Regular readers of this blog are probably so tired of hearing me talk about the sewing room remodel… especially since I’ve shown you basically nothing. And yet I’ve been referring to it for over a month…
It’s not done yet, and will likely never be “done”, but it is finally presentable. I’ve been sewing in it for a little over a week, and loving every minute of it. So, time to share! (Also, this is going to be a CRAZY photo heavy post…)
Caveat- I didn’t take before photos of either the old sewing room or the old playroom. Both were not something I was proud of. You only get the happy after photos.
First, we cleared out the old playroom, and I thoroughly shampooed the carpets. Have I ever mentioned that Myrtle, our nearly 14 year old kitty, has decided that litterboxes are for suckers? Yeah, that’s awesome. Great for our carpets.
Next, I made curtains.
I love the fabric soooooo much! The colors are perfect for the paint and carpet already in the room, and perfect for my taste.
Next came the best present Rich has ever gotten me:
A door!! The playroom was open to the hall, no door or even doorframe. Which meant I couldn’t keep out the naughty cat, and couldn’t leave any fabric (or anything) on the floor. At least, not until my amazing husband installed one for me! So now, the room is safe from Myrtle!
Next step was building a ton of Ikea furniture. Again, hooray for the husband!
My original plan was to buy white Expedits, but Ikea has discontinued the line and all that was left when we went was black. In the end, I actually like the black more than I expected.
Then I had to bring down alllllllllll the fabric. And yarn. And books. And magazines. And random other craft supplies. I enlisted the children to help move things. Of course, then I had to refold nearly all the fabric. That was intense. I watched the entire Season 3 of Game of Thrones while I was working… In all, I ended up with one 4×4 cube expedit, one 2×4 cube expedit, and one 2×2 cube expedit. I bought drawer inserts for 2 cubes, and door inserts for 2 others, so in all, that left 24 cubes for fabric. And I filled EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THEM. I ran out of room, and all my Kaffe fabric is on a leftover old white 2 shelf bookcase. And my dream of putting scraps into the kids’ old fake Target expedits? Yeah, no, ran out of room there, too.
The giant black bookcase I used to hold about 2/3 of my fabric in the old room fit into the new room with about 1.5 inches of clearance!! That shelf now holds all my crafty books, magazines, patterns, and some miscellaneous supplies.
(Please pardon the stuff piled in front of it! I told you it’s not perfect yet.) That stuff piled there? The contents of the drawers of this old dresser we scored for free from a neighbor some years back.
The old room was so crowded that just to get into the drawers I had to move 3 things. Ugh, but it did provide much needed storage. It’s not the prettiest thing in the world, so I decided to experiment with this
I’ve had that keep calm and sew on fabric for years, waiting for the right moment. And I just picked up those spools a few weeks back, on clearance! I did a lot of searching online, and found tutorials for how to Mod Podge fabric onto wooden furniture. And while it’s definitely not perfect, it is fun. What do you think?
(The Singer on top was my Grandma’s. I actually made some clothes on it with her back in middle school… I love that I can now look at it all the time. It needs a tune up, but it still works.)
I mentioned the kids’ old fake Target expedit shelving? There was one 3×3 unit, and two 2×4 units. We moved the 3×3 to the new playroom, and I kept the others. I planned to put my scraps in them, but instead, they became yarn shelves. I LOVE being able to look at my favorite skeins.
And, um, that’s not even all the yarn. I don’t want to talk about it. I might have a problem.
See my new old Pfaff up there?
Also, you can see my high tech design wall. It is two super cheap vinyl tablecloths, backed with the fuzzy stuff. They’re simply tacked to the wall. Low tech and cheap, and it works just fine. My design wall is actually smaller in the new room, which is a bummer, but, overall, I’m so far ahead!
Can you see that rainbow pillow? It’s on my couch. Because the room is so big, I have a couch and ottoman just for me. This couch is the first “real” piece of furniture I ever bought- not a futon, not from a thrift store, not a hand-me-down, etc. The cushions covers have seen better days, and one foot is broken off and has to be carefully shoved back into place if you move the thing even one inch, but it is so very very comfy and cuddly even nearly 20 years later.
(The mod podged dresser is directly across from the couch.)
Are you ready to see the sewing/cutting area? (Are you still there, even? I’ve been droning on forever…)
Here’s the cutting area- you can even see where I’ve got my laptop and speakers set up. It’s not a prime viewing spot, but it turns out the wifi isn’t awesome in the basement, and I don’t have a lot of choice on set up spots. The plastic tubs are some of my scraps- the tubs used to hold the yarn. Fabric in this area is: yellows, oranges, browns, pinks, reds, white/black etc, solids, novelties, xmas and halloween. Xmas and halloween are under the cutting table as I only need to get at them occasionally. The bin under the table holds my City Sampler fabrics, and the ugly mess is flannel I haven’t decided what to do with yet.
And don’t you love the Ikea rug? It’s the one big splurge of the whole redo. Totally didn’t need it, totally love it. And it was only $40, so, not too bad. AND with my brand new door, the damn cat can’t mess it up. Oh, and that Raggedy Ann and Andy embroidery piece? My OTHER Grandma made it for me before I was born 🙂 The empty white wall behind the expedit is going to be covered with a Kilim rug from when I was a kid living in Istanbul. I LOVE that rug. But we have to get it prepped to hang properly.
Next, the sewing spot.
You can see I have a mini ironing station right next to the machine. I’m already really loving it! (In my old room, I could’t set up the iron close to the sewing machine, and I wasted a ton of time going back and forth….) This new station is so handy. The big board is over by the giant bookshelf, and is easy to get out for bigger jobs. The fabrics on this side are: purples, blues, greens. Because I have the most of those. And this wall also has that white Kaffe-filled shelf that you can’t see- it’s right at the end of the 2×4 expedit.
There you can see how that half of the room fits together. And also that the art isn’t hung on the walls yet. Soon, I hope.
I am so happy with this room. It’s huge- I think about twice the size of my old space. It’s clean and pretty and comfy and full of things that make me smile. It’s big enough that I can have multiple projects out at once without feeling overwhelmed. And it’s ALL MINE.
I am very aware of how lucky I am to have this space. I started sewing more than 15 years ago in the corner of the living room in Rich and my tiny one bedroom apartment in Brookline, MA. Then I used the kitchen table in our first house in Denver, followed by a corner of our bedroom. When we moved to this house, I got a room that I split with a desk and computer. For 10 years, that room served me wonderfully- even that smaller room was a wonderful gift- space of my own to sew! But this new room?
I’m a grateful woman.
A grateful woman with a room of her own.
And possibly too much fabric and yarn.