I’m back from our annual Retreat Runamuck and the sunshine has returned to Seattle. It generally likes to fool us in May and then lead us into Junuary, but today I’m appreciating its natural helpfulness for photos and for easing my reentry into reality.
I’m all packed up for a flight tomorrow to teach in Georgia. Traveling with quilts is ridiculous and I’ve been teasing I should trek Europe with them.
So with a little time on my hands and the help of natural light I thought I’d share some studio photos and tidbits about the tools that have worked for me in the studio.
Machines- They deserve a post of their own. I have three Berninas and a Juki (not to mention a few in the basement). I know many sewists that love their Juki for quilting, but I prefer mine for piecing. I find the guidelines on the walking foot of the Bernina irreplaceable for the straight line quilting I generally choose.
Pressing station- Tutorial to build your own here. I love the storage this provides, especially for the machines when not in use.
Good Iron- I have used all sorts of irons, but I always go back to this workhorse, the T-Fal Ultraglide. Features include: low cost, loads of hot steam, automatic shut off, no leaking and longevity. Even older models from Goodwill and Ebay have lasted me years. What more could you ask for?
Design Walls- Yup, there’s a tutorial for that too. I have a fully padded room and enough for student use.
Things on Wheels- Each student gets a cart. It’s like a mini home away from home to collect your stuff. When not in use I can push them under the fabric shelves and spread out. The chairs get the same treatment and allow students to choose a comfortable height. The pressing board is easily moved since it has wheels too. All make for easy cleaning.
Basic Sewing Tools- All color coded. This makes keeping track easy for me. For the most part we all share tools and the pins typically migrate to one pin cushion;) The print handled scissors are for paper. Tools that don’t have a place to tie a ribbon got the color code via nail polish.
Trash (scraps) Bins- These help with keeping the fabric bits out of the trash here in Seattle. We actually can recycle fabric if it is separated. Pattern to make these are in Christina Cameli’s book, First Steps to Free-Motion Quilting.
Drinklip– These are darn handy and known to hold a bottle of beer as easily as a cuppa coffee or starch. When I put extra machines away I use them to clamp the cords beneath the table and out of sight. Machines back up and poof there is the cord ready to go.
Ikea Wall Rails- I started with one and it was so handy I added another. Perfect for long rulers, hanging rotary cutters and an iPad.
I have been collecting functional studio ideas on a Pinboard if your looking for additional inspiration. I still hope to actually paint trim and the door this summer so I can move on to finishing the cubby above the fabric shelves that currently is a dust cove.
It’s easy to show all the ‘perfect’ stuff, so I thought I’d also show what has been evolving outside. Jefe built the retaining wall and steps over the past month. I’m hoping while I’m gone this week some magic will happen with backfill, gravel, a step into the kitchen and pavers into the studio. A girl can dream eh?
The retaining wall will have a fence up to the bottom of the kitchen window sill for some privacy in the courtyard/entrance. Siding and paint would be nice;) We’re actually considering painting the brick unless someone can sell me on a color I like that goes with it.
I can already envision hard working sewists enjoying their lunches together in that courtyard. I love useful spaces.
Have a good week Peeps;)