Monday, April 08, 2013

my studio

Today I'm going to give you a little tour of my studio....also known as my basement. We have been having lots of house showings, so we have to keep things pretty clean. It's not fun, but we are ALL getting good at cleaning. My kids included!
My craft area is not exempt from the constant cleaning. I took these photos today without tidying! It has never been cleaner...or larger, for that matter. My husband may or may not be giving me grief for the sprawl that is happening... :)  Oh! I should mention the tile floor. It's where I baste all my quilts. It's handy to have a built-in grid on the floor. It allows me to line up quilt fronts and pieced backs easily. Almost effortlessly!
Over spring break I spent some time folding my stash neatly. It was a great time to take stock of what I had and organize it. The colored bins on the top shelf are full of scraps. (The pattern for the boxes can be found in Sunday Morning Quilts.) There is plenty of depth on the shelves for books AND fabric. Sweet! I love dual function.
It was no surprise that pink and aqua are nearly tied for the tallest stacks. I have a lot of pink and aqua in my world, and my fabric stash is no exception! Look at that pitiful stack in the middle...I'm not sure if you can tell-it's purple and brown combined.
Lots of light fabrics...I could make another low volume quilt or two. The red is under control only because I use it ALL. the. Time. Not much orange, either, because I keep using it faster than I can stash it.
These stacks aren't allowed to mingle. I've got Sherbet Pips, and Ruby on the right. Chicopee and Flea Market Fancy in the middle. Batiks and a few solids on the left. (Yes! I have batiks!)
These are fabric pulls that I've done in the past and just can't break up. SOMEday I will have time to get to these.
I've been sewing on a 6' banquet table. It's not the prettiest, but it is so nice to have both machines set up all the time. I've been using both machines with regularity. Someday I'll have to do a run down on the strengths of each machine. I think that could be an entire post.
Here's my little computer station, complete with a pillow on the wall. (What? You don't store pillows on the wall at your house???)
Here's my cutting station, ironing stuff (which travels all over the room, as needed) and then my buffet. I've NEVER had the top cleaned off. It's hard to not pile crap on there. I'm still loving my thread storage! I bought the shelf at a thrift store a few years ago. It's quite handy and quite full! I love having every color of thread on hand. And notice the quilt overflow under the table. I don't quite know where else to stash quilts anymore. (The problems I have...I know....)

Here's where it gets embarrassing....
.....my closet. Ugh. I think I need to take a closet cleaning course. I can get organized to a point and this is the rest of the story. It makes me cringe. But then again, it's a closet, right? There is a lot of fabric stashed in there...pre-cuts, flat folds, stacks for charity quilts, and other misc stacks. Batting scraps, walnut shells, interfacing, vintage fabric, WIP's...what have you!

And my one last dirty little secret....
....my washtub. I've been considering blogging about this for a year or more. Maybe if I "out" myself, I can get working on it? :) I've completely filled it with zip loc bags full of scraps, each one representing a project. Last count I had 28 bags of goodies in there. I'm afraid I may have hit the point of no return in my scrap hoarding. Or else I can look at it as unlimited potential? Yeah, I think I'll go with the potential thing......

I hope you enjoyed the tour of my studio in it's current state. I'd love to hear what you think. (Please be gentle.) :)

I've dug back in my archives to show you what it used to look like.... Nov 2007. Jan 2008. July 2009. August 2011. Sept 2011. Jan 2012April 2012. Here's how it looked when I first moved downstairs last fall. It's good to see progress!

Happy Monday to you!

94 comments:

Alisa said...

I think it looks fabulous! Looks like you have room to quilt with a friend if you want - nice. I think everyone has closets that don't look to good. Not everything in life can be categorized and put away perfectly! Enjoy it and hope your house sells soon. It's not easy to keep it looking pretty all the time.

Natalie, the Chickenblogger said...

You "cringe?"
Let me help you put it in perspective: I aspire to achieve the level of loveliness in your closet!

Stephanie said...

it looks fantastic! We don't have basements in Australia so we only get to see them in movies and they are usually dark and scary lol. I am totally in love with yours, it looks like it came straight out of a magazine :)

Nisa-mom said...

my gosh!! lucky lady, so you claimed a whole basement room for yourself ? lucky..lucky..lucky :D Too bad, my room just a tinny room, almost cramp with fabrics - im afraid my hubby will get heart attack when he see my fabrics LOL

Tiffany said...

