All Things Vintage

As of this evening, I’m the proud new owner of this lovely old gal.


Can you read her badge? She says, “Red Cross” on her. I’ve been informed that she’s a Davis treadle sewing machine, one of the machines the company made and donated to the Red Cross during World War I. She’s got quite a history, this gal! I’m itching to get her home to my house (my in-loves picked her up) and make her sew a pretty stitch. That may be easier said than done. Who knows how long she hung out in the barn?

On another note, I dug out my 1930’s reproduction fabrics tonight to start something new. The only problem? I don’t have a pattern yet, or even a general direction. I was considering a 30’s sampler, but am not familiar enough with pattern history to know which blocks to make. I have a few vintage tops awaiting my attention, too. Those are a wedding ring quilt, Dresden plates to applique down, and string blocks. I could use my repro fabrics for one of those patterns, but I was hoping for a small challenge.

Do you have an suggestions? What would you stitch up if you had a good solid collection of 30’s prints?


5 thoughts on “All Things Vintage

  1. I have recently acquired a Red Cross sewing machine. Although my machine is not near as good as yours due to it being left outside for I don’t know how many years. It has been very difficult to find any info about this machine and the treadle cabinet as well. I can’t restore it back to original but I would like to clean the rust and preserve what details are left on it. I also have the base but the top is so damage from being outside that it needs to be replaced which I could do if I had more info about it. Any info you can give me would be so appreciated.


    • Hi, Pat! I’m not an expert on this or any treadle machine, but we have found out a few tidbits here and there about our old gal. She was made by a company called Davis. (There is a yahoo group dedicated just to Davis sewing machines.) We found that many of the Davis machines were sold through Sears. According to some literature we found when we googled “Davis sewing machine Red Cross”, the company made and distributed domestic machines to Red Cross centers. In all likelihood, our two machines were part of that group. Isn’t that interesting history? How exciting that you’ve found one, too!
      There is a facebook group called “Vintage Sewing Machines” that has an abundance of good advice on cleaning and polishing up an older machine! Happy sewing!
      Thanks for stopping by!


  2. Hi Stacy

    Was wondering if you are able and willing to copy your booklet about the machine and maybe take a few more detailed pictures. Have had no luck finding any more info on this machine. I am willing to pay for a copy.


  3. Hi, Pat,
    I don’t have a booklet for my Davis treadle machine, but found most of the history of it online. My household is mostly packed up right now, but I’ll take some more detailed pictures of the machine once I’m moved in a few months. I’m sorry I couldn’t be more help!


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