Thursday, January 13, 2011

Welcome to My Sanctuary

Yesterday The Apple Pie Gal did an excellent post on her quilt/sewing room which actually isn't a room at all, but rather a corner of a room. Her point was that even though you don't have a whole room in which to set up shop, you can still find an area to make your own.

She indicated she'd like to have a look-see at my quilting area. I am lucky enough to have a whole room to call my own. But this certainly wasn't always the case. In forty-plus years of living in various houses, this is the first time I've had a room (yes, a WHOLE room!) that is strictly mine. Maybe hubby just got tired of eating on the kitchen table amidst rotary cutters and seam rippers. Because it was on the kitchen table that I quilted for many, many years using three shelves in a small cabinet for all of my storage. Well, the cabinet and boxes stashed under the bed, in closets, wherever I could smoosh them in. (And where I sometimes forgot I put them.)

My room is 12' x 16'. The door to it opens off what will be my new kitchen when our remodeling is done. As you step in the door, this is what you see.

Directly across the room is a wall of storage. (More of that later.)

If I shut the door and look to my left, this is what you will see. Storage of my Big Board (which hubby made for me) and a storage chest with TV (that does work occasionally) on top of it.

Also on the wall a little farther down is my cutting table. The shelves under the table hold boxes of fabric and other sewing supplies.

A closer look at the top of the cutting table.

Back to the storage wall.

The left side contains more fabric and general storage areas. I have back copies of quilting magazines in containers on the floor.

The right side is for storage of wall hanging and quilts I use for seasonal decorations in the house and projects in progress.

If you keep going clockwise around the room, next comes a wall with thread racks, calendar, clock, etc.

This is my work table where I keep my two machines permanently set up. I use each machine for specific sewing jobs. I do all my piecing on the machine on the left. My chairs are swivel chairs on wheels so when I'm piecing, I swivel around to the ironing board to press without having to get up.

When I planned this room, I made the choice to sacrifice storage space in order to have two design walls. You see the smaller one above (with the applique on it) with a glimpse of the other one that covers nearly a whole wall.

My big design wall goes floor to ceiling and will hold a full-sized quilt (queen or king size if I really squeeze it) for layout before piecing. I can't tell you how often these design walls have proved themselves out. Sometimes I have to leave a project there for days to decide if I have color combinations right or make a decision as how to quilt a piece. Love my design walls.

Then we are right back to the door again.

Although I've never yet done it, I have this burning desire to hole up in my quilting room for three or four days straight, coming out only to grab something to eat, make a bathroom stop or sleep a few hours. It is such a wonderful, cozy, well-set up room (for me anyway) that do you see why I'm so frustrated I'm not finding more time to spend in there?


  1. When I look at this room I feel like it is an old general store. You just need some salt pork, bulk sugar, and a barrel of soda crackers. You are very well stocked.

  2. Oh. My. Goodness. I cannot believe you have not barricaded yourself in that room. What a well-designed space! I absolutely love your design wall. If I quilted, I would demand one. It takes doing something for a long time in tight spaces to be able to come up with such a great space!

  3. Well darn you! I was just getting ready to stop screwing around and start doing some paperwork when this title popped up on my reader! WOW! You deserve such an amazing room, so don't feel badly about throwing your square footage at our faces LOL, it is lovely! There are those pine wall closets again, I love so much and would cover every wall in my house with them if I could! If I have time tomorrow I will post my "back of the door craft area" hehehee! I'm only sad I can't enlarge your photos more, they are eye candy!

  4. Oh my gosh! It is awesome!! The closets are amazing and very neatly organized! The mounds of quilt magazines did not escape me! They never 'get old'.

    What is your design wall made of? I would love to have one that big. Mine end up on the floor :)

    You know, good things always come to those who wait and I say you more than deserve that wonderful space!

    Now if we could just squeek out some time for you in there I am sure you would be so happy!

    Sewing soothes the soul and is a wonderful outlet for creativity! The blocks hanging on your walls are proof of that!

    Again, wonderful room! I love it and thank you for sharing it with us!

    I am reaching for the Windex now to clean the saliva from my screen!


  5. Awesome room! I'd like to hole up there just cause it's bigger than my bedroom or livingroom! LOL!

    That design wall is amazing. Quilting is one craft I haven't tried but would love to at some point.

  6. It's beautiful! I don't quilt but I'd love to have a room for my sewing, crafting and e-baying, and your "set-up" would work great for me. "Honey, about the spare bedroom, can we talk?" LOL

  7. I love your room. I dream of having a room like it one day myself... At present I have a big desk in my (sunny) bedroom and count myself lucky to have cupboards down the hall for my fabric storage.

    Now, go cross post this to your quilting blog!

