There was a note pinned to a piece of fabric under the presser foot saying that the machine worked. It is not a Featherlite, a very popular machine even now. Quite the contrary, it is very heavy.
It was sitting on top of its cabinet which was in very bad shape. You can see where it attached to the cabinet by these hinges on the back of the machine:
I did that, and it sews very nicely. I was proud of myself for being able to thread it, both top and bobbin (only one bobbin came with the machine). However I soon realized that there was something wrong with the lovely simple mechanism for winding the bobbin. It appeard to be frozen - wouldn't turn. I was about to give up on it when my wonderful husband took an interest. He freed it up and fiddled with putting it back together. We had no manual, and neither of us could remember exactly how it had looked. But, in spite of this, he got it working. It is not like it was before, but it works!
So I started planning a project from another of the books I had ordered to read in California.
Most of my friends will understand why this title appealed to me. I like to improvise. Long ago as a dance major at UCLA, I spent my whole junior year improvising. I am not too fond of following the rules. None of my weaving friends would call me meticulous. The few quilts that I have made were either very simple or made up as I went along. I decided to make twelve six-inch blocks, enough for two placemats, with Christmas colours. The first block I made was a "liberated star". Then I made a very liberated log cabin block. I thought that more of these would be too busy, so made some simpler blocks. This is the result:
Meanwhile, the instruction booklet I ordered from Singer came. Imagine my surprise when I read that there is a way to drop the feed dogs so that one can freehand quilt with this lovely old machine. Stay tuned!