5 reasons to spruce up your sewing space

Does your sewing space inspire you?

From Creating Your Perfect Quilting Space

Or do messy fabric stacks, toppling tools, and piles of unfinished projects send your creative muse into hiding?

Clutter, inefficiency, and a simple lack of space can build barriers between us and our creative pursuits. But what if you had a guidebook at your side that could help you:

  • Get—and stay—organized and efficient?
  • Use your space more resourcefully?
  • Create more time to quilt?

Creating Your Perfect Quilting SpaceIn the bestseller Creating Your Perfect Quilting Space, professional organizer—and quilter—Lois L. Hallock offers dozens of ways to make your sewing space a place that will nurture your creativity. From simple strategies for taming your stash to grandiose sewing-room makeovers, you’ll find tips and tricks that will fit your time, space, and budget.

Creating Your Perfect Quilting Space offers easy-to-implement ideas that will help you:

  1. SEE all of your fabric. Learn to fold your fabric uniformly—no matter what size or shape—so you can see your entire stash at a glance.
  2. FIND COMFORT in ergonomics especially for quilters (no more aching back from marathons at the sewing machine).
  3. RETHINK the location and function of your current space.
  4. DEVELOP habits that support short- and long-term efficiency and organization.
  5. MAXIMIZE your creative energy with ideas for layouts, lighting, and storage, plus options for sewing, cutting, and pressing stations.

Get a sneak peek at the eBook in these posts:


Creating Your Perfect Quilting Space Studio PlannerMake your dream quilting studio a reality with Lois’s book and her hands-on Studio Planner!

  • Arrange your perfect studio on paper with more than 40 cutouts representing cutting and sewing workstations, ironing boards, shelving, design walls, and more
  • Use the easy worksheet and graph paper to record measurements, reposition cutouts, and avoid snags like doors and electrical outlets
  • Get the Studio Planner for $12.95 $7.99.

Creating Your Perfect Quilting Space Studio Planner
Creating Your Perfect Quilting Space Studio Planner

What’s the current state of your sewing space: comfy and clean, a bit cluttered, or completely chaotic? Tell us about it in the comments!


34 Comments (leave a comment)

  • I have to say that I get a bit envious of those clean and well organized sewing spaces in the book. I recently moved my sewing space into a larger bedroom, and while it doesn’t resemble any of those rooms, I am making good progress in getting everything out where I can see what I have. It’s been a HUGE job, especially due to the size of my stash, but now that I can see most of the fabrics, I am more inspired to get busy using them ! So I would say it’s cluttered, but clean at this point. And since I have no more larger rooms to move to, it will have to do ! I just have to sew, sew, and sew some more to get these gorgeous fabrics I have into something someone will love and cherish for years to come.

    —Jean Biette on August 20, 2014
  • After sharing my sewing space with a motorcycle and exercise machine for the last 30+ years, I am finally getting a room dedicated to sewing. Right now we are getting read to move out so that a complete home renovation can take place. The "City" has hampered our plans, delaying this process for eight months as everytime we approach them, there is a new requirement. In talking to friends, this his happening not just to us. The "powers that be" are increasingly putting a stranglehold on our ability to update our residences. I don’t mind the "suggestions" for more efficiency, saving energy, etc. In fact, I’m excited about them, but it’s the other "stupid" non-sensible insinuations that city officials demand. The logic of these nusisance alterations have even baffled designers we are working with!

    —Rosemary on August 20, 2014
  • Completely CHAOTIC!

    —Linda Taylor on August 20, 2014
  • Every suggestion in the book is true. I have also found it helpful to purge about once per year, and learned to "let go" of things I have held on to for too long. The principles in the book are exactly what I used when we first created my sewing room. It is truly MY space, and I am there as much as possible.

    —Patty Bower on August 20, 2014
  • Completely Chaotic, also. Doesn’t hender me cause I keep on sewing.

    —Betty on August 20, 2014
  • My room is wonderful, but messy. I pull fabrics and don’t readily put them back. Still trying to organize scraps…from 1.25 inch squares/strips to 4-5 inch squares. Think I will "hit it" this afternoon.

    —Nancy Searcy on August 20, 2014
  • Sewing space, everything in different rooms. Stash in drawers – organized.
    Sewing machine in one room, Iron board, Iron and cutting board tossed in a another room, design wall in a different room. I need to take over one room!

    —Quilting Tangent on August 20, 2014

    I need help!!

