sorting patterns & fabric

I must confess I’m really bad at keeping order amongst my sewing stuff.

I know it is impotant to be organized if you want to be efficient in your sewing, but sometimes it is so much more tempting to start that new project, then to clean and categorize the previous ones.

This habbit of putting stuff in piles, make it inevitable to once in a while do some serious sorting and cleaning in my sewing room.

And so I have.

I started with my patterns. Since I drafted most of my patterns on my own, they don’t come nicely folded and paced in plastic bags. Instead I needed to do all this categorizing myself.

I putt the patterns in different piles (historic, to use again, trash ect.) and tried my best to mach up all those lose pattern pieces.IMG_6221

When finished I’ve tossed about half of them, and sorted the other ones in paper boxes and binders, nicely labeled with year, measurments, and a quick sketch.IMG_6219

 Then it was time to deal with my somehow ever growing fabric stash.

I carried all the fabric boxes and bags into our living rom.IMG_6044

Then I started sorting the fabric in different piles (syntetic, linings, smal scraps, historic ect.)IMG_6045

Some of the piles got quite big. (You might recognize the pink cotton on top (HSF Pink), and the brown flowery cotton print (Sport Anglaise).)IMG_6046The pile for “to make historic costumes of”.

I also found some new fabrics that I’ve forgotten about.IMG_6422A golden patterned syntetic, the striped pistage green “leftover” from my regency gown, and a white striped curtain voile.

Then I packed all the fabrics in different boxes.IMG_7852This is the ones containing syntetics and are going down to the storage in our basement.

And my historic apropirate fabrics, got packed and stored close to hand in my sewing room wardrobe.IMG_7855

I also decided it was time to clean my iron.IMG_7856This cleaning method is the best I’ve ever tried (If you haven’t yet, you really should). You just rubb the white paste to the hot iron and then wipe it of with a cloth. The heat melts the paste and takes the burnt dirt from the iron with it when wiped clean.

How organized are you in your sewing?

Past Sewing “Rooms”

Last time I told you about my favourite room in our new apartment, and I think most of you are in total understanding about how great it feels to have a place dedicated only for sewing (and drawing). But for you how don’t know, I will show you some of my past sewing “rooms”.

But first I think I will tell you about my machines and favourite tools.

This is my sewing machine (Husqvarna Emerald 122), and she’s been faitful (and I to her) for the past 8 years. And hopefully she will stay true for a couple more years, even though the noises she makes make me think she soon will need to slow down and retire.CIMG0933

And this is my overlock/coverlock (Singer Quantum ?) which I bough 5 years ago with my sewing ernings. I’m not as in love with her as I should be, but I guess I never really taken the time to get to know her poperly. She works just fine (even though she sometimes refuses to sew over thick and bulky fabrics). But latley I’ve been abandon her more and more thue to my historical sewing.  CIMG0930

This is one of my best buy ever – A steaming iron (Tefal turbo pro). I can have her working all day, and only have to refil her once or twice (without turning her of), and she still never complain or overheat.CIMG1807Sadly she did die the “never stop steaming” death 6 months ago, when something broke inside and she just flooded the room with steam and coulden’t be stopped. So I replaced her with a cousin (which I hate, and dont have any picture of).

I bought this pin-cusion in a dollarstore and she’s been living on my sewing table ever since. Both pretty and useful.CIMG1798

On thing every seamstres needs is some good pressing tools. I love this “tailors ham” and uses it as often as I can. I also just got a “sleeve board” and that’s great working with pants, shirts and shorter straight seams. CIMG1808

I keep my threads in a handy box sorted by collour and type (buttonhole thread, extra strong ect). This photo is old, and I think I will need one more of these boxes now.CIMG1795

Extra points for guessing the use of this cushion. Hint: It’s a floor cusihon… CIMG1017…I use it when cuting fabric on the floor, saves my knees a lot of pain. I acctualy bought this a H&Ms “Home” department 5 years ago, and it’s been great.


And now onto my past workspaces.

When I was young, and still lived at my parents house, I use to take the sewing machine (a borrowed one from an aunt) and set it up on the kitchen table. This proved a bit tedious since at every meal I needed to clean it away, and then reset everything once the meal was over.