I love it! At first glance it reminded me a salon. It looks roomy. :) My sewing station is the corner of my living room right now. All my fabric fits in a couple of tubs and drawers that I store on top of the old beat up round table I sew on. :) Of course, I can't complain because I still get to leave my sewing machine set up at all times and I can even watch my kids play while I work (if I have to).

~ Jackie said...

Yep I think you are being too hard on yourself. It's a CLOSET!! It looks pretty good if you ask me. I'm sure there are a lot of crafters, sewists, quilters, that would love their closet to be as tidy as your is. My closet and fabric storage is pretty tidy and organized...if I could just FIND my sewing table...or cutting table... or.....

Jenny said...

It looks AMAZING! My sewing room has never been as clean and tidy as yours is. You've inspired me to start sorting and organzing!

Annie said...

I love it, and my wardrobe full of stuff looks worse...believe me! I hope your new house will have a space just as good for you.

Jenny said...

Wow, it looks awesome! All the space is amazing, and so tidy! Boy, if you ever decide to destash those scrap bags, I hope I see it in time to get in on that action.

Rachel said...

Oh my goodness! LOVE the peek into your world!I am jealous of your tile grid! Fabric looks AMAZING!I never thought to showcase a pillow on a wall before, I will definitely be stealing that idea! Closets have doors for a reason, athough your closet looks better than mine ever has or will. LOL. I can help you out with that quilt stack, just pop them in the mail :-)If I could come close to just organizing my scraps like you do I would quit sending them to Suzanne, LOL.I think you have an amazing space!

Karen - Quilts...etc. said...

scrap hoarding is good - think of all the quilts you can make - love the studio/basement - envy you your space.

Becca-Lou Creates said...

Fabulous craft room, very jealous. I now have my craft space but its just a corner of the office, but hey it's better than no space. Need to get it tidy though.

jennifer richmond said...

you-are-so-lucky!!! wow! beautiful space. i'm so jealous-i sew on the kitchen table and have fabric, sewing machines, boxes full of trims, etc. "hidden" all over the house.....i'm sure if i ever sorted my fabric (ahem...) my pink and aqua stacks would be the tallest too! love your blog!

Teressa P. said...

I'm so jealous of all the room you have. We have an extra room but it's dedicated to computer, tv, video games and treadmill. I wish it was my sewing room and all nice an pretty like yours. As for your washbucket stash, you could always do a giveaway ;) hint, hint :)

Happy Cottage Quilter said...

I think your "studio" looks fabulous!! Even your closet :-) I too have zippy bags, but mine are full of to do projects. Fabric and patterns all waiting, and waiting, and waiting!! I think I better stop buying new fabric and start working on the ones I already have in my dreams. Let's hear about the machines.

Pétra said...

I am so glad I'm not the only one with bags of scraps from different quilts! If you figure out what to do with them let me know. I've been thinking minis but then what?!
Your studio looks amazing be proud!

Laura C @ littleandlots said...

Thank you for sharing your space with us! I have been quilting in small rental apartment spaces for a couplea-few years now, and we are going to be house shopping this coming fall-winter. A sewing space is on my must-have list, and it is very useful to me to see how an experienced, prolific quilter organizes her workspace.

Also? Since I bought your book last year, I also have plastic Ziploc bags filled with putative scrap projects. Probably not 28 of them, but a lot of them. I sort like a maniac now. :)

Caroline said...

I just cried at all of the fabric goodness. My place is too small for me to have a dedicated spot. My husband is also in school so every spare cent goes to clothing kids, not quilting. I make myself happy with the 1 or 2 charm packs I get at Christmas every year (and somehow that keeps me in projects... hm...). I'm always so grateful when I get another pillow order because it means I get to go shopping! So almost every bit of stash I've acquired from before we got married is gone and I'm down to two drawers of MY fabric. So yours looks deliciously perfect!

Grandma said...

I love it all, especially the messy part, because it makes me feel more normal! You must be doing something right as you are making so many beautiful interesting quilts. I love following your blog because everything you do is so interesting, and because you just seem so REAL!

cat and vee xoxo said...

