What to do with an old sewing machine

What To Do with An Old Sewing Machine?

If you are getting into the journey of sewing or since you are already in it and practicing for a while in this long run, you have achieved advanced sewing skills. At some point your old machine is new for someone else or it must have been handed over from your family members. In both cases the sewing machine is old, right? On the other hand, you might be wondering to upgrade form the current model you using.

No matter the situation, the question is, what to do with an old sewing machine? Well, there are bunch of opportunities out of an old sewing machine. From recycling and donating to trading in or selling, the possibilities are endless. You explore the opportunities and scan through the ideas to utilize the old machine better along with us.

Key takeaways

  • Get sure of the status and condition of your old sewing machine.
  • Pick up any idea for your old sewing machine to utilize it
  • Make sure you are aware of the additional tips to utilize better

How to Determine an Old Sewing Machine?

Old sewing machines are difficult to value but they worth for sure. However, their value depends on technical and emotional factors.  Usually, they hold much significance since granny and other family member has used it. On the other hand, some people might want to sell or upgrade their sewing machine. In this case what you would do with the old sewing machine?

How to determine an old sewing machine
How to determine an old sewing machine

To determine whether your sewing machine is actually old you must determine few factors.

  • An old sewing machine can be in any condition. It could be in mint, fresh, or covered in rust, mud, and other stuffs, it wouldn’t be considered as a good sewing machine. There would be charges for repair and clean it.
  • The sewing machine you have is almost 5 to 10 model behind and lacks some modern features which fasten the procedure of the sewing work while you work for the projects.
  • There may be great differences in value and condition between different models in a Brand’s collection. It all depends on the particular model’s desirability. Both when it first came out, and as a collectible or usable item years after it was built.
  • The value of a particular model within a brand’s collection can differ greatly too. As a collectible item or usable item, it all depends on the model’s desirability at the time of its release, as well as years later.

Utilize Your Old Sewing Machine: 5 Ideas

Just because your sewing machine is old doesn’t mean you have nothing to do with it. even though can’t use it personally yet there are a bunch of ways to utilize it.

  1. Keep
  2. Sell
  3. Exchange
  4. Donate
  5. Decorate or Recycle


Keeping hold of the machine may be the best option. It might have sentimental significance or be beneficial one day. However, you can also take a chance to repair them since they are strong and unbeatable in performance. Try to keep it clean and oiled with thread and needle replacement before working.

Since you are keeping your old sewing machine you must take care of it properly. Ensure your sewing machine is cleaned up from the dusts. If you don’t keep it neat the needle plate, hooks, and other stuffs would be jammed which can cause it to run poorly or even break down. Also, don’t forget to oil it. Use the default oil container to oil your old sewing machine. Put a tiny bit of sewing machine oil on these moving parts and really make sure it is working properly.



If you want to get rid of an unwanted item and make some extra cash at the same time, you should consider selling your sewing machine online. There are markets for old and new items. You can list your sewing machine for sale in classified ads or even online. The first and foremost condition for selling your old sewing machine is to get sure about it works perfectly fine. If you haven’t had the machine serviced in a while, then spend some bucks to make it top-notch and catch the eyes of a buyer.

Additionally, conduct the market briefly and fix a right price for it. The price factor depends on the location, trends, etc. so research briefly about such factor and then determine a price to get hits form the buyers. If you are selling it online, then a clear crisp photo is must. So, click a good photo with proper focus and colors correction details so that the buyers find it attractive and contacts you as soon as possible.



If you can’t sell your old machine, you can trade it at a local sewing machine store in exchange for a new model. If you have a machine to trade, check on some website to see if there’s any deal available. You may be pleasantly surprised at what they can offer when you trade it in. it is a great way to get some cash and save the machine from ending up in junkyard.

But get sure of the condition of your sewing machine. If you can’t figure it out by yourself then bring your machine to the exchange shop or store for an evaluation and they’ll let you know how much they’re willing to give you for it. If you decide to trade it in, simply bring it back to the store and complete the exchange.



There are several places that accept donations of old sewing machines. Thrift stores that accept electrical items, church groups, and shelters are some of the places that accept donations. Try to find out local sources where donations are on. The condition of your old sewing machine depends when you are donating it. It needs to be working well and have as many original accessories as possible in order to be useful to the charity or group. The majority of charities do not have the resources, the money, or the time to refurbish used machines.

In case if you are wondering about the right place to donate your old sewing machine then firstly you can consider charity trusts. they are always thriving to make good developmental impacts by training people regardless their age. the next place to look for is, schools and homeless shelter. it would be a good way contribute and help people to get decent cloths in their need and earn a lifetime skill.


5.Decorate and Recycle

Repurpose the machine into something different is a great idea, it not only reduces garbage going to landfills, but it may also add a personal touch to your home décor. People are being more into DIY and using their creativity they are making things out of old stuffs which is amazing.

You can repurpose your old machine into an any showcase or art pieces and if any parts are working you can replace it since modern machines are sometimes compatible with older ones. For recycle you can keep the parts that are appropriate for your concept of changing the decor of the sewing machine but not all the machines are suitable for such transformation. That’s why it is better to examine the machine first.

Decorate and recycle
Decorate and recycle

Additional Tips for Utilization of Old Sewing Machine

As you have the basic ideas to deal with your old sewing machine there are some practical tips to enhance the experience of those ideas.

  • Since your old sewing machine is unused for a long while make sure you cover the machine with a piece of cloth from outer hazards.
  • Try to use the sewing machine often otherwise it can become stiff and difficult to run. If you don’t have any work to do on It try to run it once in a week or month for keeping it up to the mark.
  • On the other hand, if you prefer to go directly to a dealer, he’ll will likely pay you more money, You’ll earn less money when you sell to a dealer, but you’ll have less hassle. The amount of time you want to put into making money off the machine is entirely up to you.


What kind of oil do you use in an old sewing machine?

You can use natural oil from plants, mineral oil, and synthetic oil on a sewing machine.

Are old sewing machines worth money?

Yes, depending on the model and condition of the sewing machine they are much valuable.

Do people buy old sewing machines?

Yes, many people purchase old sewing machines for their appearance and vintage aesthetics.

Final Thoughts

Old sewing machines are not only a piece you would just get off and leave it in the junkyard because if you utilize it properly you can bang out of it. Just like the ideas above if you pick one for instance, sell it or keep it. Imagine what your family would worth for this machine after years as a vintage piece or how much fortune you’d make if you sell this old piece of sewing machine that still works like a charm. So, instead of giving a single thought don’t worry much about your existing sewing machine like we said you can also update it by exchanging as well.


Hey I’m Sherry Howes an expert in sewing, knitting, crocheting, and embroidery. With a passion for fiber arts and a talent for crafting, I Have spent years improving my skills and sharing knowledge with others. Whether teaching a class or creating a new project, I’m always excited to share my love of crafting with the world. I like researching new techniques and trends in the crafting arts community.

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