Vintage Portable Sewing Cabinets | Redo It Yourself Inspirations : Vintage Portable Sewing Cabinets

Thursday, November 3, 2016

Vintage Portable Sewing Cabinets


I've secretly been wanting a vintage style sewing cabinet. Not that truly I need it, but my small wooden sewing caddy is bulging and I can't close it up even after I've organized it. So my mind traveled back in time remembering my mother's... and my sister's, that my father made. With the thought of making one myself, I just have not had the time to even plan on building one. It's been on the  long "to do" list. Of course, I could ask my dad to make me one. But guilt would get the best of me. When he made one for my sister, we had a choice, vegetable bin or sewing cabinet. At the time, I needed and wanted the bin. And to this day, I use it. It's a prized possession that I take pride in having every single day.

Then I saw a sewing cabinet for sale locally.

Hmmm... $35 ... and not exactly attracted to it; I passed.


With my dining room table full of sewing, I went back to it. Wondering if I could redo it to make it my style. Oh my. Not digging it.


I decided, "Nah, I might as well make one". Passed again. That certain gut feeling of "should I"?... Well, it just wasn't there. You do that when you shop garage sales, thrift shops and online sales. That thought of maybe I should buy it because I might regret it later lingers in your head.

With no regrets, I did forget about it.

Then. There was this one.
Yesterday.
At a local thrift shop.
Almost saying "come over here" with a glow around it. I mean, it might as well have had a neon sign over it, "reserved for Robin".
The very first thing I saw in the store and with its magnetic greeting, it just simply had me in a trance.
Really. Not kidding! I don't remember walking.
I must have floated.


It's kinda sorta what I was accustomed to. Kinda like Mom's.
The price tag of $19 was certainly quite fair.
It was like it was "meant to be".
I picked it up without challenging any feelings about it and went straight to the cash register to take it home.
It was like I was a secret agent, picking up "the package" and on a mission. I didn't even have shades and a dark suit on. It was so notulant.
Without hesitating, I pulled up at home, and I opened it up and the Angels sang.


It's actually in very good shape. It appears to be handmade. Many people have "copied" the "Sew-Tidy" cabinets that were made by Edmilton Corp., Milwaukee, Wisconsin around the 1920's.

To share such information, I found this one at an online auction house.


You can find them at yard sales, estate sales, and online through auctions and shops. I've never seen any at thrift shops before finding my new treasure.

Looking around further, I have some more to share with you. Forgive the photos and links, as we are at the mercy of poor photography and ended sales of a limited topic.

Check out this gem from an online shop. I'm totally "hearting it".


This antique, was once online during an auction. I found it via Pinterest. Obviously much older than the 20's.


Another shop listing. Check out the colors.


As you can see, the styles and colors can vary by the maker and trend. This is another shop listing. Adorable legs!


The frame is always the same, but how it's decorated and organized depended on the maker's needs. 

Some were left as simple and just wood, like this one from another shop


My mother's has the jars attached, as this one does. 


I adore how some are done with personal touches. The fabric on this cabinet makes it so cute in cottage style. 


I'm really happy with the one I have. It has plenty of space and more compartments than I need. Extremely sturdy.


There were once jars that are now missing. But I can change the lids and add my own.  The jars I will use requires the consumption of blueberry preserves. One down and three to go. (So much for eating non fat plain greek yogurt. Sugar in jam kind of kills that diet idea.)


In fact, I'm changing out the fabric too. but I can live with what is for now.

It's brown with pretty floral splashes of pink and turquoise. Love the greenery in it.

The hardware and upholstery nails are in fantastic condition.


For what I have in mind; I'll deconstruct it, refinish the wood, use the fabric print I have in mind, re-use all of the solid brown pockets, and put it right back together. Then, it will be my own.


For $19, I am smiling from ear to ear. It came with some things in it. Buttons, thread, heavy washers (pattern weights), pencils, really good safety pins... a whole pocket full! Oh, and two old razor blades still packaged that made me chuckle. I remember my father using one of those silver razors pre-disposable days. I was fascinated how it opened. Hmm, wonder if he still has it? If so, he could get a few great shaves in the future.

Stay tuned for the makeover.  =D

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