Make a Mason jar sewing kit to mend costly clothing repairs fast


The salesperson offered the gal a 10% discount for a wool cardigan missing a button. If the picky gal hadn’t snubbed the deal, she would have saved $8.50 (plus tax) on a high quality sweater with a fixable flaw. Since the extra button was still attached, I offered to take the cute cardy off the salesperson’s hands for 15% less, and went straight home to play with my sewing kit.

sewing kits

My trusty Mason jar sewing kit has been one of my secret money saving tools for years. Sure, I’ve pocketed a few extra bucks negotiating discounts on blemished clothing, but my simple sewing skills have mostly helped me mend the quality gear I already own. Extending the life of your loved clothing can save you some serious cash, and doing the work yourself may save you from paying a seamstress to do a trivial repair.

sewing kit gifts

Unhinged hems, missing buttons, teenie tiny holes — it’s all fixable if you keep your tailoring tools handy and in working order. To help you get your fabric fixed, go ahead and convert a Mason jar into a sewing kit with a pincushion lid — you’ll have the cutest kit on hand to put most mending needs in stitches. It’s the perfect gift for students, new homeowners, maybe even husbands, or anyone who gives a darn.

Mason Jar Sewing Kit: Stuff you need

You’ll need to collect sewing items to put in the kit, as well as the bits and pieces for building the pincushion lid.

mason jar sewing kit

To build a pincushion lid:

Sewing kit items:

  • thread in basic colors: white, black, beige, navy, green, brown, red, gray
  • small scissors
  • measuring tape
  • needles (assorted sizes)
  • straight pins
  • safety pins (various sizes)
  • seam ripper
  • buttons — extras saved from clothing
  • fabric pencils
  • small containers (optional)
  • Fray Check (optional)

Gift Option: Mending Kit in a Jar

It’s a well known fact that I like to stick things in jars. I’ve squished fish (not real ones), I’ve baked pies (real ones), and I’ve stuffed some strangely themed things into Mason jars. So it’s no surprise that I suggest stuffing a few sewing staples into a jar as a thank-you gift too, but you’ll need a few sewing instructions to complete the craft.

how to sew a button
Download: How to sew a button

Mason Jar Sewing Kit: Instructions

A few easy steps to sew up this project.

sewing kit

STEP ONE: Separate and trace. Separate the Mason jar lid sealer and screw cap. Trace the lid sealer onto the cardboard. Trace another circle one inch larger onto your fabric.

jar sewing kit

STEP TWO: Cut and cushion. Cut out both circles. Plump up the fabric circle by stuffing the batting between the cardboard and fabric circles.

jar mending kit

STEP THREE: Glue cap. Assemble. Turn the screw cap upside down, and sandwich fabric, batting, and cardboard pieces together neatly. Glue down fabric around the exposed cardboard, then stick the top of the lid sealer to the cardboard so the fabric is cleanly contained. Press firmly, and screw onto Mason jar until glue is dry.

mending kits

sewing kit jar

STEP FOUR: Fill. Fill your sewing kit with mending supplies of your choice, and top the pincushion with a few needles.

mending kit

STEP FIVE: Mend something. A few instructional videos for your (improved) sewing pleasure.

How to Sew Buttons, Snaps, and Hooks

How to Hem

How a Stitch is Made

Question: Do you mend your clothing?



  1. Jules November 2, 2012 at 6:48 am

    I don’t mend our clothing, but that’s mostly because the damage done isn’t the kind that can be mended. I’m talking about huge gaping holes, not just a button or two. But then again, it’s 4-6 years of wearing the item before it’s worn out, so I can live with that.

    I do sew a lot, though. Mostly stuff like curtains, bags of different sorts, and sometimes even a hat. This year, I’ve made a lot of baby things already–I’m mostly finished, but there are one or two more little things to do before I can put the machine away for good.

  2. Jace November 2, 2012 at 6:56 am

    I think I just found my christmas gift idea for all my friends!

  3. Robin from Frugal Family Times November 2, 2012 at 7:02 am

    I almost always mend our clothes. The exception would be darning socks. My mom showed me how to do it when I was a kid, but I always hated wearing darned socks. That little lump was a downer. Then my chiropodist coworker told me she recommends NOT wearing darned socks. Oh happy day! No more guilt about turning holey socks into rags.

  4. Barbara November 2, 2012 at 7:02 am

    Hi Kerry – great idea to have on hand and for gifts. Thanks

  5. Debbie November 2, 2012 at 8:34 am

    Yes! I get a lot of satisfaction in mending and patching…I’m not sure how much my husband loves the patch jobs but my patching skills are getting better ! lolol

  6. Rose November 3, 2012 at 11:16 am

    Hi, For socks to clean mini blinds. Put socks on your hands, and a sink or tub of soapy water, rub the blinds till clean, rinse. This worked for me. Love to sew and have made a lot of clothes.

  7. Kikkatar November 3, 2012 at 12:38 pm

    I have to mend a button on my work uniform today so this article came just in time! =D

  8. Shona from No Nore Sheeple November 3, 2012 at 10:01 pm

    I enjoy sewing as well and have built up a very extensive sewing kit over the years – so much so that I’ve had to make use of a tool box to keep everything in! While many folk say they don’t enjoy sewing, it is an absolutely essential skill to know because over the years, it can save hundreds, if not thousands of dollars.

  9. Myra November 4, 2012 at 8:09 am

    This is a great idea. I would use a SOS pad instead of cotton for pin cushion. This will help keep pins/needles sharp. Super gift idea for kids leaving home

  10. terri November 4, 2012 at 5:22 pm

    Great post, Kerry. I patched a hole on the knee of pants I would not have worn again otherwise. If done neatly, it is hardly noticeable. I thank an American domestic diva for that explaining that skill. Maybe an idea for future posts?

    If you never learned to hem by hand, which I still do, a sewing machine is great for that task, as well as for repairing hems that unravel. I’ve made my own curtains and table cloths. So easy it’s laughable.

  11. Maripat November 7, 2012 at 12:25 am

    So true, Kerry. I’ve saved a boatload of money on clothes over the years, buying sizes that didn’t quite fit, then altering them. Or buying clearance items with slight imperfections, like that missing button.

    I have a “hem stitch” video here:

    There’s a “repair hole in sweater” video here:

    Additional tutorials are free also, at

  12. Jenny November 9, 2012 at 11:28 am

    This is an absolutely adorable idea and I want to make one for my daughter. I still use my grandmother’s sewing box, which I inherited. My mom taught me how to sew and it saves a lot of money on replacing clothes.

  13. […] I need to learn to sew, but until then I’ll just make a sewing kit. […]

  14. Helen July 27, 2016 at 8:07 am

    great article, and like others, I can see gift possibilities! I’ll be making one for myself while I pound my head and say duh! I take those buttons off cloths but seem to lose them before I need them, so including them in this jar is a great idea.

    One QUESTION: why are the videos private?

Leave A Comment