Growing up, Mum always had a sewing room. Sewing was her passion and also her way of making a little extra income while being a stay at home Mum.
I always enjoyed sewing and all sorts of crafts, but when Mick and I bought our first little house, a sewing room, as such, was not on the wish list. We had a little desk in the spare room and a cupboard to keep my bits and bobs in. My sewing machine was my little, portable Elna Stella (which I still have) and it fitted nicely on a shelf in the linen press. Any sewing was done on the kitchen table.
After we were married we were kept busy renovating our house, restoring old furniture and the like. When we planned our current house, a sewing room, as such, was still not on the wish list. We did however, set up a room as an office/sewing room/spare room. By then we had our first computer. However, any sewing still seemed to happen on the dining table.
It was only a couple of years after we moved in here that I got the quilting bug. I think it was really the first time for a long time we hadn’t been fully occupied with house related things.
My sewing has always happened in the lounge room. There are two tables in there and I seemed to commandeer one. I have a lovely little chest of drawers with my sewing notions and threads close by. Cutting took place on the dining table and the ironing board was set up in the lounge room too. Not very efficient. Lots of walking too and fro when working on something. Once I bought my bigger Janome, it lived permanently on the sewing table.
The storage cupboards in the office or “Orifice” as it is generally known filled to overflowing and then fabric started to take over other parts of the house. It was becoming a big mess. Not a good look when you are wanting to sell your house. I have “before” photos, but I am too embarrassed to share them. Just take my word for it, it was a mess.
We have had a big declutter. Some stuff to the tip, some to the op shop and rather a lot boxed up and moved “off site”. Not the best way to deal with things for once we move into our new house, but it was the best way to deal with things at the time.
The “Orifice” looks decidedly bare now……..but oh so lovely.
We removed a big cupboard and a couch which created an empty corner. This is now MY corner. It is rather spartan, but that suits me for the moment. My chest of drawers that I painted early last year, finally have a home and are full of (some of) my fabric. The pretty pink boxes and magazine files were cheap as chips at a discount store a while ago, so I snapped them up. Perfect for storing my craft books.
I just have my sewing machine and a box of my most often used bits and bobs on the table, which we brought in from the lounge room. My light box and Featherweight sewing machine are beside the table. I’m even putting everything away when I’m finished. Shock. Horror.
When I was sewing my quilt top the other week, I set up my ironing board at right angles to the table. Why, oh why haven’t I done this before? Oh yes, because it wouldn’t fit where my table was in the lounge room. It made pressing all the little blocks so easy.
The only downside I have found is that I’m always working in my shadow, so I have now been out and bought a little fluorescent desk lamp. Not terribly pretty, but I was more interested in function. It has made the world of difference.
Another thing I have done is stored all my rulers together. I’ve often seen racks made of timber to stand up rulers, so I thought outside the square and tried a letter rack from the discount store and a cute Swedish serviette holder from the white elephant stall. Perfect, although a bit messy. I now have all my rulers together and out of the way on a shelf in a cupboard. You can see a spare letter holder at the right of the photo. I’ve even used my little table top ironing board for the first time.
Yes, I still have stuff stashed all over the place, but our new house is going to have an office and a sewing room. How times have changed, from when we just had a little desk in the corner of the spare room. I can’t wait to have a place to keep everything together and to prettify…. just for me.