I have loved taking your tour, thanks so much! Gorgeous folded stacks on your shelves, and thanks for sharing your cupboard and washtub too - we definitely all that that equivalent in our sewing spaces!

My sewing space triples as the kids' playroom and my husband's music room (baby grand piano and organ) - after the kitchen, it's by far the most-used room in the house - so I'm always feeling the pressure to keep it vaguely tidy. Happily, I rarely bow to that pressure!

Thanks so much - good luck with selling your house too. Cat.

Marjorie's Busy Corner said...

Trade ya??????? lol. I love your space...is one machine a Husqvarna? I couldn't really see names.

Char said...

Your space is wonderful! So organized, mine is only organized to me. Anyone else would be overwhelmed I'm sure. As for scraps, my scraps have scraps I'm now using empty pretzel containers because I've run out of room in the scrap bins!

brownj6610 said...

Wow...I can't even open the door to my closet to know what's in it. Lucky you. I'm jealous.

tahoe34 said...

Are you kidding me??? I have all of my fabrics neatly stored in see thru bins in my garage. Your stacks make me look like a slob!!!
Great job Amanda Jean, and don't beat yourself up over that closet. Your room looks great!!!

Sew Pink said...

Wow, what an awesome space. I'm sure we'd all love something half as organised!

The Calico Cat said...

Love the neatly folded stacks - I just can't do it...

Love the scrappy washtub - I have 2 scrap bags, one to keep & one for sharing. (I have a couple random scrap bins too - one for solids...)

Kathy @ Kwilty Pleasures said...

I love seeing other quilter's sewing spaces. Thanks for sharing! Love the tub. I have one..although it is in my garden!

natalie christensen said...

Looks great!! I think the wash tub is my favorite. I love to use scraps and love your Sunday morning quilt book to help me use them up.

✾Jamie Lee Cooley✾ said...

Wow! I never thought of using tilled to Line up the backing but that's genius! When you move you could get an old wooden table and have your husband cut out a space for your machine so you could have a huge flat quilting area. Then you'd have everything! I also have a washtub with a tn of Ziploc bags in it, but they are all various wips I started and never finished...much more shameful;)

sewpaintit.blogspot.com.au said...

I love your space! So organised and you have lots of room. I wish I had more space but I do at least have a sewing area with my machine out all the time. I woudl love to see a close up of the pillow on the shelf - it looks lovely.

Shar said...

I love your space. Mine keeps changing. I think I'm going to have to use some of your ideas.

Ann Ferguson said...

Why and how is it so neat!? I love it!

Jeneta said...

Oh I wish we had basements in Australia - it can almost give you another whole house! I LOVE your closet and wash tub (because that's pretty much what my space looks like all the time!). I particularly love your zip lock bags - you are so ornagised! There's nothing worse than forgetting that fantastic idea you had but couldn't possibly start until the other 59 are at least under way. I'm impressed that your kids are getting good at cleaning. Perhaps I should suggest moving to my family?

Carmen said...

I also love seeing other people's creative spaces! I always get inspired... and now I'm inspired to clean my sewing room!

Donna said...

I wish my room looked so neat and tidy...and organized!

jenni said...

I love that you shared. I know it is hard, but is is very inspiring to see how others organize their stuff. It looks so clean and neat, And the amount of fabric makes me feel better (haha) Thanks!

Deborah said...

Wow - so much fabric!! Love the way it is all organised, looks like you have enough projects to keep you going for a lifetime :-)

ann said...

What fun to visit the inner sanctum. Your organization is commendable even if it a forced fit. I know you've shown your fabric scrap baskets before but seeing them again may, just may, have inspired me. Thx for the tour

Cheryl Arkison said...

That room looks so different all in white!
Did you see the comments on my blog? People are already asking for another scrap quilt book...

Nicole Hannah said...

When your house sells you should do a massive giveaway - all the ziplocs in the washtub! That way you won't have to pack them 8), and you'll be starting fresh new projects in your fresh new house (just like not bringing your old broom with you, buying a new one instead).

Jenny said...

Wow! Your space looks great! My studio is right in the middle of our main living space. Our main floor is an open plan living room/eat-in kitchen and my sewing desk is backed to the kitchen bar. My sewing supplies and tons of fabric are hidden in a large vintage trunk that sits in our living room.

Jude Jones said...

