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Thread: Does your sewing room always stay cluttered?

  1. #1
    Super Member jcrow's Avatar
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    Does your sewing room always stay cluttered?

    Every few months I organize my sewing room and before I know it, it's so disorganized again. Two days ago I started a baby quilt and my room is a mess. I just have sooooo much fabric and gizmos and not enough room to store everything. I quit buying fabric a while back when I realized I was out of room, but it doesn't help me now. I have two long, long tables with a 32"x70" cutting mat and it has fabric and thread and needles on it. I have a lot of my fabric on bookcases and in rubbermaid clear tubs and in my closets. I have sewing machines in my closets. I have lots of things organized, but lots of things are not organized because I don't have room to organize them. I have clear tubs of fabric that are stacked clear to the ceiling!!! Yes, I have a problem. I am a fabraholic. But I quit buying fabric and am only using what I have (which I'll never use even if I live to 110 years old). I have so many quilt magazines that I think I should just throw them away. I haven't looked at them in years and they take up space. I gave away lots of my fabric to gals on this board to downsize and I'm still overwhelmed and cluttered. Does anyone else have this problem? I just bought another bookcase and more clear plastic tubs and filled it all with fabric to help organize my room, but I feel I just have too much or I need a BIGGER ROOM. I don't want to give any of my fabric away, I just want advice. I know there are plenty others that have this problem.
    Last edited by jcrow; 07-23-2013 at 10:40 AM.
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  2. #2
    Senior Member Diannia's Avatar
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    I try to keep my room organized...doesn't always happen though...especially when I'm creating! I do clean it up after every project is completed and I've started either cutting my leftover fabrics into sizes I use or put them in a bag for my girlfriend that saves every scrap she can get her hands on . My room is our formal living room...and it's still not big enough...I'm branching out into our 4th bedroom.
    I am too blessed to be stressed and too anointed to be disappointed!

  3. #3
    Super Member luvstoquilt's Avatar
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    I have the same situation for sure but I still buy. I have mine clean at the moment and am making myself finish what I am working on before I start something new...driving me nuts!!!! I need nothing...well maybe I need a dumpster! I am giving fabric to people that quilt for causes and I am going thru those bins now to see what I have...I am shopping at home before I go to the fabric store. I am sure a local guild would love those magazines...last show around here they were selling old magazines for 25 cents each...at my quilt group we all love the oldies which we share.
    "You must do the thing you think you cannot do"....E. Roosevelt

    Sharon
    Yorkville, IL

  4. #4
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    You aren't alone, believe me. LOL My quilting fabric is organized though and ruler folded and put into drawers according to their background color. That's about where my organization stops. My old sewing room was 20x20, my new one is 9x15, so not nearly enough room, heck, there's barely enough room for me, the cutting table, sewing desk, ironing board, and 2 small dressers, the "overflow" is in the "storeroom" behind the sewing room but you can't get there from the sewing room, and the rest of my fabrics are in large plastic totes in the "container", all the fabrics in my sewing room is quilting cotton with the exception of the flannels which are in the container, since I don't use them very often. I can clean the room up and within 10 minutes of working on something, it looks like a tornado went through there, so I just "live" with it. LOL Sorry I'm not much help.

  5. #5
    Power Poster ManiacQuilter2's Avatar
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    Yes, mine is too. I would post a picture to prove it but then I would be utterly embarrassed !!
    A Good Friend, like an old quilt, is both a Treasure and a Comfort

  6. #6
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    Sometimes it is hard to tell when the blessings of 'enough' become the burdens of 'too much'

  7. #7
    Senior Member Mickey1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bearisgray View Post
    Sometimes it is hard to tell when the blessings of 'enough' become the burdens of 'too much'
    Unfortunately, so true!

  8. #8
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    My sewing room used to be clean and organized. I am a visual person so I needed to "see" where everything was... fabric on open bookcases, corkboards with patterns and pictures hanging..... but I just moved to a new place and share a sewing room with my mom. The room is bigger but has to contain twice as much stuff so seems smaller. My mom is not quite as visual as I am so trying to strike a balance while setting up a new sewing room is frustrating lol. She prefers things hidden in boxes and closets and cabinets but when she is working it is chaos.

