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Deb's Sewing Room Layout and Cabinets

My sewing room at my previous house was wonderful! It was located in "the barn" which was a short distance from my house. We lived on 200 acres in east Texas. My front yard was a 100 acre hay meadow. Quite a nice place to relax!  I moved last June to a new home and will post pictures of it soon.  But in the meantime I will tell you about my last sewing room!


When you enter the barn you see the door to the sewing room at the back of it. Occasionally I would see a field mouse scurrying around but my dogs took care of the snakes, thank goodness!

 I had an 8 foot sewing table custom built for my sewing machine. It has room for my sewing machine, serger, television, and DVD player with lots of room to spare. The insert around my machine allowed me to quilt, appliqué, and piece with ease!

I replaced my rickety cutting table with a 9-foot unit. It had shelves, drawers, and even a neat place for me to store large rulers and cutting mats. I had my fabrics in clear tubs labeled with the appropriate color group. The small containers across the top of the fabric wall were all of my on-going" projects.  I also designed a 12-foot ironing center. Part of the unit was at desk height so I could just swing around in my chair and iron sitting down if I wanted to or I could stand and the elevated portion if I so choose. My Elna press was on one end with a computer and printer in this unit.

What is the best lighting to use for a sewing room? 
Twice as much light is needed for sewing as for casual reading. Good lighting, general and local, is essential in the sewing center and of course depends on the layout of the sewing room.

General light is usually provided from a ceiling fixture. General lighting requirements for a room where sewing will be done depends on the size of the room. If your room is less than 8 x 10 feet, you should have a ceiling fixture using 150 watts incandescent or 60 watts fluorescent light. If your room is 10 x 12 feet or larger in size, you will need two watts per square foot incandescent or one watt per square foot of fluorescent.

Lighting experts recommend at least 150 watts incandescent or 60 watts fluorescent local lighting for cutting, marking, and machine sewing. A light such as this should be shaded so it does not shine directly into your eyes. It should be positioned 14 inches above the working surface, 12 inches to the left of the needle, and 7 inches from the wall. The bottom of the shade should be at eye level and the inside of the shade should be white.

An adjustable recessed reflector or recessed eyeball fixture positioned in the ceiling above a point 13 inches to the left of the needle and tilted toward the needle also may be used to provide local lighting for machine sewing. Fluorescent lights shielded by a panel are good under cabinets located above the sewing area.

If you use fluorescent lighting in your sewing room, for local or general lighting, it is best to use deluxe warm white tubes that give flattering light. It does not distort colors any more than incandescent light.

Provisions also must be made for adequate wiring in your sewing center. Locate duplex convenience outlets within easy reach of the sewing machine, iron, and other equipment you may be using. Take care to locate convenience outlets so cords plugged into the outlets will not interfere with traffic patterns. It may be desirable to install outlets 40 to 42 inches above the floor for easy access.


Deb Luttrell is owner and operator of Stitchin' Heaven

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Stitchin Heaven
P.O. Box 1914
Quitman, TX 75783

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