Tuesday Tips {Gigi's Thimble}

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Hello and welcome to another installment of
Tuesday Tips!

I'd like to invite you into my studio today...
You've seen bits and pieces here and there.  But today I will show it to you in it's entirety.  I really wanted to do a walk through video with you, but this will have to do :)  I hope you'll enjoy the pictures!

This little shelf is a place to display things I love; wooden spools (in the apothecary jar) that belonged to my husband's grandmother, a little collection of antique irons, and some fabric.  The magnetic board was a gift from my sister and is great for keeping notes and keepsakes on.

What quilter doesn't love color? 
My Moda Bella Solids color chart is a great reference and fun to look at.
The damask boxes add a pretty visual, while storing specialty threads that I don't use very often.  It also doesn't hurt to display fabric that you love in a sewing room.  The fat quarter bundles inspire me and remind me about future projects I want to do.  Below the shelf, I have two curtain rods.  I found them at Ross for $3.99 each!  Yay!  I wanted Freezer Paper at an arms length since I use it so much for applique.  And polka dot wrapping paper is another necessity (perfect for every occasion!)

The newest addition to my studio makeover is my peg board.  I love having my rulers accessible, yet out of the way.  Before, they were precariously piled on a shelf in my closet just waiting to fall off  (which can lead to breakage). 

I also hung a few patterns on my peg board that are either too big to fit in my pattern binder or that I just think are pretty.  A red and white quilt is on my quilting bucket list and I think Petit Fleurs by Fig Tree is just the one I want to make.

I keep all of my small scraps (1/8 yard or smaller) in these jars. I have 6 jars (three on this dresser and three on the floor next to the dresser).  I divide the scraps into different colors groups.  For example, the large jar in the back left holds red and pink scraps.  The other large jar holds blue, green and purple scraps.  The small jar holds oranges and yellows.  I also have a jar for light colored neutrals, a jar for grays and blacks, and a jar for browns.

I keep my threads near my sewing machine (right behind it, actually).  I like having them in this little cupboard that I bought for about $4.  They're kind of hidden behind the doors, but not entirely.  I can easily see what colors I have or do not have.

This large, double-wide dresser allows for everything to have a specific place.  The small drawers at the top hold my gadgets, pens, lint roller (gotta have one!) my scissors and rotary blades and my embroidery floss.  All the other drawers hold my fabric and a few random projects.  I like that it's all hidden away, but easily accessible.  I keep every thing folded in color order and it makes me want to keep it that way :)  You can see more pictures and details of this dresser (and what's inside) HERE.

You may wonder why I'm showing you a picture of a trash can...
Well, I often find that I'm walking across the room to dump scraps and clippings into my trash can.  Now, I have two trash cans.  One right by my machine (because I'm always clipping dog ears and threads there).  Another (bigger) one is at the other end of my cutting table so I can discard of unusable scraps after cutting.  With two trash cans around, I have no reason to not have a clean and clear cutting area.

The tutorial for it is one I got from Heather at the blog, {House} of A La Mode.  I actually have two but I only keep one in my sewing room.  The other one is in our basement.  The reason I have two is because when I take photographs of my quilts for my pattern covers I like to lean the two design walls against my house (I always take the photographs outside).  Then I stick my quilts on them (they just stick right up because the design walls are wrapped in batting).  Then I smooth out any wrinkles and make them nice and straight. The design walls are only 4 ft. wide and my quilts are often times wider than that.  I like the walls though because they are big, lightweight and portable.

My sewing room, is actually an extra bedroom in our house, so I'm lucky to have a walk-in closet with a few built-ins.  In here is where I keep some of my quilts, patterns and a big Rubbermaid box full of random pieces of batting.  I've also got a few boxes and baskets that hold ric rac and my 30's prints.  I keep my works in progress in clear boxes on a shelf so I can easily see what I've got going.  The brand of these boxes is called Protect 'N Store and the two sizes I use range from $4 - $6 dollars each.  I like keeping all of the fabric for each project in its own separate box with the pattern inside on the top so I have everything ready to go. 

So that's it.  That's how I roll :)

I'd say this room is a sewing room on a budget.  There are no high-end cabinets, just my little dresser that I picked up for $40 at a thrift sore.  There is no fancy cutting table.  I got mine for $50 at an antique store.  My cutting mat is relatively small, but it works.  I like to look for deals and find things that are pretty but don't cost a lot of money.  

I hope I've encouraged you to get organized and display the things you love. 
After my little sewing room makeover, I feel more inclined to keep it clean and put things back in their places when I'm done with them.  I like the way it looks and I feel that my creative juices can flow more freely!

Thanks for stopping by!  And remember, a room can be functional and pretty without spending a fortune.

Have a wonderful day.
~ Amber


  1. So cute!! I just got tons of inspiration/ideas for organizing my sewing room :)

  2. Your room is so darling! I just love how organized you are. And all of your little details are really fun too. It's kind of a room that you have to take your time looking at. Love it!

  3. Thanks for showing us your room. I too have a room posted about here http://boptoni.blogspot.com/2011/07/its-been-while.html but I really struggling to make it pretty and I really want to make it mine lol.

  4. oh..I have the perfect place for a little piece of pegboard...I am gonna steal some from the shop...

  5. Thanks for the tips. You have an attractive and functional sewing room, done on a budget. I really need a design wall. I currently use a flannel sheet spread on my queen size bed - better than nothing but not idea as I have to pack it up in order to go to bed.

  6. I've looked at all your Tuesday Tips, but this is by far my favorite!!! I love your peg board, and the curtain rods for the paper. I'm definitely "pinning" this to remember!
    Thanks for the tips!

  7. I meant to thank you for the tour of your cute sewing room, but I posted it at Sherril's blog instead. Sorry about that. Love your blog.

  8. I love how cute your sewing room is. And very neat and tidy! I love the pink dresser with drawers, I could use something like that. I also really like how you are using the apothecary jars for fabric bits. I put mine in bins & boxes right now, but it isn't really very pretty or as accessible, so I might go find me some big jars to use. Thanks.

  9. What a great set up! I'm going to look for jars like yours to hold scraps - they look nice that way! And thanks for putting the idea in my head about the curtain rods to hold stuff that comes on rolls for easy access. I already have two from a former apartment that I could put up and put to use!

  10. It is wonderful! I can't wait to see it in person tomorrow. :)

  11. Your room is sew darn cute :) and functional. Thanks for the tour and tips!

  12. It looks SO great. Love that dresser that you painted and I'm happy that you have those scissors hanging. I saw a pair in an Anthro magazine, I think? and totally thought of you.

    SUCH great ideas!


  13. It's beautiful and classy, Amber, just as you are!

  14. Thank you for posting the pics of your studio! I love the idea of putting the small scraps in the large glass jars. I'm a new follower and already love your blog!

  15. Your sewing room is wonderful! Doesn't look like it's done on a budget at all. Love the idea of the fabric scraps in the jars & of course I love your dresser. Thanks so much for sharing. Happy Holidays!

  16. What a neat room you have and so much light.
    Merry Christmas to you and your wonderful family.

  17. OhMyGosh Amber -- it's all SO gorgeous! I LOVE LOVE LOVE that wrapping paper idea. Your room is so, so pretty AND organized -- I'm super impressed!

    My room is unfinished. And ugly. Very sad. And now I'm saying Uh-Oh. ;-)


I ♥ to hear from you so please feel free to leave a comment. I read each one and try to respond as often as I can. Thanks so much for stopping by! ~Amber