Dreaming about a studio

I am getting my own studio!!  We call ourselves “Snapdragon Studios”, but up to now that has only been half-true.  Although we do work out of two spaces, Kim’s is a gorgeous sewing room in her walk-out basement (think big windows, pretty decorations, lots of storage) and my “studio” is a perpetually messy desk next to the kitchen table in my 488 square foot house.  Think nice light, no storage, have to clean the bills/ pile-up off everytime I want to sew.  Also think cutting expensive fabric on the same table my toddler smears spaghetti sauce around on.

We have a detached garage that’s extra deep, and up to now it’s been used primarily for storage (not a lot fits in 488 sq.ft.) and for Paul’s work bench.  There’s just enough room in the back to squeeze a studio in for me.  It will be 7′ deep by the width of the garage, which is 14′, and oh, do I have some plans for it.

Since I don’t have any building progress to share yet (we spent the weekend moving three big storage shelves and organizing the part of the garage that won’t be studio to make room for the new wall), I thought I’d share some of my inspiration pictures with you.  (Click on the pictures to be taken to the source.)

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Thinking this color for the walls. I also love the natural elements and the white furniture.

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We are adding two windows to the side of the garage that faces the backyard so that I can watch the kiddos play from my desk/ sewing table.

 

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This is similar to the cutting tables in the costumes shops I worked in and it will be THE MOST WONDERFUL THING. Mine will be lag bolted together like the ones in the shops because I want to be able to climb and sit on it without worrying that I’ll crush it, but this is the basic idea. The casters are key so that I can wheel it out into the garage to be able to work on both sides.

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We’ll be installing French doors to lead from the garage into the studio to get the cutting table in and out.

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Pegboard is key.

My current sewing table/ desk will move out there (and will, incidentally, free up all kinds of space in our house), and we will build cabinets to hang above the cutting table for fabric storage along with some open shelves for my sewing books.

I am also daydreaming about making felt covers for the windows and having a lighting set-up and backdrop wall to be able to better photograph projects, buying a proper dress form instead of my sad little leaning tower of Pisa (who has lots of personality, but almost no use in fitting garments), bringing in a little comfy chair for sitting while hand-stitching or conferring with Kim, and of course geraniums in window boxes and all the pretty little details.

I’ll be sure to share updates as we go along, but please share if there are aspects of your craft room that you can’t live without.  What am I forgetting?

-Elizabeth

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11 thoughts on “Dreaming about a studio

  1. I get sooooo excited when I’m thinking of creating new space. I’m not very good at guesstimating the size of the space so I always over-plan. Enjoy this wonderful project. I’m jealous! (I know, I’m not supposed to be jealous). But I am very happy for you and your new plans.

    • Thanks, Betty! I can’t wait for it to be done and ready to use. After a lot of years of sewing in whatever little space I could carve out it’s going to be *so* luxurious to not have to unpack everything before I can start working!

  2. Looks and sounds awesome. I don’t blame you for the excitement. I know the feeling, just how I felt when I got my own room/studio 6 1/2 years ago. Only thing I can see missing is ironing board/space?

    • Good looking out, Charlotta! I currently use an ironing board that hangs on a door and folds down, and I am thinking of hanging it on the wall in the new room because I don’t like taking up floor space with a traditional ironing board. I’m a little obsessed with my iron (it deserves it’s own post), so I’ll need to find it a place of honor. 🙂 Do you have pics of your studio that I could see?

  3. Very exciting! I can’t wait to see how it turns out. The absolute musts for my craft spaces include:

    – Amazing lighting. All the lamps, everywhere.
    – A hideaway for my sewing machines. My Singer goes into a “garage” cubby that’s part of the bookshelf attached to my desk, and my serger has a little wheeled cart that slides all the way against the wall under my desk. There’s no crawling or awkward lifting or “where will I put it while I’m doing this space-consuming hand work?” – I just slide them to their places and have an empty table.
    – A jar of the most used tools mounted to a wall within reach and a drawer of the less frequently used tools also within reach; “with in reach” is defined as less than an arm’s length away without turning or leaning when I’m sitting where I normally sew.

    Good luck and have fun! I hope you’ll update us with a post on the must-haves you’ve decided on.

    • Good call on the lights. I am still thinking about how I want to do that. I love your garage system- not sure I’ll be able to do it exactly, but I am thinking about how to be able to push the machines out of the way when I want to. I am thinking pegboard on the wall above the desk and another by the cutting table for scissors/ rulers and rotary cutters etc. My rotary cutter is currently under my desk somewhere because it fell off due to being homeless, so I can’t wait to for it to have a place to hang its hat. I probably won’t go as far as painting the outlines of the tools on the pegboard, but I might… 🙂

  4. Yay for sewing spaces! Would you believe that at the moment we are in the middle of enclosing a verandah that will be come my own sewing space, and it’s almost identical size to yours. So many great ideas in your post, I hope you don’t mind if I borrow some 😄

    • That’s awesome! Let’s put our heads together- I would love to see yours when you are finished! I probably have unrealistic expectations, but I can’t help but think that I will be more productive, a better stitcher, a better writer and probably smarter and prettier in my new studio. 🙂 If nothing else, I’ll have a lot more room in my house, so that’s something. Good luck with your renovation!

      • Im all for unrealistic expectations haha. I’m just so excited to have my own little space that I can lock myself away in and create to my hearts content (did we say something about unrealistic expectations haha.
        I think mine will be quite simple in the end. I have all these grand plans, but then remember the space is quite narrow so I’m trying to pair back a bit.
        The layout plan at the moment is, at one end, a wall to wall desk with a small return for my machines, with storage underneath ( if there is room ) & possibly an ikea expedit unit at the end of the return. Under the one of the windows will be a drop leaf cutting table. ( I am so jealous of the one you have planned) and maybe a chest of drawers or cupboard if it will fit. Id also love a nice comfy chair somewhere in there but we will see how it goes 🙂

    • The inspiration pic is hers, actually! If you click on the picture it links to her post about it. We had those types of cutting tables in the costume shops I worked in and I’ve always dreamed of having one of my own. That to me is the ultimate luxury in home sewing. 🙂

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