    —Barbara McDonald on August 20, 2014
  • I set a New Year’s resolution this year when finished for the day, clean up the clutter. I have achieved this about 75% of the time, still aiming for 100%. A clean room motivates me (maybe that is the child in me to see how messy I can make it).

    —Mary Jordan on August 20, 2014
  • My vacation sewing room is in the loft. I have an old commercial table for the machine and a cutting table on risers for height. Luckily there are built-in drawers for thread and supplies. I hang a quilt over the top log to hide the area from down below.

    —Deanna Sue Adams on August 20, 2014
  • Chaotic because I have now taken over two rooms. The small den is not large enough for another table for my cutting board so at present it resides in the dining room. I figure the extercise to get from the den to the dining room is good for me rather than spending hours just sewing and cutting and not moving.

    —Nancè W on August 20, 2014
  • Chaotic after 4 moves in just over 2 years. Can’t wait to get everything organized again, unpacked, know where everything is, etc. I haven’t been able to quilt for 6 months. It’s been to busy getting everything in shape with my home. Can’t wait for Fall, so I can work outside less, and start quilting more.

    —Suzanne on August 20, 2014
  • HA..HA.. that’s a good one! Mine is so chaotic it’s rediculous! I just close the door and go in there when I need something. I have taken over the spare bedroom now and it’s becoming crazy, although it IS organized! My plan is to completely re organize and clean up my chaotic sewing room…I need Help!!! I need to purge, and refold fabric…have done that in the other room, you can actually see the fabric! 🙂

    —Jeanette Spellmeyer on August 20, 2014
  • My sewing space is shared by a computer, printer and table, two floor lamps, wall shelves halfway up one wall (they are full), one filing cabinet, one dry sink, a waste basket, two dining room chairs, a Featherweight which is on the floor, two bins of fabric, a tool chest,and occasionally one of my husband’s bicycles.

    —Evelyn on August 20, 2014
  • I made one simple move of my sewing machine location and it’s made all the difference! I can’t believe I didn’t think of it sooner. Duh!

    —Marianne on August 20, 2014
  • Completely chaotic! I have UFOs tucked in many places, though a great number of them are in the two 5-drawer dressers in the closet. Most of my 68 baskets of fabric are organized, but there are probably 8 that have fabric just shoved in there, waiting to be organized. I did, however, use Lois’s ideas for using upward space for storage; my wall of fabric goes within 8 inches of the ceiling.

    —Jill Ellis on August 20, 2014
  • I once suggested turning the guest room into a sewing room; my husband asked me why I wanted to restrict myself to one room?

    The truth is, I like sewing on my large dining table in the family room with the big tv on the wall. What I don’t like is having to move my stuff when people want to eat at the table.
    I like having things in different places around the house; the 20 drawer chest with my fat quarters in the family room, my books and magazines split between the shelves in the same room and the shelves in the office. I like having a craft cupboard at the top of the stairs and in the wardrobe in the guest room.

    I think I’d love it so much if I could put it all in once space, but to be honest, I think I’d have to build a new wing onto the house to be able to fit it all in.

    It’s all a Lottery Win Away!!

    —Kayt Deans on August 20, 2014
  • My sewing room is very organized, all the fabrics are neatly folded in a cupboard and all my treads and sewing notions are in the bank of drawers which makes it easier for me to find anything at any time I am sewing. I really enjoy being in my sewing room. Oh I also have a computer and a radio/ CD player

    —Karima on August 20, 2014
  • It’s chaotic, I’m sorry to say. I have a wonderful space — my studio is the whole room normally called a "living room" — ! I also have storage space in the bedroom, the hallway, and even the bathroom linen closet! But I like to do too many different types of quilts/projects, each with its own set of fabrics and tools, even though they mostly overlap. I am in the midst of a severe (for me — I hate to throw away ANYthing!) purge, cutting precious bits and larger pieces into several sizes of squares, strips and strings. Some of my stash has been around way too long! I am now most of the way around the colorwheel of bins, and hope that when I am done, fabric piles on the floor will find their own way into the emptied bins and back onto the shelves …. or is that too much to ask? I am finding it a little easier to let go of small bits by using the cuttings to fill dog and cat beds for the local shelter, making the outside of the beds from misc heavier fabric that has somehow wormed its way into my stash.

    —Carol Barringer on August 20, 2014
  • Every new project begins as a treasure hunt! My sewing room contains small items, such as notions, iron, and UFOs, while books, fabric, and embellishments are scattered wherever there is space in the house.

    —Lynne on August 20, 2014
  • I try to clean my room after I finish each project. Otherwise it becomes a monster. Right now it is a monster.

