Tu-Na Quilts: Where the Magic Happens

This post could also be titled Where the Creative Mess Occurs.

Tu-Na Travels on the Quilt MN Loot posts will continue after this brief overview of my sewing space.

Melva at Melva Loves Scraps is hosting a linky party where you can see other quilter’s sewing spaces and quilting studios. I plan to check them all out to get some organizing and decorating ideas. You’re invited too.

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My sewing space is in the laundry room on the lower level of our house. I really meant to get that valance finished for your visit but I’ve been rather busy lately. I recently added a window shade to protect my fabric from the sun when I’m not in the room.

 

Welcome to my Sewing/Quilting area. I’m so glad you came to visit.

 

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My husband recently installed a shelf above the window so I could display my button collection in vintage canning jars and

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fabric pre-cuts and a few quilting books.

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A shelf under the window is a fun place to put some decorations and a jar full of ring pincushions as well as the Tide. I used to work with children, so those blocks are the perfect decoration for me.

 

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My sewing desk holds more quilting books. My fat quarters fit nicely in those plastic bins. A cookie jar holds a nice surprise.

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I like to call them cookies. These are the good kind of cookies to have around–low calorie and no information is disclosed.

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A plastic tower holds pins, machine feet, and other small items that tend to get lost in the drawer. Scissors, rippers, pens and pencils, and small rulers go into the gadget caddy that spins around. This was one of my best finds at a thrift store.

I’ve read before that creative people are messy people. Well, then I must be the most creative person there is. I leave the cleaning until I’ve finished a project. I have several projects going on at one time.

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The sink comes in handy for pre-washing. The counter is the perfect height for cutting. The vase on the right is full of fabric scraps. Yes, there is a wine bottle on the counter. No, I did not just empty it. It’s there so I can make a wine-bottle cover.

 

But I did take a few minutes to tidy up as I knew you’d be visiting.

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This sign hangs over the sink. I’m the only one who reads it.

My quilting projects often flow out onto our pool table as it is the right size to lay out baby and crib size quilts. Quilting projects also flow onto our living room floor, dining room table, and kitchen table. A recent project had me overflowing onto all those areas.

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I had to move furniture out of our living room to make space to lay out this recent quilt project. I’ll be writing more about this quilt soon.

So where’s my sewing machine set-up now? It’s upstairs on the kitchen table. When I have a large project to sew or when I have quilting help, I move my machine into a larger area.

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My mom and I are working together on several projects. Recently, my sisters joined us for several fun quilting days. But those are topics for another post.

I’m trying to convince my husband that we either need to move the pool table out so I can completely take over that room or build a studio. He says I just need to take time to clean up the spaces I have. Sigh.

What I Learned Today:

  1. Cleaning-up is necessary but still not fun.
  2. Finding creative storage solutions that fit tight spaces is difficult.

Question: Do you clean as you go or clean when you are finished with a project?

Linking with

Myra at Busy Hands Quilt for Finished or Not Friday. (Button on the sidebar)

and Brooke at Silly Mama Quilts for WIP

 

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39 thoughts on “Tu-Na Quilts: Where the Magic Happens

  1. Janice Holton

    Great tour, Karen! Love that children’s block idea and the vintage jars full of buttons! Can you show us your favorite button? You’ve made great use of the space that you have! I have to clean up periodically, even before a project is done, especially when I get distracted by another project and start pulling fabrics out to play with. Pretty soon, it’s fabric everywhere and I have to get it back under control!

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  2. quiltgranny

    OMG. We must be twins separated at birth. Before we moved my sewing room was in the basement laundry room. Lucky you, you have a window. Is that a Jen Kingwell Gene Pool quilt top on the floor? I have one started and blogged about it a while back. Yours is bigger than mine. Beautiful space that looks real to me and really loved.

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    1. Tu-Na Quilts, Travels, and Eats Post author

      It’s a plus quilt using mostly Elementary from Moda with green and purple accents. This one is huge at 84 x 99. Too big for me to tackle on the home machine so I rented time on a longarm to get it quilted.

      Yes, my space is real and not made up for a magazine.

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  3. quiltgranny

    I also love how the quilting/creating process takes over the whole house. Because my quilting room is on main floor in our new home, I have to tidy up every evening (pick up scraps and put tools away) but the dust bunnies are definitely winning. It’s not unusual to find a cat napping in one of my scrap cupboards. Sigh…

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    1. Tu-Na Quilts, Travels, and Eats Post author

      I bet it’s really a pain to pick up every day but then again when you’re in the habit of doing so it’s probably easy. Open the cupboard and surprise…there’s your cat. That’s funny. I’m just wondering how he/she opened that door by themselves–pretty talented cats. Now to just teach them to pick up after you and you’ve got it made.

