Sunday, October 2, 2011

#3 - Great Grandma Alice's Sewing Tin

Each time I venture over to Nanna's house, I come home with something special.  Over the past few years she has been cleaning out her huge house with more storage nooks and crannies that you could ever imagine possible in a house.  So true to form, she had a big box of things that she wanted to show me of HER mother's things.  My Great Grandmother, Alice, was quite a clever lady.  She fed a family during the depression, and learnt how to bake with spoiled fruit, she sewed everyone's clothes and did all the mending by hand, and she raised five children successfully.  

Now my Nanna, is a collector.  She likes to keep items that have meaning.  She has kept alot of her mother's things and has brought things out here and there to show our family, but she rarely parts with these treasures.  Most of these treasures are in the above mentioned box, along with other treasured memories.  We sat on her bed and went through the box, exploring past memories.  There was a sweet little stationery box, filled with love letters from Pop, their airline tickets for their honeymoon, the receipt from the store she bought her wedding lace from.  Then there was another little box with department store price tags.  Nan used to be a master calligrapher, and she kept her practice cards.  I ummed and ahhed about if it was possible to make an art piece out of them.  I left them with her as I was unsure what I'd do with them and didn't want to misuse them.  There were pieces of old jewellry, cards, photos, and other lovely things.  And then at the bottom was this...

I instantly grabbed it and asked what was inside.  It was Grandma's sewing tin.  And look what I found inside....

My eyes must have lit up because Nanna asked if I would like it after admiring the contents for a minute or so.  I think I said yes before she finished asking me!  Also in the tin was some old small pliers, buttons, some needles and a thimble.  I absolutely adore those wooden spindles!  Little did I know what else I would discover.

I took the tin home and cleaned it out that night.  Wiped things over, cleaned the buttons and put them into my button trays.  I had emptied the contents one by one onto my desk, and at the bottom was a piece of folded tissue paper that was being used as a liner.  It was very old and smelly and gross so picked it out and threw it in the bin.  I discovered a piece of paper folded up that was sitting underneath the tissue paper lining.  I unfolded it...

It was a site permit for a craft stall!!!  I stumbled upon a small piece of family history that makes me very happy!!!  Crafting runs in my blood!  I wonder if she was successful at selling her wares?  

Now I need to find a sweet spot to display Great Grandma Alice's sewing tin so that I can admire it while I work.
What hobby, like/dislike or personality trait have you inherited from your ancestors?



The Creative Beast said...

I love your story! It reminds me of my own grandmother who taught me to sew and to knit =-)

Sewing runs in the family but I seem to be the only one who actually made some money using my skills by making costumes for the LA Opera, among other awesome costuming gigs.

So glad I found you through blogtoberfest =-)

Catherine Hansen Peart said...

Hey Christy!
Thanks for dropping by my blog. I love this story - I have such a soft spot for my Nana and family history. I just love, love, love old things (including my Nana - hee hee) and the stories behind them. I definitely picked up my crafting gene from my Mum and grandmothers. They are/were all talented in that way and I love knowing I am carrying it on.

Catherine Hansen Peart said...

I forgot to say that we were living in Brisbane before we left for overseas nearly 5 years ago now! Homesick... :-)