Thursday, 28 January 2010
The sewing basket
My main anti-procrastination task today (two other small ones, now done as well) was to set to and sort out my sewing basket. I went in there for a thimble yesterday and couldn't find one, but it was a complete untidy jumble in there. So, into the kitchen, all over the table this morning, big cup of tea in hand. An hour later, a lovely tidy and organised basket, lots of memories revived too:)I think the oldest thing in there is probably the blue needlescase with the orange and pink on - I made that for an aunt, and it was returned to me when she died. I can't have been more than 7 or 8 when I made it I think. Another oldie is one of the French knitting bobbins, the one made from an old wooden cotton reel - I had that as a child; have acquired two more now, although one is Bean's; the third is hand made from beech and is particularly lovely, bought at the Oak Fair a couple of years back. The thimbles in the picture are reproductions of a Roman and a Medieval thimble. I did one year of a Fashion Design and Management course after school, and was taught to use a thimble properly, now I can't sew without one! The beeswax dates from college times too (1979), as part of the kit we bought to start the course. I have my thimble from college, but that's tucked into a bag of tapestry at the moment. Thimbles are kept in their own little padded fabric box so they don't get lost in among all the other stuff.
The old cotton reels are some of my favourite things in there - so tactile, and a pleasure to handle and use. I'd gladly pay more money for sewing cottons if they came on wooden reels again.:) I gather them up in charity shops, boot fairs, the tip, etc, and give them a home. The cotton itself is always useful too, and much subtler colours.
Pins - the iconic Dorcas pin box - anyone else got one/remember them? Dorcas is the patron saint of sewers. My mother had a pin box exactly the same. Various other items creep in - a marble, a button, a safety pin, a carpet tack. My mother's had things like that in it too. I don't remember putting anything but pins in there over the years - but the strays are there all the same - how do they get there?
The elastic was all wound up neatly and tied/pinned, likewise the bias binding, and popped into a tin for neatness. Things That Shouldn't Have Been In There were removed and put elsewhere, so all that is in there now is sewing kit. The basket was emptied upside down into the bin, its calico lining brushed out, everything being returned where it should be.
An hour well spent.
Posted by MrsL at 13:34