Tuesday, May 14, 2019

Spring Clean Your Studio Blog Hop

Welcome!  This year I can't believe I was actually brave enough to sign up for the 5th annual Spring Clean Your Studio blog hop hosted by Cheryl Sleboda of Muppin.com  I think this is just about the worst my room has been in the almost 12 years I have been using it!

My room is in the back of a 1909 two story house.  I am lucky in that my room has two closets - which are very handy for hiding storing supplies.  My room is about 11 ft by 10 feet, so not very big.  It also doesn't have much wall space - but I am working at making the best use of the space.  I do have a nice big south facing window which is lovely for light, and the garage blocks me from the late afternoon sun, which is nice in the summer because it stays nice and comfortable in here.

So...on with the before situation.  Piles.  Heaps.  Mounds.  Definitely to many projects, but besides that, very little clean up between projects.  Where to start?  Something easy, I think, like the little spot beside by sewing machine.  Much better now.
Next, I tackled the top of the small dresser.  I hardened my heart and decided it was time to get rid of some stuff - organization is wonderful, but when you are dealing with too much stuff, it's just clutter.  I put several things in the donation bin, including a jewelry stand that was pretty, but just not that useful.  Then I decided to tackle the mound of batting filling the corner.
I pulled out the entire pile, then brought out the bin that's supposed to hold batting scraps and got to work.
I decided that only what would fit in the bin, plus anything cut into 2.25 inch strips or 6.5 inch squares could stay.  All the larger pieces were folded and labeled.  The rest was cut into squares or strips and the leftovers went into a bag for donation.  (My guild makes and donates dog beds to the local shelter)  Here is the after - the bin is back under the table and I was able to put my green file box here as well as a couple of small boxes that I moved from the small plastic bins under the window.  Everything looks much neater and less cluttered now!
Yes, the scrap bin is still threatening to fall over, but I will get to that soon - I have enough to work on for this post, and I think that's a project for another time.  I don't want to get distracted and not complete my task.

What is this junk under the cutting table?  Leftover pajama fabric from making Christmas PJ's four months ago!  Wedding dress remnants.  Cotton denim for pillows, and a quilt that someone gave me to finish up.  The flannel was cut up into squares for rag quilts, wedding dress remnants bagged for storage, Denim and quilt were placed into a more appropriate storage area as well.  Now that looks better!
I'm starting to see a trend here.  I move from one project to the next with lightning speed, not bothering to put things away.  I know that I've been busy, but as much as the clutter drives me nuts I really need to start taking the time to at least put things away as I go!

Moving onto the other side of the room, here is the latest pile.  This includes backing fabric for a top I finished last week, plus additional fabric to add borders to another project.  I got it all folded and put away.
Now that's much better! Still a lot of piles, but they are sorted and the projects are ready to work on in their turn.  The shelves on the right were gifted to me - they originally held flower bulbs!  The little cubbies are great to hold project boxes and are short enough not to block my design wall.
My favorite part of my project?  The new shelf I added to the center of the wall.  I was able to get some stuff off the sewing table and feel more organized.  I also hung pictures properly and moved my thread racks so they fit better.  I love having more space on the sewing table so I don't feel so closed in!

Woohoo, look at all that space!  Now I am really ready to do some quilting!  I still have lots of stuff, and probably always will, but at least it's cleaner now and a lot less cluttered.  I do still need to vacuum up the rest of those dust bunnies, but I am happy to have spent the time to do a good cleaning.
I definitely want to continue to finish the projects I have started, but I vow that I will be better about cleaning up after each work session so I won't end up with so many random piles.  I will also continue to purge items (and fabric) that I am not using and that I don't need.  I really want to move away from the clutter and piles so that I can have a more peaceful and relaxed feeling in here.  I also plan on repainting that ceiling white soon!

At least now you know that you are not alone in being messy - I think a lot of quilters deal with this same kind of disorder and overabundance of fabric.  It's part of the process! The most important thing is to deal with it so that you enjoy your space and be creative.

