Turn a Cutlery Chest into a Sewing Box

My latest project is a cutlery chest makeover into a sewing box.

I’ve needed  new sewing supply storage for years. The basket I have is too small and doesn’t hold much.

I don’t do a lot of sewing, but I do enough that I’d like to keep things better organized.



This is what I started with.

This cutlery chest cost me just $5 at a flea market years ago. It’s been sitting on top of the fridge for all that time holding cutlery that was never used.


Vintage wooden cutlery chest before makeover

So I pulled out the cutlery and put it in the kitchen drawer where it belongs and decided to transform this chest into a sewing box.

Inside of vintage wooden cutlery chest before makeover

Here’s the inside of the cutlery chest. Love that neon fuchsia!!

But not for this project.

Removing the velvet fabric inside cutlery chest

I ripped out all the cardboard pieces wrapped in velvet and kept them to use as templates for their replacements.

The bottom pieces are still in the photo, but I did take them out also.

I removed all the hardware and spray painted it with a bright yellow.
Then I gave it a light sanding, wiped it clean with a tack cloth and primed the outside of the chest with a white spray primer.
spray painting wooden cutlery chest red
It took 5 light coats of the red before I was happy with the coverage.
Red always takes longer because it’s has more translucency.
Lining inside of cutlery chest sewing box with cardboard
Then I used the templates that I removed from the chest and cut out cardboard pieces to glue in using my glue gun.
This gave me a nicer surface for my fabric.
Lining inside of cutlery chest sewing box with fabric
The fabric I used is from a tablecloth that I bought at a thrift store for $1.50.
I took my measurements, cut out my pieces of fabric, and then installed them using spray adhesive.
I used my glue gun in the corners to neaten it up.
This tablecloth had a cross stitched edging that I cut out to line the edges of the insides of the chest. I attached it using my glue gun.
Repurposed cutlery chest makeover into sewing box
Here it is with the inside all finished. I then added the yellow spray painted hardware.
Adding decorating buttons to top of cutlery chest sewing box
I spray painted some buttons and added them to the top in a flower pattern with my glue gun.
Here are 2 views of it when it’s closed.

And here it is with my sewing supplies.

Turn an old cutlery chest into a sewing box
I just love it and it has so much more room. What do you think?
It’s going to go nicely in my new craft room/office when I make it over (if it ever cools down because it isn’t air conditioned). I’m planning to redecorate it in the colours of my blog.
In the meantime I’ll continue with projects in preparation for that, and other projects as well. Stay tuned!
Thanks so much for reading!



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  1. You'd never know it was the same box. What an amazing transformation and it serves a useful purpose for you know. Great job. Found you at Catch as Catch Can:-)

  2. Wow! This is such a wonderful idea! I just adore the red and yellow you chose too!
    Thanks so much for sharing with the Pink Hippo Party~
    Amie @ Pinkapotamus

  3. Oh, it is so cute! You did quite a beautiful job on her. Thank you for sharing this at my Make it Pretty Monday party at The Dedicated House. Hope to see your prettiness again on Monday. Toodles, Kathryn @TheDedicatedHouse

  4. Love the red and yellow- so cheery! Love how you can repurpose something into what you need. I repurposed a sewing chest into a bread box once. It's all about what suits you! Thanks for linking this up to Gettin' Krafty With It!

    1. I agree! It's fun to repurpose things in ways they weren't intended. A sewing chest into a bread box is a great idea! Thanks for the great party!

    1. Thanks Gail! You're right – it will! I am so ready for it to cool down so I can start on my new craft room. Hopefully soon!
      Thanks so much for stopping by!

  5. This is a great idea! Funny thing is that I have that exact same cutlery chest gathering dust. Now I know what to do with it!
    Thanks for sharing your project!

    1. Thanks Joaninha! That's exactly what mine was doing, gathering dust, while filled with cutlery. I'm getting so much use out of it now. I'm so glad that something I've done has inspired you. Thanks so much for visiting and for sharing your comment with me. Tuula 🙂