Friday, January 07, 2011

Organizing My Sewing Room

I had the best of intentions yesterday. I was finally going to work on my owl quilt. I laid out all the pattern pieces on the table, and was about to take inventory (I've moved houses since I last worked on this quilt) when I realized I could not find the pattern. It should have been with the pattern pieces, yet it had mysteriously disappeared. I knew it had made the move but I could not figure out where it was hiding.

I started searching. And searching. When it became clear it was not in the handful of places I could think of off the top of my head, I decided it was time to clean up my sewing room, and find the pattern in the process.

The Sewing Room
Organizing my sewing room
When we first moved in it took us a little while to determine where we would store all our fabrics and our sewing machines. We live in an apartment where space is at a minimum. My mother is my roommate right now (ie. we split rent) and she has been quilting for over 20 years. She has a lot of fabric, and I have a decently sized fabric stash. We had too much fabric to just store it in rubbermaid containers.

Instead, we decided to convert an extra large pantry into a sewing room. This would allow us to shut the doors and hide all the mess if we had company over. The adhoc sewing room has 4 shelves on each side of the closet, but none of the shelves span the width of the closet. These shelves are about two feet wide by two feet deep. There's some serious space and potential fabric storage area. There's a large open area in the middle of the closet, perfect for a sewing table. We purchased a desk from Ikea measured to fit exactly in this open space.

my whole sewing room
For me (the right side of the blue line), it's perfect. For my mom (left side), who has been collecting fabric about as long as I've been alive, it's a bit tight but she's made it work. In both cases, proper organization is essential. While I rudimentarily organized my half of the sewing room when I moved in many months ago, I hadn't done any further organization. So while I looked for the owl quilt pattern, I organized. Sewing notions went up into clear rubbermaid boxes, which I then labeled. Ribbons, elastic, nylon webbing, and any type of cord went into one box. Sewing tools, like scissors and my rotary cutters go in the other one. I have another box for fabric scraps, and another for my box quilt blocks.

Here's the result. I still love the rainbow cover on my sewing machine, and the button jars I made. And of course, I found the missing owl quilt pattern.

How did you design your sewing room?

clean and organized sewing room


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