Is a lack of space cramping your creative style? You can still make awesome stuff without a dedicated sewing room! This creative space, including a corner sewing table, takes up just 30 square feet!
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In my dream home, I have my very own office/studio, and it’s AMAZING…you ready for it?? It’s about 150 square feet, painted a cool gray with gorgeous white trim and vaulted ceilings. There are built in bookshelves everywhere, huge windows overlooking my gorgeous green yard and like 4 huge wide tables for cutting out fabric and patterns and collecting miscellaneous crafty crap.
*Sigh* But back here on planet earth, I live in a 2300 sq ft house with 8 children. Finding space for my creative hobbies isn’t always the biggest priority so I’ve had to figure out the best way to make do for the past few years. Having a dedicated space to do what you love is important; even if it’s just a tiny corner of a dining room table. So here’s a peek into my creative corner!
My sewing space currently resides in a shadowy corner of my family room in the basement. This room also functions as a homeschool room, play room and media room…so it is FULL. One of these days I’ll organize and decorate the whole thing so I can show it all to you. We’ve got 2 full bookcases, 2 long Ikea tables, 6 chairs, a gigantic sectional, a school supply/toy closet and fabric closet. It’s a hot mess but it allows me to be close to the little kids while I sew which ensures that I get a lot more creating done than if it was all in a separate room!
When designing this space, I knew I wanted a corner sewing table for my machines and ironing board so that I can stay seated and make a sewing project from start to finish (I’m very lazy). One of these days I think I’ll get a comfy swivel desk chair so that it’s even easier to move around! I’ve got my regular sewing machine on the left which is one of the best sewing machines I’ve ever used! (it’s also an embroidery machine) and my serger on the right. Behind the machines I installed two metal rods to hang little white storage buckets. These hold everything from seam rippers to scissors to markers and tape measures. They’re really roomy and are strong enough to hold several pairs of heavy scissors! The little clear box to the right of my serger holds all my bias tape and a few odds and ends.
I use the drawers on the right to hold just about everything else I could ever need while sewing: the top drawer holds pins, tape, chalk, etc. The others store ribbon, elastic, zippers, buckles, snaps…you name it! The big wide drawers on the left hold my button collection as well as all my really large paper patterns. My favorite way to keep these patterns together is to take a large piece of cardstock, fold it in half and staple two of the open sides together. These fit perfectly into the drawers and keep me from having to fold big patterns more than a couple times to store.
Behind my machines, I chose to hang pretty stuff and magazine cut outs of inspiring clothing designs. While I love the idea of a pegboard to hang all my tools like many sewists use, we’re so tight on space that our “television” is actually a projector screen that pulls down and partially covers this part of the wall. So the stuff I hang on it has to be fairly flat so that it doesn’t damage the screen. It’s worked out pretty well!
In the back corner I have my stash of sewing books and smaller paper patterns inside 3-ring binders. I also keep my big clear rulers here (out of the reach of naughty children who have broken about 3 of them already) and my big cutting mats get stored behind my machines against the wall. My favorite part of my machine table is the power strip! I used Command strips to adhere it to the table and plug everything into this strip. That way, when I want to work, I just have to flip one switch to bring everything to life. And then when I walk away I switch it off so I never forget to turn off the light or a machine or my iron (totally did that for years before this setup).
You can see a bit more crap stashed under the back corner of the table: I’ve got a bag full of cross-stitching supplies under there, padding for my dress form and more (and more and more) patterns.
Under my thread supply, I keep this pretty metal basket full of fabrics in my “queue”. Anything that really inspires me or that I’ve bought for a specific purpose goes here so that it doesn’t get lost to die a sad and lonely death in my fabric closet (under the basement stairs). I love seeing the pretty patterns and dreaming of how I’ll put them to use. Way above the thread rack, I screwed in two hooks (these big ones are from the hardware store and are designed to hold bikes on a garage wall) to store all my rolls of paper: carbon tracing paper, swedish tracing paper, medical paper, rolls of interfacing, fusible web, etc.
