Sewing Room = Starting from Scratch

AnnieLovelyDecember 10, 2012

Hi everyone,

This is my first post on this forum, and I hope you can give me some good ideas. I have recently moved into a new home and have a huge sewing room which I'm starting from scratch. I've purchased an L-shaped counter and some storage shelves.

I'm thinking of getting a pegboard with hooks to hang up my scissors and other tools, and then some shelves for my books etc.

If you were starting your room over again, what would you do with your space? Thanks to anyone who comments.


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Annie Deighnaugh

How exciting for you to be getting your own space! It's really a nice thing to have.

I was fortunate enough to get a craft room in my new house (which I insisted I get the SW corner of the house for maximum light). I outfitted it with cabinetry in a U shape, similar to how my office at work was laid out. It has a closet for storage. In addition to shelves, I had a box built into the corner of the closet to hold bolts of fabric upright. (Can't see it in the's to the left of the closet door.)

I kept the old maple dining room table which is on wheels and has a flip top, so I can flip it down for cutting and layout, then flip it up and roll it against the wall when I don't need it.

I had the electrician put the outlet for the iron on a switch so I can just flip the iron on and off as I'm back and forth when I'm sewing, rather than have to do it with the dial on the iron. (In the middle pic, you can just see the foot of the ironing's on the left as you enter the room). I also was sure to have room for full length mirror on the wall.

The flooring is a heavily cushioned sheet vinyl that is very durable, very easy to clean and soft under foot as this is in our lower level and is on the foundation concrete floor.

I had the electrician put in a lot of light as well as it's a work room. We also bought an armless office chair that adjusts in height and leaves my arms free for maximum movement....hate it when fabric gets caught on an arm or the arms get in the way and you can't pull the chair in close enough.

Please keep me posted on your room...I'd love to see how it turns out.

    Bookmark   December 10, 2012 at 8:02AM
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What an absolutely beautiful room! I am so jealous of it. ;o) The sewing room in my last house was the best Ive ever had, but now that I'm on my own I can't really afford to do all that I'd like to do.

I especially love all the natural light you have.

I don't have a closet or any shelving in the room that I"m using, and I'm wondering if I should actually put my dining room table in there and use it as a dining room instead. Then have my sewing room where there are wall to wall windows. It may look odd to anyone coming into my house, but it would certainly stimulate my creativity with all that natural light.

I also love the idea of an on/off switch for your iron. I never would have thought of that, but it's a great idea.

Thank you so much for taking the time to post pictures. I wish more people would share.


    Bookmark   December 10, 2012 at 7:34PM
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Annie Deighnaugh

To make that decision, I would consider how far the dining room would then be from the kitchen and how often you use the dining room. I believe that you should devote the most and best spaces in your house to the things you spend the most time doing. If you sew a lot and use the dining room very little, then go ahead. Me, I need the DR right near the kitchen for carrying plates and such in and out. I use it often enough so it matters.

Another consideration is how messy are you and do you mind? When I'm in the middle of a project, my craft room is a mess, and I'm delighted that it's downstairs away from the main living area so only I see it. In my old house, I had no craft room, so sewing took place all over the kitchen and dining room, so the project had to be cleared away each night. What a pain! And if we were having company, sewing projects had to be completely banished. If you don't mind having people traipse by your project space, then go ahead....

    Bookmark   December 10, 2012 at 10:43PM
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I agree that your sewing room should be in a separate room. I've moved a lot over the years and only a few times have I had a dedicated room for sewing. When I did, I got a lot more done, lol. It is very hard to get back to a partially completed project when you have to put every single thing away when you have other things to do.
And, don't forget to pick a spot for your ironing board.
We just recently moved across country and I had to leave all my fabric, patterns and old sturdy ironing board behind with a friend who's wife sewed(I did grab a few pieces and patterns I couldn't part with and stuffed them into a bag).
Here, I'm only going to have a corner of a dedicated computer room to do needed repair-type sewing until a separate room becomes available. My DH found a 30" table top ironing board at a thrift store that I can use in a pinch until I find(um...can afford)a decent one.
Back on point, I find that one of those portable/rolling clothes racks are good for hanging almost complete projects.
Don't try to cram too much stuff into your room(I know it's tempting)so you'll have floor space to spread out large things like draperies and duvet covers.
Hope this helps and hope we get to see pics of your room progress. Have fun making it happen!

