Sewing Room

Still Getting Organized

Remember how I was going to leave my fabric container solution until summer? Yeah, that didn’t happen – I got spring cleaning fever and just had to fix that mess.

It started with the my cable management system, surprisingly. Under my desk, I have lots of power cables going into the power bar (printer, monitor, tablet charge dock, sewing machine, iron, and table lamp). It worked, but it was a bit of a bear. I have a couple of power bars that I’m no longer using at work, so I brought one home to use. Before you ask, they are not power bars from work – they are power bars that I bought myself and took to work because I needed power bars in my previous role and our department had no extra budget at the time. I just brought my possessions back home.

My first step was to figure out my cabling. I divided my assets into low-draw power and high-draw power. The printer, the lamp, and the tablet charger are all low draw (or, in the case of the printer, turned off 95% of the time), so they can be on the same power bar with a large-draw device. The monitor, sewing machine, and iron are high-draw devices. The monitor is actually more mid-draw as it’s an energy efficient model, but the sewing machine and the iron definitely pull energy. Looking at my room, I realized that there is a second outlet in the room that I could be making use of, but it was not wired up. I asked husband to install the outlet for me and help me put the cover on the ceiling light – ten minute job max with all the precautionary steps taken. I love how he helps me to make our lives more comfortable. Sometimes. Sometimes it makes my life harder … as you’ll see. But harder for the best, always!

Crawling around on the floor, re-cabling, made me cringe. So many dust bunnies!!! Since I currently have an unfinished floor in the sewing room, the rough floor catches the dust and fabric lint. When I sweep, I get a lot of it, but *evidently* the floor snags some and it gets quite yucky. Combine that with the cat and dog fluff and the dust bunnies abound! Out came Mr. MiracleMate (the vacuum cleaner) and away ran the dust bunnies. The difference between sweeping and vacuuming (for me, at least) is that objects don’t get moved when I sweep. I know – I’m a lazy housekeeper. I just don’t see the point of moving things you don’t normally get behind if you’re only pushing dirt. I will get down on my hands and knees to sweep under – just not behind. Vacuuming and mopping justify furniture wrestling for me. And now we see why the bins got re-organized.

I pulled out everything movable and vacuumed. Since I’m now putting things back, I might as well organize the fabric. In addition to this, I inherited a bucket of yarn. I used this opportunity to merge the yarn I was keeping with the yarn I had just gained into a single yarn tub. I now have two tubs for fabric to sort. 😛 This is so very dangerous – now I have more storage room to buy more fabric! All my very future fabric projects (mostly Tula Pink or Craftsy-purchased fabric) and backing fabric went into the bottom bin. All the bits of fabric (fat quarters, scraps, a few yards of fabric not dedicated to a future cause) went into the top bin for easy access any time I need for little projects. The small bins are broken into two sections – denims in one, batting and flannel (for backing baby quilts) in the other. The book boxes were put back on the opposite wall, some extra things placed on top, and everything fits in a single row now!

Whoo hoo, tidying!

During my cleaning adventures, I came across a couple of old quilted pillow shams for an old commercial quilt that had quite literally been worn into pieces. I decided to re-purpose them into stash hiders. While this pile of boxes and totes is organized, it is in no way neat. I took the shams and covered two of the flat areas. This has the added bonus of acting as extra “table” space for spreading out blocks for planning or pressing. Once the ironing board goes up, the area looks very tidy (from most angles).

Finally, I cleaned up my rolling cabinet area beside the cutting table. You may remember the mess from past posts. It’s always been a leaning pile of backing fabric, projects, rules, and extras. Since I pulled apart Mess Mountain to sort the backing fabric into the storage bins, I decided to clean this up as well. You may notice a small tub is still sitting there – this is a very old quilt that my Auntie El made. It’s in very rough shape. I did intend to pull it apart this winter and revitalize it, but I didn’t have the necessary fabric or time to do that. Since it’s the same size and shape as the cabinet, I just left it there with another pillow sham to cover it for neatness sake. All my big rulers are laid out on top for accessible use (ruler organization is definitely a summer project) and the current project pieces sit out on that. Currently, the Grandma quilt … *groan* … the next blog will have FUN things to say about that!

I was supposed to be finished at this point and for 20 glorious minutes, I thought I was … until the wonderful husband decided that today was the best day to buy and install the closet organizer for our bedroom. I’ve been asking for that organizer for a couple of years now, so I should be happy/thankful … except that I have my dressers in the closet right now, so I had to pull everything out and re-organize the bedroom. This displaced a very old cabinet that belonged to my great grandfather. Since the sewing room is the only mostly finished space (well, not only – but the other two bedrooms are in use and have no additional space), it had to move in here. I still had a little bit of organizing energy, I decided to get on it immediately and finish it up.

I pulled apart the book box corner and slid the cabinet into that area. The yarn box no longer fits, but I had an extra space that I was using to store my sewing machine cover, so I just slid it in there. The book boxes are now under the window and the small bins just barely fit between the cabinet and the storage tubs. Whoo hoo! The second pillow sham went on top of the cabinet to protect the wood from the sun and wear&tear. Finally, some of my fabric collections (including the flannel) and some extra thread storage containers went into the cabinet for quick and easy access. There are a couple of personal items from our bedroom that have nowhere else to go still living in the cabinet, but I’m not worrying about them just now. When the Victorian cupboard comes upstairs this summer, I’ll be reorganizing again, so I’ll figure out the cabinet things when that happens. I’m also planning on making drapes for the window to protect my sewing projects from the sunshine, but at this time of year, I’ll take all the sun I can get!

When everything was said and done, I was happy with the result. The sewing room is much more accessible than it was before I started and it’s giving me ideas for Organization Phase 2 this summer. I’m also super stoked about the pressing station. I didn’t realize having the extra space behind the ironing table would be so useful! I someday intend to have an actual cutting and pressing table, but for now, having this is amazing!

~M

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