Finally along that left part of the corner, I have my mini ironing board and iron, as well as more pretty storage on the wall. I love, LOVE this circle shelf because it’s super cute and gives me a place to keep contraband up high. My kids are pretty good about not getting into my sewing stuff (on penalty of death) but if the littles are being stinkers one day, I’ll stash my pins & needles up here as well as candy (or other sewing treats that are not for children) in that little bowl on the top shelf…what they don’t know won’t hurt them!
And that’s about it! It’s not the fanciest or the most well organized but it works pretty great for me at this stage of life. I often use the kids’ school tables for cutting out patterns…or just the floor. I tend to make a big mess when I sew at night because I can, but it’s nice to have a place to put everything back in order when it’s time to clean up.
Let me know if you have any questions…and I’d love to know if you also have a teeny tiny sewing or crafting space. Let’s hear any other tips out there for being creative without a full room at your disposal!
Here’s another reveal of a cute room in our home. And if you also love sewing, find some great tutorials here!
Table top, skinny drawer unit, wide drawer unit, chair, pendant light, white storage buckets & rods, and white magnet boards – Ikea || Sewing/Embroidery machine – Bernina Artista 180 (bought used on eBay)|| Serger – Brother 1034D || Thread rack, iron – Amazon || Circular shelving unit, clock, gold cup, similar decorative bowl, metal basket & plastic (bias tape) basket, ironing board, gold baskets & mounting rail behind ironing board – Target || Instax camera – Amazon || abstract art on circle shelf – Candy Kirby Designs ||other handmade art – Pen and Paint || snowy barn art – painted by yours truly
Kim CoffinMarch 9, 2017 at 2:43 pm
Your sewing room is perfect! I love the Ikea desk with pull out drawers. I think I will need to get one of those. My pattern storage is getting out of control!
BonnieMarch 9, 2017 at 3:46 pm
Thanks!! Those drawers are my favorite! But I’m still not as organized as I should be…
MelissaMarch 9, 2017 at 5:38 pm
Thanks for sharing. I have very little space so this is helpful to see how others make it happen. Honestly, I am thinking of just getting a shed for work space lol.
BonnieMarch 12, 2017 at 8:17 pm
I was JUST reading an article about she sheds…not a bad idea! haha.
AnneMarch 12, 2017 at 9:27 am
Thank you for the tour of your sewing space! I’ve got a Craft Gossip post scheduled for this evening that features your post: http://sewing.craftgossip.com/?p=92024 –Anne
BonnieMarch 12, 2017 at 8:17 pm
Awesome – thank you Anne!
GurmuletteMarch 12, 2017 at 9:35 am
My sewing corner is in the living room, all my material is in baskets! I have an embroidery machine that is in my bedroom because more room in the living room. But with a large family the place is missing.
BonnieMarch 12, 2017 at 8:16 pm
That’s for sure! But we make it work 🙂
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eimear greaneyMarch 13, 2017 at 2:55 am
love to see the ‘ubquitous’ alex drawers, I have a set too! and great place to put the table top board. I have a small room for the past few years and its great, but ultimately I think if you can get a space where your machine can be always available its a total gamechanger. love those storage ideas – v inspiring
BonnieMarch 13, 2017 at 10:11 pm
Thanks! They’re so great, right? And yes – if I had to pull my machine out, I’d never get any sewing done!!
michelleMarch 13, 2017 at 3:50 pm
I actually found that over the years I sewed more and had more creative ideas in my smallest sewing room that was tucked under the eaves. Miss it.
BonnieMarch 13, 2017 at 10:10 pm
I agree, Michelle! Something about tools being more accessible, I think.
GrandmaMarch 17, 2017 at 11:54 pm
I think your blog is adorable and your space is great. I have a beautiful desk that belongs in a lovely office but it’s in my room in the corner. I have my 55 year machine and serger on the desk and a mat / cutting board also. I live with my daughter’s family so have to keep things neat. I’m 79 and before I moved here I had a fabulous sewing room but it was always a mess. The smaller the space the neater I become. I make doll clothes for 18″ dolls. I had 4 boys and my daughter hates dolls. (She says they’re scary). But I’m having fun!!!
