Sunday, July 15, 2018

Can this space be prettified?

Ever read the recurring magazine article in I think Good Housekeeping called " Can this marriage be saved?" It was pretty fascinating stuff. It came to mind as I thought about my sewing space "being saved" . By this time you all know my new space is clean, big, heated, dry and all I could want minus a window. It is a bit rough around the edges but the bones are great, much of what we said when we looked at the home we bought recently and are currently in. What you see above is my best attempt one week post moving to get an organized situation to work in. In the home we did a Chip and Joanna style total redo and those bones are looking great now. Down in my cave, not so much. I don't expect to put any money into this for now, if ever, and those bones really make it work but, hey, it's got to get better than this. After making a couple of garments I was so frustrated  with not having what I needed at my fingertips and worse, not knowing where a lot was. I took a break from stitching and totally reorganized  what you see above and more.

I touched every single piece of fabric that I own and refolded them all, putting them in better categories that work for me, much like my last sewing space. I went through every single pattern I own and did the same. Last, and most important, I organized every notion into being right where I would remember it and in a logical fashion. No it didn't get prettier, but it is far more functional now and I am not walking in circles looking for a Frixion Pen.

What you see above is a built in eight foot Electrician/Former Owner Guy's work table and pegboard back drop. The pegboard and the table are all now painted white, clean  and very neatly organized underneath with paints, dyes, laces, etc. I still did not like the distraction of all those carts and containers under the table. As I went through my fabrics I found 6 yards of batik that I planned on making into curtains for the little apartment we lived in last winter. Never bothered, but, geez, it was enough to.............

I love my clean white  work table. Ergonomically it is at the right height for me. I know the Former Owner guy is taller than me and has major back problems. Maybe this table was too low for him. It is just right for me and I love it. The back side is open and all sorts of goodies underneath are awaiting my efforts. My husband loves this and I thank him for recycling Former Owner Guy's foofy drapery rods so we could use them on the table.  It took a jigsaw!

Maybe this winter, in a fit of cabin fever, we will get the sheet rock taped. Hubs would like to seal the floors first which is a really good idea. All I know is I am getting happier in our new home with each passing day.

One more new item in my creative space, one I love and use more than you would think:

My new little vice!  A real vise! Yesterday I used it to hold a hook of a hook and eye duo so I could bend back the "tongue." This enabled me to put the hook under my presser foot and machine stitch it. Then back in the vise and I bent it back into shape. One favorite bra back to wearability! These are great for smashing those heavy seams on jeans and acting as a third hand when needed. I know there will be lots of uses for this new tool and 19.00 at the Big Orange Box store!
Sewing is happening. My table curtain was a one day wonder. I have finished my knit panel skirt and can't wait to show you. Not sure what will be next in the queue............maybe some heirloom sewing. Lata'..........Bunny


  1. Have you considered adding a fake window, perhaps with an led light, a grow light or an ott light? There are lots of plans online including That could make it even more fun to work in your new space.

  2. I love the idea of using mirrors. I do have a couple of "basement" type windows that do get a lot of light. Once I saw the design show on HGTV with "Candace", a Canadian designer who was terrific. She took a typical tiny basement window and lined it on the inside with mirror. Then she hung curtains and a valance. It looked incredible and twice the size as the mirrors made it look like more of the outside was coming in. It was quite clever and I've always wanted to try that. I think I have my chance now. It will all unfold in time. I really appreciate your input and the link. Thanks.

  3. How lucky to have that pegboard and worktable from the previous owner! Having everything where you can find it is key, so good job organizing! Honestly, I think functional, organized, and easily cleaned up is Fantastic. That's like 80% of pretty to me.
    As for making the space prettier, I think you've made a nice step by adding that curtain. You could put more panels of fabric on the tall set of shelves that would block dust and the little bit of visual clutter that it's contents provide, if you wanted.
    Could you/would you want those pretty old-fashioned embossed aluminum ceiling tiles? I don't think those are too expensive and I bet they are not that hard to install over your bare ceiling. I've never tried it myself, so it may be a bigger project than I imagine. But I think it could be quite pretty.
    I like your industrial lighting, but I suppose that could be switched out for something prettier.
    I don't see mirrors.

  4. Bunny - I like the upgrade! Especially that you painted the table and pegboard white and then added a fabric skirt to the base. It really helped cheer up the space! Glad you're getting some sewing done!

  5. That space looks incredibly inviting and perfect just the way it is. Very functional and organized looking and the curtain/skirt on the front of the work table adds the pretty. I have a large space that I love but it does not look that nice.

    1. Thanks, Garnet. Part of the issue is that I did interior design for many years so you can see why I feel like I have to do something. It is very functional right now and I really don't want to put cash into this but we'll see what sorts of tweaks we can do over time. I love to refinish furniture so that may play into this as well.

  6. Bunny, I am so glad you are back to blogging! Although I didn't comment often, I really looked forward to seeing what projects you were doing, and missed you while you were gone. As someone who for many years had a basement sewing space without a window, I can commiserate! We recently moved to the Carolinas to retire, and are planning a new home to be built soon. It will have a sewing/crafts "studio" built over the garage. I can't wait!
    The transformation of your space is marvelous! An additional idea to "prettify" might be to cover the floor joists and insulation above your sewing space. (I never got around to doing that in my "dungeon." ) If you don't want the trouble or expense of a drop ceiling, you could use staples or thumb tacks to put up fabric or sheets - a fabric ceiling! Since you have no natural light, I'd use white. That might even bounce your artificial light back down and brighten the space even further.
    Wishing you many blessings in your new home!

  7. What a great improvement! I've hung a skirt around the sides of my cutting table to hide a similar assortment of things - so much nicer to look at. And I wasn't aware that shelves can be hung from pegboard, so thanks for that! There is one thing I'm a little concerned about, and that's the exposed insulation -- which I'm assuming is fiberglass. Not good to breathe in those particles. Might be a good idea to go ahead and get the ceiling drywall hung sooner than this winter, even if the taping and finishing comes later. Otherwise it's coming along beautifully.

    1. You are right, Libby. I can't touch that stuff. As far as the pegboard, most pegboard shelf holders are very lightweight and most shelving is quite heavy. This is lumber we had leftove from our tear down upstairs. The secret to the shelves and all their weight is something called "Faceouts". Why, I don't know because in my mind they are brackets. I will leave you with the link. They are pretty attractive and worth the money. Our boards/shelves weigh quite a bit plus my goodies tend to be in glass containers, my preference. This link to where I got these will explain more about the "faceouts". They take more weight than regular pegboard brackets.

    2. Thanks for the link. I think the shelves add so much to the feel of the space.


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