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Thread: Kitchen table sewing

  1. #1
    Junior Member Mrs Shak's Avatar
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    Kitchen table sewing

    I have to sew on the kitchen table and my stash, etc is thrown in a corner (in clear containers or baskets) or in other rooms. I would love to set up an area in the basement but it is too damp (when it rains hard or when the snow melts, we get water down there).

    I'm looking to see if anyone would have any ideas of how to better organize because I have to dig through everything in order to get what I want. I do keep current projects in their own totes. Or how to use a damp basement? I don't have any extra space except the basement.

    My family (and I) are tired of having to look at my sewing stuff whenever we use the kitchen! TIA!

  2. #2
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    If you have room, purchase a standing pantry unit with doors from Walmart. Put your stash on mini bolts and fill up the shelves. The unit will look nice and all your stash will be easy to see. It will just look like you added a cupboard to the kitchen until you open the doors.

  3. #3
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    Similar to Tartan's idea, I have an old armoire that used to hold a TV. It is in the living room. Closed, the armoire is just another piece of furniture. It holds everything including my featherweight.
    There are many pinterest ideas on how to restyle these into new workhorses. Some show how to build a pull down table for additional workspace too.
    The thrift stores around here have them at a very reasonable price. Most people do not want them anymore because they are not large enough for the new TVs.

  4. #4
    Super Member Sandygirl's Avatar
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    In regard to that damp basement, you should call a basement waterproofing company for a price to waterproof it. We had our oozy stinky farmhouse basement waterproofed this past spring and it is wonderful now! They installed a french drain. They dug around the perimeter of the INSIDE of the the basement (more efficient) and installed the piping that directs the underground water to the new sump pump pit.

    I never dreamed that we could use this basement. Water used to pool in places and now, no more! "Expensive" but so worth looking into! We were actually pleased at the price quoted, the quality of the outcome and the result we now enjoy. Our mental "guesstimation" was much higher than what it ended up costing. DH got busy and painted the walls and the floor. My DH is moving his hobbies to the basement! Such a difference!

    oh, while we were at it, we had the basement windows replaced for new efficient windows. We still came out lower than our guesstimated price. So pleased!

    I would call for quotes and advice, pricing. Sounds like your situation is not as drastic as ours. (It is raining now....no pools!)

    sandy
    Sandygirl

    Janome 9900 / Janome 9700 / Janome Decor 3050 / Janome 1100D serger
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  5. #5
    Super Member Sandygirl's Avatar
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    In regard to the sewing area, i love the Closet Maid shelving with the fabric cubbie drawers for storage. Or look into storage drawers on wheels. Mobility is key for me. I like to be able to move my stuff around. Wheels are a must.
    sandy
    Sandygirl

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    Singer Centennial model (inherited from my late, fav aunt!)

  6. #6
    Junior Member Mrs Shak's Avatar
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    Thanks for the ideas, I'm not sure if hubby would like another piece of furniture in the house, but drawers on wheels, he might go for. I'm so used to folding my fabric, I didn't think about bolts...

    I wonder if I could really bother him and go vertical. Hang some towel bar type things on the wall and hang the fabric.

    Sandygirl, we checked into have new drain tile, etc done to the basement, the problem is that there is concrete on three sides of the house so removal and/or replacement of the concrete is where the financial problem is. We have a stone foundation and it's starting to get tiny leaks which we keep patching but we can't control it.

  7. #7
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    I think that the first thing I would do, is to take care of the basement problem, because eventually that will become a MAJOR problem.

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    Super Member Aurora's Avatar
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    You could also install a sump pump to remove the water.
    Aurora

    "A dying culture invariably exhibits personal rudeness. Bad manners. Lack of consideration for others in minor matters. A loss of politeness, of gentle manners, is more significant than is a riot." -Robert A. Heinlein

