When I was growing up my Papa called me his princess. My husband and son treat me like one to this day. Yet, for the longest time I was a pauper to the clutter in my every day life in my home and my finances. Then one day I decided it was time to stop living like a pauper and to be the princess everyone thought of me as. This is the journey I took to de-clutter all aspects of my life and become a true PRINCESS!

Monday, March 31, 2014


INTO THE "SNAKE CHARMERS BASKET"  At least that is what db and I called it when we were kids. LOL!

So next I dove into my mother’s sewing basket and what a true treasure trove.  In the very top was a little hand held battery operated sewing machine.  

I’ve not test ran it yet to see if it works. It should work because when I took it out to look at it I discovered it looks like it has never been used.  It has a $3 clearance price sticker on it, so I am guessing Mom picked it up on sale for in the camper and just never used it. 

I’ll test it later when I have batteries available.  I’m thinking if it does it will be a great little tool for doing stitched scrapbook and card layouts.  I do know it does a chain type stitch so I’ll need to make certain I either knot off or put a dab of glue or tape on the ends of any stitching to prevent unraveling.
Just below it in the basket was an old tin like sewing machine tools use to come in.  I almost just set it aside thinking it was the tools for her old Kenmore machine, but then remembered that machine has been long gone and thought I should check to see if there was a tool I could use with my current machine.  

Nope, no tools, but lots of snaps of two types, buttons, hooks and eyes, can you see where this is going? Wow! Anyone who crafts or sews knows those things have gotten rather pricey in the last few years.

Enthused even more about looking in this tall basket I dug deeper.  There I unearthed a small tin that use to hold typewriter ribbon.  Anyone here remember typewriter ribbons?  Watch out you’ll be showing your age.  

It was taped shut and rattled so I gently opened it.  It was full of eyelets in all colors! I am thinking I’ll leave them in the nostalgic tin to put them on my embellishments shelf.
Near it in the basket were two tools, one for setting the eyelets and the gripper snaps and another one for making holes in belts.  I believe it is now sold under the name Gator or something similar.  Both will definitely be handy in crafting.

As I went deeper into the basket the basket got wider.  From the middle section I pulled out a plastic bag full of more buttons!

Numerous packages of rick rack, bias tape, lacy seam tape, and trims.  Xyron 1.5” here we come! These will definitely be turned into trim for projects.

In the very bottom was a large TG&Y sack, shows you how old some of this stuff is. It was full of zippers.  I’ve seen some really cute crafting work done with zippers in the past but considered them too expensive to buy to do it.  Now…

Just as I thought I had found everything of crafting value in this basket I uncovered the curtain rings below.  These I can tell you will eventually end up being used to combine cards like swatch cards or something similar. 

There of course were the usual pin cushions, needles, straight pins, an old pattern for a 1960’s pant dress, a long nosed pair of surgical scissors (my mom was a nurse assistant for years in the burn unit) and spools of thread. 

For the most part I saw nothing to cull out from this treasure trove for the local charity, except maybe the pattern because it definitely wasn’t my size.  I did find plenty to make crafting so much more fun.  

So now I needed to decide what I wanted to leave in the basket, which of course I was going to keep and what I wanted out for easier use.  Then how I was going to store it?
So I started with the easiest. Buttons.  I’ve already established I keep jars of all types, so obviously the buttons were going to go into a jar.  I'll decorate the jar up some to make it more attractive in the future.  Right now I'm all about organization!

Since I had a custom historical clothing sewing business for 15 years I have all sorts of odds and ends of buttons, trims, and such, but they are stored in the basement and elsewhere.  Eventually they will work their way upstairs as I declutter those areas, but for now I will work strictly with what was in my mother’s sewing basket.  I wanted them to be easy to access rather than having to dig through the deep sewing basket each time, because I know me, if I have to dig much I won’t use it.  

Back off to where I have odds and ends baskets I have bought on deep discount sales over the years and simply have sitting around collecting dust.  I found one that was the perfect size immediately.  I already have a matching one for it on my shelf with a few other items that need sorted—later, so I got the empty one.  Remember I am a basically lazy person.

The bindings fit perfectly.

I left all the fasteners in the green attachments box, the eyelets in their little typewriter ribbon tin and added the scissors to my tools caddy, along with the two hole punches and my grandmother’s manicure set and pliers.

I had a basket full of zippers from another source in the room so I added those to the TG&Y sack and replaced it in the bottom of the sewing basket.  On top of that I added all the embroidery transfers from both my grandmother’s embroidery floss box and the Ramen box. 

Put the spools of thread in the top and added the lid.  It all fit perfectly.  Once the room is completed the basket will be set out as a decorative item, while being a useful storage piece as well. 

So in the last two days by re-arranging and culling a wee bit I got rid of three unorganized ugly containers and repurposed several nice looking ones to where they are easily useable.  

I now have so much more to add to my small collection of crafting embellishments from just those two unopened for years sewing kits.  So that leads me to ask, what great things could you find in your sewing items to use in your crafting?
Jan who says “onward and upward to more culling in the morrow” in OK

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