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Thread: Approximately how old does a machine need to be to be considered "vintage"?

  1. #1
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    Approximately how old does a machine need to be to be considered "vintage"?

    I consider my machines "middle-aged" - but a 1960s Singer 237 was listed as "antique" on Craigslist.

    I consider that "middle-aged"

    And what is the difference between "vintage" and "antique"?

  2. #2
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    Different items/types of collections have some very different definitions. Typically "antique" means things older than 100 years. For me it also means no electricity even if that can now cross the 100 year line.

    "Vintage" is more variable, can be one generation or more -- so for my generation in the 1970s the 1950s was vintage. My own definition for what I mean by "vintage" fabric is that which is 36" wide (in general) which is generally earlier than mid-1960 (at least American-made), but I've seen Y2K fabrics described as vintage as well. As time is passing on, a lot more stuff is dated as "mid-century".

  3. #3
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    Typically in collector circles, Antique is over 100 years old and vintage is 30-99 years old.

    Even with "mid century", I know a guy who loves finding mid century sewing stuff, but he's into the 19th century, not the 20th. And can you believe it - we are almost 20 years into the 21st century! My, how time flies!
    My name is Cathy - and I'm addicted to old sewing machines and their attachments.

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    Nice to know that I am vintage and not antique!

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    Super Member leonf's Avatar
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    And how many non Singer machines are listed as Singers on Craigslist?? If it black and cast Iron it must be a Singer, right?
    "Sacrifices must be made." Otto Lilienthal

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    Super Member NZquilter's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by leonf View Post
    And how many non Singer machines are listed as Singers on Craigslist?? If it black and cast Iron it must be a Singer, right?
    ... And it's a super common model and looks like it's been in a barn for the last 20 years. But doggone, we are going to say it's rare and ask $700 for it!

    Gotta love those listings!
    We didn't realize we were making memories, we just knew we were having fun. ~ Winnie the Pooh ~

    1912 World's Rotary Treadle (White Company), 1942 Singer 66-16, 1952 Pfaff 130-6, 1954 Singer 15-91, 1956 Singer 201-2

  7. #7
    Super Member cashs_mom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by my-ty View Post
    Nice to know that I am vintage and not antique!
    Good to know!
    Patrice S

    Bernina Artista 180, Singer 301a, Featherweight Centennial, Rocketeer, Juki 2200 QVP Mini, White 1964 Featherweight

  8. #8
    Power Poster ckcowl's Avatar
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    A 1960’s machine is far from being an antique. I have a 1956 Singer that the dealer told me wasn’t even vintage yet.
    hiding away in my stash where i'm warm, safe and happy

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by ckcowl View Post
    A 1960’s machine is far from being an antique. I have a 1956 Singer that the dealer told me wasn’t even vintage yet.
    Good to hear. I'm a 1946 year model and don't consider myself "vintage" yet.....................oh wait....................we're talking about sewing machines here!
    I have and have used my Grandma's 1937 Singer that she bought new. I guess that might be considered vintage.

    Jim

  10. #10
    Senior Member kwendt's Avatar
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    Oh my... I don’t mind being ‘vintage’ but I’d so rather not be labeled ‘antique’! Lol Seriously, I’ve heard it said in the antiquing world... that antique is 100 years or more here in the US. In England, that might be vintage. Maybe how ppl view it, is dependent on their culture or geographic area? For me: antique is about 150-200 years in my mind as I grew up in a house built pre-1860 (sea captains house in old Maine). But I live in Florida now, and what is old here is 100 years or so (about 1920’s).
    Last edited by QuiltnNan; 06-12-2019 at 07:26 AM. Reason: shouting/all caps
    Babylock Ellegante, Babylock Evolve, Janome MC 4000, post-war Japan 15-91 (Chromed clone), Singers: 501 Rocketeer, 401, 403, 301 short bed w/card table, 301 short bed w/ trapezoid table, 221 Featherweight, 201, several 15-91ís incl a 15-91 blackside, 15-86, 66-6, 66-16, old 15 (1903) Tiffany Treadle, 127 Sphinx Treadle and various other machines that come and go...

  11. #11
    Senior Member kwendt's Avatar
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    Jim, bet that 1937 is a great machine too! Kudos!


    Quote Originally Posted by Flyboy Jim View Post
    Good to hear. I'm a 1946 year model and don't consider myself "vintage" yet.....................oh wait....................we're talking about sewing machines here!
    I have and have used my Grandma's 1937 Singer that she bought new. I guess that might be considered vintage.

    Jim
    Babylock Ellegante, Babylock Evolve, Janome MC 4000, post-war Japan 15-91 (Chromed clone), Singers: 501 Rocketeer, 401, 403, 301 short bed w/card table, 301 short bed w/ trapezoid table, 221 Featherweight, 201, several 15-91ís incl a 15-91 blackside, 15-86, 66-6, 66-16, old 15 (1903) Tiffany Treadle, 127 Sphinx Treadle and various other machines that come and go...

  12. #12
    Super Member leonf's Avatar
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    kwendt. you may want to check out Sarah Graves murder mysteries. She solves crimes while trying to maintiane her 200 year old house in Eastport Maine.

    And you are right, of course, 400 year old houses in Europe are still being used. Antiques may be 1,000 years old.

    I was thrilled to be apart of finding a hide scraper here in Kansas USA that probably was lost before Columbus made it over.
    "Sacrifices must be made." Otto Lilienthal

  13. #13
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    DH and I were watching a series on the Scottish Islands, and they routinely talked about buildings that were several hundred years old.
    My name is Cathy - and I'm addicted to old sewing machines and their attachments.

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