see from these photos, she is in fantastic condition already and yes she does work!

The detailing in the wood is amazing, and she even came with her original tools.

For those of you that are not familiar with these machines the top of the table here:

Lifts and folds open to the left like this:

 Then the front top middle section lifts up and forward (there is a draw that runs the length of the front panel too)  :

So you can lift Kitty up, fold the front top panel down again and she rests down on top of it.

Sigh. Such beauty. So many memories of my own Nanna.

The detailing on her is SO very intricate. From her face plate, to her bed… her wood panels. Just simply beautiful.

Kitty is very very special to me. Kitty has pride of place in our hall under our memory wall.

She is right opposite the door to my Cougar Cave, with Lilli May’s bedroom to the left, the bathroom and our bedroom to the right and opposite the Kitchen. She is the first thing we see when we come into our home.

She is the best welcome home. Thank you so much Husbando, I love and adore you! 🙂

I hope Lilli May will enjoy sewing as much as I do and I look forward to the day that I watch her sewing with Kitty and maybe some vintage Holly Hobbie fabric… just like my latest collection found here (limited items available). 🙂

So have you had fun on a farm? Or what do you remember about your Nanna from when you were little? Do you have your own Kitty and do you know her history?

Keep smiling




  1. Beautiful!! Lucky you!
    My Grandma had one of these too. It used to be in the room I slept in when we visited her and I dreamed of one day using it. Never happened 😦 And I dont know where it ended up when she passed away. I hope it was looked after, I dont think anyone in the family still has it either … I guess I will just continue to scour antique shops for another 🙂

  2. Hi Michka! A quick update … I found out my Anuty has Grandma’s Singer Treadle and it’s doing well 😉
    AND!!! Best of all!! I found one for myself two weeks after I commented! {I blogged about it} She was an hour up the road from us and on eBay! She’s in great working order and has heaps of extras including the original books etc. I found it 20hrs before the end of auction and asked the gentleman if I could collect in a few weekends and he said, “As a matter of fact I’m heading your way on Thursday and will deliver” Fate. I am blessed and still look at her in awe not quite believing she’s alllll mine! 😀

  3. How do you find the exact birthdate of a singer treadle????

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