Sew Great to be Organised - Notions Spotlight

February 18, 2021

Welcome to the first week of our #SewOrderly challenge with Lauren from Molly and Mama and myself.

We kicked off the challenge by awarding the Liberty bundle to Penny who showed us a video of her amazing space!

Let's talk notions storage today!

If you're newish to sewing, then you might not be familiar with the word notions.

Notions are all the small paraphernalia that accompanies sewing. Like scissors, pins and thread.

Whether you love them or hate them or are indifferent to them, notions are one of the things that accumulate as you sew, almost without even trying. And that brings with it the problem of where you’re going to store them all.

I love getting a peek into sewist’s spaces and seeing the different approaches they have at storing their stuff. One of my all time favourites is Kimberley from Sweet Red Poppy for all the eye candy she always has!

So now come take a peek into my space and see where my organisation is up to and how my space is evolving. - Billy storage

Some people approach storage from a purely practical point of view. They just want a solution which doesn’t have to look pretty, it just has to work.

Your options also depend on the space that you have, how much you have to store and how much you have to spend.

Others go all out on the pretty side and like to keep everything on display and make décor out of their notions, practicality be blowed!

I’m currently on a quest for a happy mix of the two. I want a modern and clean space, with a few touches of the sentimental and favourite kind.

I do believe you can organise your notions effectively, and still enjoy the form and colour that they bring to your space.

I'm not going to display everything, but I don't want a stark space that lacks character.

I’ve been using this tiered stand from Ikea to hold my pens, rotary cutters, and scissors on the table in front of my cutting mat for a few years now. - ikea tiered tray

It’s been great for when I’m sewing and writing patterns, as I can grab everything fast and put it back just as fast.

It just needed a rethink and refresh to work its best for me again.

This week I went through the contents and culled the excess pens and scissors from the top tier. I also switched around the lower tier with some practical items like my tape measure and notepaper and some purely special items like my tins which are mainly just there for cute.

So now we move over to the next notional theme I’m focusing on this week…my thread! - great wall of thread

When we began the first serious fit out of my studio, I really wanted to put my thread on display.

I loved all the pretty pictures of thread displayed on the walls of studios and I was determined to have one too, so we built a serious pegboard to mount it all on and I had great fun decorating it.

After nearly 30 years of dressmaking, sewing and quilting I have accumulated a lot of thread. I have a lot of colours and I still use a wide range of colours for top stitching and quilting. This is actually only a fraction of it. I have double ups, overlocker thread, embroidery cones etc. in another container. - DIY thread system

I was so determined to have it on display that I ignored all the common sense rules (and my mum in my head) that I already knew: keep your thread covered so it stays dust free and doesn’t fade from light damage.

After several years now of having it on the wall, I’ve decided enough is enough.

Practicality wise this wall has worked well as it’s so easy to grab when I need it. - pegboard thread system

But now it’s time to put it all away. My promises to myself to dust it regularly haven’t eventuated, and I can see that it’s not staying in good condition.

I really want to implement a system that is just as easy to use so I’m planning to re-purpose the pegboard in my drawers, so I can see it and grab it easily.

I’ll update you with how I go!

If you find yourself with a burgeoning collection of thread to store and are just wanting something fast and practical, why not save old biscuit tins, plastic containers or baskets. You don’t have to go out and buy something special or spend much at all.

Group your thread in ways that make sense to you, and label the containers so you can find what you want easily.

Here's another great link for lots of ideas on thread storage.

If you are in the market for some serious thread storage, I really like the Artbox system which has several thread storing options and is a buildable system. I wouldn't mind some of these myself, but I'm not sure where it would fit after I've filled it up!

If you're like me you would rather buy fabric than storage. But investing in great storage over time will save you money in the long run and you will thank your younger self!

Hop on over to Instagram and get plenty more tips from others who have great ideas and methods on how they store all manner of notions on the #seworderly hashtag.