15 February 2007

What the Hecht?

I've never been sure quite what to make of the Hecht Sewing Machine and Motor Company, a tiny throwback of a shop in the Garment District on 304 W. 38th Street, but I've always loved their little window display, filled with obselete tools of the trade, ancient products and bits of old advertising.

The store dates from the turn of the century, though I haven't been able to ascertain the exact year, and seems to operate year after year under the radar. Some old New York businesses are celebrated by the papers from time to time. This ain't one of them. Maybe sewing machine parts and services aren't sexy enough for the City Desk. Some fabric professionals don't seem to know about it either. I once met a Broadway costume designer who worked out of a loft in the same building, and she told me she had never even entered Hecht's.

You can't take your old Singer in to be fixed here. Hecht's caters to the surrounding garment trade and their industrial machines. They also seem to have a soft spot for antiques. A man in the store told me they take in old machines from time to time when they become available. Not old, like 1950s. Old, like 19th century.

1 comment:

Jake said...

Pleas go back to Hecht's and speak with Mrs. Hecht. She's a fountain of information. The back room is the cleanest and most beautifully arranged amateur museum I've ever seen, and they have at least 2 more floors of stuff I've never seen...