Monday, July 27, 2015

A new sewing space!

I am really very lucky and have had my own room for sewing since I started sewing, save a few temporary months while my sister stayed with us. But, it's always been make-shift, with a cheap hand-me-down particle board desk to sew on and a folding chair. For a long time, we had an extra bed in there, and we also stuck a treadmill we got from my grandpa in there.

Once it was time to move my youngest daughter into a big girl bed, I was excited. We were planning on them still sharing a room and that meant that the spare bed that had been in my sewing room would be leaving. Yay!

This is my messy closet. It's still pretty messy, but a little less so, as I was able to move some things onto the Expedit shelving unit.

I also got a new Bernina, as I've mentioned, and the particle board desk just wasn't cutting it anymore, and I needed a better surface for cutting. A regular desk or table is just too low for me.

So I spent months scheming. I spent a lot of time on the Ikea website. And I finally made some choices.

I ended up changing my mind and returning a couple of things, but once I had decided, it was pretty easy to implement.

Yep, I still use a folding chair, but that's temporary...I'm hoping from a hand-me-down office chair from a neighbor who has ordered a new one.
I bought two Bjorkudden tables. I initially planned to buy just one for my sewing machine, but the top was really an ideal size for a cutting table as well, and bed risers lifted it to the perfect height so we returned the not-quite-ideal desk and bought a second table. I'm so pleased to have a dedicated cutting space at the right height so I can cut more when I need to.

I love using a table for my sewing machine instead of a desk because I'm not limited to where on the surface I can put the machine. If I want to slide it all the way to the right so I can rest the bulk of a quilt to the left of the machine, I can.

In moving the bed into the girls' room, we also lost the necessary space for their Expedit bookshelf, so I inherited it and put it in the corner. It's perfect for storing my boxes of scraps, patterns, and a few other notions, and I have a box full of specialty rulers right on top. I was hoping to claim a bookshelf or something, and it worked out perfectly.

I was finally able to sort my scraps into (hopefully) more usable storage. They went from two very crammed drawers to 8 storage containers (7 are Ikea SAMLA bins). I divided them this way:

  • Warm colors, small pieces (pieces that would be approximately one piece for piecing)
  • Warm colors, larger pieces
  • Cool colors, small pieces (pieces that would be approximately one piece for piecing)
  • Cool colors, larger pieces
  • Neutrals
  • Larger cuts (smaller than fat quarters, larger than the largish divided color bins)
  • Precuts (cut by me: 5", 3-1/2", 2" and mini charm packs)
  • Whites (which is in a smaller, shoebox sized plastic bin)

We'll see how I get along with this division. So far, so good, and I've been pulling from it for smaller projects. Yay!

(Also: I don't buy fabric by the bolt, but I did get a couple of empty bolts from a local shop to store larger cuts on. So nice!!)

I also made myself a design board! I used sound board like Angela Pingel, but duct taped the batting down instead of stapling it. I love it, and my girls love it too.

So far, I'm really happy with my space. I think it's going to enable me to sew more efficiently because I have things better organized and can use the space more effectively. And the cutting table is really going to make a huge, huge difference. I know it's not super pretty yet, but I have a bunch of mini quilts in the works or on my wishlist, so that will help. :-)

Huge thanks goes out to my awesome husband for helping with the tables and design wall, and for letting me take over an entire bedroom!


  1. Thank you for the tour of your lovely new studio. It's looking really good. So nice to have things just as you want them, it's worth the wait.

  2. Great sewing space! I love all the wonderful light streaming in through that big window and how you've used the space so effectively for sewing, cutting and storage!!

  3. Found your blog trough minimania flickr! Great sewing space, having specific places for everything makes it much more easyer to work!