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Thread: Second sewing area?

  1. #1
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    Second sewing area?

    Hi,

    i have my my finished basement set up as my sewing/quilting/beading area, but I find I only go down there on the weekends when I have a few hours at a time, during the day, to use the area. The lighting is not great (there is some inset lighting and I have plenty of lamps) which is one reason I think I don't use it as often as I'd like.

    I'm thinking about setting up a second sewing machine in an extra bedroom that gets lots of natural light that I can use when I have a small amount of time to sew (15-20 minutes). That way I could get in a little sewing time before work. Now when I get home from work it's almost dark and the basement isn't so inviting.

    Any ideas on how I can either make my basement space more inviting or have a small space upstairs? What would you do?

    Thanks,

    Karen
    Karen

  2. #2
    Super Member Annaquilts's Avatar
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    I would go with the second space in the nice room. Sitting in a basement with inadequate lighting would not appeal to me. I have an awesome quilt studio upstairs and spent many hours there but I also set up a tiny sewing station in my family room. I have a 201 Singer in a nice cabinet with drawers and just enough of one project so I can work on it but also put it away. I also have my travel iron and a TV tray ironning board down there.
    Anna Quilts

  3. #3
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    I think it depends on your lifestyle. Since you say you work, perhaps by the time you get home , prepare dinner, clean up...not much time left..maybe some tv time with SO..or not. When I worked and did all that when getting home, I would "give myself" one hour of quilting time..in "my" room ( little attic). That was my decompression time.....brought me back to center. Different home now, "my space" is in finished basement...but the unfinished section...had walls painted butter yellow, there are 2 Windows, had extra lighting put up at work stations...cutting, sewing, L/A, and no longer work outside of home, but this is still my escape hatch.....now am widowed, so do not share time with a SO, but do have handwork up in living room along side a wingback chair that is my tv place. So I guess I'm saying a little of both is a good thing, if you can do it.

  4. #4
    Super Member lovelyl's Avatar
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    Do you have an extra machine to leave set up in the extra bedroom? If so, I see no reason why a second sewing area would not work. You could use your basement area to cut out your projects on the weekend and then just have a machine and perhaps a small table with a small cutting mat and ironing pad on it. What else would be in the room, a bed, dresser? I do most of my sewing in a bedroom and use the bed as my "horizontal design wall". Let us know what you come up with
    Linda
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  5. #5
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    It's ok to have a small 2nd place that is uncluttered with tools and projects for those 15 min stitches, but it is not ok to have a main sewing area without enough lighting. Ttoo much new fangled lighting to recommend these days, so head to lowes or a lighting store to buy an equivalent of 4 florescent tubes over your sewing area.

  6. #6
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    I would go for the spare bedroom. My "guest room" is my sewing room. I have a twin bed in there and a sewing table that takes up where a second twin bed would be. Whenever one guest comes to stay, they get the sewing room and my bins of fabric stack underneath the table. Whenever two guests come to stay, they get my son's room with a queen size bed and he gets the twin bed. The room is light and airy with sun coming in the window. It's perfect to sew something for 5 minutes or longer.

  7. #7
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    You could set up the second sewing area as you would if you were going to guild or retreat. Do all your major cutting downstairs then your finishing upstairs. If you had guests it would be easier to put your equipment up.

  8. #8
    Super Member oksewglad's Avatar
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    I'm thinking of adding a second permanent sewing space...I say permanent because yes I have a space downstairs but like the dining room table to MQ large quilts..which is where my second temporary space is. With my home's open space concept it is a mess. If I tuck a small piecing station upstairs and make room for a table for quilting downstairs I think I would have less of a mess...plus we could eat at the table....Thanks for the discussion....
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  9. #9
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    Thanks everyone. I'm lucky I have plenty of room to spread out, I guess I feel guilty because I have this big sewing space but now I want a "satellite" sewing space as well.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Prissnboot's Avatar
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    I'm fortunate enough to have one sewing area, and to me, unless I'm working on two projects at once (and don't even get my mind started there!), it would be too much of a pain to haul stuff from one area to another.
    She looks for wool and flax And works with her hands in delight.

  11. #11
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    I think we all understand the desire for a sewing space that is a bonus little nook close to other people for company, and s large area where we can spread it all out, make a mess, get away by ourselves, and get lost in creating. Does anyone else want or need the space that you're wanting to carve out for sewing? I can tell you I have a fairly big sewing room/guest room (12x15) with natural night and I love it. I used to have a tiny craft room under the stairs of our basement and the lighting was all artificial. It wasn't so good for my mood but it kept craft clutter away from the visible living areas of the main level. gave that up to a son who likes it as a gaming room. If you have it to spare, and no one is against it, I say enjoy it. You'll be far more relaxed and productive if the room is inviting.

  12. #12
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    I would definitely use the second area. My sewing room is not in the basement, it is just down the hall from the family room but I do my hand sewing usually in the TV room when my family is home. And I can understand that going down to the sewing room late in the evening doesn't sound like a big deal but it feels like it at the end of the day.

