Monday, September 16, 2013


When I was in Pittsburgh this summer, Bethany gave me these sewing notions from a friend's relative's someone's clearing out. Treasures from the back of a drawer, this pile includes rusted needles, a real emery strawberry with thick, steel pins, button hooks, and that wooden club is a handled darning egg, for mending socks. I've mended a few socks, but now I just replace them. Eight pairs for $10 at Target, they're not worth mending!
It reminded me, have I shown you this? It's an old sewing machine demo model that used to belong to my maternal grandmother. My sister, Laura, gave it to me earlier this year. 
I've cleaned it and oiled it so everything moves,
but I haven't tried to make it sew, yet!
All these treasures have gone to live with antique notions I'd brought home from my paternal grandmother's house years ago. They live in this cabinet, made by my youngest son in High School wood shop. Note the old iron being used as a bookend next to the cabinet. I bought it at a thrift store, thinking it would be good to have a hot, dry iron for pressing seams. Lucky I didn't burn my house down, it gets so hot! The end sitting on the ironing board burned a hole right through the ironing board cover!
Inside the cabinet there are more of the usual old or antique sewing notions: thread, buttons, snaps, needles, thimbles. I love those little black paper packets of needles and the wooden spools of thread. There are buttons in a jar on another shelf, and cards of bias tape and rickrack in a drawer. Seems like everything was labeled 29¢.
There are a few unusual items, though, worth taking a closer look.

Here are some needles, probably for threading laces through stays and corsets. One is (very tarnished) silver, one is mother-of-pearl, and the others are whale bone. From Massachusetts, you know. 
This is (again, very tarnished) a silver, folding measuring stick. Look closely at the case (the lid is missing) and you can see newsprint under the leather, forming the shape of the case. 
And though they don't have anything to do with sewing, these little shoes are stuffed into the cabinet, too. They were worn by my father when he was a baby. Hard to imagine!

I'm linking up with Beth's Sewing Museum Linky Party at Love, Laugh, Quilt, because showing off  sharing our own little sewing museums was her idea! I look forward to seeing the goodies others have posted!


My Sister Made Me Do It.... said...

what a beautiful cabinet your son made for you and filled with all kinds of memories...........thanks for sharing...........

beth said...

You even have a cabinet for your museum! It's wonderful!

Deborah Hamilton said...

I'm impressed. My favorites are the darning egg and the sewing machine.

Missy Shay said...

How fun, I love vintage sewing stuff! Is that a chain stitcher?

Jill said...

You have wonderful old sewing items. Nice cabinet to store and display them.

Michelle said...

Those are some really neat treasures! I love the whalebone needles -- don't think I've ever seen anything like them.

Vroomans' Quilts said...

Love all your little treasure in your cabinet. Oh, I forgot the darning egg - there's a few of those around here somewhere. The bone needles are a real treasure.


Lovely post, I love old sewing treasures! and those shoes are so special.

Muv said...

Oh those gorgeous little shoes!

Quilter Kathy said...

Such a wonderful display cabinet of treasures!

OPQuilt said...

I have a similar little sewing machine, given to me by my mother. I think it was my aunt's but I got to inherit it. It does do chain stitching, and I could never find the right needles to go in it, so it sits on my shelf, too. I love looking at it.

It was fun to see all your sewing notions. I inherited my grandmother's sewing basket and yes, everything does seem to be 29 cents!

Elizabeth E.

Muv said...

Hello again Lindaroo,

I have linked my blog post today to this post so people can come and admire the little shoes. I think you will enjoy the picture I have posted, and you will see why I thought of your dad's tiny shoes.