    Bookmark   December 12, 2012 at 3:35PM
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Hi...If I was to do it over, I would go slow and determine exactly how I used things and what would be most convenient for the way I work For example, I would not want my scissors and tools hanging on the wall. Too much "effort" to retrieve when I wanted. I would want those things in a drawer or in a container near my workspace. ie, I use a bucket with an organizer on it that I made to hold my "tools". Withn easy reach, I can see what is there, and it sits on a table next to my machine.
And if you are like most other quilters/seamstresses, you collect fabric and you will need to allow ample space to properly store it so it is accessible, and easy to see. Again, I retro-fitted a walk in closet with floor to ceiling shelves and place my fabric in stacks by color.
You really just have to determine what is best for you and your needs.
One hint: I use a surge protector strip to plug in my iron but I taped it up on the edge of a counter, so I don't have to bend over and under a table to plug it in. Same set up with my sewing machine, serger, and embroidery machine.
Elevate those surge protector strips!
Good luck and have fun designing your new space.

    Bookmark   December 13, 2012 at 6:53AM
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I wish I still had a dedicated sewing room--had to give up the room for my youngest to have her own room--no way she was sharing with her brothers!

Right now, all my sewing stuff is in our bedroom. It works out okay, since the room is quite big. I have a 6 foot folding table which doubles as my cutting table, a 4 foot table which holds my sewing machine and serger. Notions and thread are in a plastic bins with drawers, majority of fabric is on shelves against one wall with the rest in totes in my closet and under the 6 foot table. Eventually when my stepdaughter moves out on her own(she's 18 and in 11th grade), I will get my own space again.

    Bookmark   December 23, 2012 at 1:30PM
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Hello Annie, I have been sewing or doing some form of crafting for over 50 years. I now have a converted , enclosed back porch that is finally "my space". All these years I have used whatever I could put my hands on that would serve my purpose. I recently found 8 matching base cabinets at my favorite thrift store that were reasonably priced. I have tried several different layouts to give me the best use. This is what I currently think is best for me. The top shelf will hold several plastic storage bins. I want space to set up at least 3 machines. My son who is in construction will install them for me. Since I do several different crafts I want to create "stations" to work in that contain the tools I will use for that craft. (Hopefully very soon!) Maybe this will give you some ideas.

    Bookmark   December 28, 2012 at 4:02PM
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Annie, This would be my floor layout. The room also shares ,my laundry area so there will be a washer, dryer, folding counter,room for an ironing board, a roll-top desk for computer, a laminated desk-top for sewing, plus surface for 2 other machines. The "island" is made up of 4 base-cabinets put together on casters so it can be moved where work surface is needed. Now all I have to do is make my family want this as badly as I do.

    Bookmark   December 28, 2012 at 4:12PM
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Annie Deighnaugh

Wow Liddybuff, you certainly packed a lot of work surfaces and storage into that room...very impressive.

    Bookmark   December 30, 2012 at 9:07AM
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Thank you Annie. I did plan things by using graph paper and taking LOTS of measurements. I can't wait to get it all in place. One other tip I want to pass on,... If you are forced to use an area that will be seen by others often you may need to keep things under cover. My husband helped me install a large wooden pole that I hung 4 inexpensive shower curtain liners on that can be drawn across my work area. This keeps things looking rather neat and are easily opened when ever I want to use my space. My curtains are solid blue vinyl that cannot be seen through. They matched my area perfectly since I have blue carpet and blue storage bins.

    Bookmark   December 31, 2012 at 2:57PM
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