When I grew older me and my boyfriend’s first apartment was a 2-room, with a fairly big livingroom, where I used one of the corners for my sewing space. Looking at it now it look so messy. CIMG1800

But I did had a big table to set the machine on.CIMG0931

Back then I had this “great” way of storing my up-coming projects – in plastic bags on the floor next to the dressform. Omg, and my boyfriend didn’t leave me. At least I did have a bookshelf for my sewing books. CIMG1799

Only at this time I only had this many sewing/fashion books (half a shell). CIMG1548

“The messy creative process”. But I do remember that chair – It was so old and uncomfortable, having spikes from the seat almost coming through the fabric. You didn’t have those massive sewing spurs that goes on for hours and hours on that chair, I tell you.syhörnan svartvitrutig klänning

Then we moved to a smal 1-room flat, and I needed to choose wisely on which of my sewing things to take to our new home.

Here I got a smal corner behind the beed and the bureau. And do notice the newspaper suffed under the leg to keep the dreadful table somewhat stable.CIMG3665

Doing my pattern drafting at our coffé table.CIMG2971

And the ironing at the window, beside the kitchen bar-table.CIMG3671This was insane, and I missed my dressform a great deal, but it only lasted about 1,5 years.

Then we moved again – and once more we setteled for a 1-room apartment.

Sadly I couldn’t find any pictures of my workspace, which lasted for about 2 years. But I can tell you this 1-room apartments had suprisingly many rooms, like kitchen/sewing room and living room/beed room/saloon/dining room/sewing-in-front-of-the-Tv-room. I basacly had my stuff everywhere.

And now we are living in our 5th apartment – and I finaly got my very own sewing room.

And you know – the smaler your space are, the bigger the dresses will be. balklänning tyll fram

Me (5 years ago) working from under a pile of tuille.syhörnan tyllberg

A Room of my Own

My sewing have been on hold for about two weeks because we have been moving.

It is quite frustrating getting this crazy urge to sew and then realising everything you need is un-optanable in the bottom of some box, somewear.

But the move is not all bad, in fact it is great (once we got everything in order). We are up-grading from the various 1-room apartments me and my boyfriend use to live in to a 4-room, and you all know what that means – A sewing room for me!

I think that’s the thing I’m most exited about. And I need to force myself to split my time to get the other rooms in order too – not just “my” room. But it is fun to try to figur out the best way of putting the furniture to get the most out of the (smal) room.

So lets take a look at what I got so far. IMG_5009A cheap bookshell for varyous sewing tings, and boxes of tooles and fabric. All within close reach.

IMG_4702Yesterday I picked this up at a hardwear store. It’s ment for carpenters to keep their nails and such. But it is also perfect for buttons, snaps, ribbons, zippers and everything else you will need.

IMG_5011I also got a sewing table (were both my machine and overlook will live), only to be used for that purpose. (Ignor the bags under it and sthe plastic bag keeping it somewhat stale.)

IMG_4711One of my demands for this room was a wardrobe. And as you can se I’ve stuffed it full. The bags and big boxes conains fabric and will be sorted and stored in our basement.

IMG_4712And I need at least one shell for my historical shoes.

IMG_4710The rest of my costumes are stored in lovely boxes like these ones, sorted by decades or style, (undergarmnents, headwear, 18th century dresses, ect.)

This next thing is something I’ve been dreaming about for a long time.

To get all my fashion and sewing books gathered at on place.IMG_4703And now I have it. One hole bookshell for my sewing literature (there are also some books about art, design, textiles and historical people).

IMG_4705These two shells are reseved for my historical costuming. I think I will need some more books, to cover the holes in the ranks.

IMG_4733And trying to be a bit more organized this year, I got a whiteboard to write all the necessary “keep in minds” on. Like HSF challenges, costumers info, up-coming events and what I will wear (and need to make) for it.

IMG_4699And as my cuting/drawing table I got this arcitects table from my boyfriend (It has a glas insertion, which can be lit from beneath, to help copying drawings). Sorry for the mess.

IMG_4701(Last week I was busy polishing up my portfolio for aplications to a school).

IMG_4696And the best way to get a overview of yor work is to trow them all on the floor (ehm, no).

And this week my room has changed again.IMG_5008Now the focus lies on the 1880s opera gown, and trying to keep track of both time and money spent on the dress.

IMG_4734The dressform also fits into the room (barely).

IMG_5018But I will continue to do most of the handsewing in the couch watching movies.

I’m really happy about my sewing room, but I guess it will take a while to figur out exactly how to keep everything in the best way.