Sunday, April 29, 2012

A sewing nook makeover

Earlier this year, I took a little break from sewing. I needed a step away to focus on other things. I've only maybe half-stepped back into making sewing a priority, mainly out of obligation to the other things in my life. The kids and my job and keeping the house from being condemned are all pretty much non-negotiable duties.

But another thing holding me back? The mess that is my sewing nook. How can you feel creative and inspired and excited about spending time on your favorite hobby when the place you do it looks like...(prepare yourself!).... this?

Please, don't call Hoarders. Or Child Protective Services. This is really the only corner that is in total mayhem in my house. I'm not a neat-freak in any sense, but this the place that for some reason gets really out of control and messy. Which leads to total sewing shutdown.

My sewing nook is in a small, L-shaped, ugly corner of my basement. It's lit by a single bare bulb hanging from the ceiling, and it shares real estate with the water shut-off thingy. The only electrical outlet is located in the base of the light-bulb, so my extension cord for my sewing machine, table light and iron hangs in the middle of the space. The third picture down shows the opening in the back left of the corner that goes into my laundry room. I had a bookcase shoved into the opening to close it off and hold all my fabric. It's a hard shape to make cute. But I was also not using the space well. I wasn't making a point to keep things neat. I needed way more organization. The smaller the space, the more important being really organized becomes.

So on Saturday, everything came out of the space. Things were sorted, fabrics were refolded, stuff that didn't belong there was sent to the get-outta-here pile. And then everything went back in.

In progress....

It has to get worse before it gets better, right?

After a few hours of working on it throughout the day, I finally had it reassembled and looking better.

I like to see some of my fabric, so for now, I'm storing a bunch of it here on this bookcase. Along with some notions like fusible fleece and interfacing, and on the bottom shelf, a small box of works-in-progress.

 Here's looking into the nook. I have had the striped rug for about 10 years, since I lived in an apartment. Haven't found a use for it in my house until now! I also bought the painting almost 10 years ago at a coffee shop. It too hasn't had a home in my house for some time. I like how they brighten the corner up!

The table itself is from the 1950s. My mother-in-law wanted to get rid of it a few years ago, and I love it dearly. The chair is from my childhood, so my vintage factor is not bad here, eh?

I'd like to get my threads mounted on the wall. Other than that, I'm happy!

 We bought a new storage unit for inside the laundry room, and it's doing wonders not just for that room, but for creating a nice barrier here. Eventually, when we add more storage options to that room, I might use some of the shelf space there for fabric.

 As part of my cleaning process, I threw away my old sewing cover, which was ugly, stained, misshapen and even cut apart down the middle. Time to make a new one!

 Organized these shelves by getting rid of most everything but the sewing books. I might add some baskets here eventually.

Right now, a lot of my fabric is hiding until the table. It's not ideal, as I worry I'll forget about things if they're so hidden away. And I also won't be as motivated to climb under there to put things away. But it'll do for now.

What do you think? Better?

It's still not a Pinterest-worthy crafting space, that's for sure. And it's not done. But I'm feeling way better about it. Before, just looking over into that corner got my blood boiling. Now, I'm actually drawn in and feeling inspired to go sit and sew.

Does your craft space need some TLC? Go in there and spend 30 minutes tidying up -- it feels so good! 


  1. Phew, much better! I tackled mine at new year, and it's more or less still okay. The sofa's looking a bit piled up, mind, but I don't use it anyway ;o)

  2. It looks so good! It's fun and bright!