Friday, September 7, 2012

New sewing room

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I used to have a home office.  Then I didn't need the home office anymore.  At that point, the piles started to grow.  If I didn't know what to do with something it went into that room.  I decided I needed a dedicated space to sew in... so I carved out a little area in that room for the machine.  The closet was full of junk so my fabric and materials ended up in bags on the floor.  This vicious cycle went on for more than a year, and the room continued to pile up.  When friends came over to sew, I moved all my stuff out to the dining table.  Any readers that have been to my house know that door was always closed.  You're about to see why.  I'm almost embarrased to show this photo, but I figure if I want to show the good, the room I'm proud of, then I also need to suck it up and show the bad, where I started.  So, here goes...........
Ok, so now you've seen this room at its worst.  For a long time I wanted to clean it up, do something with it, I just never knew what exactly I wanted or where to start.  The job seemed too big, too intimidating.  My mom is a great cleaner outter and decorater, so I thought I just needed to wait for her to come visit.  But then, when she's here I don't want to spend days working on a room. 
Recently, my husband and I sat down to have lunch and watched a PBS special about quilting.  Yes, I have a great husband that humors me on occasion.  On the show the host talked about a design wall, and that is what finally got me to tackle the room.  I started by researching design walls and how to make them.  Then I looked at hundreds of pictures and many blogs for sewing room ideas.  I wish I could give specific credit to the blogs where I got each of the wonderful ideas I incorporated into the room, but I visited so many great ones I lost track. 
I knew I couldn't hang a design wall until I cleared out and cleaned up.  That Monday I was on a mission.  For a week I didn't sleep well because I was so excited about the room, and ideas kept swarming in my head.  I wanted, I needed, to finish the room.  By the end of Day 1 most of the stuff on the desk, floor and closet had been sorted.  The hallway had 2 piles, one for donation and the other was boxes of old business files that needed to be shred.  The seat and floor of my car held office supplies that were to be dropped off at one of the schools where I'd worked.  The sewing stuff was all in the closet. 
Day 2, I finished working through the stuff; I'd sorted it all and put things that were staying in the closet.  I picked up paint samples and was about ready.  By the end of Day 2 the furniture was moved to the center of the room.  I never imagined, even at that time, I would end up loving the room as much as I do.  I had three color samples: a purple, light green and soft yellow.  I took a picture for mom and she liked the yellow best, my husband also liked the yellow.  It was at the bottom of my list.  But, trusting my advisors I went with the yellow. 
Day 3 I painted, and by the time my husband got home from work I was pulling the masking tape off and about ready to move furniture into place.  My mom and husband were absolutely right about the color.  Daryl made some great suggestions about furniture placement.  I certainly wouldn't have done as well.  I was so happy with the room at this stage.  It got so much better though.  Now the decorating work started.  I bought a curtain rod to go over the closet with clips so I could hang my projects for photos (idea from a blog).  I got a valance rod, found absolutely perfect fabric for the window, got coordinating fabric to recover the bulletin board on the desk, added under cabinet lights to the hutch, made the design wall (with help from Daryl and my friend Dionne), found some cool wall decorations, and last but not least made a pegboard (idea from a blog).
I found a really clever tip for organizing fabric from Maggie on the Smashed Peas and Carrots blog.  Right away I ordered the comic book storage boards so I'd be ready when the closet was empty.  I'd love to find a cabinet similar to hers for the fabrics, but for now they'll be hidden away in the closet.  My scrap fabrics are sorted and stored in containers by color.  I still have a little more organizing in the closet, and I will be replacing the furniture with different tables someday, but for now I have a whole new, pretty, organized sewing room for about $200.
sewing room with pegboard
design wall made from foam insulation wrapped in batting
sewing room with pegboard
organized sewing room closet with mini bolts
Yes, Captain Jack Sparrow stayed with the room re-design.  There was no way I could take him down.  Last, but certainly not least I have to say a HUGE thank you to my wonderful husband for all of his help in making this room happen.  His input and getting things hung for me was invaluable.  It was really special to me how excited he got at each stage in the process to see the changes take shape.  He took an active role in making my vision a reality, better than I thought it would be.
I've been so anxious to share this with all of you.  I hope you've enjoyed my ramblings and photos.  I'm happy to answer questions... and I'd love comments or suggestions.  Oh, and the table under the window is for guests (though my friend Dionne wants a nameplate someday), and I love to craft with friends!

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