I have finally, after nearly 2 years here, finished another room of our house.
And to me, it’s a very important one — it’s my sewing room!
I’ve mentioned before that the upstairs of our house is just 4 empty rooms, and I’m turning each one into a room to house a specific function: an office, a sewing room, a longarm room, and one other room that I haven’t made a decision on what to do with just yet. A spare room — can you imagine? I’m so excited!
The only room upstairs that had any outlets or light fixtures was the office, so I could not work upstairs after dark (except in the office). The ceiling light operated with a pull string, and there was only one outlet . . .
A couple of really nice guys came and worked here for two days this summer, and now I have lots of outlets in every room, and all new light fixtures that operate with switches! And I still find myself grabbing for the pull string in the office when I’m ready to shut off the lights!
Here’s what the sewing room looked like when we moved in:
Then I began painting (with the help of my friend, Cindy, and her daughter, Sarah):
I just left the ugly carpet in place so I didn’t have to use a dropcloth. I chose to paint the walls and trim white to help keep the room brighter, and so that wall color wouldn’t be competing with the colors of things on my design wall, etc. I decided that the walls could stay white, and I’d use accent colors to liven things up. (Accent colors can be changed a lot easier, too, should I happen to change my mind about what I want, and without having to repaint the entire room.)
Then My Cowboy put up my design wall. We had lots of help with this part, as you can see:
Then we ripped out the carpeting:
I wasn’t sure what we would find under the carpeting, but the floor wasn’t in real bad shape, so I have opted for now to NOT refinish it. I gave it a good scrubbing (OK, several good scrubbings) and the spots that aren’t so great are covered up with furniture, so I figured since it wasn’t even going to show very much, I wouldn’t worry about it. It was more important to me that I just get moved in. And I won’t feel any worries about dropping things or causing any damage to a “perfect” floor.
I finished painting the trim, the electricians put in the outlets, switches, and light fixtures, and it was finally time to start moving things in! Woohoo!
And here’s what it looks like now!
Here’s the light fixture I chose for this room. I had originally thought I wanted track lighting in this room, but I’m so glad I got this instead. It’s big, it’s really bright, it’s directly over my cutting table, and I love it!
Next, we built my cutting table.
I had the two matching bookcases you can see in the photo above, already painted white, and exactly 4 feet in width. Cindy had shown me a picture (maybe from Pinterest) of someone who had made an island out of bookcases, and since I had been wondering about exactly where I would put those and how I would have room for them, this was the perfect solution!
I just bought a 3/4″- thick 4′ x 8′ sheet of good quality plywood, cut one foot off the end of it so that it was 4′ x 7′, and My Cowboy fastened it to the top of the bookcases from underneath with screws, one bookcase on each end, facing out. Then I painted the top.
Now I have shelves on both ends of the cutting table to store things very handily, and the middle underneath is open, and that’s where I stacked all my bins of fabric. Now they’re within easy reach while I’m working there. It’s a dream setup, I tell you!
There’s room for both of my large cutting mats on top, and my tool caddy and scrap basket, so I can have several things going on all at the same time (which I usually do, so this is fantastic for me). As you can see, I’ve already piled it up with stuff I’m working on.
My portable light table fits neatly underneath. I just pull it out, put it on top of the cutting table, and plug it in to use it. Very handy! I also keep the trash can there, and a bar stool, in case I’m working there for a long time and want to sit a bit. The big red bin is my scraps. (Not all of them, I must confess, but oh, well.) I also drove a nail into the end of the far bookcase, and use it to hang all my rulers on. I haven’t loaded up the bookcase on the other end yet, but it will hold my reference books and keep some other things handy.
The bookcase on this end holds my pre-cut scraps, my scraps for applique (sorted by color), a bucket of strings for string piecing, and a basket of scraps. I’m really trying to be organized in here — I know, I know, so unusual for me!
Cindy and I painted my sewing machine cabinet this happy blue color, and I reupholstered the stool cushion with red and white polka dot fabric. It makes me happy!
I put one of my tall white cabinets with drawers in the corner, and hung my thread rack on it, and put two of my “sewing b0xes” on top. And hung my Elvis picture!
My daughter bought me two rolling carts with drawers, and Cindy helped me assemble them, and all the drawers are full of the projects I have going on — so handy. Both within reach of the cutting table, and one right next to the sewing machine so I can use the top to lay out pieces I’m working on.
This large empty wall is going to be painted with whiteboard paint one of these days, then I can use it to scribble on and make lists. I’m an obsessive list maker! And my sister gave me that thirty-one organizer that hangs behind the door. I also now keep the door closed all the time to keep the cats and dog from getting in — they’re sorely disappointed, but they’ll just have to deal!
I also recovered my ironing board with the same polka dots and hung up some picture wire to clip little bits of inspirational things to:
My Cowboy hung my bulletin board and clock:
And I covered my design wall with batting:
I still need to make curtains, and I think I have enough polka dots left to make them from.
I also need to organize the drawers in the tall white cabinet. It’s mostly empty right now, while I decide what things to put in it. I want everything to be organized and convenient.
There is a closet in this room, and I have my two large tubs of yardage and other not-so-pretty items (like bags of stuffing, quilting hoops, rolls of interfacing, and all my empty tote bags) stored in there. There’s also another rolling tower of bins full of projects I’m working on inside the closet out of sight.
Let me just tell you I LOVE this room! It’s so bright and cheery, and now even at night it has good lighting. Everything is handy and convenient, and I hope to be much more productive now that I’m all moved into this room.
I still have some more decorating to do, and some more organizing, but the main thing is — it’s operational!
Next up, finishing the longarm room. It has lights and outlets, the closet is ready to go, the walls are painted, the window trim is finished, the shelves are built and painted, and I’m working on the floor. Once the floor is done, I’ll be able to move in there, but I’m not sure when I’ll have time to finish that . . .
Stay tuned for the next tour!