Thursday, January 27, 2011

The Sewing Room

My sister in law, Corinna, is a busy gal.  She has a business called Lilypad where she sells all sorts of fun stuff like baby slings and purses and really cool aprons.  She also sells Norwex products.  And she has 3 kids.  Did I mention she homeschools?

So, her sewing room space is an important multipurpose room for her.  And, as happens to the best of us, it had gotten away from her a bit...or, in her words, had become "a scary disaster area".

A few weeks ago I went over and left her with some homework.  Here is what it looked like that day.

The assignments I left Corinna with were to purge as best she could, move the large shelf into the closet area, and purchase some see through storage bins.  Today I returned and we spent about three hours making her space pretty again.

First we worked on fabric.  As you can imagine, Corinna has a lot.  She sorted it into categories and then we filed it in clear bins for easy access.

We put all the fabric bins on the large shelf in the closet along with a couple bins for current projects and a bag of items to mend.

Next, we tackled the built in shelf.

I tidied up Corinna's products.  One shelf for Norwex and one for Lilypad.  I also organized all her gift wrapping items onto the 3rd shelf.  On the floor we have a few items that are rarely used.

On to the desk.  
We sorted all the items on top and inside and gave every last safety pin a home.  One side of desk drawers became Lilypad storage and the other side Norwex. 

 We used storage containers that Corinna already had but just moved them around a bit.  

We also moved the filing cabinet and set of drawers to the space between the wall and desk.  We were able to house all Corinna's scrap booking items in the drawers which gave us more bins for fabric.  Yay!

The end result.

I know it feels overwhelming when you find your space has gotten out of control, but if you follow these steps, you'll be back on track in no time.  First, purge.  Corinna and I had a bag for garbage, a box for give away, and another box for items that needed to move to a different room of the house.  Next, sort.  Put all like items together.  Figure out where they should be stored that will be most convenient for  you.  If it's hard to put something away...chances are, you won't.  Finally, don't forget to practice keeping everything in it's place.


  1. That is a fantastic transformation! Corinna must feel like it is a whole new room in her house. :)

  2. Wow, seeing the before pictures again just really reminds me how indeed very scary it was. I LOVE THIS ROOM NOW!!!! Really, Shannon, one of the things I loved the most is that you MADE me go through everything... at one point I said, "well, I'll just put this here for now" and then a while later you came back to it and told me gently to go through the stuff...I love you for that. I needed that. I think it was organizing therapy day for me and I will be forever grateful.

  3. Yay looks amazing! I know how much I love to get to work in an organized space - I bet you'll be SO productive in here!

  4. Wow! Great work ladies.


  5. I LOVE the yellow chair! It's the first thing I saw in the room; my eyes were not even drawn to the 'mess'. It all looks wonderful!

  6. It looks awesome!! It's like a totally different room. I especially like the Before pictures. It makes me feel good knowing I'm not the only one with messy rooms. Oh. I guess now that this room's clean, I probably am.

  7. Those are pretty sweet before pictures, I agree. They actually make my chest constrict and make me want to run away. I'm glad I don't have to anymore, at least not in that room. :)
    And Rose, that chair was a garage sale or back lane find a long time ago and I love it too!

  8. Do you keep going into the room just to look at it and admire the orderliness of it?? I would.


  9. Corinna-when Shannon posts my laundry room transformation...the before pics will make you so happy. Of course...they were totally staged for effect...hahaha. :) (not!)