  8. Oh my goodness. That's beautiful. Good for you to finally be able to have a whole room just for you. You deserve it. I think I'll take a look at APG's site today. I've taken over a corner of the bedroom for my sewing and quilting. Maybe she'll have some pointers I could use. Thanks for sharing!

  9. Jane - That's it! That would mean I wouldn't have to leave to eat! :o)

    Susan - Yup, by the time I got my room I had done a lot of thinking of how I would want it designed.

    Erin - I am so looking forward to seeing what YOU come up with for your sewing area. I know you'll get maximum use out of minimum space! Keep us up to date on it, please.

    JJ - Thanks!

    APG - We put a soft fiber board on the walls because it was cheap and we did the room with as little $$ layout as possible. I painted it where it would show obviously, but covered the part for my design walls with white flannel. If I need straight pins to hold big pieces on the wall, they go into the fiber board just slick. It's worked out really well.

    Sparkless - I'll bet my living room is smaller than yours! Can you beat 8-1/2' x 15' for smallness?? And that includes a wood stove!

    Ruth - We have only one bedroom in our house so if it were ever necessary, my quilt room COULD be turned into a bedroom. (But I'll have to be dead first.) :o)

    Jen - Sun I don't have in my room. Only the one north facing window. But I made sure to have lots of ceiling lighting so it's always plenty light in there.

    Lori - Oh, do go check out APG's post. She has a LOT of good ideas.

  10. I just LOVE the way you have it so organized!! The way you store your fabrics is fantastic. I use the clear storage bins for seeds (yes, I have THAT MANY). Neato neato. I'm sure that is a very enjoyable place to be. I'm sure come March, there will be plenty of time to hole up in there----no decent snow, and definately not time to be outside (snow, mud, snow,mud).

  11. WOW! That is absolutely awsome. I just organized my sewing room but it's not much compared to yours. I definitely would hole up in that room of yours!

  12. Sue - You have THAT many seeds??! Well, no wonder your gardens look so fantastic!

    We've been getting snow (yes, imagine that!) all afternoon and have about 3" now at almost 8:30. I hope it snows alllll night!

    Alla - I appreciate it so much, you wouldn't believe it! I've simply got to do that three-days-straight stint in there this winter!

  13. Oh I love it! I have a big room too but mine is not as good as yours. I will have to show mine one day too. This was fun! I hope you spend many wonderful days in that wonderful room.

  14. WOW! I'd want to hole up there too!! You have a lovely work space! I'm still sharing my room with my daughter who's away at school for most of the school year and when she's home...I'm in the dining room! :/

  15. Holy. Moly. My eyes just turned the loveliest shade of green and I drooled a little bit on the keyboard. What a lovely sewing space you have. :)

  16. Wow, I'm so jealous! THAT is a great room. Makes we want to come over and explore...dig through everything. The color is so "Happy".

  17. Val - Oh, please DO show your sewing/quilting room. I'm sure we could pick up tips from you.

    Beth - I see a full-time room coming to you sometime in the future . . . no?

    Mama Tea - You, too, m'dear . . . someday. Fingers crossed you don't have to wait as long as I did! ;o)

    tami - I like bright colors so chose the color I did for the walls. My husband liked it so much that he's painting the garage walls with the same paint!!

  18. Thanks for sharing. Very lovely and organized.

  19. Hello You have an amazing set up. I love your quilts. I am a quilter also but this winter. has been a challenge to get anything started. Greetings from Canada. B

  20. growmyown - You're very welcome and thanks!

    Buttons - Welcome and thanks for commenting. Sounds as if you're having about as much luck finding time to quilt this winter as I am! We need to find a way to get a few more hours in the day . . . and then use them for quilting only!

  21. I love your sewing room! I also sew on my kitchen table,but at least I have that,I'm grateful.Wish I had that room though,maybe someday,one like it.Oh,I am following your blog,have been for a while,you are welcome to follow mine as well,Blessings jane

  22. I love your sewing room! I also sew on my kitchen table,but at least I have that,I'm grateful.Wish I had that room though,maybe someday,one like it.Oh,I am following your blog,have been for a while,you are welcome to follow mine as well,Blessings jane

  23. My goodness what an awesome room! I'm not even a quilter and I love your space!!

  24. Jane2 - Thanks for your comment. There's nothing wrong with the kitchen table for sewing -- except having to put everything away so often. I've found when I can leave everything set up, I can pop in to my quilt room and sew for even 15 minutes where if I had to drag out and set everything up, I'd never get that 15 minutes in.

    Teri - Thanks, Teri. I'm very, very grateful to have the space.

  25. Deborah - Well, thank you very much! Seems I'm able to be in there so seldom lately, you can come rent space from me. (Very cheaply!)