Monday, June 6, 2011

Organizing my quilt studio - Part 1

Hi everyone:

I was rearranging some of my quilting space this week-end and a friend was asking for some tips and photos. I'm certainly no organization expert - if you saw how I work on designs you'd agree with me - but I do have a fairly efficient quilting studio in a small space, so maybe I do have a few ideas that you might find helpful. As this is a bit of a lengthy post, I'm breaking it into two parts. In this first part, I'll show you my studio and in the next part I'll explain a few of my organization tips - or at least tips on how to cram as much as you can into a small space!

I am fortunate enough to have my own little quilting space in my basement. I would, of course, like to have a little more room, but reality is that this is it. I've taken over about half of our basement as well as my husband's office, so I really can't complain - but I sometimes do! 

My challenge in this space has been the fact that there are only 3 walls, and of these, one has a window and another has a door in it. Although I've tried to come up with different configurations, I think the present one is the most efficient use of the space - at least until I add more toys to it!

I started out with one sewing machine and a cutting table, made from our old kitchen cabinets (thanks to hubby, Gary) and have now expanded to a long-arm machine and frame, two sewing machines, an AccuQuilt cutter and dies and the original cutting table. It all fits into the original space, so how'd I do it? 
Note: I no longer have my B-Line mid-arm machine as I sold it and have upgrade to a Handi Quilter Infinity as of December 2015.

Well... first we had to renovate the entire kitchen so that I could use some of the old cabinets to make my cutting table. Okay, so we were going to renovate anyway, but my husband did make my cutting table from some of the old cabinets. I store some of my stash in the cutting table and some in the wall cabinets, also courtesy of our old kitchen. The rest of my fabric, as well as kits, is stored in our sauna. Okay, I know what you're thinking, but actually it was Gary's idea as we don't often use the sauna, and it works very well as a fabric repository. I have my fat quarters in a plastic cart and the rest is in labelled boxes and bags. While it could be organized a little better, I can find what I need and know what is there. I freed up additional space by getting rid of some furniture and rearranging the rest. I recently realizing that I need a few more appropriately-size storage containers to handle some of my tools and WIP's, but things aren't too bad. 

Here's a few photos of my current quilting space. 
Rolling cutting table with laminate top,
rulers hung on side and fabric storage

Sewing machines and wall cabinets for fabric and tools

B-Line 18 machine and frame at 10' set up

Overall view of studio

View from back of frame
So there you have it. This is where the magic happens - or where I get an idea, start a project, get interrupted, leave the project, well, you know how it goes! 

In the next post, I'll examine some of the areas in my studio and give you my organization tips.

Do you have a special quilting space in your home? I'd love to hear about it and see your photos.

1 comment:

liz said...

Thanks so much for sharing your space and ideas. I'm off to read part 2 of your post. I'm curious what the height of your cutting table is - love it!