What do embroidery needles and Q-Tips (or cotton swabs) have in common?
Sounds like the beginning of a dumb joke, doesn’t it? Well, there’s no punchline…
As you can see, I’m not kicking off the stitching part of the New Year just yet, but I hope you are!
In the meantime, though, this is a fun little tip for organization, especially if you use Tulip needles or small tubes of beads and you want to pack them up for easy organization. This storage solution works great for travel purposes, too!
This tip was not my idea, just so you know. I learned it from a friend who was visiting Kansas City, where we met up for some shop talk. It’s just too good not to share with you, and I think it proves the power of using everyday items to good effect when it comes to storage and organization for needlework.
If you’ve ever bought travel sized anything, you might already know that, many times, travel sized goods offer interesting packaging solutions.
It just so happens that Q-Tips brand cotton swabs come in small travel containers like the one pictured above, in different colors. They’re colored, but clear, so you can see through them.
And, more to the point, they’re the perfect size for…
…exactly seven tubes of Tulip needles!
Some standard sized bead tubes would also fit within.
Some great points about the Q-tip travel boxes:
1. They are the perfect size for Tulip needle tubes. They’re just the right height.
2. Seven Tulip needle tubes fit in one box perfectly. Not too tight, not too lose. Just right!
3. The boxes are clear so that you can see the labels on the tubes. If you really wanted to, I suppose you could write on the top of the corks, but you don’t really need to.
4. They’re affordable – They’re about $1.00 for a box, and they come cotton swabs in them that you can use for other things.
5. The lid is easy open, and it snaps shut.
Though I’m sure the plastic lid will wear with use (the hinged part is just thinner plastic), they are excellent little boxes and sturdy for this purpose. I think they’ll last for a good bit of time before the “hinge” wears out.
Now, I do want to mention that not all cotton swab travel containers are made alike.
I tried a few of the generic brand containers to see how they would work for the same tubes.
They don’t really work as well. Now, when it comes to cotton swabs, I’m not a snob. I don’t have to have the name brand! But when it comes to cotton swab boxes, the Q-Tip brand ones are the ones that really fit.
The generic brands that I found had boxes that were too tall, slightly deeper, but not as wide. The height was problematic, because the tubes shifted too much with movement and the corks came loose.
Only five Tulip tubes, with some leftover space, fit abreast in the generic brand’s box. The leftover space also allows a little too much movement with the tubes.
So, just keep in mind, if you go out searching for cotton swab travel boxes, that they aren’t all the same.
I love my little Q-Tip boxes full of tubes of Tulip needles. Some day, I might concoct a way to make them a little more attractive, but for now, they’re not bad looking and they’re wonderfully serviceable!
So if you are out and about, looking for storage or organizational solutions for your Tulip needles – or maybe you’re a beader and you travel with tubes of beads – you might consider checking out Q-Tip travel boxes. They work!
And that’s your handy-dandy needlework tip for the week!
Don’t you love it when everyday items contribute so well to the wonderful world of embroidery?
Thanks so much for all the good wishes and prayers that poured in earlier this week for my mom.
She is presently still in critical care. In fact, I’m typing this at the hospital. It’s long days, and we don’t have a definite time frame for recovery (or as much recovery as we can expect), nor really a clear prognosis yet. It’s a matter of waiting at this point.
Thank you so much for all your kind words! I wish I could reply to everyone individually but alas…!
Enjoy your weekend!