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Saturday, 3 February 2018

A Bevy of Bobbin Organizers

Options for organizing your bobbins
Silicone bobbin clamps...
Last August, I decided to tame my small collection of bobbins and purchased these silicone bobbin holder clamps on eBay.

I ordered them on the 17th and by the time eBay's 45 day protection loomed on the immediate horizon, the shipment had still not arrived.

Not wanting to fall prey to bad practices by some eBay sellers, I always request a refund when this happens. And I always contact the seller to re-submit payment when the package ultimately arrives.

In this case, it was November 8th. For me, it set a new record for delivery from China. (I had been convinced that it was lost or at best, sitting underneath some discarded crates at the port of entry in Vancouver.)

In the near three month interim, I began to seek out other solutions. For example, at the Sears liquidation sale, I picked up a package of those things commonly known as bobbin buddies. They are meant to be stuck into the top of a spool for easy matching of bobbins with their original thread mates.

Options for organizing your bobbins
Good idea but still lacking...

After I tried these out, I realized that keeping the loose threads at bay was important to me too. And these bobbin buddies did nothing to keep the thread under control.


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A few years ago, I was in the market for some double-walled water bottles. (Yes, change of topic, but this all ties together eventually!) When we travel, we like to bring along our own water bottles. On one of our trips to Mexico, my other half left them behind in our hotel room fridge. As replacements, I tried a variety of styles, including these jumbo tumblers from Bubba. While they hold more, they are also too big to be convenient for travel, so they've been put to other use.

Now — for the part that ties this all together — these tumblers came with permanent straws made out of silicone that we've never used. While digging through a kitchen cabinet on the morning of November 8, I came across these straws and had a sudden inspiration to turn one of them into bobbin managers.

Options for organizing your bobbins
Snip, snip and a silicone straw is turned into a bunch of bobbin (thread) managers...

You've seen the idea before; people generally buy PVC piping for this purpose. But my straw hack here works just as well.

Options for organizing your bobbins
You can't even see where the tail of the thread is hidden!

Now, I'm not suggesting that you go out and buy yourself a Bubba tumbler just to get the straw, but it's another case of how you may find things around the house to repurpose. (And who knows? Maybe you do have oversized straws at your disposal that can be put to similar use.)

If you've been reading carefully, you'll note that I said I made these little bobbin managers the morning of November 8. That afternoon, my silicone bobbin clamps finally arrived in the mail.


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Despite the long wait for these, they did not disappoint. No more loose bobbin tails!

Options for organizing your bobbins
All three of my bobbin organizers in use...

Unless the bobbin is almost depleted of thread, these clamps hold well.

Options for organizing your bobbins
Close up view...

The set of twelve — along with a couple of ball chains to keep them together — were $3.79 (USD; shipping included). With my silicone straw yielding twenty-eight little bobbin managers, I now have enough thread management for forty bobbins.

My next move, therefore, was to get more bobbins. For that, I shopped Mom's old sewing kit. They're free and I don't have to wait three months to get them.

Options for organizing your bobbins
Three ways to organize your bobbins!

But if you've been curious about these little clamps and wondered how well they might work, I can say that I recommend them. Be aware, however, of price variations — I've seen as high as $12.99 USD for this package of twelve and there's no flippin' way I would ever buy at that price!


1 comment:

  1. Good to know you like those bobbin clamps. I had purchased a package of Bobbin Buddies that keep the bobbin and thread together and didn't like them at all and gave them to a friend who uses them. They just didn't fit my bobbins and I don't store my thread spools with bobbins. I like those donut looking things for my bobbins. They hold about 35 bobbins and I can grab the whole thing to find the thread color I need without flipping through individual holders. The next best thing I like to use for bobbins are those ice cube trays for water bottles, so there are about 4 long skinny sections that I put my bobbins into. I also use those individual foam toe separators to hold bobbins that I have 60 weight bobbin thread for my decorative stitches. That way I can distinguish them from the regular sewing weight thread.

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