  9. #9
    Super Member LynnVT's Avatar
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    Another possibility in some areas of the country is spray foam. A friend showed us their basement where foam was sprayed on walls and ceiling which made the house warmer and the basement dryer. We also have an old house with round rock foundation walls and we are going to look into doing that. Since our basement floor is dirt, only concrete under the furnace, and part crawlspace, it still won't be usable for much, but I think it would help the dampness from going into the house. Of course sump pump or dehumidifiers can also help in some situations. Good luck. Be as creative in your storage as you are in your quilting. I just found good size underbed storage boxes with casters at a very good price at Family Dollar. This is not a "$1 store" but a discount chain in some areas. I'm rearranging my stuff into the "Harry Potter space" which is a closet under the stairs in the living room. Some stuff will go under the beds. Not ideal, but much neater than it was before.
    "The business of life is making memories. In the end, it is all we have." Butler Charlie Carson, Downton Abbey, season 4, episode 3, PBS.

  10. #10
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    Maybe you could get a free-standing cabinet that you could put a fold-down bar on which would hold your machine and then use the rest of the space for fabric and iron, etc. Good luck. I have seen such arrangements in Better Homes and G. magazines and Southern Living.

  11. #11
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    Many good, useful, inexpensive ideas have been offered...may look into some myself! That damp basement sounds like your main problem......could that cause that nasty black mold to form......hope you can resolve it....sounds like a waste of space that would drive me crazy!

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mrs Shak View Post
    I have to sew on the kitchen table and my stash, etc is thrown in a corner (in clear containers or baskets) or in other rooms. I would love to set up an area in the basement but it is too damp (when it rains hard or when the snow melts, we get water down there).

    I'm looking to see if anyone would have any ideas of how to better organize because I have to dig through everything in order to get what I want. I do keep current projects in their own totes. Or how to use a damp basement? I don't have any extra space except the basement.

    My family (and I) are tired of having to look at my sewing stuff whenever we use the kitchen! TIA!
    So many ideas. Measure your kitchen for space that will be convenient for you. Keep those measurements with you when you're out. Do a lay out graph of your kitchen. Keep that and make notes on the back side and maybe few photos of ideas. Then keep in mind anything that you can attach "casters" to. Mobility can be key. You may be able to find something at the thrift stores. Check the different photos ideas in the Mission Organization section. Also fishing tackle boxes or tool boxes are great for storing scissors and other notions. Thread and bobbins. Walmart has tackle and tool boxes that stack on top of each other. Dollar discount stores may have some also. Fabric in baskets you are currently working with can be decorative. Some would not realize you have "fabric scatter" different from fabric clutter. You can put pretty little labels on baskets or if you use the canvass baskets. You can make your own canvass baskets. So easy. Just measure your basket and go from there.

  13. #13
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    How much water, just a bit, running into the drain? Get some large cart wheels (here's a picture, but get bigger than this, to keep your platform out of the water.

    http://www.uline.com/Product/Detail/...B&gclsrc=aw.ds

    A sheet of good plywood, 5/8" or 3/4". Cut it in half. Reinforce it with 2x4. Attach the cartwheels to the 2x4.

    Put plastic bins which seal (like rubbermaid) on the frame.

    Wrap plain charcoal briquets (no starter fluid) in newspapers, then wrap that in scrapbook paper (for the protection of your fabric - acid & lignen free, etc.) and put a bundle in each bin with your fabrics. Absorb odor & moisture.

    ... can you tell I lived with your problem once upon a time...

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mrs Shak View Post
    I have to sew on the kitchen table and my stash, etc is thrown in a corner (in clear containers or baskets) or in other rooms. I would love to set up an area in the basement but it is too damp (when it rains hard or when the snow melts, we get water down there).

    I'm looking to see if anyone would have any ideas of how to better organize because I have to dig through everything in order to get what I want. I do keep current projects in their own totes. Or how to use a damp basement? I don't have any extra space except the basement.

    My family (and I) are tired of having to look at my sewing stuff whenever we use the kitchen! TIA!
    It seems you have 2 problems storage and organization. Having current projects in their totes sounds good. Are they hard totes where one project may not fill the tote? Would a flexible, clear plastic bag work better?

    Could you store things not sewing related in the basement on shelving suspended from the ceiling so the water won't bother them? (Like seldom used pans, etc). If you put everything in its own plastic bag the humidity shouldn't bother it. But I wouldn't put fabric or paper down there. Anyway this might free up space upstairs.

