Nancy Zieman organize your sewing room







A call came, “We’d like to photograph your home sewing studio to feature in an upcoming issue of Creative Spaces: Quilting & Sewing, a special issue from the editors of Quilters Newsletter.” First thought: what an honor! Second thought, what a mess I have!

I have allocated my home sewing studio for personal sewing: landscape quilting, and sewing and embroidering gifts. Being in the sew/quilt biz, I have two other sewing studios, which shouldn’t surprise you. Another is at the Sewing With Nancy TV studio at Wisconsin Public TV and the other at my office. All three studios are filled with decades of fabrics, notions, and supplies.

“Get Busy and Clean Your Sewing Room”

So, to avoid embarrassment I decided to get busy and clean. The magazine wanted to see my organization, which at this moment was nonexistent. The urge came early one Saturday morning. Without the thought of taking a photo, drat, I started to clean my main closet, first a corner, then all out warfare!

First Step, Organize Usable Fabrics into Categories

It was like a trip down memory lane. Bought this in 1995 for a suit… Never going to happen! Thought this fabric would make a great pieced wreath to give a friend for Christmas, but it never made it out of the shopping bag. You get the picture.

I stacked, bagged, and labeled the fabrics with the hopes that the new recipients would appreciate knowing what treasures, slightly aged treasures, were tucked inside. I emptied three storage bins of fabric!


Nancy Zieman organize your sewing room




Nancy Zieman organize your sewing area



Next, Good-bye Linda Evans Patterns!

Then there was the shelf of patterns. I saved about 20, organized and culled out about 200. Not all of you could stand to part with your patterns, but at this point, I was getting a thrill out of giving away old baggage. I was pretty sure that the patterns were complete, and I took a few photos to remind me of how I used to dress!


Nancy Zieman organize your sewing area



Finally, Sort my Precious Landscape Fabrics

We each treasure some fabrics more than others. Since I spend free moments/hours landscape quilting at home, the foliage, floral, tree, bark, and leaf prints are like watercolors or oil pastels to a real artist. Yet, there were those purchases that would never make sense. Besides, as my storage bins I was using castaway order processing, picking, and packing baskets used in the early 1990s at Nancy’s Notions.

Buying somewhat transparent dishpan tubs, I culled, sorted, and saved the fabrics that I thought would serve my designing purposes. A few Post-it Notes and, ta-da. A fresh start!


Nancy Zieman organize your sewing area



Load up the Van!

I started stacking the giveaway pile on the piano bench, just outside my sewing studio. My husband took a look, shook his head, and knew his job was to load the van and head to the second-hand shop.


Nancy Zieman organize your sewing area



Final Stage—Gratification!

Last week I found myself just standing in awe while looking at my organized closet. My guess is that it took 10 hours of work and a trip to the store to purchase dishpan tubs and swim noodles—to organize my landscape quilt wall hangings. The freeing side of it is, as they say, priceless!


Nancy Zieman organize your sewing area





Nancy Zieman organize your sewing room







Fabric and Pattern Stash Giveaway

I did other cleaning and primping, but the majority of it was in the giveaway. My only regret is not doing it sooner. By the way, I fully expect to see some of these vintage patterns on eBay!

Inspiration from a Nancy’s Corner Guest

You may find more inspiration or motivation by watching my Nancy’s Corner interview with Gretchen Hudock from Reorganize Today.

Bye for now,

Nancy Zieman The Blog

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