I would love to hear about your machines!!! Whenever you have time....make it dicey, I really need the scoop! Love your blog and I have your book and I love it!

ZeedleBeez said...

I love your studio! I love everything about it! I could stare at your neatly folded fabric piles all day. Thank you fr sharing your work space. No wonder you produce such gorgeous things!

Moje Małe Rękodzieło said...

I envy you, you have so much space for your passion... I love every littest thing in your studio..! Can I move in? I can even sleep on the floor ;-)

Marit said...

Thank you for inviting us to your studio! It is a welcoming space that holds promise of great quilts to be. Love to know that you have 28 bags of scrap goodies. I think those are well deserved treats for future play. IMHO you have worked (hard) to achieve / produce them.
; )

Little Island Quilting said...

Pssssst, I have some batiks too ;-)

Nailaa said...

I really like that you have a space :) and I really love the view of your fabric ^ ^
I will be in May to organize my corner-so finally my - but unfortunately it will be much more modest

greetings from Poland :)

La Pecora Nera said...

I love your craft room!!!!
Hugs, Emanuela

Anthony and Sharon said...

Jealous.
I think next February you could have 28 days of giveaways and give one of those baggies away each day. You could call the bin your "Purging and Surging of blog-readers because tons of people will follow me if I give these away" bin. :) Kidding (but serious and hopeful just a wee bit)

Also, it's good to know that when I come to watch you and get tips on how in the world you quilt so quickly (silently and without asking for snacks, promise) that there is plenty of room for me to observe.

junacreationsuk.blogspot.co.uk said...

OK, I'm officially jealous. What a fantastic room. Your closet it like the top of where I do my quilting. I live in a studio flat (your basement is probably bigger), so I live, sleep and quilt all in the one room... and the worse thing is I look at it and think it's not too bad, well now I'm either going to have to rethink that thought or I'm going to pack my bags and move into your basement :o)

New Salem Homestead said...

I recently read that instead of calling it stash it is now called your resource center. Therefore, you could say that you have 28 bags of "potential" in your "resource center". Sounds fancy, right?

C. Jaeger said...

I LoVe it! Great space! I also have a wash tub full of fabric scraps...full, as in overflowing.

Sheilaf said...

Love all the space you have. No basements here in Florida, sadly. I have a 6ft table like you, but my husband added a piece of varnished marine plywood onto it for me. It has made it soo much more stable, thought you might like to know! Keep up the lovely quilts.

Lynn said...

Thanks for taking us on a tour. Thank goodness for ziploc bags. I have a bin of them too, scraps from projects that one day will be new quilts. One day ...

Jessica Christensen said...

It looks fantastic. My stuff is still in boxes and large bins, and I've been here a year and a half. Even your closet looks good to me. Nothing like a house on the market to make us keep things nice. ;)

Chase said...

So nice and organized! The tile floor is so nice! We have laminated floor here and it really helped me when I work on basting. I also have your sewing table. Mine is 6 feet long and shared with my daughter. We each claim one side of the table, but I really wish it is all mine~

Nana-Bob said...

your studio is lovely. someday I aspire to have one of my own. :) I have a question about your thread holder. What is it? Is it a printing draw? They used to keep lead pieces int hem? Just curious because I have one and was thinking of converting it to hold thread. :)
thanks for sharing your space. :)

marie bartels said...

Never in my life I have seen a clean sewingroom. Do you really work here?

Thimbleanna said...

Wow CrazyMom -- it's looking awesome. How will you ever be able to leave it? My whole sewing room (except for the shelves of folded fabric) looks like your closet. I just can't seem to organize the chaos! I love your pretty stacks of folded fabrics!

Nana said...

Please do a blog post about your sewing machines. I am in the market for a new one and love to hear strengths/weaknesses of different ones.

a maidenhair fern said...

I think you're doing good. Once in a while I give my "not so desirable scraps" to a quilter friend who's out of a job. She's so thrilled with them. My great grandmother used to say about clothing, "if you haven't used it in a year, it's not yours". It's amazing the weight that is lifted when I give her my scraps, especially if I can use it for her birthday present :) (disclaimer: there are some lines of fabric I would never give away, even the scraps)

anotheryarn said...

Thanks for the peek. At least your washtub is cuter than my 18 gallon plastic storage tub of scraps.

a maidenhair fern said...

