I found this basket at a Thrift Store. The tag inside reads “Designed exclusively for Penney’s” I’ve tried to find one like it but only found this so far with this pattern and shape. I’d like to find out what year it was made.
This blog post was suggested by one of my best friends who loves to stitch. She is great at cross-stitching plus she has now caught the sewing bug! She thought that the topic of ‘Essential Sewing Items’ would make a good blog post….and she was quite right! So this week on Twitter and Facebook I have been asking you all what are the essential items in your sewing baskets? and I have had some great responses.
My friend has two sewing baskets, one for upstairs when she is doing her machine sewing and one for downstairs when she does her cross-stitch. The pretty sewing box downstairs was handmade by her grandad and it is one of her most treasured possessions. She keeps her aida and embroidery threads in that one so that they are close by when she does her cross-stitching. Over the years she has stitched me some beautiful cards and you really can’t beat knowing someone has spent all that time stitching you a special card.
I’m the same as my friend as I don’t just have one sewing basket. But it is not because of convenience ….. It’s just because I have too much stuff! :o) Instead I have my sewing things stored wherever I can find space to store them. I know exactly what I’ve got and where it is though, doesn’t matter if it’s in the shed or in a container in the wardrobe. I know where to find most things when I need them. I have stashes of fabrics wherever I can stash them but I always make sure all dangerous things like buttons and needles are kept well out of the way of my daughter’s little hands.
My top 5 sewing essentials are gorgeous floral fabrics, sharp scissors for cutting fabric, seam ripper for when you make those inevitable mistakes, white thread (I use it for nearly all projects and my favorite 'wonder’ product which is the paper-backed fusible web. I just love it and use it all the time for personalising projects and adding applique. There are many more things that could and should be on that list though but if I had to pick 5 essentials they are it….oh, and obviously a good sewing machine. :o)
My friend has told me what she has in her sewing basket and most of the things are the same as what can be found in mine and probably a lot of your sewing baskets as well. She has thread scissors and good quality fabric scissors. The next things she wants to buy is pinking shears and I don’t blame her as they are so useful! Especially for when you are making bunting, which is something I do a lot of in my own little cottage business, Polkadotii Designs. If you take a look at that page you’ll see all the photos of the sewing projects I have made over the years. I’d love to chat with you about your favourite crafts over on the Sewing-Online Facebook or Twitter page. My friend also has a selection of needles, threads and spare buttons in her basket plus as she uses a thimble,needle threader and stitch unpicker they are in there too. If she ever needs to do an emergency mend she has some hemming web and there is the obligatory sewing pins and pin cushion that every sewist needs. Her pin cushion has elastic which goes around your wrist and she says it’s very handy. If you want something similar, we sell one here. Do you know, I don’t have a pincushion yet! I just have all my pins in a little tin - I must be organised and make myself one. If you don’t fancy making one you could always take a look at the Sewing-Online range of novelty pin cushions - there are so many to choose from. My friend is a big fan of owls so she’d love this owl pin cushion. The last bits and bobs that my friend says she has in her sewing basket are a laundry pen, a hand cream and a little lavender bag - just because she likes it! :-)
I had lots of you answer my question 'What are your sewing essentials?’ on our social media accounts and here are the responses that I received:-
Large Magnet for when you spill your pins… I loved this response!
Tape Measure ( This response was accompanied with the tip that we all must remember to replace our fabric ones if they become stretched. I’d not really thought about that before but I’ll have to check mine to see if they need replacing)
and my favourite response of all was from someone who said that EVERYTHING was essential. I quite agree with this as there is not one thing that I could do without when I am sewing and there is still so many more things that I want to buy to add to my sewing kit.
I’d like to say thanks to my friend for her input and thanks to everyone who responded to my question. It’s been great to find out what we all consider as our essential sewing notions.
I hope this blog post has provided some important insight into what should be in your sewing basket. As my friend said to me everyone’s sewing basket is very personal and there is going to be a huge difference between the contents depending on the crafts that you enjoy.
Sewing-Online sell literally all of those essential sewing items that you all mentioned and lots more besides. They even sell ready-made sewing kits which you can buy and then top up with your favourite notions as and when required.