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Thread: LA sewing room layout help

  1. #1
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    LA sewing room layout help

    I have searched for a layout for long arm sewing room but have only found layouts for sewing rooms with out a LA. if any of you that have a long arm and have it with all your other sewing stuff - piecing machine, serger, cutting table, ironing station, shelves/totes for fabric (some hanging space for clothes that I make for back to school -which is rolling) please share. I have measured out out the items I have listed above but how to lay it all out is daunting to me. I'm afraid if I give it to a space planner/architect, if they don't sew, they have no idea of how it is all used! I just thought of this but I suppose I could use one of the sewing room layouts and add the LA at one end?

  2. #2
    Power Poster QuiltE's Avatar
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    Sorry, I can't help you in the way you have asked.

    However, when I am in a quandary such as this ... I start with graph paper
    First making a to-scale drawing of the room, including all its nooks and crannies and idiosyncracies.
    Also, be sure to mark electrical outlets, switches, windows, doors, closets, etc.

    Then I make to-scale cutouts of what I want to put in there, no matter how big or small.

    Now I am ready to play as to where things will go.
    Be sure you allow for the space you need to move around things ...
    For example, space for your chair to roll out from your sewing machine;
    the space you need front/back/sides of your long arm; etc.

    You may want to do vertical graph layouts too, to see what works on height allowances.

    Keep in mind that no two rooms are the same, so the "rules" never really fit!!
    You have to do what works for you and your lifestyle.


    I did a major kitchen build in this fashion.
    I was told by one kitchen designer/builder no-way it would work.
    For some strange reason he did not get the job!
    Instead, the people who got the job said, it was their job to hear me out, and help me perfect what I wanted. She listened, and totally "got" why I wanted things the way I wanted them to be. Yes, she helped me make some changes, but only to make it even better!!!

    The same goes with your sewing room ..... figure out what works for you ...... and make it happen!

    Have Fun with the planning process!
    Last edited by QuiltnNan; 05-15-2019 at 03:12 PM. Reason: shouting/all caps
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  3. #3
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    Like QuiltE, when I designed my quilting studio, I broke out the graph paper also, and when I thought I had the layout the way I wanted it then I took painter's tape and taped the floor to mark out all the furniture placement and walls for shelving, peg board, design wall, etc., before I ever brought in the first piece of furniture or equipment.

    I wandered around that (empty) room periodically for a number of days, making sure that I could maneuver comfortably around without hitting any of the "corners" that the tape represented, doors could open fully, supplies & tools would be close at hand, and that I liked the flow of the room. A few minor adjustments were made, and I am completely thrilled with my space.

  4. #4
    Power Poster ckcowl's Avatar
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    Graph paper is a great way to start.
    My room is long 24’ x 14’ ( two bedrooms we removed the closets between the two and opened the two into one). One end has a large long display cabinet that has a glass top, storage doors, lights and drawers which I use for storage but also as a large light box. In front of the cabinet is my ironing board. These are on the short wall- between the end of the room and the door. On the end wall is my large cutting table. Beside that ( opposite from the ironing board) is a small dresser. On top of that is my ruler rack. In it are cutting tools, rulers/ templates, hand sewing items. In the corner- facing the cutting table is a book case. Then on the back wall, beside the book shelf is a window. My sewing desk with sewing machine is in front of the window. I can look out at the backyard, enjoy the birds & wildlife visitors. Next to that is another larger book case. There are drawer units under the cutting table. Starting about midway in front of the large book case, about 3 feet toward room middle starts the longarm table. It runs toward the other end of the room. Behind it ( between the two doors ) is another book case the end wall has a fabric storage shelving unit, batting and totes in the corner, far side of the door on that end is an old computer desk with the bobbin winder, bobbins, tool basket etc.window side of the room in the corner is another dresser with quilting books, tools, stuff. Under the quilting table is more storage area. Whew itemized that’s a bit overwhelming.
    hiding away in my stash where i'm warm, safe and happy

  5. #5
    Super Member wesing's Avatar
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    Depending on your space, you may have only one or two options of where to put a LA frame, and then arrange everything else around it. That is the case with our room, but we are still happy with our space.

  6. #6
    Senior Member cindi's Avatar
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    I’ll post pics, but my sewing room is a disaster, so please forgive the mess! When I sew, nothing gets cleaned until I’m completely done, lol. My room is 24x17 and is in the basement, in what was the woodworking shop of the previous owner. My husband put most of the white furniture together from Ikea, and built the cutting table and ironing table. The TV area is filled with furniture I’ve stolen from other areas of the house I still have to get the sewing table together - a slow process one area at a time (you’ll see the blue painter’s tape on the floor where it will go). I love that the cutting table and ironing table are both on wheels. I can move them wherever I need them. In fact, everything is movable, so if I decide to rearrange, it’s not a problem! Well, except for unloading that fabric from the shelves, lol. After moving several times, my sewing rooms will always be “portable”. The pics go from left to right as you walk in the door.
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    Last edited by cindi; 05-15-2019 at 04:12 PM.

  7. #7
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    What I do is cut out to scale the outlines of all the things that must be accommodated. Then draw the outline of the room into large scale graph paper. I usually do 1/4 inch for every 6 inches. Draw all doors plus swing room, windows, outlets etc. Lighting too.

    I put it on a cork board and move the pieces around until they make sense.

    Remember the LA has both a foot print, plus the space you need around it to work. Will you be working from the back of the machine?

