I have two sewing/craft boxes in use at the moment. One lives permanently on the coffee table next to my side of the sofa. It contains the equipment for works-in-progress/frequently used tools (currently it has in it my needle case, my crochet hooks, a pair of embroidery scissors, some tapestry needles, a weaving needle, my pincushion, a small ruler, a tape measure, a film canister full of crochet stitch markers and a pencil that I rescued from my Dad’s workbox). It is an old cigar box that my parents used to store cutlery in. It is pleasing to me.

My cigar box craft box

The second was hidden out of the way in the cupboard. And was a plastic box. Really uninspiring. And didn’t make me want to sew things. And wasn’t very pleasing.

My (hidden in the cupboard) sewing box

For Christmas I was bought a basket full of Body Shop smellies. Having found homes for all of the items contained within (although I remain unconvinced by watermelon body lotion), I got to wondering if I could think of a good use for the basket itself. I wondered about lining it, and whether I could make it into a more inspiring sewing basket. A quick google later and I’d found this tutorial. I thought I could use the orange tape measure fabric I bought at Ally Pally (and used for the needle case) as it just seems right for such projects and decided to give it a go.

I cut out the fabric, and pinned it together. At every point I popped it into the basket and checked it for fit. It took a lot of attempts to get it close to fitting well and the side panels weren’t completely square. It is also, of course, possible that the basket isn’t completely square either - I don’t think it’s the most expensively produced basket ever.

Sewing basket - side vie

I pretty much followed the tutorial instructions up until the top bit. My basket has handles so the finish they used wouldn’t work for me. So I started off by tacking in the four bottom corners to keep the fabric in place as I use it and then started to sewed the top edge through the basket. This was hard going and did involve a certain amount of blood being spilled. But it kind of worked out ok.

Sewing basket - looking down

It’s not the neatest piece of work ever, and in retrospect this may be another “running before you can walk” project as it was my first attempt at sewing 3 dimensions - every thing else has been flat - and as I mentioned earlier I don’t think the basket was square to start with. However, it is a much nicer sewing box than a plastic food container, is a decent size and makes me a little bit more inclined to use the things that lie within. We’ll have to see if this translates into more sewing!