BonnieMarch 19, 2017 at 5:39 pm
It sounds like you have a great space! And you’re right – the smaller space necessitates organization!
Sharon C.August 18, 2017 at 9:59 pm
Amazing! Two questions though…could you show the command strip holding the power strip? I don’t quite understand how you attached the strip, but it sounds like a good idea.
Secondly, what do you use the projector for, and can you show it in use?
Thanks ever so much for sharing your clever ideas!
BonnieAugust 19, 2017 at 8:17 am
Thanks Sharon! So if you go to Target or wherever you can usually find a whole aisle of “Command”-brand sticky products. They’re like strips of thin foam that act as double sided tape and I just stuck those underneath so the power strip wouldn’t slide around. And our projector is essentially our TV! We have it hooked up to a Playstation which means that we can stream Netflix and Amazon video through it, play video games and watch DVDs/Blu-Rays. Hope that helps!
Sharon C.August 20, 2017 at 1:09 am
Thanks, that helps a lot! I’ve used the command strips to hang organizers and pictures, but never thought to use them for the power strip. GENIUS!
Gay. RossAugust 21, 2017 at 2:17 pm
I have a small bedroom for sewing. My problem is storing the material. I have tubs of fabric I accumulated over the years. How do u decide what fabric to keep & what to give away? I have a long list of “gonna do” but I don’t know when it’s going to get done.
BonnieAugust 21, 2017 at 4:15 pm
Oh my – this is totally the hardest part about having limited space for creativity: storing all those pretty fabrics you want to work with! I currently only let myself buy fabric that I already have a project in mind for (like, pattern purchased and everything – not like “ooh, this would make a pretty dress someday!”). But before that I had oodles and oodles and it was so hard for me to part with it. But I finally went through it all and asked myself if each piece inspired me to create. If it was just cute or functional but not inspiring, then I gave it away. (Some of it I actually stored in my garage for a while and ended up a few pieces 🙂 But overall it was a great relief to pare down my supplies to only very inspiring fabrics! Good luck! 🙂
AngelaDecember 16, 2017 at 1:59 pm
I sew in a part of my L-shaped living room in my small 620 sq feet home. We have little storage and no attic so everything has to be carefully stored. I’m a messy sewist too but my main problem is having too many things on the go at once and because I haven’t finished projects it gets very cluttered. My aim now is to get creative with the fabric and materials I have so I use up stuff and to get those UFO’s completed.
BonnieDecember 17, 2017 at 2:35 pm
Wow – I’d love to see how you have your home laid out, Angela! It sure makes us stay on top of projects when we don’t have a lot of space, right?
Jennifer RosenbergJanuary 26, 2018 at 6:00 pm
Hi, I’m also a homeschool mom and we just moved to a new house. The school room doesn’t have any electrical overhead so once it is dark, we have no lighting so I’m looking for the best way to light their desks. I noticed you have a cute set up for yours. Where did you buy the lamp or how did you make it? Thank you!
BonnieJanuary 27, 2018 at 9:16 pm
Hi Jennifer! Lighting has definitely been a challenge in our dark basement. This lamp is from ikea! The shade is just one of many they have that can fit on a bare light bulb attached to a long cord. So I hung the cord on a hook in the ceiling and voila! 😉 good luck!
BrendaJanuary 30, 2018 at 9:56 pm
So enjoyed your post. I’m inspired to work on my space. My question is, did you use bulletin boards to hang your cut out pictures?
BonnieJanuary 31, 2018 at 11:20 am
Thank you Brenda! No, the inspiration boards are metal magnet boards from Ikea. I just use tape to put up my cut outs but I used to use a piece of foamboard before I found these…anything could work!
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Rosemarie IAugust 28, 2020 at 11:28 am
Where did you get the little white storage buckets?
BonnieAugust 28, 2020 at 11:36 am
They’re from Ikea!
Rosemarie InserraAugust 28, 2020 at 12:39 pm
Oh great. Do you recall what they’re called?
BonnieAugust 28, 2020 at 3:06 pm
They’re linked at the end of the post.
Rosemarie InserraAugust 30, 2020 at 8:01 am
Found them! Thanks so much. I totally blew by the sources
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