Thursday, March 01, 2012

My Sewing Room Makeover

My sewing room has been long neglected and has become a catch all room for many items that don't even relate to crafting.  It's been on my to-do list for many months, so when I read about Project Pretty at IHeartOrganizing, I knew it was time to get my butt in gear and reclaim this space!

Last January, I posted some pictures of my sewing room and I'm so shocked when I look back at the photos!  I can't believe it looked like that!  Seriously?

January 2011

I can't believe I thought it was organized when it looked like that!

Since that time, I've purged a lot of fabric that I will never use, found amazing organizing ideas, and cleaned up my stash!

Are you ready to see the finished product, one that I won't be ashamed of in 14 months?

So.  Much.  Better.

I had one vintage sheet (I believe it was a queen size) that I loved.  The teal and green flowers were gorgeous and I couldn't stop thinking about it in this space.  So, I used every single scrap to make the curtains, chair cover, bulletin board, table skirt, and handtowels.  My husband transformed into Superman and painted baseboards while I worked one night, hung curtains, and moved furniture.  I love that man!

My sewing room is a large space on the back side of our house, behind the laundry room.  I am told that the previous owner used it for stained glass work, and I love the idea of keeping the craftiness in the room!  Before we moved in, the room looked like this -

Ugh, right?  We replaced all the vinyl flooring with ceramic tile prior to move-in day, and I'm so glad we did!  I'm also glad we painted- this lemon yellow was giving me a headache!

My cutting table is made from two bookcases from Target and an old closet door.  The closet door was originally used on my old ugly cutting table, so I had the hubby cut it down and wrapped it in white contact paper.  I have a tension rod and a curtain hanging over the open space in the middle.  I would love to have this open, but it's a great place to throw items that I don't want my kids to see or if the room needs a quick clean up.  This room doesn't have a closet, so there isn't much space to hide things!

Above the cutting table is my "door on the wall" that I use as a white board for planning ideas and making lists.  This has worked great for me!  I removed the original vintage sheets that I started with last summer, just because the writing was difficult to see with the background of the sheets.

On top of the door sits my ribbon jars.  We lowered this shelf from its original location (above the door frame) to attach it to the top of the door.  I like this look much better.  The jars are all similar in size and shape, but not identical.  Primarily, I use applesauce and spaghetti sauce jars for this.  My family knows to throw these jars in the sink and once clean, they go to the sewing room!  :)  Practically speaking, yes the ribbons do get wrinkled, but they are easily ironed out.  This is such a space-saving method and it puts some color on the walls that any wrinkles are worth it.

I use three bookcases for the majority of my storage.  We had these bookcases in our rental, but since we have built in bookcases in our new home, I got to claim these for the sewing space!  The white boxes are from Ikea and although they aren't super sturdy, they serve the purpose here.  I wouldn't put them in a kids room, if you know what I mean!

I love the chrome finishes on the boxes and a spot for labeling.  I used my new favorite font, Inspiration and some blue scrapbook paper to create a label for each box.

I have been wrapping my fabric on boards for a while, but upgraded my system to these archival safe boards from Amazon.  Although they are designed for comic books, they work perfectly for fabric and fit neatly on the bookshelves.  I love that they are acid free, too, since much of my fabric is sentimental or vintage.  I was inspired by this pin on pinterest to do so!

I was able to wrap all sizes of fabric on these boards, from one yard to a queen size vintage sheet.

I found these open wire baskets at Target for just $4.48 each!  I almost squealed in the store!!!  I bought all they had.  Sorry to those of you who shop at "my" Target!

They are the perfect size for corralling small scraps of fabric, zippers, bias tape scraps, etc.

I recovered another chair that my friend gave me.  Remember the first one?  There's still two more waiting to be updated in the garage!

My sewing machine is from my husband's great-grandmother Annie.  It still works wonderful!  I have kept it in the original cabinet, and love all the stories this machine could tell.  I keep a photo of Grandma Annie in the windowsill to remind me of her.

The curtains were a super-duper easy project!  I just made a long strip of fabric, lined it, and clipped it onto the hooks for the rod.  Very simple but adds the color and finished look I wanted.  My kiddos play on the patio and since it's screened in and the pool is gated off, I can open these sliding glass doors while I sew.

I mentioned this Ikea clearance find last week in my Favorite Things Friday post.  I use it to gather my scissors, rotary cutter, marking pen, white board markers, etc.  Sometimes it sits on top of my cutting table and sometimes I put it on a shelf.  Just depends on what I'm doing.

