The unfortunate part of all this is that one must clean a portion of the space before one can start organizing that space. And looking at my space, it was almost overwhelming to figure out where to start . . .
I have a tall black plastic shelf that was stuffed with crazy quilting stuff and who knows what else. It was fun to throw most of it on the floor, what's a little more mess on the floor! Then I started sorting.
I first tackled the crazy quilt mess. I love to collect things to crazy quilt with almost as much as I love to crazy quilt! (I'm thinking it's an obsession the more I clean up this space.) I had a wonderful time sorting through bins of stuff thrown together - fancy fabrics, bits of lace, beads, fancy buttons, charms, crystals, ribbon, trims - a ridiculous amount of stuff jammed all in three big tubs. Kind of, sort of, semi organized but still a mess. I had to ruthlessly take myself in hand to sort rather than start stitching . . .
|Beads, crystals & fancy buttons|
Beads went into plastic sectioned boxes and baby food jars (I knew I saved those for some reason!) Charms, fancy buttons and sparkly stuff into other sectioned plastic boxes.
|Trims, bits of lace, ribbons and couching "stuff"|
Trims, bits of lace and ribbons into shoe boxes. I felt victorious until I remembered that a great majority of my crazy quilting stuff is still at the shop . . .
I played with buttons for days and finally decided that just setting up the boxes and having somewhere to put all the stray buttons I come across would be enough for now. Sorting through my Mom’s, Nana’s, Great Aunts Viola’s and Beatrice’s and my mother-in-law’s button collections was a task that could take weeks and I’d never see the entire top of my sewing table.
I do love going through all their button boxes. Being children of the depression, my grandmother and her sisters worked in a sock factory somewhere in Gloucester when they were young and learned to save everything. They were the original recyclers, not because they were trying to save the environment, they were trying to save every penny they could by reusing everything. Which is why I find sets of buttons taken off old clothing & strung together on thread or in small plastic boxes or wrapped neatly is a clean tissue in their button boxes. They make me smile and think of my Nana and her sisters.
I've started a box of vintage sewing tools. Their sock darning eggs make me laugh. My Nana was horrified that not only did I not darn socks, I didn't know how. She could never get me to sit still long enough to teach me and while I still wouldn't darn socks, I do wish I'd let her teach me how.
I feel the same way about knitting pot heads - that sounds interesting doesn't it???? My Dad used to sit on the stairs during the winter and knit (he called it knitting but it was actually kind of like macrame) lobster pot heads - the netting funnel on lobster pots. I always meant to get him to teach me how to do it. My brother knows how, I saw the set up on his stairs last time I was home, I'll bug him to teach me.
Until then, I'm still sorting here.