Can we talk Sewing Rooms?

donnar57June 25, 2008

For the first time in YEARS, I am going to have my own sewing room. Mostly I've had to share space with the guest room. But in recent months, one daughter has moved out on her own, and the guest room needs to move downstairs since my mom's knees don't climb stairs as easily as they used to. So we're playing "musical rooms" this summer. I get oldest daughter's room, second daughter is moving into the old guest room, and the guest room is going to her room. We'll have to PAINT, too .... UGH!

My sewing room is a bedroom that has a built-in ironing board in it. A previous owner must have sewed, and had it installed. Since I sew, we never took it out, even when DD#1 moved into the room.

The room isn't huge - it currently houses my big sewing cabinet (for both regular machine and serger), a TV stand (and old VHS tapes), a small chest of drawers (to house fabric, eventually), and a desk. The desk is the only thing I can't figure out its use except as a desk. Any brilliant ideas here? I don't have another sewing machine (no plans to get one, either), there's already a place in the cabinet where my serger sits, and it's a double-deck computer desk so using it as a cutting table isn't really an option.

Also, where do you all store your cutting boards? I have three - two are made for rotary cutters, and the other is cardboard and folds out - I've used it when I had to cut on the dining room table or on the floor.

My DD left a bulletin board in there for me, and a set of bookshelves. The bookshelves will (eventually) hold all my sewing books. Any brilliant ideas for the bulletin board, or should I take it down?

Decor is going to be my ever-growing collection of stuff related to the old TV Show _I Dream of Jeannie_. I have autographed photos, magazine covers, toys, and such to display. I'm probably going to change the curtains - haven't decided if I'll go with a hot-pink for Jeannie, or a sewing related theme.

Thanks for ideas,


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Do you have to keep the desk in the room? Since you obviously aren't using it for a computer any more, it seems like it's time to either give it away or store it somewhere else. OR could you use it for a combination planning area, TV station and get rid of the TV stand instead? In a room with limited space, I'd get rid of at least one of these pieces. In fact, I'd get a wall-mounted shelf for the TV, store the videos on the bookcase and get rid of both pieces.

Get some skirt hangers and hang your rotary cutting boards from them in the closet or on the back of the door. The folding cutting board can be stored behind the door, too.

I'd definitely keep the bulletin board. I use mine all the time. It's very handy for pinning pattern instructions onto while sewing a piece. I also pin pattern pieces onto it I've taken them off the fabric, but am not quite ready to put them away yet.

For your collectibles, mount some shelving up near the ceiling. This allows you to display these fun pieces without taking up space on the walls. The framed pieces will obviously go on the walls. It sounds like it will be a great room when you have it finished!


    Bookmark   June 25, 2008 at 11:04AM
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Here's some pictures of mine.My room is 16x 22,and is packed full.It also serves as my computor room,it's where i do my tole painting ans all my other crafts.

My cutting table:

thread rack:

computor area:


    Bookmark   June 25, 2008 at 3:55PM
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Here's a link to pictures of mine. It's 10 X 11 with one wall taken up with the closet. My DH built the 3 tables with the computer and sewing machines. The white table folds out to a nice big size, so I never use my cardboard cutting board any more.

About a year ago I "overflowed" into the dining room with my quilting setup. We never used the dining room anyway, so why not? :)


Here is a link that might be useful: sewing room

    Bookmark   June 25, 2008 at 4:56PM
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That is one massive thread organizer, Kathi! Love it! I haven't even thought about mine yet - now that I am thinking about it, it will probably hang in the closet like the other one did for several years. Mine is so much smaller, though!

Getting rid of the desk or finding another place for it - told my DD#2 today, taking it to school is definitely an option. If you can believe this, I'm in a spare room but there are no spare teachers' desks. It would actually be a perfect desk for me in my classroom because it has no drawers for me to junk up!!! And since it's one of those sparse "computer desks", my school computer would fit on it much better. (My school computer is on this thing called a computer table, but it makes me look up to the monitor in such an angle that my neck aches for hours afterwards.)

Now I'm starting to think "new curtains". I just want cafe style, something simple - and am thinking about hot pink to go with all of my decor. I just bought myself a new sewing caddy - plastic, in hot pink - at Michael's.