This is a stand that I found at a yard sale for $2.  I had my dad add pegs, take off the ugly bunny on the top and replace it with a square sign and give it a fresh coat of paint and voila!- a stand for hanging my vintage tote bags that are for sale in my Etsy shop!  (Notice the Little Tykes car in the background of the patio where my kiddos play!)

And that's it- except for the half bath.  Which still has some projects on the to-do list.  I'll reveal that in a few weeks, okay?  I use the half bath for  bookcase where I keep my sewing books and magazines, mainly.

One final before and after, okay?

Before we moved in:

Fourteen months ago:

And the after!

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  1. Such a lovely transformation. My sewing table is in desperate need of an overhaul! I think tomorrow I will make a start...

  2. Some fantastic ideas in there.

  3. Um...AMAZING!!! I love this great job!!

  4. I think your room looks great! It's certainly a nice big space & seems so light and airy. My space is pretty small, but it is so wonderful having a space of your own, isn't it?

  5. I officially envy you!! My sewing room is also my computer room, my recycling station, and my KITCHEN!! And where my daughter does her college homework. It is the only place we can gate off from the daycare children, and still be able to see and hear them. But I still manage to sew and get things done. You definitely have a beautiful space there!

    1. Thanks for your sweet comments! I sewed in a very tiny space (closet, laundry room, a stairway landing, even!) for years. Make the most of whatever space you have and enjoy!

  6. I love the ribbon jars. How pretty, and easy to keep track of! Nice work.


  7. WOW! You did an amazing job. Thanks for sharing at this week's BFF Open House!

  8. I love this makeover! My sewing room needs a serious overhaul and you've inspired me. :) What section of Target did you find those wire baskets in??? I LOVE them!

    1. MJ- they were on an endcap near the rugs/home organization section. They had canvas liners in them, but I took those out. Hope you have the same luck at your Target!

  9. Oh my goodness, I am so jealous of your space! I do a TON of sewing but the only place for my sewing machine, serger and all the supplies is also my teeny tiny bedroom. Your space looks fantastic, great job!

    1. Nicole, I sewed in a closet and a laundry room for years! No shame in a small space. Make the most of whatever you have! Thanks for your sweet comments!

  10. I just popped over from I heart Organizing. LOVE your sewing room and all your amazing ideas!! I've been checking out all your links and enjoying everything I've read. You are amazing!! Thanks for sharing!

  11. Well done, a lovely room to sew in!

  12. Good job on getting that cleaned up and finished! I think everyone works much better in pretty spaces :-)

  13. What a change!! lovely room!!
    María from Spain

  14. Beautiful! Love your vintage fabric on the window, chair and as a "skirt"! I must get to Ikea someday. Happy crafting/sewing!

  15. Love it! Stopping by from Tip Junkie's Link party. I LOVE the storage for your fabric and the IKEA boxes. I use those in my homeschool room. Thanks for more storage ideas. I just hid all my storage in my craftroom with desk curtains. Stop by and check it out!

  16. Oh my goodness... Love your sewing room!!! I would love for you to link up to my party going on now at Jillify It! Hope to see you there!


  17. Wow! Doesn't even look like the same space! I love all of the boxes, it looks so nice and tidy!

    Thank you so much for linking up and sharing!


  18. What a wonderful transformation! You must LOVE creating in there! :D

  19. I love the changes! It looks so bright and cheerful too.
    I am following you now, can't wait to see what else you share!
    Amy @

  20. Wow you do have a nice sewing room. What a makeover!

  21. Great ideas! Love the recycling your doing also. Nice bright n' inviting room. Mine is on the way in about two weeks moving to new house specificly with a room for my long arm. Thanks for all of your ideas!

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  23. Having a messy room can badly affect the speed of your production. It’s a good thing that you put some boxes in your work room, Amy. It looked more spacious and well-organized.


  24. Getting inspired to actually do something to the space I am blessed to have. I'm half way through my 3rd year of retirement and keep chipping away at the projects I started while working full time outside of home. Early in my marriage, my husband said "If only you put half the organization to home that you do to your classroom!" Found your blog linked to iheart organizing! Thank you!

  25. amazing tranformation. me ha encantado la tranformacion de tu cuarto de costura. y la tela que utilizastes para la silla y las cortinas me encanta. disfruta mucho tu lugar de costura



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