Sewing: A mess, is a mess, is a mess!
If I came to your personal sewing space at your house, what would I see? – Everything neat and tidy and put away? Or – more like a shambled mess where you can’t find anything and really wish you hadn’t invited me in in the first place. The space you have to sew in is just as important as what you are sewing.
Have you ever caught yourself saying “ I don’t feel like cleaning this up now, I’ll do it tomorrow”. Then life happens and by the time you can get back to it, it seems like the mess has multiplied and you just can’t be bothered. So you fold it all up and add it to the “projects to do” shelf and walk away.
Leaving your projects out is more than a luxury … it is the way to SANITY. Being able to close the door or put up a privacy screen is a MUST. The amount of space you have isn’t as important; organizing the space is the key. make privacy screens to your specifications at the studio, btw, and they look great anywhere). A few specific items can give you a place for everything and keep everything in its’ place. The ultimate yet most unrealistic thing to do is, the instant you finish using something, put it back where it belongs. Here a few things you can do to make that easier than it sounds.
Hang a coffee mug rack on the wall of your sewing area, or use coat hooks, to hold scissors, measuring tape, spools of stay tapes and wonder tape, pretty well anything you will use that can hang. If it has small enough spindles, hang your spools of thread and bobbin cases there too. Even machine needle packages can be hung from a ribbon attached to the case.
Use a chest of drawers or a cupboard of some sort under that hanger for storing fabric, notions, interfacing, pressing needs, etc. The surface of this can be used to support a cutting board and pressing mat (like the kind used and sold at the studio) that can remain there all the time. A cork board affixed to the wall above the pressing/cutting surface is ideal for pinning guide sheets, small pattern pieces, incentive pictures, to keep them close and useable yet out of the way.
Place your sewing machine very close to the above unit, on a table big enough for your machine, to save steps. Have a wall lamp affixed above the machine for maximum illumination. While you are at it, clamp a hand-made scrap bag (made by you at your perfect little sewing station, of course) or tape a paper bag to the table for catching threads and scraps and keep a small magnet stuck to your machine for picking up dropped pins off the floor. Im sure most of us know how frustrating and time consuming that little exercise can be.
Your space need not be big or in a separate room. It just needs the love and attention you plan to give your pattern to turn the fabric into a masterpiece , all with a smile on your face and satisfaction in your heart.
I’m pretty sure there are more time and space saving tips out there. Do you have any? Would you be willing to share them with us? Let’s chat!