Saturday, January 09, 2010

One of the things I really needed to do over the holidays was to get my hand-sewing gear in order. I have more than 10 projects on the go, and it seemed that I could never find anything I wanted, or when I did track down a project some vital piece would be missing. So I went through every cupboard in every room and collected it all in one spot.
A long time ago I decided it was not an extravagance to have multiples of items I used constantly, like thimbles, scissors and needles. Later I added magnifying glasses to that list, because I can't do a thing if I can't find my glasses. And it's very difficult to find a needle that is perfectly suited to your way of stitching, so I tend to buy packets of different brands and types every time I'm in a patchwork or sewing shop.I have quite a few now, but I need to make a list of what I have, because I"ve obviously been buying the same thing over and over, and I still don't know which one is my favourite. Time to record my thoughts on each of these, so that I know which ones to replace, and which ones I need never buy again. It will be a while before I need to buy Luixin needles, because I have 7 packets!!

The needlebooks are a great success, so I would like to make a few more of them, maybe a few sets of matching pincushions and needlebooks. I should be making lots of gorgeous little things, instead of just whipping up something to fill the need.The thread needs a jolly good sort out, and then the ones I need for particular projects can go back into the kit, and the rest can return to the thread stash. If I'd been looking for my silk thread I would never have thought to look for it where it was, hidden in a box of templates; I must be more organised this year!
And the templates need to be sorted and filed in clear plastic pockets and labelled. No more digging and flinging things about trying to locate something I know I have. It never takes long to restore order, and I'm always grateful to be able to put my hands on things straight away.

One thing surprised me; I only found two thimbles. I have sewn with a thimble since I was 6 years old, and always have them handy. I must have bought at least a dozen of the nice brass ones, and yet there are only two here. That can't be allowed; it's off to the LQS to stock up again.
I like using lots of different containers to hold my sewing things. Mereth and I have often bought boxes of toffees or chocolates, just so we can use the container afterwards; the kids used to be encouraged to eat all the goodies so we'd have the container sooner.

Next time I go shopping I will buy thimbles and some more scissors, and I'll make up 6 complete sewing kits; needle book, thimble, scissors, pincushion, magnifying glasses and thread. Then there won't be a reason why I can't work on a project when I want to.


Sue SA 7:58 PM  

I am so impressed that you have TEN hand sewing projects on the go. I probably have that many UFO's, but keep them hidden so I can justify starting new ones. I love seeing pictures of your quilts, your output keeps me motivated!

Sew Create It - Jane 8:48 PM  

I have done just the very same thing. Everything came together on the dining room table and then I sorted it all out. I too had an abundance of needles! It's much better now that it is sorted...though I'm not sure I'm going to remember where I put everything. LOL

antique quilter 9:14 PM  

this post made me laugh, yesterday I had to go thru a few bags I use for projects on the go for my favorite applique scissors
guess I should buy a few pairs of those scissors!
I love the quilt you posted yesterday the 4 patch blocks set in a nine patch setting and the quilting is amazing on it
really came a live
thanks for sharing it with us. You never cease to amaze me with all you get done

Andrea 11:30 PM  

What a great post - I have really enjoyed nosing at your goodies - lol ! I too am forever buying things just so I can have the tin or box - I think it's an illness.xx

pdudgeon 1:22 AM  

this is a great idea! thanks for letting us take a peak at your sewing supplies.

Debra 1:51 AM  

What fun! Thanks for sharing ;-)

tami 3:15 AM  

Oh you have made me remember that I need to do that with my hand sewing supplies as well. I have multiples too and put them with the projects, but I have been having trouble finding any. I think it might be because I have so many projects in progress. :(

Laura 3:42 AM  

What a nice collection of notions! If you have ten hand projects going then you most definitely need some more thimbles!

kelley 7:20 AM  

love this's something I really must do too...knowing you have a dozen of something and not being able to find even one is so frustrating!

lvoe the quilt from yesterday too...nine patches are one of my favorites...

Lori in South Dakota 3:34 AM  

I keep multiples of sewing items too. 2 pairs of the the scissors that clip to your shirt on a retractable leash. Lots of seams rippers--I even have them velcroed to the front and back of the long arm. I keep lots of items in bowls on the long arm table. And those little school boxes---that holds my current hand sewing project--mostly sewing down bindings. A basket holds long arm bobbins. Another basket has thread. I rather like baskets!

sewprimitive karen 5:45 AM  

Do you have places in mind for the six kits? Love to watch other people get organized lol.

Meggie 9:27 AM  

What a great idea. I loved seeing your collection- it made me feel better, as I tend to buy multiples of things like scissors and needles, then lose track of them. Cant blame the kids any more!
I do have several sewing kits I have made, & always question myself about making another!

Jenni 12:53 PM  

I have recently tried the Jeana Kimball straw needles for hexagons, and have decided that I want to chuck every other needle I own in the bin. Just love them. Good idea to make up the little sewing kits.

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