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      1. Melva Nolan

        When we had an indoor cat he would often go to the basement to my fabric stash cabinet (that I didn’t include in my studio tour) and nap. The doors simply close with a magnetic latch, but he would also open bathroom drawers and cabinet doors.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Gretchen

    I’m fortunate that we live in an old farm house that has 4 bedrooms upstairs. We have 3 children so I’ve always had a whole room for my sewing. When our daughter moved out, I took over her bedroom; that is my fabric storage, cutting room (on the old kitchen table my husband picked up at a garage sale before we were married, got a new table to celebrate our 26th year of marriage). I try to keep stuff picked up, but vacuuming doesn’t happen very often. Thanks for the visit to your sewing area. I’d like to stop in for a cup of coffee but Minnesota is a little to far from northern Indiana. Blessings, Gretchen

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  5. Cindy

    Mess oh I never have a mess…I just close the door and it looks perfect. Maybe I should hang a mini on that door with the message ‘Enter at own Risk’

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  6. piecefulwendy

    What a fun tour of your space! I’d share mine, but honestly, it is not pretty — just pretty crammed full of fabric and whatnot! The quilt you had laid out on the floor looks like quite the project. Hope we get to see it as it comes along!

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  7. Jan Altomare

    That was a great tour of your space. I see it a creative not messy. You have order to your things and it looks like everything has a place. I do all mine in the kitchen. Lucky I have a huge island and leave my machine at one corner. Do all my cutting and laying out there. The dust bunnies definitely don’t have to worry here about getting sucked up, they live on.

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  8. Demaris Soso

    Oh, my, what a nice trip to your sewing room, and I think you are well on your way of organization, what with the buttons all in such attractive jars, good use of these jars, and your
    other clever areas of storage. Good Job. To have a studio for all your work and supplies would be ideal, but you would lose the fun of being clever and making good use of the space you have to work with. Besides, doesn’t everyone make use of the floors to display the quilts that are to big to fit the dining table?
    Will be waiting for your next blog to hear more about the quilt on the floor. Should be most interesting.

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    1. Tu-Na Quilts, Travels, and Eats Post author

      You do look on the sunny side of things. The quilt on the floor is finished and gifted. It has quite a story to go with it and the post is in the works. But first I have to finish up the loot post from the shop hop. So much to write about and so many ideas.

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  9. Jennifer @ Inquiring Quilter

    Your space is so neat and tidy! I love that you are the only person who sees that sign. Made me giggle. You have an awesome sense of humor Karen! But your husband is so wrong. You also need space to create. A happy wife has her space. Anyway, if voting is allowed, you can tell him for me that I vote for the pool table to go. I might not help to add that I don’t really play pool, at least not often. I love the tool caddy and the candy jar. You really have found the perfect spot for everything! That plus quilt is gorgeous and I can’t wait to see the post about it.

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    1. Tu-Na Quilts, Travels, and Eats Post author

      I’m not the only person who sees the sign but I am the only person who reads it.

      That pool table hasn’t been used in 4 years. It’s beautiful and an expensive one but still taking up too much space. Time will tell what we do with it. BTW: I’ve been informed that neither of our votes count. It does make a good place to fold laundry though and lay out baby quilts.

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  10. Myra @ Busy Hands Quilts

    Messiness surely is a sign of creativity! I clean as little as possible, only when it gets so bad I can’t find something or the mess just makes me crazy. Good on ya’ for just using the space you have and cheerfully making it work!

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  11. Jen R

    Eek. Cleaning? What’s that? I tend to clean up my space when I am in the mood. Sometimes it happens every other day, sometimes not for months. Rarely, I get too many in progress projects and have no room to work so the cleaning must be done.
    I love your little wooden blocks. Very cute!

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    1. Tu-Na Quilts, Travels, and Eats Post author

      I think I should have said creative reorganization instead of cleaning as I tend to move projects/fabric from one side of the counter to the other.

      I thought the block idea was pretty cute too. Good thing the camera didn’t focus on all the dust. Thanks.

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  12. louise hornor

    I really like all your jars and bins to corral the “stuff”! You’re more organized than you claim to be 🙂

    I tend to clean up at the end of a project, but sometimes the mess is so overwhelming that I can’t keep working. Then I stop to clean, which usually leads to rediscovering fabric, which leads to dreaming about the next project. It’s distracting! But my space is so small that even a small mess becomes chaos very quickly. Sigh.

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  13. Cathy Melancon

    First of all, I am jealous of your big laundry room! I have a laundry closet!! Yiu have made te most of it and I love the decorations and your great storage items! Thanks for a peek!!

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  14. Melva Nolan

    Thanks for the tour of your studio space. You have A LOT of buttons! I had quite a collection, though no where near as large, but gave many to a dear friend who makes button bouquets and likes to use vintage buttons especially. I kept a few, but I know those I gave away went to a good home. 😉

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    1. Tu-Na Quilts, Travels, and Eats Post author

      I’m glad you came to my virtual tour. My button collection is quite large with quite a few vintage ones. Occasionally, I do use some of them but tend to keep adding more. I like having them displayed on the shelf. I saw that idea in a magazine once and was so glad we had enough height for the quart jars.

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  15. quiltypatch

    Your sewing room is a great place, very practical, love the idea of being in the laundry room! Love your cookie jar too 😉

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