    In my closets I put some plastic shelves on the main shelf which gave me more storage in the space above the main shelf. If you have standard closets, you could even attach a shelf close to the ceiling which could take stuff like batting or out of season clothes, etc. and you wouldn't have to get at it very often.

    As to organization, if you could categorize your stuff(by use or fabric by type/color) maybe you wouldn't have to "dig through everything" as often. I have all my sharp things(scissors, needles, rotary cutters, etc) in a small 3-drawer plastic container that sits on a bookcase. When my grandchildren were little and slept in my sewing room, I just took the whole thing into my bedroom for safety. Maybe you could keep something like this elsewhere and take to the kitchen when you want to sew.
    Last edited by selm; 10-02-2014 at 10:58 AM.
    Sally

  15. #15
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    For leaks around stones in basement, This Old a House did a program on hydraulic cement. It can go right in even if the leak is still wet and seals in minutes. You do have to work quickly though.

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    Don't want to sound mean, but how old are your children? Young enough to double up in a bedroom? Old enough to be thinking about moving? Any room in one of kids bedrooms to set up small table?

  17. #17
    Junior Member meganc731's Avatar
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    How attached to your kitchen table are you? I bet you could find or build a table with storage in the middle and chairs or benches with lift up seats for storage. Check out Ana White for furniture plans.

  18. #18
    Super Member jmoore's Avatar
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    Kari, much like you, I sew at my dining room table. I have a cutting table set up in a spare bedroom and keep my fabric in a plastic storage bin with drawers on wheels. I have to move my machine to the laundry room when we have guests for dinner.

  19. #19
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    Perhaps a bookcase if it fits? I buy large sheets of foam board at the dollar store and cut four 9x12 boards from it (there will be some excess) . Wrap fabric around each board and organize it by color on the bookcase. I also use plastic shoeboxes from dollar store on bookcase and cut pretty coordinating scrapbook paper to label the inside fronts and keep them uniform (but less utilitarian). I roll fat quarters and tie with a scrap strip, then put them in a pretty container on top of the bookcase ( not a lg bookcase).

  20. #20
    Senior Member Sew Krazy Girl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pocoellie View Post
    I think that the first thing I would do, is to take care of the basement problem, because eventually that will become a MAJOR problem.
    Ditto - MOLD? Could be dangerous.

  21. #21
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    Before I had a dedicated sewing room I used whatever space I could....I stored under beds. I helped the Hubbs make a taller bed frame and kept everything under. It was a pain but when I got room I have to admit my "stuff" multiplied exponentially....not good either! good luck. I just bought a beautiful buffet that would have worked before.

  22. #22
    Power Poster Jingle's Avatar
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    I would certainly fix the basement first. Mold causes a lot of health issues and not good for any of you. Sorry to be so out spoken.
    Another Phyllis
    This life is the only one you get - enjoy it before you lose it.

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    [QUOTE=Sandygirl;6912071] They dug around the perimeter of the INSIDE of the the basement (more efficient) and installed the piping that directs the underground water to the new sump pump pit.

    Be careful...what is the back up plan for when it is raining and the power goes out...how do you use the sump pump then? Be sure to have a way to protect your fabrics and machines/cabinets from wetness/pools from an overflowing sump pit. Ask me how I know!

  24. #24
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    I do not have a dedicated sewing area. In order to store my stash out of site I purchased 2 short book cases that I placed behind my sofa. I placed decorative items on top of them so they look like actual sofa tables. I also purchased a wooden toy box at the thrift store that I store my portable sewing machine in and small items like rulers, templates and tins to hold my thread. I made a pad for the top of the toy box so it can be used as seating.
    Fabric is like money, no matter how much you have it's never enough.

  25. #25
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    I have a friend that dosent have a sewing room and no room to store her stuff so her husband made her a storage table for the kitchen what he did he got four unfinished banks of drawers then took a sheet of plywood and some tile and some other wood and put this on top of the bank of drawers and made it look like a kitchen table and she stores her sewing stuff in those drawers and they still have a kitchen table with chairs. The table top when finished was bigger than the bank of drawers

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