My best tips for cleaning up your sewing studio?
  1. Start small.  Don't overwhelm yourself trying to do too much at the start.
  2. Don't be afraid to get rid of some stuff.  You can't organize clutter.
  3. Clean up as you go.  Don't let tasks pile up on top of each other.
  4. Be creative with storage - you don't need to spend a lot of money to organize!
  5. Don't get distracted and start a new project - keep your eye on the goal!

I hope you've been enjoying reading everyone's posts for the hop - I've been super encouraged and have had fun getting to know some new-to-me bloggers!  Thanks so much to Cheryl for organizing us and letting us have fun showing you how messy we really are behind the scenes, because you know - it's not all pretty pictures and perfect staging.  At least not around here!  Once again - here is the line-up, we're almost at the end!

April 29 – Linda Bratten – http://lindabcreative.blogspot.com/
April 30 – Sandra Johnson – http://www.sandrajohnsondesigns.com
May 1 – Jennifer Schifano Thomas – http://www.Curlicuecreations.com
May 2 – Becca Fenstermaker – http://www.prettypiney.com
May 3 – Sue Griffiths – http://www.duckcreekmountainquilting.com
May 4 – Kate Starcher – http://katiemaequilts.com/blog
May 5 – Jo Westfoot – http://www.thecraftynomad.co.uk/blog
May 6 – Sam Hunter – http://www.huntersdesignstudio.com
May 7 – Simone Fisher – http://simonequilts.com/blogs/news
May 8 – Elisabeth DeMoo- http://www.brownbirddesignsquilts.com
May 9 – Sarah Myers – http://www.quilted-diary.com/blog
May 10 – Amy Bradley – http://www.purplepineapplestudio.com
May 11 – Kathy Nutley – http://www.QuiltingsByKathy.com
May 12 – Carla Henton – http://createinthesticks.blogspot.com/
May 13 – Sherry Shish – https://www.poweredbyquilting.com 
May 14 – Kate Colleran – http://www.seamslikeadream.com/blog
May 15 – Pamela Boatright – https://www.pamelaquilts.com/ This is me :)
May 16 – Cathy McKillip – http://wishuponaquilt.com/blog
May 17 – Cheryl Sleboda – http://blog.muppin.com


Jennifer Thomas said...

Hello Pamela! I didn't know you were a fellow old house dweller! I love your blue walls. They're so pretty. And that sloth block/quilt on your design wall is cute! I think you did a great job, especially taming that batting pile. I get batting everywhere. It's crazy. Have a fabulous day!

Kathleen said...

Love seeing people un-earth their studios! I am forever trying to keep mine in better shape, and really am getting better about it. I too have too much stuff and if we ever let go of the aparment, I’m sunk. We have an old cottage 1905 in Maine and it is small. I could get some of the stuff in, but I will definitely be expanding into the other space. SO, I try to be more an more cautious about not saving and moving more out and less in. Its working, but it is a process. Fun to see your!

Barb said...

I always enjoy the before and after pictures....love it

Shelina (formerly known as Shasta) said...

I liked seeing the before and after pictures too - good to see that it is possible to clean up the sewing room. I wouldn't know. :) Seriously, your post is inspirational. I have been trying to clean up a little at a time, but you are so right, it would be so much easier if I cleaned up as I went.

O'Quilts said...

wonderful job...great to see the progress...you are inspiring me.

Emily said...

This looks great! I have to really clean up my sewing space the two or so times a year we have guests, as I sew in the guest room. That helps force me to clear off the tables and sort through the clutter.

Quilting Gail said...

Hi Pamela!
Thanks for showing us your space! You have inspired me to start tackling my area! Or at least start with one section at a time!
My dream is to clean up as I go ... but that's a dream that never comes true! :-)
Quilting Gail

Karrin Hurd said...

Great work, I love seeing the before and after pictures. I too have a smallish room 8x10 with wall to wall furniture and things can get out of hand easily. Thanks so much for sharing your progress!