Sunday, 19 June 2011

Vintage Sewing Supplies

This week I collected some more of my late Gran's sewing things from my Grandad. She was a wartime teenager and very much the original 'make do and mend' lady. I was brought up on these wartime sayings; 'waste not, want not' being a favourite which I now use with my children. Her sewing box (one of several) and button tin reflects this beautifully.
There was a lot of darning thread for socks and stockings alike.

Watching her sit and darn in the evenings used to fascinate me, it required an amazing amount of patience, weaving threads over and over again. I feel quite ashamed at the things I discard which she would have repaired or used for something else. I do donate reusable clothes to charity shops and recycle clothes which aren't good enough to wear so I'm not completely wasteful. However I am so far off my Gran's level! In her sewing box I found two sets of bra straps which had been cut off the bras and put away 'just in case'! It would be fair to say that if I ever needed to make something for school, Gran could always put her hand on just the thing for the job!

I found two little leather cases in with the threads. One was full of different coloured darning yarns for her stockings. The little messages on them are lovely.

Her button tin was full of lovely goodies too. 

Some were still attached to the original packaging.

A few leather buttons.

A collection of buckles.

A glass button - I didn't know buttons were ever made of glass.

And these, what were these used for? They are mostly in pairs and I wondered if they might have been the fastenings for little baby shoes?

And look at these animal print buttons. I wish I knew what my Gran wore that these were attached to - just not her style at all!

I love walking down memory lane! Thanks for walking with me.
Becky x


  1. Becky, what a little treasure trove, all the more special because they were your gran's. I think the little button things are cufflinks, but I am not certain. We are a 'consumer society' and very wasteful, I try to re-use and recycle as much as I can. I do think though, that clothes and underwear etc. were much better made in your grandma's day, even in my parents day than now, and worth darning or repairing. Thankyou so much for your lovely comments, and for taking part in my giveaway and using my button, much appreciated. Love Linda x (I think Lois used both oil and chalk pastels in her picture).

  2. What an exciting collection of goodies - and how lovely to have such lovely momentos of your grandma to cherish and make use of. We could learn a lot from our grandparents about recycling and re-using, they really were the experts! Liz x

  3. What a lovely post, thanks for taking me down memory lane with you.

    Lou xxx

  4. How lovely to be able to remember your grandma this way. I'm sure she would be pleased to know her things are still loved. xxx

  5. Hi to you! Found your lovely blog and am so glad to be here!
    Love your finds from your Granny. Things were so much better made in the old days- built to last, I guess.
    Anyway, am your newest follower so I can keep up to date with all your great things. Am off to get a cuppa and have a read of your blog.
    If you have the time, do pop over and see me- I love a bit of crochet and thrifty finds too.

  6. Wow, what lovely treasure, and lovely memories too!

    Just spotted the Garden of Daisies giveaway button on your blog - a day too late - damn! I left a comment anyway, just in case!! :o)

    Hope all is good with you!
    Maria x

  7. What a fabulous collection, and all the more special because of who it all belonged to.

    My gran was a seamstress and I spent many hours watching her at work :)

    I've seen those mystery buttons before - are they collar studs? I'm not sure.

    Kate x

  8. What lovely surprises in such unassuming containers...the sewing box looks very familiar...great to have it handed on to you - must evoke some strong memories.
    The leather buttons remind me of my dad and granddads cardigans!!
    Ali x

  9. How lovely that you have all your Granny's sewing supplies - in those days the ladies were so skilled and clever at making do and re-using things - my Granny was the same, darning and re-using things - and the art of darning i bet nobody bothers to practice now becuase we are so used to buying new. So wasteful really, we are so spoilt these days in comparison.


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