Friday, August 3, 2018

Another Fun Gadget, the Underbraider

This is a gadget that I believe came standard in the attachment set of the older machines - I'm talking about the OLD black Singers from the early 20th century.  At that time, it was probably common to adorn garments with braid, thus the underbraider which attached it from the bobbin-facing side of the fabric, as the name implies.

For this attachment, it doesn't matter which shank type you have, but you do have to have a machine which has the holes in the bed and the throat plate that match up with the slot to screw it on, and the little clamp that holds it in place.  The majority of old Singers have this configuration - this is on my Singer 237.

So what you do is insert braid, or whatever 1/8" embellishment you're using, into the slot:

Another thing you must have is the short, open-toed quilting foot.  A regular straight stitch presser foot won't work because the toes are too long and too close together to allow for the slot that feeds the braid/ribbon.


Here's a good thing to know: if you don't have that type of quilting foot available, then you can use your button foot!  That is what I'm using here.  It is almost exactly the same and works perfectly well.

So naturally you match your bobbin thread to the embellishment you are sewing on which is going onto the right side of the fabric which is face down.  If you are following some kind of outline or design, you can sketch that on the back of the fabric which is face up.  Now sew!

Let me take a moment and point out how quietly and smoothly this machine sews.  I like it better each time I use it.   Excellent machine!

And here is the right side  (this fabric sample is an old press cloth so please excuse the scorch marks!)

What I think will be even more useful for me is sewing on tiny rick-rack.  If you are so lucky as to have some vintage baby rick-rack, this is the perfect gadget for sewing it on.  (Modern baby rick-rack isn't as tiny as the older kind, and may not fit.)

I collect vintage rick-rack.  I love this stuff!

So if you are making a hem, for example, and want rick-rack along the hemline, you can do it in one operation from the wrong side.

You can't tell, but this is very tiny rick-rack, just 1/8" wide

The top thread popped through a bit here, so I could have adjusted the tensions.  But you can still get the idea.

This gadget won't necessarily rock your world, but if you happen to find one in an old box of attachments like I did, now you'll know what to do with it.