  9. #9
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    Mine is a disaster as long as I'm sewing. My room is only 8x10 and barely has what you could call a closet. I have a small sewing table; one of the collapsable craft tables for cutting/ironing - although it's never in it's collapsed state; a futon; a dresser; a dressing table and 2 end tables. I've only ever bought for projects. I don't have any room for fabric storage except for my project leftovers. I have a few books. Leftovers and books are in the dresser. Some leftovers in a couple of tubs. I usually clean up after each project which helps some but the room is never 'clean'. Always something going on.

  10. #10
    Power Poster PaperPrincess's Avatar
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    Mine always looks like an explosion in a fabric mill! My sewing room is actually a fabric storage facility, and I sew in my dining room, which is quite large. I keep pulling fabric and eventually you can't even see the dining room tables (there are 3). the only up side is we have an annual holiday party, so it forces me to clean at least once a year.
    "I do not understand how anyone can live without one small place of enchantment to turn to."
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  11. #11
    Super Member Gramie bj's Avatar
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    My sewing area always seams to be in a mess in one way or another. If not sewing, than someone just drops thing off on the counters. I too have stopped buying fabric. I will buy backing or if my stash runs out of a fabric that will work, I had to buy green last month because I didn't have enough of any of my greens (I have 11) to use for the whole quilt. looks like I will be doing a scrap quilt using a lot of different green's to use up some of my smaller pieces. I have completed 6 tops, and my grand's have finished 4 tops all out of my stash and scraps. Still don't see any empty spaces on my shelves, I just dig out another box of folded fabric and load the shelves back up. I think I have finally emptied my last tot of fabric. It does help that this last spring my DH built me a set of cabinets 7ft tall and 8ft long, just to hold folded fabric with doors on the front. I am slowly sorting through all my templates, patters, mag's and sewing machines, If I have not used it in the last 2 years it is going up for sale!! I am really tired of knowing I have something and not finding it!! So am being very strict with myself. Maybe if I have less to dig through I can keep my sewing area cleaner longer, and find things faster! Well that's the plan! Lets see if I can stick to it! LOL

  12. #12
    Senior Member Katia's Avatar
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    I can not sew in a mess, so I have to straighten and clear the sewing area of my sewing room regularly. I am sure someone that is super neat or not a sewer or crafter would look at my room and think it was quite cluttered. I just have a lot of stuff and not enough storage or room. But I do have to stay on top of it and keep fairly neat or I get very stressed. Of course I do make a mess when I sew, I think that is pretty normal. But I work hard at clearing up after each project.

  13. #13
    Super Member carolaug's Avatar
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    I also get stressed if my room gets messy....I find if I take a picture it really shows me how bad it looks and helps to modivate me to get it in shape. Its so much easier to find stuff when clean and a happier place to work in.

  14. #14
    Senior Member QuiltingHaven's Avatar
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    When I am working on a project, (usually one piecing main one, one cutting out, and one hand quilting and/or machine quilting or binding and things get a little out of order. I try to keep things in different organized places and then when I get each project all done. I organize everything from that particular quilt, get it put away, run the sweeper, clean that machine, and make sure the area looks somewhat organized and START on the next segments of projects become 1 and 2 and start finding a new number 3. Works for me.
    Busy in Ohio

  15. #15
    Super Member nanacc's Avatar
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    My "sewing room" is simply my home! I have refrained from moving into the master bedroom, kitchen, bathrooms. I have to admit the other 3 bedrooms and living area are being overtaken by total chaos! I am afraid that if I organized, I couldn't find anything!! No pics of my messes for sure!

  16. #16
    Senior Member petthefabric's Avatar
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    Right now, it's worse than ever. I've been going from one deadline to the next. Lot's of WIP's that really are IP. And too much stuff to get it all on the shelves.

    So far, I remember:
    Clean up after each project. Ouch!
    Stop purchasing. Ouch!
    Annual must get it all cleaned up. Yeh! We also have a big group once a year and that room gets temporary sleeping facilities. Must get it all cleaned up. So I know it can be done.
    Give it away after 2 yrs of no use. Ouch!

