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 I got a new toy today.  It arrived in a big box from my uncle in Colorado, taped to the gills, as usual.  I opened it, too impatient to wait for Mr. Apron to come home, and was greeted with a curved expanse of white plastic, not unlike this:

Was it a bread machine?  A laminating machine?  ( I do love the smell of melting plastic)  Something else ending in machine?  When Mr. Apron came home, we barely had time to eat dinner before I had to dash off to go tutor, but he did spy a manual of sorts visible from behind the miles of bubble wrap.  Words such as “needle” “thread” and “bobbin” jumped off the page.  A new sewing machine!!!

But not just any machine.  It’s a Viking Husqvarna Platinum 735 Royal.  I don’t know what any of that means.  I do know that we used Vikings in 8th grade home ec to learn how to sew (even though my mom taught me the summer before), and that they had lovely smooth action.  I also know that during the summer before moving out to Philly to be with Mr. Apron (shhh, I also had job prospects, but he was my primary motivation.  It’s a big secret.  shhh), when I worked ever-so-briefly as a seamstress for an Egyptian man  who owned a dry cleaning establishment, I had the pleasure of working on a Husqvarna, and damn! if that didn’t make my piece of shit $99 special from Ames’ going out of business sale feel inferior. 

I have always advised my sewing students, when they look for a machine to learn on, that all they really needed was forwards, backwards, and zig-zag.  I still feel that way, to some extent.  You can learn the basics of sewing from such a machine.  And now the beginner models are coming with all sorts of gimmicks and doo-dads — they’re like the Hyundais of the sewing world.  When I got home from tutoring, I waited politely for Mr. Apron to finish his blog, and then ran downstairs to rip open the box.  Taking off the stormtrooper helmet, we found this beauty:

I am so stoked.  I have already figured out how to thread it, a feat made easier by the drop-in loading of the bobbin (like on a film camera), and the automatic needle threader (I have yet to figure this part out).  I have found the bobbin holding tray, designed by brilliant Norwegians to keep threads from tangling (like they did on the trip from Colorado).  I have drooled over the decorative stitching.  I am in love.  I have no idea how to use 3/4 of the features this machine offers, and yet I will not know how I ever sewed without it.  Pretty brazen, you say?  Well, it is an odd house-warming gift, especially from one’s uncle, but one that will be used and appreciated more than a chafing dish or a salsa platter.