Every boat owner needs to learn to sew!
This I have no doubt. I only recently learned, and it is really easy. At least to level that is useful in countless ways. I only got the idea to sew because I was looking into cheap ways to get a dodger. Professionally made they are many thousands of dollars, but only about $1000 in materials if you construct one yourself. So I set out to determine if this was something I could do. Ultimately, I think that yes, I will be able to. In the meantime, wow, sewing is so useful. Every boater needs to learn. I started with just curtains, to learn the machine. Now it seems I sew something else almost every day.
This is my sewing machine. A gift from my mom. I would guess it is as old as I am. It't fairly simple to learn, and it turns out pretty powerful as well. Testing it, I was able to easily sew through 8 layers of marine canvas.
I also recommend that every boat owner gets a pool table.
My first project. 6 sets of curtains. My boat had none, and they were pretty low on my list of things to get, but proved a simple way to learn the machine.
On a recommendation from another sailor, I removed the door to the V berth, and sewed a curtain in its place. The door was in the way, and almost impossible to close while standing in the forward cabin. The curtain really made that space more usable.
And wow, I think the interior of my boat looks MUCH better. The yellow and green curtains give it a splash of color that makes it less dark and happier.
Another project for learning, I bought a kit to make a duffle bag. Only $30. I will probably buy another, just because it is so useful while traveling, and because it is a good price for the bag.
Then I had the "ah ha" moment. I startet making all kinds of bags for things that are hard to stow on the boat. Here is one for an anchor. Only 2 bolts and the anchor will collapse into this bag and will easily stow in a locker. Much less space than boxing it, and parts won't get lost or mixed up from packing it loose.
Another picture of the anchor bag. I also made bags for various tools, my dremel, hacksaw, coping saw, and extra blades. And very large bag to hold a spare anchor rode and chain.
Obviously I have been working on all this at home. This is the Magma Kettle BBQ that is normally on my boat. A cover for it that is not nearly as nice as this is over $50. This one was free, from scrap canvas leftover from the duffle bag.
Another cool idea. There is (was) no place to store my hatch boards while I am sailing. They just got tossed in whatever corner and moved around. So I made a storage bag for them, which now hangs by the companionway.