It has been so very long since I’ve taken you on a tour of my sewing room. I moved into my new space over a year ago and I wanted to get things “just right” before I shared it. I’ve been putting it off for a while, but scheduling myself on the calendar for the Curvy Sewing Collective Sewing Space series which I host on the CSC has prompted me to get a move on, clean it up and organize it to take photos. There are still some things that I want to do with my space and someday I’ll get to them. But for now, I’m ready to show you around my sewing room. 🙂
*If you care to reminisce or see some different storage options, you can check out the post about my old sewing room, which has actually been featured in some sewing room inspiration posts and pinned tons of times on Pinterest.
We moved into my grandparents’ house last December, but I started setting up my sewing room last summer. I decided to choose the formal living room, which my grandma called “The Red Room”. We already have a living room (and a parlor) and don’t need to have two, so it made sense to use this space. This room is at the front of the house and is mostly all windows, which is good, but also a pain sometimes. If you’re standing from the viewpoint of the photo above, looking straight through those windows with the clock between them, there is the front yard and driveway. To the right is the enclosed porch and entryway which lead into the parlor. You can see this room from the front and the entry, so I try to keep it somewhat clean and picked up.
Unlike my last sewing room, this room is a shared office with my husband (the dogs and cats also hang out in here). I realize that I would have much more space for my sewing stuff without our computer desks in here, but I like having him (and the printer) in here. From the photo above, the enclosed porch/sun room is through those windows. Someday that room will be finished and I will share it with you. Right now, our senior dog, Doc, stays out there part of the time (he has dementia and other issues), so painting and flooring are on hold. I also just brought over a bunch of books from our old house that I haven’t put away yet (I’m a bit of an organizational nerd and have my books arranged by genres)
I like having my sewing desk in a place where I can both watch TV and look out the window. I don’t want to look at a wall and like watching movies or Netflix/Amazon while I sew. I also like having another sewing table catty corner so I can turn around in my chair and use my serger or another sewing machine.
It took me a while to figure out the arrangement of this room. It seemed so big until I actually started setting up my stuff. For a while, I thought that I wouldn’t be able to have my cutting table, but I figured out a way to use it in this space. It’s actually six pieces, so I “cut” it in half and gave the other half to my MIL for her sewing room. Here’s my tutorial and how it looked before I split it up. It isn’t an outstanding amount of space to cut, but it works for me, plus it’s a good place to store things. I cut most things on my sewing table. I also have two large folding cardboard cutting mats that I could lay out on a bed and cut patterns (like my grandma taught me) if I needed to.
On my cutting table I’ve glued metal rulers which I use to measure fabric. I have some of my rulers and cutting stuff, plus an ottlite. Honestly, this table is such a magnet for stuff. I spent more than hour cleaning it up, much to my cat’s dismay as she enjoyed sleeping up there amidst the chaos. I just put my dry erase board there after not knowing where to hang it in this space. I love keeping lists and having it on that board to remind me. I was writing them on a notepad, but I would never read it….
In the space under my cutting table I have two caddies (from JoAnn’s) which I keep notions in and a plastic drawer cart that has some laces and linings in it. Behind those are my bins of fabric. I love collecting notions and I buy new and thrifted notions all the time. I also inherited a lot from my grandma, plus I got a box full from my mom when she organized her sewing space. I live about 30 miles from the closest sewing store (JoAnn’s), so I like to make sure that I have what I need when I’m working on a project as I can’t just run to the store for a quick trip to pick up something. It’s also cheaper to purchase items on sale and stock up, plus vintage notions are usually better quality than new ones, so I love using old stuff, too.
I keep my patterns in the shelves of my cutting table. These are Dritz pattern storage boxes. The colored ones I found at thrift/antique stores and the white ones I used to buy at Hancock’s and I’ve also purchased them from Create for Less online. I arrange my patterns by decade for the vintage/historic ones and by what they are (i.e: dresses, skirts, etc.) for contemporary designs. My vintage patterns are in acid-free clear comic book bags. I don’t write on my pattern boxes as my collection is always evolving. I add to my patterns and I also go through them occasionally and weed out what I don’t think I’ll need.
I wanted to have one of those metal pattern cabinets and put my name down at a Hancock’s when they were closing, but I couldn’t get down there to pay for it (they wanted payment to hold it that day), so I missed out. I have seen some on Craig’s List, but I’m not sure that I really need one that bad. I might change my tune if I saw one for a few bucks at a thrift store or if I got one for free. 🙂
One of my favorite parts of my room is my fabric cabinet. My parents picked this up for me over the summer. It’s a kitchen pantry cabinet, but works so well for fabric. I love being able to see my fabric through the glass, plus it keeps them clean.
I keep my scrap bin in there and I don’t have to see it! (Also, I organized this before I took photos…)
My ironing board usually sits in front of my fabric cabinet. The top of the cabinet is a good place to keep pressing aides while I’m ironing. My ironing board was my grandma’s. I ditched my crappy Target one when I got this one, which is so much better made than what they produce these days. I need to replace my ironing board cover and I actually have fabric to make one, if I ever get around to it…
On the other side of the door is my filing cabinet where I keep more tools, rulers, stabilizers and ironing stuff. The doorway to the laundry is right on the side of this, which makes it nice for both sewing and ironing clothes.