As for your closet, why don't you get a dozen containers all the same, and put your stuff in them. Label the outside with the several things that ls in there. As long as it's labeled, it's neat! Add in a few of your cute containers in there. My new favorite container are these multi-purpose bins used for files. There are different sizes. I use them in my kitchen for beans or pastas or junk. Just label the side.

http://www.containerstore.com/shop?productId=10022942&N=&Nao=120&Ns=p_sort_default%7C0&Ntt=file

MellieWo said...

Looks pretty awesome to me! I cuurently work on the dinner table with scraps in one plastic container and two shoe boxes. I know it's hard to keep things straight for viewings. Hope organization keeps your fantastic projects going!!

apple slice said...

I had a friend stay recently and was showing her all my fabric. The visit spurred a total re-org of all the fabric by color. Breaking up fabric pulls and all. I think it will free me somehow. Now it's all in bins in the closet. I've started a new project and am finishing two scrappy quilts. Couldn't be happier! Love your space. You are absolutely amazing. I wish you all the best in your coming move!

Lisa said...

Beautiful! H how I wish!

Sarah said...

I am so jealous! I can't believe how clean and organized everything is, including the closet! If anything looked halfway that good in my sewing room I'd be ecstatic.

Annemieke said...

Always nice to see someone else's working space. The pictures of your open closet with the piles of fabric are very nice. Feels good to know where you can find your things when you need them right?I think you have a very nice and spacious sewing-room.
Groetjes
Annemieke

The Bumble Girl said...

What an amazing space! I love how you are able to use the floor :) I hope to have a space like this some day too!
I just ordered your book, I am really looking forward to it!
Thank you!

Kimberly said...

I have craft room envy! Oh, I would love to have a room like this. It's big and has everything you need. I'm new to quilting, live in a smallish apartment, so I quilt out of my office. This means setting up and breaking down on a daily basis. Ugh!

Kimberly,
http://www.birdiegirlquilts.com/

Franziska said...

wow! So much space. And it looks wonderful.

VeeV said...

Great room.... love the space.....the grid on the floor is perfect!!!
i'm a bit green........
xox
eva

Suzanne said...

Thank you SOOOOOOO much for the photos and for sharing the nooks and crannies of your space. I'm inspired and encouraged. I want to make my space look pretty and I gleaned a few ideas from yours. By the way, I don't have a washtub but I do have a propensity to acquire baggies of leftovers from projects. :-)

Cheerful Homemaker said...

What a great room! I wonder what potential buyers think when they see it?

Mama Pea said...

Great room. Wish I was that organized and that I could whittle down my stash to that. I need to do that. Your "messy" closet is far cleaner than any area in my space! In my defense, my space is only about 1/8 of yours. :-) Lovely, Amanda Jean!

brianne said...

your sewing studio is wonderful!!

Debbie Leschisin said...

Thanks for sharing your pictures of your quilting space. It looks great. Your fabrics look beautiful in those nicely folded stacks.

Jacqueline said...

I loved touring your studio!

I would love a how-to on getting fabric neatly folded like that! Mine is always a mess as I find it hard to fold and stack neatly like that when the pieces are different sizes...

LOL @ pillow on wall! hahaha, loved it!

themissymom said...

You make me smile. You and your "dirty, little secrets".
I think, sometimes, if we all just posted pictures of what our sewing and craft areas REALLY look like, we could all just relax.
I love the clean, organized and spacious look! I also love when mine is something close to that.
*sigh, but in reality, it rarely is! Sewing and creating is just messy business. I have stacks of books and projects and bits of stuff everywhere.
My basement shop is created from cast off shelving and furniture from the rest of the house, so nothing matches, it is old and tattered. My favorite sewing table is an old, solid wood door my children have scribbled all over...but it never vibrates when I sew!
The basement walls are unfinished and ugly from previous water damage. The ceiling beams are open and webs love to grow up there.
But at the end of the day, it is still my haven and I am fortunate to have it. I am also fortunate to have a husband who allows me the entire basement for my stuff!!!!

Your sewing area is LOVELY!!!!

Keep calm and sew on!

Cynthia said...

Your scraps have scraps! Live it. Sounds like my stash.

Cynthia said...

