What’s In The Buckets?

So many wondered what I travel with . . what’s in my buckets.  This morning I unpacked a couple of the buckets to show you what I carry.

There’s a little variation in the items I bring, depending on where I’m going.  If I’m taking projects to sew on while at mom’s, she has most everything I have so I don’t worry a whole lot about taking every item I could possibly need.  If I’m going to a retreat to sew, I don’t try to pack every conceivable item because if there’s something I desperately need and don’t have, someone else will have it and will let me borrow it.

If I’m going to some remote cabin or small town hotel, I take everything I think I might possibly need.  The packing I’m sharing today is for a small town hotel so I have about everything I think I might need.

I love these little pencil pouches and keep two sets of them loaded.  I don’t ever unpack these pouches once I get home.  They’re always ready to go!

This one has the following items:

A rotary cutter, extra blade, pen, pencil, a pad of lint/thread remover sheets, Post-It notes, band-aids, aspirin and Kleenex.

This one has a calculator, small pair of scissors, machine needles, extra bobbins, dental floss, more pens and pencils.

Projects and larger supplies are put into buckets.

When we travel with Speck, we’re staying in pet friendly hotels which means other dogs have been in this same room and every now and then, I can smell a dog so I bring along some candles.  There’s also a wind-up flashlight and an LED lantern.  Never know when the power may go off!  I always keep an extra magnetic pin holder, along with a packet of pins, a small pair of Gingher scissors and a couple of spools of thread.  Then I begin adding fabric for specific projects.

I try to pack the fabric and block pieces in the order I’ll need them.  The border pieces will be on the bottom.

The block instructions/fabric goes in next.  I’ve cut all the components to  make the blocks because it’s easier to do all that at home with my large cutting area.  Instructions and the quilt drawing are also added.

Pencil pouches go on top and this bucket is full and ready for the trip.  I have another bucket with a second project to take too.

A separate bucket contains a power strip, a Mighty Bright slip on light (that works off electricity or batteries), iron cleaner because if I’m using a hotel iron, they usually need cleaning.  A set of small screw drivers, a larger screw driver, sewing machine oil, Best Press and Speck’s food and water bowls are in this bucket.

Dog food and dog treats, along with a couple of skeins of yarn are added.  This bucket is full and ready for the trip!  I’ll have my knitting bag with me in the car and it contains a couple of pairs of socks that are in progress, along with all my knitting needles.

There’s a tote bag packed that has a couple of rulers for rotary cutting, a mat, and the extra fabric for both projects . . just in case something is cut wrong or missing.

In theory, with the things I have packed, I could make two quilt tops and four pairs of socks.  That’s more than I could get done in one week but I’d rather have too much than not enough.

What have I left out?  Anything you take along that I haven’t mentioned?


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    well, I would have to pack a book to read…can’t sew all the time…and what size cutting mat do you take that will fit into a tote?

  2. 3

    Pat in Washington says

    The sewing retreat I go to has been running for over 25 years and has developed a tried-and-true list of “Don’t Forget to Pack” items, based on what things we have forgotten to pack over the years….. like the power cord for your sewing machine, or your medication, or your favorite pillow, or your underwear.

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    My friend once forgot her sewing machine at our retreat. Luckily another friend’s husband was bringing another forgotten item and picked it up for her.

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    Your Nook or Kindle, or a couple of books, would be what I’d add to the list. And meds, if you’re on any.

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    If I’m driving alone, which I usually do, I take my MP3 Player. It keeps me alert as I listen to an audiobook or a teaching message. I like the zippered pouch idea and the buckets. I have used bags and then I have to look through every one to find something specific, like lip gloss or a bag of snacks I stuck in last.

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    Quiltinggranna says

    hotel lighting is awful. I take my portable Ott light…..and my nifty little seam ripper/slicer. and an awl depending on what I am working on.

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    You did a great job……I also take a little Ott lamp, a seam ripper, a needle threader, chocolate, a book, vitamins, and thimbles.

    What time will you leave? A tavel mug for coffee?

    sao in Midlothian, VA

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    pdudgeon says

    a spray-‘n-wash stain stick for treating spills on clothing when they happen. That way when you get home you can dump the dirty clothes right into the washer without having to go thru them to check for stains.

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    I also include an emory board – nothing like a nick in your nail that catches on everything to slow you down. I would also take a camera and charger. Judy C

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    I seem to always forget my TOWEL when I go on a retreat that isn’t at a motel!
    I have a toolbox that is always packed. I used to pick up a lot of used machines, and like to work on them right away, so I carry some emery string (dont know the technical term!) incase of any burrs in the plate caused by a broken needle. Not that it ever happens, of course…! It has everything you have, pretty much, along with extra bobbins for all machines, machine feet, small rulers (6″, 1/4″ for PP, etc.) pin cushion (my “cute” ones), extra needles, and fits the pouch for pencils. It’s all in one, and I just grab it for everything, since I never know if I will have to fix someone’s machines, or get a great deal while on vacation on an old machine! And tons of dog stuff! Leashes, poop bag holders (see blog), dog treats-(my dogs would eat me alive if I forgot dried dog chicken! Doggy cocaine!)dog meds-frontline, heartworm. We made the mistake of not taking the frontline one year in Oct., and had to run out and get some-fast, as the ticks had a second hatch! Dog sleeping bag, dog towels, dog sheets (since they like to sneak up on the bed or couch in the middle of the night.) Anyway, you get the idea. I like the candle idea, since the last time, we had to buy one, since usually they put you in a smoking room when you have dogs. Have fun. Watch out for bed bugs!