A present and a half

I got a present yesterday.  A very nice present.  A Bernina 801 sewing machine.  I’m going to assume that half of you are now going “well that was nice I guess” and the others are going “you lucky :@{}@!”  Allow me to explain…

There are many types of sewing machine.  They come and go, although a few brands like Singer and Brother stay around (my beloved Necchi comes from a time from when they were excellent.  Then they stopped being.  As soon as they stopped being made in Italy apparently!)  Then you have Bernina.  Think Rolls Royce and you have some idea; it is the one you aspire to.


This one was delivered 1st October 1981 so it’s over 30 years old. (Sadly we worked out that just before my great uncle died which may explain why my great aunt, who gave me this gorgeous machine, has barely used it.  Just too painful.)  It is immaculate.  The dust build up is tiny.  The motor is making some strange noises, almost certainly due to under use, and it is going to have a service before it gets used.  I don’t want to risk it.  Luckily the shop it was brought in is still going strong.

But the reason for the post is not (just) to gloat.  There are some design elements that impressed me massively and I wanted to share them.  There were two elements really, both to do with packaging. 

One is the little bit box.  Now for all I know this may be standard now but as well as the compartments there was one to hold the bobbins.  And (although it’s a little hard to see on the picture) in the lid there is a pic of the machine and several columns.  The columns show the different stitches available and their ideal settings.  Then from the columns are little arrows so there’s no mistaking which dial to change for each bit.  So simple, so clever!


The other ingenious ting (so far) is the case itself.  It’s a butterfly case- you just put it in the middle then the sides fold up to encase it.  But the clever bit is the way everything clicks into place perfectly using every bit of space available. it’s very neat.  I say everything but in fact I still haven’t worked out where the cable goes…




Right, off to read the manual! byeee


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