Tips And Tools Tuesday – Chatelaine – a What?

I’ve always enjoyed hand-work and usually just place my hand-stitching supplies on the end-table next to my chair.   When I hand-quilt, I use a hoop to hold my quilt.  I’d get all settled with the hooped quilt in hand (and wrapped all around me) and realize I’d forgotten one or more of the supplies I needed. Drat! Then I’d have to get out from under the quilt to hunt for the wayward item(s). Ugh! And sometimes, as I shifted and adjusted the quilt, I would knock my supplies right off of the table! GRRRRR!

But, not any more!

Now I keep everything I need hanging comfortably around my neck in a handy little contraption called a “chatelaine”.


Chatelaine.  ( Pronounced: shattl – ane. With a long “a” sound in the second syllable.)

It’s a funny word that most people are not familiar with. I sure wasn’t when I first saw it. (I had to look up the pronunciation.)

I had bought a book by Fonz and Porter titled Quick Quilts from the Heart.  Page 12 has some suggestions for “Secret Sister” gifts. A chatelaine is one of them. Instructions and pattern begin on page 42.

I thought, “What a great idea! This is exactly what I need!”




So, I made one.


The top pockets are flat and pieced. I keep my thimbles and needle pullers in one. (I keep a few thimble sizes at hand because my finger will sometimes swell a bit if I’m quilting for a long time. I just switch to a larger size thimble and keep on quilting!)  I keep a wooden needle case, containing several extra needles, in the other.


The bottom pockets are over-sized and have elastic at the tops to hold larger objects such as a spool of quilting thread, and scissors.







I can even store my glasses in it.











As suggested in the instructions, I tied an 1/8 inch satin ribbon to a small pair of scissors and tucked the end under the bottom of the top pocket.  Then secured it when I stitched the bottom seam.

I haven’t misplaced my scissors even once since I started using this chatelaine!

Now, my glasses, well that’s another matter. 🙂






Yep. That’s me, hand-quilting a Drunkard’s Path quilt that I hand-pieced years ago. Everything I need to hand-quilt is right there in the chatelaine. Check out my blog post “Quilting On The Go” to learn more about this quilt project.

And, yep, I’m wearing a headlamp. It’s great for when I need extra light. Last week’s Tips And Tools explains more about this unusual quilting tool.



Perhaps a chatelaine is just what you’ve been needing to keep your tiny tools together and handy. If you do an internet search for “chatelaine” you will see many images of ones made from metal that women used to wear on their belts. There are several images of ones created from fabric as well.

As always, I hope this “contraption” makes your quilting and stitching experience easier!



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