    —Chris on August 20, 2014
  • Mass chaos right now. Need to get out of Assisted Living and into my own apartment, move all my packed stuff from my house & this place, sell my house and then I will be re-united with ALL my fabric. All (45) 65 gallon buckets…and the smile will return to my face.

    Am working on smaller projects until everything is back to normal.

    —Ann Barlament on August 21, 2014
  • Crazy junky!! It becomes the junk room when cleaning up for visitors. My sewing is done on the dining table 🙁

    —Wilma on August 21, 2014
  • I have the luxury of a big room upstairs where no one else has to see it. sometimes i even clean it up. but one can create or one can clean up so…

    —Pam Reim on August 21, 2014
  • I have this book and have read it cover to cover. I especially liked the material on ergonomics. I am tall and my back used to hurt after sewing for any length of time. I changed the height of my sewing, cutting and ironing surfaces and now can quilt comfortably for hours (if I have time). I also took out all my fabric and refolded it to fit the shelving unit I had and moved fat quarters to smaller boxes. Now I can easily see what I have and smaller bits are not hidden away.

    —Linda on August 22, 2014
  • I purchased this book, and measured everything as instructed. That helped me find my third and FINAL arrangement for my sewing room. I am so thrilled with the organization I was able to achieve this time. And I have a more open space to work in now. I plan to put pictures on FB Quilting. Thanks so much to Lois Hallock!!!!

    —Linda on August 22, 2014
  • My sewing space is currently packed up in the guest bedroom and the garage. We just moved into a 1928 bungalow/farmhouse. My future sewing studio is on the 2nd floor which needs cheap wood paneling removed, sheetrock, paint ect. I won’r be sewing until the spring. I haven’t done any sewing since August of 2013.

    —Ocotilla on August 22, 2014
  • My space is above and beyond chaotic! Partly because my space is so small, partly because I don’t have enough storage space for all my "stuff". I keep hoping that one of these days I’ll have a wonderful space that will enable me to create wonderful projects. Just waiting, impatiently, for that day.

    Cindy A. on August 22, 2014
  • I have a new sewing room. I folded all my fabric just so-so but the more you fold the more the creases to iron back out. I am now folding like it is all on a bolt and group for the projects. The projects are getting done. Having a planned room does help and buying less also helps.

    —Linda Christianson on August 22, 2014
  • I loved Lois Hallock’s book and used her ideas when I set up a sewing room in my son’s bedroom when he moved to his own place. In theory, my space is organized, but once I get going on a couple of projects…then, not so much. So once in a while I do a de-clutter session, straighten up, put away scraps, tools, threads, and then I’m ready to create again! I need to have a clean, clutter-free space to work well and think clearly. I got a wonderful Horn sewing machine table and storage chest (best birthday gift ever!) and though that was quite a splurge, it was a great investment in my sewing efficiency and comfort. A few pieces of second-hand furniture, a comfy chair, lots of plastic storage bins, and good lighting all help make my sewing room a welcoming place to be.

    —Bette Ingoglia on August 23, 2014
  • My sewing room looks like it has vomited! Sadly, I have no more room to put everything away. I use two dressers on top of each other for fabric storage plus numerous large tubs for more. Every surface has stuff piled on top of stuff. For the most part, I know where everything is….usually. I can not invite anyone into my ‘studio’; I call it a "One-butt room". If only I could finish up a bunch of those UFO’s my room could look normal once again.

    —Karen on August 23, 2014
  • Welllll, as I read the other comments, I feel like I am writing all of them. My sewing room is in a different state all of the time. Can’t get through the door, oh isn’t it beautiful, well, it could get better, now where is that project I was working on yesterday? At the moment half of the STUFF is in the living room and half in my sewing room, because I am in the middle of rearranging everything. But in the middle of it, my husband went into the hospital. Common occurrence !

    —Missy on August 24, 2014
  • It is such a mess! But I feel better now, knowing that this is a problem shared by many. Like many of you, I’m stuck in a too-small space. But I don’t let it deter me from sewing.

    —Pearl on August 24, 2014
  • To best describe my current sewing space…I hold a cross in front of me when I enter the room. I like to refer to it as my work in progress since I have been rearranging and storing and stacking new fabrics and projects in plastic with lids containers. I found the absolute perfect box size at Joann Fabrics that holds my fabrics, pattern, threads, and notions for each new quilt that I want to make. Good thing, I’m retired.

    Keep smiling,

    Lynnita Shipman on August 27, 2014

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