The pictures below are of my studio in California. Since our move to the beautiful Greek island of Crete, I had to pack up that room! But, our new home has a huge finished basement for my use. Eventually, my office and creative areas will all be in one large space. For now, I am crammed into a bedroom with my computer on a cart, my favorite Brother Innov-is on a desk, a rolling cart to hold some some supplies and a twin bed that we all, including the fur babies, seem to nap on. No one wants to see pictures of that! However, as I start the process of setting up my new basement studio, I will definitely share photos and all my thoughts on the process. For now, enjoy the pics of my old workroom (which I miss terribly!).
Sewing Desk and Storage
This is my sewing desk, where I keep my Elna Quilter's Dream and extension table, as well as my serger. I don't use the serger very often, so this space is ideal for it. The shelves above, along with the drawers and cabinets below are wonderful for keeping my supplies somewhat organized.
This area was built in to a 7' closet. Originally, the cabinets and shelves were Pepto Bismol pink, with a fake wood-grain counter. When I repainted, the paint wouldn't adhere to the counter, no mater what I did, so I had a custom glass top made for under $100 at a local glass shop. It's a great surface to work on, and the light reflecting off the glass adds to the light in the room.
HandiQuilter and Juki Setup
This is my machine quilting setup. No room or money for a true long-arm, so my HandiQuilter (with my own upgrades) and Juki TL-98E with Handi-Handles is the perfect solution. Before I had this setup, I dreaded the actual process of quilting. The unfinished quilt tops just kept piling up. I've had my setup for about 2 years, and in that time, I have quilted about 85 quilts. I usually have one quilt on the frame while I work on my next top.
Under the table is where I keep my bolts of fabric, current projects in boxes and bins, and the odd office supplies that I don't need often.
I got this 8' table for $10 because there is a fist-size hole in the top. Can you see it? Neither can I! I love a bargain.
Cutting Table & Embroidery Machine
This is my cutting table, and it is wonderful. If you look closely, you'll see that it is actually 2 cabinets back-to-back, with a painted piece of wood for a top. This is the perfect ergonomic height for me, and holds my mat perfectly, while still leaving room for my embroidery machine and thread holder.
These 2 cabinets hold fabric, large items like my teflon pressing sheet and rolls of fusibles, my supplies for egg painting, and my son's pasta machine (he loves the polymer clay). The tall cabinet holds even more fabric.
The pegboard above the cutting table is so convenient for my rotary cutters, scissors, and rulers ... and cat toys, too.
Homemade Ironing Board
This dark picture shows my homemade ironing board and my TV up in the corner. It keeps me company while I press and cut.
I couldn't justify spending over $100 for the larger board that is available now, so I made my own. I started with an 18" wide board that the folks at Home Depot cut to 60" long for me, drilled several holes thru for ventilation, covered with 2 layers of cotton batting and then topped with cotton ticking. A staple-gun helped me to secure it all in place. After 2 years, I just finally recovered it.
The whole thing sits on top of my regular ironing board and is easy to move when we need to iron our clothes.
Thread Wall & Embroidery Machine
Here is my thread wall. It is so bright and cheerful to see every time I come into the room.
There are 5 regular racks holding my Gutermann collection and Coats sewing threads and specialty threads, and 2 cone racks holding my large spools of cotton quilting thread and various embroidery threads.
I keep thinking that I want more thread, but I think I've run out of room.
You also see here the front of my Viking Iris. I keep a thread catcher under it so that I have a convenient place to throw away thread snippets and small scraps.
The Messy Closet Stash
Yes, I am just like many quilters. This is my "closet of shame" stash area. This is where I store fabric that won't fit in the sewing room cabinets, flannels, fashion fabrics, terry cloth, and anything else that needs to be shoved in somewhere.
This is the closet in the extra bedroom we use as our office. My sweet hubby installed the shelves for me, and this closet stayed neat for a long time. Then, well, I just couldn't be bothered with it. I was too busy creating!
Actually, this closet IS much cleaner now. It's a bit jumbled at the moment, but much better than this picture. See the beige quilt at front center? That is a quilt that I won a second place ribbon for. Nice way to store it, huh?
Sewing Desk Storage Closeup
This is a closeup of the shelves directly over my sewing desk. These bins/drawers are a real help and time-saver. Each of my machines has 2 drawers ... one for it's feet, tools, etc. and one for it's particular bobbins. I have 2 small drawers of needles, 2 for buttons, 1 for my hand needles, 3 for pins, etc. All the others hold various tools, thread, and the like.
I am so glad I ran across these at my local Sav-On. I was bummed when I couldn't find any more, then I found them at OSH as well. They are inexpensive and easy to look at. The small purple set of drawers, I got at Jo-Ann's.
Under the bottom shelf, and behind my machine, I have 3 squares of cork. I use these to pin up notes, patterns, etc. that I can reference easily while I sew.
This is just a picture to show the bright white and yellow colors of my room. It's so cheerful and I love it! This picture was obviously taken just after the room was completed. I wish it was always this neat, but when it was, I didn't feel very creative.
When I finally talked my hubby into helping me create a real sewing room for me (this used to be the cat room ... I'm a sucker for cats), I had just purchased the HandiQuilter and Juki so my funds were kind of low. This had to be done on a strict budget.
The items that we purchased were the 8' table, the glass top for the desk, the wood for the cutting table and ironing board, premium gloss paint (and tools), curtains, cork squares, and the ticking for the ironing board. Everything else was here and just put to new use. When it was all tallied, I spent less than $250.
I also cleaned up an old rolling chair we had, put a new seat bottom on it, and made new cushions and back out of a black with pink and yellow roses fabric I had in my stash.