Saturday, October 27, 2012

Setting up a Sewing Kit

I get all kinds of excited over my sewing box gadgets.  I can spend hours pouring over the little knick-knacks, buttons, and embellishments at the cloth stores.  I just find it fun.  Comparably, I am sure Keith, my husband, is the same way at the auto supply store.  I don’t get it, but I am sure he doesn’t really see what I see in sewing supplies either.  It is just one big way we are different (but kind of the same).  I also LOVE having everything I need organized and available.  I don't have to search for things in drawers anymore.  Making a sewing kit solved all those problems for me. 

When I went to make an OFFICIAL sewing kit, the first big hurdle I faced was finding something adequate to keep it all in.  The sewing boxes they had at the store just didn’t really do it for me and they were expensive.  Cute, but expensive and not practical.  Instead, I got a tool box (it was purple one, so it was okay) because it was sturdier than a sewing kit, and it had more space…  plus, it was CHEAPER!  Like $8 instead of $30.  I am all about saving money.  

I also loved the compartments up top that I could use for many various things and have easy access to without having to dig through the whole thing.  In the top left corner- buttons, bottom left- extra thread and needles, top right- measuring tape, bottom right- safety pins, thimbles, fold up scissors.  

This is what I put into it:

  1. Measuring tape- I get the really LONG one.  I used to get the cool kind where you pushed the button and it sucked it up, but the kids thought that was WAY too much fun and I only went through 2 or 3 before I just resigned myself that it was a losing battle. 
  2. Thimble- I don't use this very often.  But it is one of those things that if you want it, you REALLY want it to be there.  So, it is there.
  3. Ruler- Mine is cool.  It is an Avengers ruler.  My five year old daughter, Gracie, used her own money and picked it out herself to get me for my birthday this year.  
  4. Pinker shears- the kind that make the jig jag cut.  They are a MUST.
  5. Sewing scissors- Another must.  Get the Fiskars.  You won't regret it.  I have like five pairs.  
  6. Rotary cutter- Another must.  If you are using a pattern, these will be MOST helpful.  
  7.  X-acto pen- I use this for very detailed cuts.
  8. Hook and eyes- helpful when making clothing
  9. Chalk pencil- helpful when needing to make lines on dark material
  10. Pencil- just your regular everyday #2 pencil.  I keep one with the kit for convenience sake.
  11. Sharpie- another convenience item
  12. Small set of screw drivers- your kids will only drop marbles in your sewing machine once before you realize just how vital these tools are
  13. Bobbins in case- I like to be able to fill as many of these at a time as I can.  I find it quite inconvenient to have to refill bobbins in the middle of a project.  The type of bobbin is machine specific, so check your machine before you buy more.  
  14. Folding scissors- another thing I don't use very often, but when I do need them, they are nice to have around.  Or take traveling with the needle and thread
  15. Staple gun- Yeah, I know this is a little odd...  but I do use mine.  Especially when I am making something to cover furniture.  Then a staple gun is nice to have
  16. Pin cushion for the wrist- A convenience item
  17. Bag of various types of needles- there are beading needles, all purpose needles, embroidery needles, cross stitch needs, dolling needles, yarn needles...  You name it, it is in that bag.
  18. Masking tape- great for taping the edge of a project, especially good when hand sewing
  19. Short straight pins- used on simple projects
  20. Safety pins- I get the curved kind.  I just find them easier to use.  
  21. Long straight pins- also called quilting pins.  I use these most just because they are longer
  22. X-acto knife blades- they dull quickly, so it is nice to have extras on hand
  23. Knitting loom hook- I do a lot of loom knitting, and this tool is a must.  Nice for other things, too
  24. Stitcher ripper- This is a basic tool.  It is right up there with needle and thread.  The name says it all
  25. Zipper foot- when putting in a zipper with the sewing machine, this separate foot makes it easier to do.  Takes a little getting used to using
  26. Sewing machine needles- Nothing sucks worse than breaking a machine needle in the middle of the stitch and having nothing to replace it.  Get a few extras.  You won't be sorry
  27. Elastic- comes in all lengths and types.  I usually keep 1/4 inch and 1/2 inch in my kit.  I also keep Velcro, but for some reason did not put that in the picture.
  28. Crotchet hooks- not just for crotchet anymore!  That little hook on the end is awesome for many different things...  like trying to turn material.  
  29. Hem measurer thingy- I don't really know what this is called, but that sounds close.  Used to measure hems accurately
  30. Snaps- this is right up there with elastic and Velcro.  I have three different types.  Black, silver, and plastic
  31. Magnetic pin holder- LOVE this so much more than I do the tomato!  Pull and pin out and toss it in the right direction.  Let the magnetic-ness of it do the rest!
  32. Pink tomato pin cushion- because I am a girl and cool like that
  33. Knitting needles- this is self-explanatory in so many ways.  On a side note- considered a "weapon" in an airport near you
For some reason, I did not put a number on it, but there is a silver long metal rod in the middle of the picture just above the crotchet hooks that is a tool used to turn material inside out.  It is particularly helpful with long thin stuff that needs to be flipped.

I also did not include my scissor sharpener in this, but that is a vital tool for me.  I used to just buy new scissors when mine started to dull.  Now I can sharpen them!  That may be a reason why I have like five pairs of orange handled scissors.  I would also include in this the small micro-tip Fiskars scissors.  They are in my knitting bag right now, which is why they weren't in my box.  But I use them ALL the time.  Very sharp.  Could also be considered a "weapon."

In my oldest daughters sewing kit, she has an awesome tool that I keep telling myself I am going to get, but have yet to do.  It is a magnetic wand.  If you have sewn for over a minute, you know what it feels like to spill all those sharp metal pins in the carpet, get them cleaned up, then do it again.  Frustrating.  With the wand, you just hold it over the area and it pulls them up for you.  Possibly getting some you DIDN'T see. 

See anything I am missing?  Let me know!  Leave a comment here!


  1. Nice kit! My fave scissors were Fiskars until I got Gingher dressmaker shears for Christmas. They are amazing. Haven't had to sharpen them ye and I've used them daily for almost 5 years (only on fabric). Just got a Ginghar rotary.
    Sew-On velcro is also nice to have! The self-stick kind is a MESS and will gum up your needle.
    My daughter loved my push button measuring tape as well - it's trash. LOL She also loves my hem gauges - I have three and all are bent!

  2. Oh, yeah, I should have specified on the Velcro. I only ever buy sew on. You're right, the sticky stuff stinks.

    I will have to look into those scissors. Although, I think I will have to go to great lengths to justify buying another pair of scissors. lol I may have to put a bug in someone's ear for Christmas perhaps. The kids always ask what I want and I never have anything really good to tell them.