I don’t know about you, but my “sewing dungeon” (named because I’m in the basement) is always in need of some organizational help. I’ve come to terms that my space will ALWAYS be a work-in-progress and I’m okay with that. It’s my creative space and unfortunately, the physical cannot keep up with my mental states of art ;) So whenever there is something out there to help me tame my chaos, I’m all ears! Below are 5 of my personal organizational tips…from one that will require some investment to my favorite…re-purposing!
1. Mason Jars
Admit it….you have a bunch of these already. Mason Jars have been quite the decor trend these past few years and I know I’ve received them as gifts and have bought my own as part of plenty of Pinterest projects. However, you can collect them by just eating! Many of the pasta sauce companies have beautiful jars nowadays and you just have to clean them out.
I’m a visual person and need to see what I have. These jars are perfect for keeping my Clover Clips and Safety Pins together. I like being able to bring the jars wherever I want to work in the house. The only down-side is that my hand doesn’t fit in the opening, but shaking the items out hasn’t been a deterrent for me. You could use these for all of your notions….elastic, trim, needles , etc. and to hold your tools such as rulers, scissors, and seam rippers….endless possibilities!
2. Binder Clips for Zippers
If you have ever worked in an office environment, these Binder Clips have come home with you once or twice… If not, these are cheap and can be found easily wherever office supplies are sold. I used to have a home office back in my sales days and have a ton of company provided office goodies. It’s nice to find other uses for these, other than to keep snacks fresh!
These Binder Clips are great if you have a pegboard. I use them to clip my zippers together by color family so whenever I need one, I can easily make a selection just like a paint swatch ring. Additionally, I use these to hang up directions/tutorials of projects I sew often. It’s great to have them accessible right in front of me on the board.
3. Car Organizer = Ruler and Pattern Organizer
So, I bought this Thirty-One Hang Up Activity organizer with full intentions of actually using it in my car. But it was from a local Buy-Sell-Trade Facebook group (bonus for being cheeeaap!) but required a little stitching to fix a pocket that was falling apart. By the time I actually fixed the pocket, my boys’ legs had reached the point where they can (and will) kick anything on the back of the driver or passenger car seats.
My awesome score on the BST site was sitting in the back of the mini-van until I realized it could hold all of my “flat” sewing supplies. Yay!!! As you can see, it holds my various rulers, marking pens, patterns and even my Fold-Away station. This would be great if you are not a pegboard person, but would like to hang some supplies close to your machine without having to take up a lot of space. You can find a ton of similar versions of this organizer on Ebay for less.
4. Sew an Hour Basket for Fabric Storage
Have you made an Hour Basket yet?!? Kelby Sews has this great FREE pattern available here in her pattern shop. I have made quite a few of these baskets but they have all been for gifts and not for myself…cue in the latest IG Alison Glass Mini Quilt Swap. As part of my swap package, the lovely Kitty from The Night Quilter gifted me this awesome basket. Not only is it absolutely gorgeous, it has pockets all around…genius!!!
This basket is great for holding all kinds of odds and ends, but I am using mine to hold my beautiful Alison Glass collection. The finished dimensions are perfect for fat quarters. As pictured, I have 27 fat quarters and 15 half-yards….ALL in there! I plan on make a few completely in my favorite designers to hold their respective fabrics (don’t worry you know I will share pics.)
Although this organization idea takes up some fabric and some time, it is great for scraps….which is less evasive on the wallet. Check out #hourbasket on Instagram for ideas on how to design your own!
5. Use Mini-Bolts for Fabric Storage
Did you know that Paper Pieces, the supplier of all kinds of English Paper Piecing (EPP) templates, also has a division called Polar Notions? Well, they have these great heavy duty plastic organizers (11-3/4″ x 7-1/2″) that can help you create these sweet mini-bolts. If you have a lot of yardage like me, the original size is for you. You can take typical 42-44″ width fabric and fold it into fourths which will be the optimal size to wrap around these boards.
I happen to buy a 50-pack of these guys when Polar Notions was having a ridiculous 50% off sale….so I would suggest either subscribing to their website newsletter and/or following them on Instagram @polarnotions to learn about their sales.
As you can see, my original stash was in pretty poor shape. And then after, my fabric is just SO pretty. I can easily see every fabric and not have to run into another incident of I-gotta-tear-apart-my-whole-dungeon-to-find-this-one-particular-fabric-I-KNOW-I-have :) You know you’ve been there! I hope this will keep my fabric less wrinkled as well. I make fabric pulls for my Etsy shop customers all the time and it will be nice to pull smooth fabric going forward.
The only down-side of these boards is that I ran out…a little too quickly. A 50-pack was not enough…sad to come to the realization that I have a serious fabric addiction…but don’t tell my husband! He already has seen my full bolt collection increase! Yikes!
I hope these ideas help you keep your space organized….or maybe you are already a sewing cyborg clean freak?!? Only a myth, I’d say…
What has been the most unusual re-purpose of an item for your sewing space? I’d love to know!
Keepin’ it (somewhat) clean,
*I have not been compensated for use and/or mention any of any items in this post. All opinions are my own.