  13. #13
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    I used to work off a cardtable that was wobbly. When I was done for the time, I put everything into the large clear containers with the table behind it. throw a work board on top then a cover on top of that then a floral arrangement. ALso had a lamp. Had a tool box with my shears and notions. If I had a lot of sewing to do my son would let me use his desk and I could shut the door. Especially if the guys wanted to watch a special show. Now I can shut the door and walk away.

  14. #14
    Super Member slk350's Avatar
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    When I lived up north I had my sewing machine in guest bedroom. Wasn't much into quilting then. When I had my 3rd baby (oops) I moved to the basement. The lighting was horrible, but I managed. Since moving to FL, we are on our 3rd house....downsized. In my last sewing room I had a double fluorescent ceiling light over my machines. It was the best lighting I ever had. Going to get another for new sewing room. Not too expensive either

  15. #15
    Super Member Battle Axe's Avatar
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    As we age our eyes "grow dim". So I would surely invest in some killer lights for the basement, or move to the well lit area. Perhaps your reluctance to go to the basement is a subtle way your body is saying it wants more light. Marcia

  16. #16
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    totally agree!
    Quote Originally Posted by Battle Axe View Post
    As we age our eyes "grow dim". So I would surely invest in some killer lights for the basement, or move to the well lit area. Perhaps your reluctance to go to the basement is a subtle way your body is saying it wants more light. Marcia

  17. #17
    Super Member jmoore's Avatar
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    Karen, if it is the lighting that detours you from being in your basement, I would definitely try to improve it somehow. Natural light is always best but I'm sure you can find something with all the new lighting options there are.

    I have been known to have two machines set up in different places if I am working on more than one project.
    attitude is everything...the rest will fall into place.

  18. #18
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    For more light in your basement you can get the LED shop lights. They are wonderful!! Home Depot and lowes has them and also Sam's club. I've got three in my basement sewing room.

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    Sounds like you know what's not appealing with your current space: lighting. There are lots of options there. Even for the short run put the new, brighter LEDs in the can lighting. They give lots of light for a little energy cost.

    As far as the second place to sew, I would never see my wife if she just went into "her" room to sew. She would live there, she sews so much. I've encouraged her and she has set up a smaller station in the family room. Now we can talk about projects, she can show me her progress and we can even watch a TV show together. We just share the process more this way.

    We both work and really don't get that much time together, so we have fun with it when we can. Many times, I'll be on the chat rooms reading and sharing what everyone else is saying with her while she sews. She doesn't get on the forums but likes to her about all of the latest hottest from everyone.

    I'm getting off track a little, but the main thing is to do what best works for your lifestyle in your house. Who cares what others think of where you sew.

  20. #20
    Super Member Wanabee Quiltin's Avatar
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    I have my long arm in the basement with my design wall. Right now we are exploring other options for lighting as ours really is terrible down there. I took an extra bedroom and made it my main quilting room. It has two good windows for light. I would definitely put a second sewing machine anywhere you think you might use it. Keep on quilting is my motto.

  21. #21
    Super Member Snooze2978's Avatar
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    When looking for a new to me house here in Iowa, my top priority was an area for my sewing/quilting. Found one with what I thought would be large enough basement split into 2 rooms at the time. I had another doorway put in so I could walk thru from either end, added more lighting on the ceiling as there were only 2 windows for the whole basement and added lots more walk plug ins including one in the ceiling for the quilt/robotic system. It seems well lite to me now as I'm down here most of the time if not outside working in the garden which is just about done for the year. I have 2 - 8ft lights in the cutting area over the cutting table and 3 over the quilt/embroidery machines in the other room.
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  22. #22
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    I have the full upstairs for my quilting, but sometimes I want to do some piecing in the main living area so that is when I bring my featherweight down and sew on the dining room table. Those featherweights are so portable and lightweight. My winter project is to sew all my 2 1/2 inch squares together and I want to do that in the main living area so I can have the TV on.

  23. #23
    Super Member Stitchnripper's Avatar
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    I think if that's what you want and can do it then go for it. For years in other house I had no good place to sew without disrupting a living space which I didn't like. This new house has a small bedroom that is all mine. I love it although it is small. But I can do most of what I want in it. I keep my minimal stash in the unfinished walkout basement on high shelves so I'm not surrounded by it. When I have a bigger quilt to do FMQ I use the dining room table but that is always a time limited project and doesn't bother me.
    Alyce

  24. #24
    Super Member redstilettos's Avatar
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    While a secondary location is certainly doable, I think another way to look at things would be to also make your primary sewing room a bit more inviting. If it is in your budget (and there are some very inexpensive ways to go here), and look at LED track lighting. The older I get the more I can appreciate a room that is 'as bright as the sun' as my hubby would say.

    I, too, am building a sewing room down in the basement with few windows, and the "rule" for hubby is....there is no such thing as TOO MUCH LIGHT!

    I am sure you will find the best solution to your lifestyle. Good luck!

  25. #25
    Super Member Just Jan's Avatar
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    My suggestion... DO NOT share your sewing space by putting a machine in the bedroom. Switch the bedroom to the basement and the sewing room up where its convenient. Bedrooms do not require as much light so that would not be a problem and you'd still have room for guests.
    I eat, I sleep, I quilt, I eat, I sleep, I quilt... awwwww retirement! I earned it, I deserve it, I'm lovin' it!

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