    In kitchen design they talk about the work triangle. For me in a sewing space I have my piecing machine, plus server, the ironing board and cutting table.

    For a LA, thread storage, rulers, batting, storage cart, are the main components of my triangle. Good lighting is imperative in both spaces.

  8. #8
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    My sewing room is 14x32, and with all my quilting "stuff", I don't have room for a frame/long arm, of course, DH says if I got rid of all my machines, fabric, books, etc., I'd have room. LOL I think some of your requirements would depend on how much quilting "stuff" you have.

  9. #9
    Power Poster QuiltE's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AStitchInTime View Post
    ..........when I thought I had the layout the way I wanted it then I took painter's tape and taped the floor to mark out all..............
    Ditto ..... the other thing to do is to keep in mind whether the object goes to the ceiling, or is just table height; or if it is a table with "air" below, vs. counters that are solid to the ground , etc. What I am meaning is that the differences of the objects can make an extreme difference of how they can "fit" in a room.

    The trick I learned in designing a room is to design it .... then "mentally" live in it!
    Everything you do in your sewing room after that, just keep thinking, I would pick it up here, return it here. And you may just discover, oh darn, I totally forget to figure out where I am going to store my quilting rulers, or Why!

    As before ... have fun with the process and take your time to make it the best for you, that you can!
    Last edited by QuiltnNan; 05-16-2019 at 03:03 AM. Reason: shouting/all caps
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    Sew many ideas ... just sew little time!!
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  10. #10
    Super Member jmoore's Avatar
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    When we built the addition over our two car garage, it was designed with a longarm in mind. We put plugs in the floors where I knew both my LA and DSM would live so not to have cords running across the room. My cutting table and ironing board are in two alcoves (dormers). The room is approximately 16 x 24 ? Maybe bigger. My LA is on casters and can easily be moved a little direction if necessary. Name:  5D71F99A-E76E-41C2-AC45-27E43675C3CD.jpeg
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    attitude is everything...the rest will fall into place.

  11. #11
    Senior Member cindi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jmoore View Post
    When we built the addition over our two car garage, it was designed with a longarm in mind. We put plugs in the floors where I knew both my LA and DSM would live so not to have cords running across the room. My cutting table and ironing board are in two alcoves (dormers).
    Love all that natural light, jmoore!

  12. #12
    Super Member SusieQOH's Avatar
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    Those rooms are gorgeous!
    Jmoore- is that a Bernina 770? I just bought one.

  13. #13
    Super Member eparys's Avatar
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    I physically did not have many choices when I set up my long arm but I did start with graph paper. It only fit in one spot. I have sloped ceilings and had to make the best of every square inch. These are photos when I "moved into" my sewing room. lol - (I would not share current pics - the room is so covered in fabric and projects you can barely see it lol). I had an odd pipe running through the room so my hubby put a small wall around and built shelves for my fabric.

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    Betty

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  14. #14
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    You are wise to do your own research and planning. It really does depend on your individual needs and how you like to do your sewing/quilting tasks.

    Do you have drawings or pictures to post? That may help with more suggestions for your room.

    I don't have a LA but can tell you when you get it right there is a feeling. I moved some tables and machines in my sewing room. Then had to move them back to original layout since it just wasn't right.

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    They all are beautiful spaces....How lucky you are.

  16. #16
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    Graph paper is a great way to start, and blue painter’s tape on the floor is a good second step. After that I placed empty packing boxes, chairs and card tables in that footprint to give myself a 3D model to see what I could work with. Wasn’t pretty but it worked.

  17. #17
    Super Member jmoore's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SusieQOH View Post
    Those rooms are gorgeous!
    Jmoore- is that a Bernina 770? I just bought one.
    Yes, I’ve had mine for two years now...you’re gonna love it!
    attitude is everything...the rest will fall into place.

  18. #18
    Super Member jmoore's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cindi View Post
    Love all that natural light, jmoore!
    Me too. No matter the season, it is always bright in my sewing room. We have deer, fox an other critters that hang out on our property so I have a good view from up there. : )
    attitude is everything...the rest will fall into place.

  19. #19
    Super Member SusieQOH's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jmoore View Post
    Yes, I’ve had mine for two years now...you’re gonna love it!
    Ah! Good to know. My next door neighbor works at the Bernina shop I go to and she's always generous with help if I need it. I'm going to take their classes too. It looks like a dream!! Can't wait to get my hands on it

  20. #20
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    I've got a long-arm machine, but all other stuff (fabric, batting, backings, stash) are kept in another bedroom. My empty nest is NOT empty.

  21. #21
    Super Member QuiltnLady1's Avatar
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    My sewing room is not large, but I had everything planned on graph paper. Probably the best thing I did was have waist high wall plugs put in -- since the house was already finished, the electrician simply put the waist high plugs higher up on the wall where the existing lower plugs were but left the original plugs in place. I also had him add extra waist high plugs where I thought I could use them (I did this through out the house). I am soooooo glad I did since getting to the lower plugs is now beyond my capability. I would have put a floor plug in but I know it would not work for me.
    QuiltnLady1

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  22. #22
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    Thank you all for responding with many great suggestions for planning the room. I don't have pictures as the house is not built yet. But i really appreciated seeing the rooms that you have.

  23. #23
    Power Poster QuiltE's Avatar
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    Lucky you!
    You have a totally blank canvas which will let you do most anything
    and be able to make your own perfect space!
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Sew many ideas ... just sew little time!!
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
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