My decor is starting to go up (just to get it off the FLOOR). Anyone have any idea how I can display magazines that are part of my collection? They have articles within them, but I don't want to cut them up. If I can't display them, I think I'll have to put them in sleeves in 3-ring binders. Ideas?


    Bookmark   June 26, 2008 at 7:56PM
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Donna ,
Keep your eyes open for stores that are going out of business for magazine racks.I got 2 of them many years ago when House of Fabrics closed.I myself don't use them anymore ,but DH uses them in his workshop for his magazines.I keep my magazines in those magazine holders.You can see some of them on top of the cabinet in the last picture.

As for my thread holder,my BF dh made that for me many years ago.I saw the picture in a magazine,and when she asked what i wanted for my B'Day i gave her the picture and her DH made it.It holds 228 spools of thread.

    Bookmark   June 26, 2008 at 9:53PM
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I have a whole wall that is peg board. It holds all my sewing notions, I have turners, scissors, embroidery hoops and so forth on it. Then all my buttons in one of those tool box things for screws and nails sorted by color and size also on the peg board. I have an old picture hanger that holds my cutting boards. I have a basket that holds my pressing equipment. I use old filing cabinets (thank heavens my DH business moved and threw them out) for my patterns. I have 8 plastic storage boxes with fabric in them separated by color and fabric. I have my sewing machines, 5 of them on plywood covered with sticky cabinet stuff and also my serger on top of the file cabinets. I help a 4H club sew projects so the machines are all used. I put all my sewing books above the machines. I have can lights above all the machines for my eyesight is not great. This is all in the basement and is a room 14' x 16'. The only thing I have a problem with is the carpet. It is hard to keep clean. I have plastic floor things from offices to keep the chairs nice and the 4Hers cut the threads out of them OFTEN. I have another older desk that we are in the mist of cutting the top to fit a machine. I also found another one sewing cabinet at an yard sale which needs new hinges for $1, so it will come in handy when repaired. I have a treadle machine upstairs. So the whole house is a sewing studio. I keep old plastic bottles from Laundry detergent for sew magazines, I cut off the top and the bottom holds the magazines just right. You can write the mag. and the issues on the side. I use old ice cream tubs for thread, divided by color and type written on the side. You would be surprised how much you can recycle items for a sewing room. The only thing I would add to the sewing room is a bathroom in the basement. I hate climbing the stairs every few minutes. We are in the process of adding a kitchen in the basement so if there is a rest room I will never, ever have to leave unless it is to go the fabric store.

    Bookmark   August 1, 2008 at 11:07AM
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My 'sewing room' is also a small, basement laundry/catbox room-the good points are decent lighting, a large computer table for a sewing machine table, space on the walls to hang cutting boards, sundries, a corkboard for inspiration. My sewing goes in spells-sometimes I'm into it, sometimes I'm not. Right now, I'm looking forward to fall sewing, plans for a coat & jacket.

I have an extra large ironing board, good for pressing, but still do most of my cutting on the floor. I also have some shelves over my sewing table for patterns, odd bits of fabric, notions, & some odds & ends...

    Bookmark   September 8, 2008 at 5:44PM
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Donna, is there any way that you could have your sewing table in the middle of the room, etc, so that you could put the back of your desk to the back side of the sewing table. this would give you more room for sewing large items (quilts, curtains, etc) You could put your cutting boards on the desk and use as a cutting table, and still use it for a desk. If it's too low for a cutting table, maybe you could build a little table with enough height to sit on top and use it that way. just a thought.

    Bookmark   September 8, 2008 at 11:29PM
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I have a basement sewing room also! I bought counter tops like for kitchens, one 8 foot along one wall that is cutting height & one 8 foot table height for computer , sewing embroidery machine & TV.

I have 2 machines in cabinets ,a dresser on one wall & like a sofa table along another wall. Under the cutting counter are 3 chests with 4 drawers. 2 small night stands under table height counter.I have shelves on 3 walls up close to the ceiling for small containers and books etc. Over the table height counter are 7 thread racks .

I have 2 cabinets for fabric beside the cutting counter. In other words the 4 walls have something!!There is a big closet that has a variety of things in it along with plastic containers with , you guessed it ----fabric!!

