I was reading Jaybird’s blog and thought I would share my tools. To be honest, I probably have way too many. But I remind myself that I have been sewing for 30+ years, so I have accumulated some good tools.
I have only been in this room for a few months, so no close up shots:) . It is functional but no too pretty. I am working on that. These two tables and the chair came from an office that was closing down. I like them so much better than the white plastic one from Costco that I had been using (and still do at the beach). They are very heavy, so my machine never wiggles or jiggles even when sewing really fast. If I get the room straightened up I will take some pics.
My main machine is an old 930 Bernina. I earned the money to purchase this machine making imitation cabbage patch-type dolls (early 80’s ??) when they were so popular and out of stock in most stores. I will never part with it, but would love a new one. I would really like to do embroidery. Also, over the years I have purchased so many attachments for this machine…and I know they won’t fit on a new Bernina, so I will keep this one for sure. I also have a serger and a Singer featherweight for traveling.
At our little beach place I have an old Singer that I purchased at Habitat for Humanity for $36! Cabinet and machine along with every attachment you can name. Works like a charm. One of my best finds : )
My favorite scissors are Gingher, I have a large pair, a set of pinking shears, a duck-bill for applique, a small pair, a stork pair and a set of snippers. The blue handle pair for cutting paper and are not Gingher.
I didn’t know anything was MIA until I found this top for a set of snippers and the case for the stork scissors. I think both of these are mixed in with my knitting stash.
Both of these are scissors inherited from my mom’s side of the family. They are too dull to use, but I keep them anyway.
My rotary cutters are Olfa. I have a 45mm and a smaller set. I also have pinking rotary blades that I haven’t tried yet. I also have the same two at the beach house so I don’t have to lug my equipment with me, along with a few pair of scissors.
For years I have used the basic blue handled seam ripper. I was in a shop in Georgia and made the comment that someone should really make a good seam ripper and the shop attendant showed me this Clover brand. So I bought 2 on the spot. One for me and one for my daughter-in-law. I have been super pleased with this. The handle is just the right size and it is so sharp.
I have lots of rulers. I didn’t even realize how many different brands/types I had until I set them out for the pictures. I am planning to hang a peg board on the wall above my cutting table so that I can hang them. I seem to use the largest one (white one on the right in second pic) with large cuts and pieces, but often I find that I wish it wasn’t white and I could see the fabric. That is probably why I like the Omnigrid with the yellow the best.
Along with rulers, I have several of these grippers. One large, one medium and a tiny one. I find them very helpful to keep my ruler and fabric where I want them.
I have been unhappy with my thread situation. I have been using these clear containers for thread and a separate container for bobbins. The trouble was, I had a hard time matching bobbin and thread together again. Also, knowing which bobbin went with quilting thread was a problem. So, now I plan to keep the bobbins with the actual thread. So, I am switching to these thread racks. Then I will be able to store the bobbins right next to the color of the thread (I saw a pic on Oh Fransson’s blog).
My main cutting mats are Olfa. I have really just one (in the pics) in my sewing room and it is pretty big (36 x 24) plus one at the beach. Fits my new table here at home really well. I have a less expensive mat I use when traveling which is not Olfa.
I also have these pattern weights that have little grabbers on the bottom to keep them from sliding. I made some weights from large washers sol-some are glued together for more weight which are handy, but I keep them at the beach. The ones I use the most are made from old film canisters that are fill with something that looks like buckshot. I had some old ankle weights that I never used from several years ago and took the pellets out to use as weights. What I love about these is the size. I make clothing as well as quilt and these are great for small shoulder areas and straps. I went to my local pharmacy that also develops pictures and got a bunch for free. The white ones work better than the black or gray because the tops are more secure.
Here is a picture of some of my specialty items that I keep out at all times in a white plastic bathroom caddy. The magnetic wand on the gloves is from a Home Improvement store. I first purchased one in a needle point shop and paid much more. I like it because if you are like me and have to sew in a room with carpeting…it is a concern. this wand extends enough so that you don’t have to constantly bend over to pick up pins.
I have been really happy with this iron. I don’t know how long I have had it…8 years maybe??? It is a Panasonic auto shut-off.
Although not really tools…..I also have a thing for thimbles. I really like pretty ones.
The 2 on the top left are souvenir thimbles from a trip to Europe. The top right are my 2 sterling silver thimbles purchased from antique shops. The 2 on the bottom left are from my grandpa. My mom gave me some of his things when she moved to the Carolinas from N.Y. Last but not least, the 3 on the bottom right I use all the time.
I also inherited buttons from my mom. Her dad was a coat manufacturer in NYC and that is where I got so many buttons. These are my favorites.
This is how I store the majority of my buttons.
A last favorite thing that is a semi-tool, my favorite pin cushion. I made it from the silk scraps after my daughter’s wedding. I made one for myself, my mom, my mother-in-law and also the bride herself. I don’t use it too much because the silk is not as forgiving as wool or cotton, but I really love it.
This turned out to be a long post with lots of pictures. I hope you found a couple of ideas somewhat useful.