I am absolutely in love with this new Singer sewing machine! The 160 was created to celebrate the 160 year anniversary of the Singer brand. In recent years, have you seen anything as sleek and sexy as this come on the market? I love the black color, the lines, and the gold accents! It is just simply stunning and is a great modern adaptation of its sisters from days past. I would love to buy one, but alas, they are currently SOLD OUT! Listing price on the Singer website is “$500 and up.” They were never sold via the Singer website however and were ONLY ever sold by the Home Shopping Network for $375. I can only imagine WHY they chose to go that route. If they had given a few of the major craft bloggers one of these (for only a fraction of what they paid HSN I can assume) and told them to write about it, the word would have been out and they would have sold 12,000 units instead of 6,000. Once they see this thing, who wouldn’t want one? I cringe at the thought of it only being available to people who can sit in front of the TV 24/7 and watch for it, what about the rest of us? My mind flashes to all of those episodes of Hoarders where they find stacks of unopened boxes with HSN printed down the sides that have gotten wet and rotted, covered in bags of… well you know what’s in those bags if you watch the show. Just the thought of one of these meeting a fate like that hurts me inside. There is no word as to if these will ever be in stock again, although I did see Singer respond to someone else that they will eventually be available in the UK, so they must have more stashed somewhere. I asked if they had any plans for selling this anywhere else, or only on HSN and I received no response.
Now for some information about the machine itself. The features of this machine include; 24 Built-In stitches, SwiftSmart Threading System with automatic needle threader, OneTouch Stitch Selection, Simple Stitch, Quick View Stitch, Drop & Sew Bobbin, Presser Foot, Extra-Large Sewing area, Drop Feed, Quick Start Guide, Machine Intro DVD, All-Purpose Foot, Zipper Foot, Buttonhole Foot with Underplate, Blind Hem Foot, Satin Stitch Foot, Pack of Needles, Bobbins (Class 15J), Thread Spool Caps, Auxiliary Spool Pin, Spool Pin Felt, Needle Plate Screwdriver, Seam Ripper / Lint Brush, Soft-Sided Dust Cove, Instruction Manual, Power Cord, Foot Control, Fringe Foot, Cut & Hem Edge Attachment, Narrow Hem Foot, Roller Foot, 1/4″ Foot, Cording Foot, Darning & Embroidery Foot, Open Toe Foot, Invisible Zipper Foot, Flower Stitch Attachment, Carry Bag with Should Strap, Sew Retro: A Stylist History of the Sewing Revolution book and The Invention of the Sewing Machine booklet.
I’m leery of new machines though, having spent a small fortune on one several years ago that resulted in total disaster and complete loss of several hundred hard earned dollars. My machine worked for just under a year, I never put heavy stress on it and used it maybe 20 times total due to some unexpected interruptions in my life. When it quit, I was able to return it for the same model, because it had been less than a year since I had purchased it. The second machine was again, not used very much, and then promptly died just out of service terms. We paid a repair man $40 to evaluate the machine, he basically walked in, saw that it had a digital screen and said that it couldn’t be fixed and would be cheaper to buy a new one. With some of my own investigations, I found that it was one of the plastic pieces inside that had broken. After hours on the phone with the company, $30 and several weeks, I received my tiny part. The machine worked for a day or two and then locked up and would never work again. Loving Husband took it out into the driveway and smashed it with a baseball bat, making us both feel MUCH better. In the process of dealing with new model machines that are poorly crafted, I had not only lost my sanity, but also an agreement with a widely distributed plus-size women’s magazine to provided enough vintage style dresses to them for an entire photo shoot.
While this heinous machine was NOT a Singer, it has still left such a bad taste in my mouth for any machine with a digital read out and lots of buttons on it that no matter how badly I might want one, I’m not sure if I could bring myself to lay out that kind of cash again. I currently have three machines, 2 of which work (the third, an old 1940′s Singer, needs the cord replaced and a new belt.) The one I regularly use is a Brother, the Project Runway limited edition machine. Although this machine is a newer model, it has very few bells and whistles. It does need to be cleaned VERY frequently and jams often, but for the most part it has served me well, costing only $130 when I purchased it new. I grew up with my father’s industrial Nelco machine that sounded like a helicopter taking off, but would sew through a tin can. It is goldenrod yellow and the case is taped together. As the story goes, someone was robbing the building that my father’s office was in when he worked in Hollywood and they fell through the ceiling, landing right on his machine and busting the case, but not even scratching the machine. My most recent machine is an aqua Singer that I purchased at a small flea market for $24. The lady was quite snotty about the fact that she had a new machine and no longer needed this one even though it worked perfectly, so I was fine with taking her abuse and the machine. It is a basic unit and makes a lot of noise, but as a backup machine it works in a pinch. The big question is, I squeak by with the machines that I have, and as much as I would ADORE one of these new Singer 160’s, am I willing to put myself (and my money) out there again, only to have my heart broken?
Singer did finally reply to my inquiry as to when or where these will ever be available to the general public by saying: “Yes, The SINGER 160 sewing machine will be available in other retailers in the future. We will be updating our website soon.”