A sewing treasure chest

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Yikes! I cannot believe I've had this sewing basket as long as I have! It's my sewing treasure chest of course and goes with me where ever I am. (Now that we're in limbo waiting to build a house just about everything else is either packed away, or having a holiday at my Mum's.) Aunty Ruth gave it to me, well, maybe 45 years ago! Am I even allowed to say that? You'd think it would have fallen apart but really it has stood the test of time.

Why the hell is it a treasure? Four main reasons: a) I've had it so long it must be a treasure; b) it fits in all the basic equipment I might need (plus accommodates random bits and pieces I have no idea where else to put); c) it's easy to carry around the house, plonk on the sewing table, and the lid never comes off unless you want it to and d) it's quite pretty. So that's longevity, sentimentality, functionality (in a variety of ways), and personality.

So what's inside? Thread from whatever I was most recently making and didn't put away yet. Small, sharp pointed scissors (must have). Thread snippers (also must have). Press button tape measure. This is the only sort I use (the other one was a gift from a friend but I don't actually use it cause it's too much bother to roll up). Box of pins. Machine needles (emergency only - I have another big box with a wide ranging selection of machine needles plus another collection in the on-board tool box of the machine). Thimble (rarely used as I rarely hand sew these days). Random buttons that have not yet found their way to the button box. Hooks for a waistband closure. A kilt pin waiting for a kilt. Loose needles and pins, including a curved upholstery needle used for I know not what. At least two quick-un-picks. Miscellaneous bits and bobs unsure of their true home - a tassel, a swivel thingy, a green moon, a felt pompom. And then we come to the treasures within the treasure box.

The grey slip of fabric accommodating sharp needles is actually the closure end of the waistband on my school uniform Winter skirt. I have not been a school girl for nearly 40 years and I am now not entirely sure what prompted me to cut off the waistband end of my skirt but presumably when I no longer needed the uniform the waistband end must have seemed to be the perfect thing in which to stick needles. And it has been my needle caddy ever since. The other treasure is the flat piece of tailor's chalk inherited from my grandmother. She died 3 years before I cut off that waistband end so it is even older. Nanny's chalk is actually useless (which is why I also have a piece of regular chalk which I frequently use to mark up fabric) but it's a reminder of where my sewing gene came from. I treasure it as much as I treasure the box. What's your sewing treasure?

Georgie Munro
Georgie Munro


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