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How to Organize a Small Sewing Space: Tips & Tricks

I love scrolling Instagram and seeing people who have entire rooms dedicated to sewing. Some have cabinets and shelves lining the walls that are filled with gorgeous fabrics. They even have a table big enough for a space for their sewing machines, sergers, and a full cutting mat. It leaves me in awe every single time.

Those rooms will always probably be just a dream for me. I don’t have an extra room in my home that I can claim as my own. So for now, I cut my fabric on the dining room table, store a little fabric on a bookshelf, and my sewing machine lives on a little desk between two gorgeous windows.

My setup may seem like a dream to some people. I know plenty of people who love to sew, but have to stash their sewing machines away when they are done. Or they have to get creative when they are midway through cutting a project on the dining room table when dinner time arrives.

Whatever you have as far as a sewing space. Whether it is an entire room or just a temporary setup, just focus on appreciating what you have and all the joy (and sometimes frustration) that it brings you!

Juki

My sewing machine is a beast of a machine and was an investment in this craft that I love so much. My first machine was a simple Brother sewing machine that I received for Christmas when I was 20. It stayed in its box and came out a few years later for a random quilt. It wasn’t until I moved into my now home and was pregnant with my first child that I dusted it off and took it out of its box for the last time. Together we sewed burp cloths, my daughters first dress, my first Zadie Jumpsuit, and dozens of bags.

During the summer of 2020 my local fabric store, [Sew to Speak], announced that they finally had more Juki’s in stock after months of waiting. With COVID19, sewing became popular and it was really hard to get new machines. I knew I wanted to upgrade, and there was a sale and they were going fast, so I jumped and made a huge purchase.

The Juki DX7 is a great machine and I’m so thankful that I have it. It is like driving a luxury car. It runs so smoothly, you can easily change the stitch speed, it has a separate motor to wind bobbins, it can store extra feet and bobbins in the base, it has an automatic threader, it can cut threads, and I can go on forever.

If you are looking to purchase a new machine I encourage you to purchase one from a local store. It helps support your own local sewing community and if something ever happens to your machine, they will typically help you out!

threadJar

One little thing that makes a big difference while I’m sewing is having this little mason jar by my side. It is essentially a little trash can. Whenever I cut threads, or if I get a thread nest, or run out of thread, all of the extra stuff goes into this jar, which I later throw out. Before I had this jar I tried to keep everything in a pile. I’m sure you can imagine what it’s like to have your fabric pass through a pile of threads. It’s a mess! I also love that I can look back and see the previous projects I was working on. It reminds me of layers in the crust of the Earth.

accessories

My desk is actually a small computer desk. On the pull out shelf (where I’m assuming a keyboard is supposed to go) I stash some of my little accessories. I always keep a few things on hand: a pair of small thread snip scissors, seam gauge, a seam ripper, and a small bowl full of wonder clips and my extra sewing needles. On the other side of the shelf is the manual for my sewing machine, which I still reference often! I know some other sewests keep these little knick knacks in a small pouch. Do whatever works best for you! My daughter is growing in height and curiosity, so I’m not sure how long I’ll be able to keep things down here.