Wednesday, August 25, 2010

The Elegant Sewing Kit (How To Keep Your Sewing Stuff in Style)

Upon laying eyes on this beautiful little box from Lee's Needle Arts, I knew it would make an elegant sewing kit. Since I love to do handwork, I'm always searching for the best box for the job. You know, something neat to keep my threads, needles-n-pins, little scissors and bits-and-pieces in. And as a frequent traveler, a well-stocked sewing box and a patchwork project in-process makes my time in-flight productive. Rather than  leafing through a ratty magazine while listening to my seat-mate snore, I can get a lot of stitching done.

The box itself measures about 2.5" deep, 4.5" wide, and 9" long. A zipper around three sides ensures all your precious stuff stays put. The "window" of the box has a paper insert in place to cover its adhesive surface until you're ready to apply your needlework. I took out the paper cover and used it as a template. 

Being very conventional, I could only think of square quilt blocks and ended up drawing a pattern for a 2.25 inch Pineapple block.  I traced the Pineapple twice onto thin white fabric, cut strips .75" wide and then sewed the little jewels by hand (used a #5 Between needle) because frankly, the starting and stopping of machine sewing just wasn't worth it. After two Pineapple blocks were joined, I framed all four sides of the rectangle with red fabric and finished the work with parallel lines of Big Stitch (a #24 Chenille needle used) on either end. Then carefully, locating the exact center of the adhesive window and the exact center of the Pineapple piece, I laid the patchwork into the window and carefully tucked in the extra fabric on all sides. Beautiful.

But I couldn't leave well enough alone! I fashioned a book-like inside that could unfold to be lifted out. And then a little star-shaped pin cushion...

When I made the tiny drawstring thimble pouch (photo at the beginning of the blog) I knew it was time to stop. 


  1. Wow!! Pepper, what a cool sewing kit!! You know that people will want to buy one when they see you with that on planes!!

  2. This is a beautiful way to carry notions around. I love the fact that it has a zipper closure instead of a snap. what a nice step up from a plastic box!

  3. That star box made a lovely pin cushion!

  4. Yep Jean--I used only the top of the star box, painted it red and then cut five stars from old wool batting scraps. Found the center of the star box top and cut a tiny hole there. Used star box as a template plus adding 1" all around and cut the blue flowered fabric in large star shape, wrapped it around the wool stars, and loosely basted in place. Then hot-glued the whole piece into the red star top. Threaded a large needle with #3 perle (big knot buried in batting)and came up through the hole into the star center and a button, wrapping around the star arms each time. Ended with hot-glue on back again.