Custom Paint & Refurbishment
I saw James’ work and I was very impressed. It takes a lot to impress me too because I used to do custom painting on hot rods!”
– Ray Elkins, VSM Restoration Instructor
We refurbish and paint many models of vintage sewing machines, including the coveted Singer 221 Featherweight. We also refinish vintage cases beautifully. Contact us via email or our Facebook page to discuss your project.
Many beautiful colors are displayed below after these important details:
Pricing is for the colors/finishes shown below. For an additional fee ($50) we can identify additional colors such as matching automobile color codes. Customer pays all shipping, each way, and we encourage appropriate insurance for the value of the machine.
Featherweights: $800. Includes a deep clean, a 100+ part breakdown including opening, cleaning, and inspecting the motor, meticulously polished chrome, proper paint preparation, multiple coats of high-quality paint, new decals, and catalyst-hardened gloss coating. Completed machines are tested thoroughly for a proper stitch.
Singer 301: $700 in a single color, or $750 in two colors. Full service is similar to the description of the Featherweight above.
Other Models: We refinish many other classic models and these are typically less than the price of a Featherweight or 301. The Singer 15, 66, 99, and 201, for example, start at $650. Full service is similar to the description of the Featherweight above.
Pedals: We do not recommend painting pedals, but we will do so at your request for $20. On bakelite pedals, we leave the “button” the original black and the rest of the pedal is painted. If we were to paint that button, the tolerance that allows the button to move up and down freely can become too tight, losing the gliding effect, from the additional paint and gloss coat.
Cases: These start at $175. Price varies depending on color and design options.
Additional Parts: We video opening your package and we do a cursory inspection for necessary parts to recommend; for example, some machines have broken bakelite thumb nuts or power terminals, some are missing drip pans, etc. If you choose to replace any parts, we can usually acquire them based on availability and add them to your invoice. Parts purchases may require prepayment at our discretion.
Shipping, Invoicing, and Caring for Your Machine
What to Ship: We require your complete machine with bobbin case and your pedal. If you are most comfortable packing your machine in its case, that is fine. Your belongings will be carefully tagged and tracked throughout our process. Your bobbin case will remain with your machine. When we reassemble, time the hook, and perfect the stitches, we want this to be accomplished with your bobbin case and your pedal, just as you will be sewing with your machine.
Prepare to Ship Properly for Your Protection: Photograph your machine from multiple angles prior to packaging. With the machine packed inside the box, take a photo before closing and taping the top to demonstrate your (hopefully) excellent packing. We video opening your machine, so if there is any damage from shipping, your insurance claim should be easily processed. We have had only one damaged machine over more than two years’ time (and not a Featherweight), and because we had excellent photos and proper insurance, the claim was paid immediately by the U.S. Postal Service.
Insure Your Package: Please insure your package for a replacement value you consider appropriate – if the shipper damages your machine, what would it cost you to replace it? Our return shipping requires insurance as well unless you waive the insurance in writing.
How We Invoice & Return Your Machine: To begin, we send you a business invoice through Paypal requiring your deposit via Paypal or credit card. We do NOT request “gift transfers.” When your machine is complete, we video it sewing to show you, and we provide photographs. We calculate your return shipping, add any additional parts/service that you may have requested while we had your machine, and you pay your final invoice prior to return shipping.
Caring for a Painted Sewing Machine: Your machine will be top-coated with a high-gloss clear coat that provides protection, but you must understand that the final job is like the paint on a fine automobile: if you were to drop scissors on a Mercedes hood, you would be likely to get a blemish. You will no longer polish your machine with oil; you will use liquid wax like an automobile. Avoid scuffing your machine with jewelry; never put stickers or adhesive on your machine. Screw-in seam guides can blemish the finish over time as you would be clamping metal against a finished metal surface, which would require great care and is not recommended.
Browse our colors and finishes below. Notice that the color-shifting finishes have videos so that you can see the effect of light on the finished object.
Candy finishes have rich color. We often spray these over a metallic base to provide a shimmering metallic fleck effect.
Pearls have great color depth and shimmering iridescence with pearl luster.
Chromacoats change color depending on the angle from which they are viewed. More than just a subtle variation in shade, the color undergoes striking transformation. Colors are indicated below. Please watch the video to see the color-shifting effect.
Sparkle Pearls offer a vivid shimmering effect in strong light, with a pearly finish.
Spectracoat creates iridescent color enhancements that appear to move right before your eyes. It looks like “liquid silver” in low light, then provide and a more flowing liquid silver rainbow in bright light. Don’t confuse Spectracoat with Chromacoat – while Chromacoat finishes dramatically change color, Spectracoat finishes offer more of a “dancing light” effect. Colors are indicated below. Please watch the video to see the effect.
Metallics are much like the finish on custom and fine automobiles. They provide a “metallic fleck” effect that gives the finish depth and shimmer.