Let us put by some hour of every day for holy things...

I will not doubt, though all my ships at sea
Come drifting home with broken masts and sails.
I will believe the Hand which never fails,
From seeming evil, worketh good for me.
And though I weep because those sails are tattered,
Still will I cry, while my best hopes lie shattered:
I trust in Thee.
--Ann Kimmel

Although the fig tree shall not blossom, neither shall fruit be in the vines, the labor of the olive shall fail and the fields shall yield no meat, the flock shall be cut off from the fold and there shall be no herd in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will joy in the God of my salvation. Habakkuk 3:17-18

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Ribbon Organizers

My daughter is the one who started me off on this online log. She signed me up, showed me how to work the "gadgets" on the layout page, gave me a few ideas, and then cast me adrift in the great sea of blogdom. (Perhaps she figured since I talk to myself all the time, I might as well at least pretend I'm addressing someone else.)

Anyway, one of the suggestions she made before hauling anchor was that I share a couple of the organizing tricks I use in my sewing room. I'd never thought much about them, but she seemed impressed, so let me begin.

As some of you know, I make a lot of little fabric bags (for weddings, showers, Christmas, and the like) and so I've always got a lot of ribbon on hand and it can get into a tangled mess in short order. Either that, or I can't find the ribbon I need for a particular project. I've adopted a few methods to help me reduce those tendencies.

Here's the first one:

What I have here is a plastic clothes hanger which originally held a pair of slacks. It has a stretchy clear plastic band which can be hooked or unhooked easily. I keep my lesser-used rolls of ribbon on this. Hanging the ribbon up makes it handy to see what I have at a glance, and it frees up the surface space I need to spread out and cut fabric. I can reel off just what I want to use. 

To keep the rolls from unreeling when I don't want them to, I either secure the ends with straight pins or I position them on the hanger in alternating directions--one roll unreels forward, one roll unreels from behind, and so on. 

Another storage item I use constantly and really like is a vintage quilted satin vanity tray. You know the type, you've seen them. I keep the ribbon here that I use most, right where I can grab it. There are lots of little compartments that keep the rolls upright, and I like that.

A pretty jam jar holds yet another ribbon stash. In here I keep loose ribbon yardage in little bundles. I can see what I have available without opening the jar, which saves rummaging.

I won't say lastly, because I've got more ribbon I'm not showing crammed in other places, but the final one I'm going to show you today sits behind and to the right of my sewing machine. This is a pretty vintage swan planter, and she holds all the ribbon snippets I'm loathe to throw away, but which are too small to be of any use for the bags I make. These I usually use to embellish gift tags, bookmarks, and other small fripperies.

 Vintage planters make wonderful containers for sewing notions--I use them for holding packages of bias tape, seam binding, zippers, pencils, seam rippers--all kinds of things.

Speaking of ribbon, my favorite supplier is CreativeTrims on Etsy. Cheryl's prices are so good, and she ships like greased lightning. I can't recommend her shop highly enough. CreativeTrims.etsy.com

Now I haven't forgotten my promise to show you the nifty hat I've been telling you about--the teal bangle one I've been making for my daughter. I just got sidetracked today, but I will have photos for you soon. 

My Etsy vacation ends in a couple of days. On February 1st, I'll be reopening the shops and listing new items. There will be sales, so do check each shop announcement for details and the checkout code.

Talk to you soon!  The three soggy doggies say hello.



  1. You've shown some great ideas for storing your ribbons! Thank you so much for the mention, your wonderful!


    1. Cheryl! Hello! How nice of you to comment. I'm so excited to see your blogs. I'll add them to my list. I was excited to learn about the Fabric Depot in Portland, I've never been there before. It looks like so much fun! I'll look forward to your photos.