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Let's Organize!

Quilting can be a very rewarding pastime, but can also be a cause for frustration. Quilting and sewing areas tend to fill up pretty fast, and for those who can't stand clutter, it can be very distracting to say the least. Creativity isn't always organized. It takes a lot of fabrics, notions, threads, rulers and other quilting paraphernalia to create a quilted masterpiece. These important tools tend to take up a lot of space. However, an organized area can make quilting more enjoyable. It's hard to be creative in the midst of total chaos.

My "before" photos of my sewing, storage and design areas.

I've received numerous letters and emails from our readers asking for advice on organizing and setting up sewing areas. While I am a crazed quilter, I must admit my sewing area leaves a lot to be desired. This newsletter and the next one will be dedicated to reorganizing quilting spaces. Thanks to my readers for your comments. It's encouraged me to do something about my out-of-control quilting area.

As a quilter, I have the same issues as most quilters. I have more ideas than actual time to execute them. When I do have the time to quilt, I find it difficult to stay focused. I find I am sorting, cleaning or looking for the tools of the trade. I have two areas that I use. They are divided between two rooms. My cutting and designing area is separate from my actual quilting area, so this will truly be a two-part makeover.

The first thing I did was to figure out the space I had and how best to arrange it. I sketched the floor plan for both areas, and then I made a list of what I wanted to accomplish. My actual quilting area was pretty much functional; it only needed a bit of organizing. It was my storage and staging area that needed the most work. I listed the problems in each area. Then I began to brainstorm ideas to resolve those problem areas. I made a wish list of possible solutions and then began to search for ideas in catalogs and magazines, and on Pinterest. I must say, Pinterest is a great place to find creative solutions to your organizational needs.

It's much easier to start on paper with the layouts and measurements before you start to disassemble existing areas. Start with a plan and do some research. Know your needs.

Go-Organize, a company specializing in craft storage units, had everything I needed to give my design area a total makeover. I found every possible unit I could wish for to organize my quilting spaces. This company has a wide variety of easy-to-assemble and reasonably priced units that would work for any crafter. I thought that part of the problem with my space was that it just wasn't big enough. But by moving all my design stuff out of my cutting area, I think both areas will stay clutter-free and be more efficient. (Of course, I would still like to have more space.)

Assembling the Go-Organize units for my newly acquired space.

Next, I sorted through my storage units such as boxes, jars and other containers making the decisions as to which were working and which needed to be replaced. I found several great storage ideas on Pinterest that will work perfectly for my space. I found lots of storage ideas using regular household items. With all the fresh, new ideas, I'm really excited with the choices I've made, and I'm ready to start the makeover.

My files and Patterns in need of organizing.

Knowing what to do with all the necessary tools, gadgets and growing fabric surplus can be overwhelming, but with a plan, I'm definitely going to enjoy this project. I'm off to do a bit of shopping.

Organizing your area can be very liberating. Let me take you on my journey. Let's de-clutter together. Phase 1 has begun for me -- how about you?

The move and makeover has begun. The chaos must get worse before it gets better!