This filing cabinet was my grandpa’s and I painted it. The paint scratches, so I guess it needs a clear coat or something and a re-paint. I keep my over-sized patterns in one drawer and my PDF’s in the other. I keep my PDF’s in letter sized manila envelopes (not shown) with the pattern cover sheet taped to the front.
Working my way around the room, here is the display wall behind my sewing machines with some of my doll collection. My MIL made all of the Gone With the Wind outfits and gave me all of the other Barbies, plus the two Gene dolls. I love looking at them. Of course, you can also see that the Doctor is present as well. I have eclectic interests.
In my old sewing room I kept my scissors on a pegboard with easy access from my sewing table. I had to re-think things for this room, so I got a magnetic tool/knife bar from Harbor Freight to hold my scissors. I do have to get up to get them, but walking/moving is good for sewing, too.
I still keep my notions and loose buttons in jars. They don’t look quite as cool as the display in my old room, but it works. I first had these on the shelves of my cutting table, but my pattern stash took over that space and the dolls take over this shelf space.
I do still love my thread racks. I have some clear plastic that I bought to make a cover for these, but I haven’t got around to making it. It gets a little dustier than my old sewing room, bu not too bad. It’s still more dust than my thread/sewing machines need.
My grandma had an old iron collection and I found that these work really well as pattern weights. I also keep the patterns that I plan to sew soon in this open pattern box within easy reach.
The sewing desk that houses my Pfaff 360 and Janome 3434D serger was my grandma’s. My grandpa made it for her. The 1960’s Pfaff was also my grandma’s and she taught me to sew on it. I have a hard time closing the bottom drawer.
My grandma’s sewing desk opens up in the back for a cutting surface. I never knew this was here until I moved this desk into this room. She always had me cut patterns out on a cardboard mat on the bed.
I keep the notions and stuff that I use most often in the top drawer of the sewing desk. I need to get some trays to organize this better as there are currently layers of stuff. The second drawer has tracing papers and the like with notebooks and odds and ends in the bottom drawer. Behind the two doors in the cabinet are the foot pedals.
These notions and such sit at an easy reach for me as I’m sewing.
And these ones sit right next to my main sewing machine.
That’s the view from my sewing table. Yes, that’s a mid-century TV/stereo console fitted with a flat screen TV. My grandpa did that.
My sewing and craft books. I recently moved all of my fashion books into a large bookcase in my boudoir. I also have more of my sewing stuff in there, like my other dress forms, sewing machine cases, sale patterns, etc. I’m always looking for sewing books and I buy them a lot at places like Half Price Books as well as thrift stores and some online if there’s a specific one that I’m looking for. My mom (a knitter) went crazy and bought me all kinds of knitting books (and knitting stuff). Someday I may progress beyond knitting a scarf.
I collect vintage sewing machines. This one is a Singer 128 with Victorian decals, circa 1919. It was found in a barn (not my barn) and I’ve been working on cleaning her up. She used to be a handcrank, so I’d like to convert her back to that someday. I’d also like to get her the bentwood case that she’s missing.
This sewing table is pretty much for decoration, but if that mid-century pink Brother Cavalier ever needs to be used, Marilyn and her entourage can move elsewhere. Underneath is a plastic cart with tools and my beads and embroidery are in the purple box and the sewing caddies.
The pièce de résistance is my treadle sewing machine. She’s a Singer 27-4 with Sphinx decals, circa 1904. I got her from my husband’s family. I’m working [very slowly] to get her in working order. She’s oiled up and loves it. I have a new belt for her, but I haven’t put it on yet. I need a few parts and then she’ll be ready to rock ‘n roll. I can’t wait to sew with her and having non-electric machines in my sewing room is definitely a huge wish for me. Sometimes the power goes out when I’m sewing. Plus, ya know, in case of the apocalypse….
There’s still some things I plan to do in my sewing room. The first is probably to get two doors to close it off. There’s three entries — one from the parlor, one from the laundry, and then one to the outside (which has a door). With this room closed off I can keep animals and dust out. We also plan to put new flooring in here. We replaced about 1,600 square feet of flooring before we moved in, but didn’t do this room yet. I’m still unsure of what kind of flooring I want in here. I also am on the fence about painting the paneling. I painted the paneling in the basement and it turned out wonderfully, but I kind of like this pine look. We’ll see…. I’d like to have this room kind of white and green. I also want to get rid of the curtains and replace them with blinds. This is the only room in the house (besides the porch/sun room) that doesn’t have double-paned windows, so that’s on the list for someday.
As far as storage goes, I’m thinking about getting another bookcase for under my cutting table to store more pattern boxes. My vintage pattern collection is expanding and I need more storage for it. I’d also like to have an IKEA rolling metal cart (Raskog) to store projects that I’m working on in.
I hope you enjoyed my sewing room tour! I’m happy to have it neat and organized and I’m ready to start another project!