    Better get back to the WIP and deadline.

  17. #17
    Super Member snipforfun's Avatar
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    Add an embroidery machine and all the related stuff to sewing mess and then you have a major disaster!

  18. #18
    Super Member Boston1954's Avatar
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    No, not all the time. Maybe about 2/3. :-)
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    I am from the South....39 miles south of Boston.

  19. #19
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    Messy ? Yes it is part of the process. You clean up as you go and after the quilt is completed. STILL it is a mess. OH Well.... C'est la vie, That's life. hugs

  20. #20
    Super Member Chasing Hawk's Avatar
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    I guess my suggestion of taking old magazines to the library or quilt shop and putting free on the box was not liked.....lol

    The post was deleted.
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  21. #21
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    My space is a lot like yours, I'm afraid. I think one of the keys to better organization is efficient storage which I really don't have in my room. The other, you already know, is less stuff. Over time, I've realized I really enjoy smaller projects rather than great big huge ones which works better with my lifestyle right now (still working). BUT...it doesn't use up stash very quickly at all. If I knew then, what I know now, I would have tried to resist when all of my quilting buddies encouraged me to build up my stash. On the other hand, I love to have stuff to use and count on. Once I retire in a little while, I hope to be able to have more time to use some up. Such a problem to have! Anyway, good luck on this, I'll be watching the responses here.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chasing Hawk View Post
    I guess my suggestion of taking old magazines to the library or quilt shop and putting free on the box was not liked.....lol

    The post was deleted.
    Really? I think that's a great idea!

  23. #23
    Super Member Quiltngolfer's Avatar
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    I usually have more than one project going at once, so I have to be a little organized. Also, I only have a 10 X 12 studio. I purchased the plastic quilt square carriers with handles (14 X 14). Each one will hold several quilt squares. I store my projects in those, and just get out the one I want to work on. I also have baskets under my cutting table that I keep the fabric for current projects in. It looks pretty good. I store my fabric behind closed doors in cabinets I had built in the room. I have quit buying for a while unless I need something to finish a project. No more places to stash stuff. Lol

  24. #24
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    My LQS usually has a basket full of free magazines, etc that people have donated so they are given away tow whoever may want them. The quilt guild has a table at their weekly meeting where people bring things they want to give away - both ideas work well.

    When I start a project I like to have a reasonably clean sewing room. It is so much easier to sew when you have a surface to work on! After each project I will clean things up and put stuff away. But that is a room that is so easy to put stuff in without putting it away - just this week I've put in 3 bags of sewing notions, batting, etc and just stacked it all on the ironing board. Maybe later today I will get in there and put all that away. When starting a new project and picking fabric it can become a real mess very quickly!! It is always a work in progress.

  25. #25
    Power Poster RedGarnet222's Avatar
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    Oh dear ... I go though so much fabric that I have bins of scraps and left overs that I need to begin putting together in some way. I want to organize the three very large bins into color ways to make it easier. But, organizing that is on the back burner.
    Two years ago I moved from one room to another and washed and organized all of my stash. It took a month of steady working on it to get it to this point. I hated doing that. All I wanted to do was to sew. But, I am glad I did it and have it to where I can open the closet doors and find anything now. I have most of my magazines all gone through and most of them donated to the second hand store. I did save the patterns I wanted in a three ring binder in those plastic sleeves.

    I know it is hard, but, I straighten, clean and dust my sewing room every Friday along with the rest of the house. I have a place to put fabrics and things that must be put away all stacked up during the week, so it makes it easier to just grab and put where it belongs. I know it would be better to put them away after each project, but, I get on a creative streak and can't do it. So the folded and stacked fabrics are my best option for some straightness to the room. I have a relatively small room compared to many of you and I have no other room to add storage to. But, this works for me and my stash.
    RedGarnet222

    "Take your needle, my child, and work at your pattern ... It will come out a rose by and by. Life is like that ...one stitch at a time, taken patiently."
    *Oliver Wendell Holms

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