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Fun & easy layout for ####sewing room

Trentini | Posted in General Discussion on

Any suggestions in transforming a small, dark navy room (9’W x 11’L)into a
fun sewing,sketching room? There is one window facing the front lawn (40″W
x 48″L)and a medium size closet. I require space for 3 sewing
machines,cutting table and I hope to purchase a dress form.  Thanks, Pamela.


  1. Beth | | #1

    Good lighting and light colored walls are what I suggest you put in first. I would begin by painting the walls a light color then put in lighting that bathes the room.

    Enough power outlets are important too. You will need enough for your machines, an iron, task lights, maybe a TV or radio, a telephone, plus anything else you want to put in.

    Congratulations on your own room. I have one about the same size and love it.


  2. Elisabeth | | #2

    How fun that you get a sewing room! And with a window, very nice. Light is important with sewing - for seeing what you are doing and for seeing the true colors of your fabrics, threads, and such. I think I would paint the walls a light neutral color first. The navy could work against you a bit. Does the sun come in the window at any time? That will probably decide how you place your sewing machines. A large mirror is a wonderful tool for fitting projects on yourself and others and being able to see both sides of one's dress form at the same time. A large mirror srategically places will also add tremendously to the light. Placed opposite a window, for example, it can work some magic with daylight and room size. The placement would depend on how the sun comes in, or doesn't come in, your window.

    A folding cutting table would work well in your space. It is a necessary luxury, in my opinion, to be able to spread out the fabric and patterns for cutting. After years of cutting on floors or on not quite wide enough dining tables I now have a custom made drop leaf cutting table on wheels that opens to 5' by 8' and it is amazing. I cut on it of course, but I also find myself working at it for all sorts of things. It is 36" high, a good height for me for standing, plus I can sit at it with a bar stool. Make sure you find a good height for your cutting table to make it comfortable for you.

    Have fun crating your new sewing/sketching room!

  3. kjp | | #3

    Do you have a closet?  If so - put in a good closet organizer with lots of shelves to store all the stuff you probably already have accumulated.  If not, put storage whereever you can in the room.  I have used plastic bins due to lack of budget.  They are acceptable, but I look forward to someday outfitting my small sewing room with better furniture for storage. 

    Before you purchase the dress form, read some of the discussions in the past here.  It seems that making a dress form is much more useful.  My DH bought me a Dritz adjustable form.  It makes a nice hat stand and is good for design ideas, but NOT for my fitting!

    Enjoy - it's great to have your own space!


  4. suesew | | #4

    Does your room have a carpet? I would get rid of that first thing. A carpet just collects threads and pins. I actually have a door over a desk and a file cabinet that holds three of my machines - under a window. Lots of wonderful light and lots of space for big projects What fun to start from scratch with a room.

  5. mem1 | | #5

    Hello, i ahve a sewing room too but the biggest problem is that my family of men and boys use it as storage place for THEIR stuff so i would suggest a padlock!!!!! This also stops persons who shall remain nameless from using my dressmaking sissors for unmentionable activities!

    A mirror beside your door and anotherone on the back of your door would mean that you can look at your back you would need a door stop though!!! . I would suggest that you use your walls for storage with shelving and suspended cupboards rather than taking up precious floor space. I have a long desk across the end of my room and going around one corner for 3 feet. This allows for the overlocker around the corner from my sewing machine. my sewing machine and embroidery machine further up . This works really well as all I need is a swivel chair to turn between the overlocker and the sewing machine.I store notions etc in some nice baskets which have lids up on the shelves and i have a linen press type cupboard for storring fabric etc . I f you are having a sewing table made have little shallow drawers put in so that you can store cotton etc in them and still sit at the machine with plenty of knee room.   I have a cutting out table which folds right down but it is possible to have one of the leaves up and so have enough room for cutting out smaller projects without having the whole thing hogging the space .


    1. Jean | | #6

      I second the padlock! Sometimes DH has so much stuff piled in the room that I can't get near my machines! Since he retired most of our disagreements were about turf.

      1. edgy | | #7

        Start w white paint -- definitely. You'll be amazed at the difference. I have exactly the same size room & it also serves as the household office and other creative stuff area. I have the door on filing cabinets under the window w the machines. Acctually, some type of desktop on drawers line the other 2 walls w shelves above. A tiny closet where I keep the really raggedy-looking stuff. The 4th wall is quite broken up w doors, but has a very high shelving unit with office, painting AND sewing supplies.Wherever there is wall space, it's in use. Bulletin boards are something I like and use. Others may not. 9 ft high ceilings so stuff really goes up and I keep a small stool. There isn't room in this room for a cutting table, so I acutally have that in a different room with the necessary tools there. Works out fine.Enjoy your space! And don't think you have to design it all at once.nancy

  6. amyL | | #8

    What a fun project. I have a small sewing room/computer area for the whole family. I love the color navy and thought it would be a good color (about6years ago) it lasted all of two weeks. I felt like I was in a cave and didnt want to go in ..So i changed the color to a warm butterscotch yellow. I loved it. The sun, when it does shine, pours in the south side windows and made a warm glow. The current color is a medium shade of lavender which my teen age daughter decided to paint last summer. I like it but not as much. I also highly reccomend a cutting table and if possible a Koala sewing cabinet to hold one sew machine and a serger. I got a good deal by shopping around . The dealer met another dealers price. (Now there are a lot of sales going on too.) Also having book shelves is important. Good Luck

  7. alotofstitches | | #9

    Good for you!  Mine is combo sewing, laundry & back entry.  First it was a yellow & now is white and I was amazed at the difference in light output with the small color change--definitely go white space around your sewing machines at least.  I use only miniblinds in window above my sewing table, pegboard all around table for scissors, etc. There's a shallow thread drawer in a "typewriter table" that holds my serger to my left to be pulled up when I sew.  My ironing board is behind me between me and the washer/dryer.  All I have to do is swivel to access iron, serger or sewing machine.  Closet for hanging and i. board storage is right of the sewing table.  If I had it to do over, I would have a larger sewing surface to left of machine as I work on wedding gowns now and the petticoats are huge.  My cutting table is elbow height with pressing surface over the entire table 8ftx54in and has 6 folding doors on each long side of the table for easy access to the shelves below.  As for the dress form--I'd use my $ on something else!  I sew for a lot of different shapes and there is NO WAY you can make a dressform into the body shapes.  I just read today, Clotilde doesn't even offer them in her catalog & as she said, "How can you lower the bust line on a dressform?".  How can you add a bulge at the high hip?  I take lots of measurements and adjust the pattern before cutting.

    1. pjcooks | | #10

      I recently decided to "share" son #2's bedroom, as he's hardly ever here!  I painted the walls an icy blue-a white based paint, but with enough blue to reduce glare.  All white was too glaring for me, even a soft white reduced the lighting in the room.  (It gets no direct sunlight, even with two windows).  The icy blue seems to take advantage of whatever light I have.  Hope this helps!  Have fun!



  8. Lynn2 | | #11


    I, too, have just recently designed a sewing/computer room and love it!  It is about the size of yours, as well.  It has one window (basement view) and painted a light grey/blue with white accessories, including double french doors to make it look not so small and draw out the sun light to the family room.  We included shelving all around the room to serve both the computer and sewing needs.  As well, we have a deep closet with cubed shelving to hold crafts and materials.  I purchases a folding table (2' x 4') that works great as a cutting and craft table.

    I am still working on setting it up, which includes looking for a more industrial sewing machine, but I am sure that I will come across a great deal once I set my sights on it.

    Good luck and enjoy!


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