Grandmas’ Plastic Canvas Treasure Trove


This weekend I started the daunting task of digging through the remaining few shelves of stuff at my folks house. I am resolved to go through at least a few boxes every time I visit. This weekend I made it through 3 shelves of “stuff”. You know how you move out of your folks for college, but in your new place (dorm or small apartment) there is never enough room to store all the stuff from your childhood? Then you finally graduate and get a “place of your own” and you will be there in a more permanent way. Time to clear the clutter from my parents’ home. I don’t want to be in my 40’s and still have a box of teenage angst under my teenage bed at my parents. Anyway, this weekend I started in the garage, which used to my studio when I lived there. I have one bookcase of boxes in there.


I was delighted to find not teenage angst paintings (yeah, there were some of those in there too), but these great sewing kits made by my Great-grandma Alida.


And this great scissor holder made by my grandma – I think this one (with the original scissors) was the one she kept in her side table by the couch where she did most of her reading, smoking, and crocheting.


I just love these pin cushions, they are actually little bits of garter stitch folded over, and then tucked into each other to make the pin cushion. I think I want to write up the pattern for this, it’s such a great way to use up little bits of leftover yarn. The scissor holders too.


Did you see that pretty crocheted piece in the first picture? My grandma was working on it and I found that in her “works in progress” bin when she passed away. I think I’m going to add it to my works in progress basket and finish it up.

And I think I want to add a third generation to this plastic canvas collection. I’m not sure what though. What’s your favorite plastic canvas project? Maybe a business card holder that looks like a cassette tape?

Update: I did! Enjoy this sweet mini Sewing Kit Box that mirrors these larger box designs. Get the ad free Grandma’s Sew Kit pattern as a pdf, read the pattern post and the free pattern here.

And that’s it for today. I’m working on the final article writing for the September issue of Craft Leftovers Monthly tonight and better get back to it. Which reminds me, make sure to check it out:

DSC_0003 Get a one month zine+kit bundle. (etsy :: artfire) Sold Out

A three month subscription for the zine+kit. (etsy :: artfire)Sold Out

The September zine. (Craft Leftovers Shop)

The full subscriptions are on sale until the 20th and be sent out all at the same time on the 22nd.

I have a really great book review lined up for tomorrow that I think you will really enjoy. So I’ll see you then!

12 thoughts on “Grandmas’ Plastic Canvas Treasure Trove

  1. I finished up some sweaters that my husband’s grandma had been knitting when she passed away. One had my son’s initials on it. It was a nice feeling to finish them.

    I like the plastic canvas sewing kits. My aunt does lots of plastic canvas projects and I’d love to fins some patterns for her that are less “country craft.” She makes fancy tissue box cozies mostly.

  2. I love little plastic canvas boxes, they’re great ways for a young crafter to get creative. I’ve still got some that I made in pretty colors and patterns. :)

  3. Plastic canvas designs would be a great item to add. I can’t wait to see the pattern for the pincushions!!!!

  4. ACK! How have I missed this post?!?!

    I adore the sewing kits, and the scissors holder. Pure PC Awesome, in my book.

    Perhaps you could design a hexagonal base with short sides for that pincushion to rest in…

  5. i am lookiing for a plastic canvas book on lamp dolls. i got it quite a number of years ago and i would like to see if i can find a copy.
    can anybody help me out here.

    pls email me back at

  6. I’m looking for basic instructions on how to make playing card holders out of plastic canvas.

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