I'm like Lizzie2 NO bathroom in basement!! So I do get exercise !

    Bookmark   October 7, 2008 at 2:29AM
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fabric storage, fabric storage - we all need more of course. (fabric and/or storage LOL) Sounds like there will be others who die an old lady with lots of fabric, also known as a killer estate sale for fabric hoarders.

    Bookmark   October 7, 2008 at 11:49AM
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I love seeing all of your sewing rooms. I have used the dining room table for so long. My DH made a 42" x 8' plywood table top to fit over our dining table when the kids and grandkids come for dinner and we stored it in the basement when not in use. I asked him to place it in our old exercise room in the basement (the treadmill folds up) on top of the 6' folding table I considered using for sewing. He added an extender for his table saw he used in his woodshop for more stability and I now have a great sewing/cutting table. It is not anchored, so we can still use it for dining. I am about to use it for sewing the first time this weekend. I am thrilled.

    Bookmark   October 10, 2008 at 7:26PM
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I've been catching up on some of the forums tonight, (it's been a busy summer)! It makes me smile that we sewers "get it done" because we love to sew; we manage to claim rooms and squeeze into small spaces, cutting in the dining room and on the floor! If I had my way, I'd gut the entire end of my house and incorporate the guest room (hardly used) and my other unused bedroom that is currently my sewing work room/computer room, and turn it into a wonderful sewing area. I manage very well now, however, with shelving for my fabrics. It cost me very little to get a laminate counter top made, which we installed on 20" brackets at the right height for my machines. I bought a large display table from a going- out -of -business sale that is a good height for cutting, etc. (It took us 3 days, with a lot of threats of cutting off the legs and a lot of bad words, but we got it into the room). I love the idea of hanging cutting boards with skirt hangers -- why didn't I think of that! I've been looking for board hangers, thinking I needed something specific for the cutting boards. I took the door off of the walk in closet (hung hippy beads instead) and put shelves all around inside and a place to hang the ironing board, etc. It works -- just l like all of your rooms work for you -- we're sewers, after all.

    Bookmark   October 13, 2008 at 9:51PM
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My sewing room is a place where I can go and feel so's where I do all of my home decor projects, quilting.....I've had to get rid of a lot of my home decor fabric...but you'll see there's still lots of fabric in there - and a pile in front of the cabinet that holds all of my sewing books.....I have to see what I'm going to do with that....
There's lots of things in there...
My new sewing machine is there....just got it for my birthday - am I spoiled or what.. ..Haven't tried it yet because I've been so busy and away, etc...but this is the big week to break it it...
My prized possessons in there are my grandma's sewing machine on the painted chest...her sewing basket and button tin are right in front - and one of the last things that my dad made before passing away - that 3-in-1 step ladder/chair/ironing board...I just brought it back from Home when I was visiting in was one of the last things remaining in his workshed..he loved making his projects...
Well, welcome to my sewing room - just wanted to let you know where I have my fun.
Hugs to everyone,

    Bookmark   October 14, 2008 at 11:38AM
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You folks are making me feel better. I thought I was the only one that had more fabric than Wal-mart. LOL I love my sewing room but it is not something I would take a picture of and post. Maybe after I get it in a little better shape. I make children's clothing for a humanitarian project and right now I have enough donated fabric to keep me busy for months. I started the project by using my own fabric and buying additional, but as people learned what I was doing they started to donate. I only have one sewing machine, two sergers, and a commercial buttonhole maker, but with all the fabric, my room is jammed. It looks pretty good after I clean it, but then I sew........or shop. It is pretty much a constant mess.

    Bookmark   October 14, 2008 at 10:26PM
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Back after a long absence - my computer containing Garden Web stuff decided to permanently crash, so I had to try to get another old computer up and running again. Then school started and who had time to do fun stuff like message boards!

My sewing room is looking better - it helps to have some of the stuff SHIPPED to its owner now residing in Missouri. But I still have the desk and some other stuff. I don't mind the desk, it's been a great project table. It's MY room and no one else usually tries to tread in it.


    Bookmark   November 11, 2008 at 8:44PM
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