"Bludgeoning hard times with a rolling pin"

"Bludgeoning hard times with a rolling pin"

Friday, August 13, 2010

Familial sewing basket neglect

I recently inherited my grandmother’s sewing basket. She wasn’t much of a seamstress and neither am I. We received baking genes instead.

Yet, there is something special about having her sewing basket. It just may be precisely because she and I were both out to lunch about sewing. Just as I can relate to her rolling out pie crusts, I can also relate to her obligation of mending—even though it wasn’t her thing.

We were kindred spirits in this regard. We shared a kind of “yeah, I don’t get it, either”-ness.

Oh sure, we could hold our own with a needle and thread…to a point. Buttons? No problem. Buttonholes? Uh, um *cough*. Excuse us, while we check the bread dough.

The other day, I organized this symbol of domesticity—for the both of us. I merged her notions and mine into her larger green sewing box. (My small pink basket remains from a childhood Christmas and hasn’t been able to handle the needs of a growing family.)

Tangled threads—be gone! I snipped and color-coordinated like there was no tomorrow. I also found some interesting items.

This needle (dagger?) struck me as strange. What project would have required such a scary device? And look how it’s bent at the bottom. I think it might have something to do with drapes. Or tractor tires.

Isn’t this package for blue jean patches cute as can be? And look at the way it was priced at 29 cents. Adorable.

A paper of “le chic” buttons—with only one button still clinging. The whole set was priced a mere dime!

Thread on a wooden spools, vintage book of needles and various other notions.

Grandma did own a sewing machine and perhaps during her teen years she made her own dresses as so many women did. I would love to know more about those times in her life.

Her hand-written recipes tell a lot about my Grandmother. The splatters and stains indicate which ones were her favorites. But this sewing basket also tells a story about the woman--a woman who would rather not, yet must sometimes, sew.

We’re the same that way. She and I.


  1. Awww that is super sweet with the jeans and button. My mom has a container of buttons and used to be my most favorite thing to do dump out and look thru as a kid.
    Thanks for finding me on twitter too!:)

  2. I know. There is something treasure-box-like about a container full of buttons!