Love your space. I'm currently sharing one of our three bedrooms with my daughter. My sewing has 2/3 of the space! Poor girl and the baby will move in there too in a few months.

If only I could sew regularly I might be able to whittle down the piles and projects. But then there would be something new to create.

Thanks for sharing. The order and closet are both inspiring.

Mo Morren said...

Love your 'atelier'. I hope you do a post on your two machines, been looking for one with more space to roll up quilt to the right of the needle. Can hardly wait for that blog-post.
Mo

Rose E. Glasses said...

Inspiring. I loved the ideas you gave, with so little effort. Like, using the tile floor for measuring and squaring large fabrics. I liked the beauty of your color rainbow baskets on the top shelves for scraps. Brilliant, using a ribbon to hold together pre-sorted fabric groupings.

I have huge drawers that my little sorted to color "precious" pouches reside. I recently trashed my "precious" pouches to find 16 inch long strips to make that addictive Bonnie Hunter Scrappy Trip Around the World.

The creativity maintaining organization is hard.

Mary on Lake Pulaski said...

What an awesome studio! The one thing I wish I could adapt - I have a wash tub in the garage and would love to keep my scraps in there, but no room in here for it.

Carie said...

Oh envy envy! My sewing room has mostly turned into a nursery thanks to the arrival of a very sweet baby Elma; she's currently sharing with the stash and my desk and machine have taken up residence in H's studio where they are the current repository for everything.

Lisa Lisa said...

Oh my goodness! I love your studio! You have SO much room!

Country Maison (Eva) said...

It looks like heaven to me ! I love your fabric stash !
My stash is poor and so I struggle to choose colours for patchwork. But thanks to you and your tutorials I'm learning to quilt and I have just finished my first project, a little pad for my daughter's mini Ikea chair. . .

I love your cushion too !
xEva

Selfsewn said...

Your closet looks fine..your wash tub on the other hand!!
I just have one wip in plastic, though I have 5 in different stages!

Brenda Trojcak said...

I really like your sewing space and think you are very organized. You are right, it's a closet, close the door!

Glynis said...

Amanda Jean, look at you go!! Looks mind-blowingly inspiring and free!! Well done! You've come a long way baby!! Lots of progressions! Thanks for sharing and being so lovably real! Your candor is completely endearing and relateable!!
Some delightful curiosities to me - you tie with a ribbon your pulls! I love that!!
I too love Batik's - Penny actually gave me all her Batik scraps one time, I still drool over some of them - I know, use your scraps! Gonna!! I thought Batiks must have been bad or had some modern quilter hex on them, but I love 'em!! Outta get some to go with the scraps.
And lastly - I knew about your Juki. Who's that cute red and white thing sittin' to Juki's left? I'm so struggling to decide if I look for a "preowned" Bernina Aurora 440QE or if I hop on down to the Juki shop and have a look at their mechanicals and computerized. Have had a simple mechanical Pfaff for 23 years and would love something either with the wider throat of the Juki or the creative options of the Bernina. My Pfaff dealer would have me go with another Pfaff. Thus, my curiosity at your other machine.
Sorry for the long comment, but wanted to share with you. Think about you so often and the fun of meeting you in Fort Collins! You always amaze and inspire me in fresh new ways! Have a great week!!
Oh, and I actually finished a couple of things but since I'm not a blogger cannot post tomorrow. Just thought you'd be proud!!
Glynis

Sarah said...

I love your sewing basement! You could have a really good quilt party down there. I have a sewing room, but it is the smallest room in the house (well not quite the smallest) but its all mine

Smultronbo said...

Thanks for the big tour. It looks awesome and I wish I had that kind of space at my hands. Currently residing in a lot smaller room. But eventually I'll get a bigger one. (have my eyes on it but its occupied atm. :P ) Take care and have a great weekend.

Katy said...

The studio is awesome! My current work space is also my kids' toy room. Not ideal, but it (mostly) keeps me off the kitchen table!

tracygracedesigns.com said...

Hi

Love the tour!

I think the only comfort you may have is that You Are Not Alone!

I too am a bit of a magpie and don't throw anything away.

If I spent the same amount of time actually using all my stuff as I do organising it then I would be overflowing with quilts!

Would love to see a tutorial from you showing how you produce the fabulous pictures of your gorgeous creations.

Love your blog.....

Tracy