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Me again. I haven't told you all that my husband hired a carpenter (my husband will help as time allows) to finish our daylight basement at the lake so I can get moved up there with my machine. I have said that the lake house is really nice but it just doesn't feel like home. Somebody told me it's just cuz your quiliting machine isn't there and I think they are right! Anyway, please pass along to me any good quilt studio ideas that you may have. I'm all ears...(well actually I am all ears, they stick out a little bit, but I keep them covered!)

Can you tell that I am giddy over the upcoming quilt retreat?

I am not ready for it, haven't got my stuff cut out, but I can do it there if I have to. I have been drinking wine coolers every night after my last awful days at work. (and I am not usually a drinker) So, I have been a little scared to use a rotary cutter. If I slipped and cut myself fatally, I'm sure they would all think I couldn't take it anymore and ended it all! :o:P

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Yep - you could become a serial cutter with the wine coolers so be careful!

Sounds like your studio is going to be really nice! If you studio is large enough, think about adding a nice cutting station. I've seen nice pics that I don't have any of my own. Also, design your studio so that it is efficient - a triangle maybe. Cutting area, sewing area, pressing area.

Please share pics when you are done!

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My studio is pretty basic, but it works for me. There are a couple of pictures on my blog. I have my longarm, cutting table, ironing board, and a table for my DSM. Plus assorted wire drawer units, some different cubes that have filing drawers, drawers and shelves. I found things that fit under the wings of my Koala cutting table so that I could use that space more effectively.

DH has installed more lights that are directly over my work areas. I have a flourescent workshop light fixture with Ott-Lite bulbs over my longarm, track lights with pendents over my cutting table and spot lights over my DSM. Each section has it's own light switch so that I don't have to have them all own if I don't need them. We also covered insulation board with flannel and attached them to the wall, so I have an 8 foot square design wall. Lighting is easy for us since we can access the attic above the studio. I would want to have put more thought into it if I had to finish walls/ceiling for the studio and did not have access from above.

Think about how you work when you are quilting and what you need to have close by. I used drafting paper and plotted out where I wanted things. Once I decided where to put the longarm everything else just worked itself out.

I still need to hang quilts, which I am planning to do this month. And I would like to get a small LCD TV to hang where I can see it from my longarm so that I can see instructional DVDs when I am trying to learn something new. But neither are preventing me from working, so they are low on the priority list right now.

I hope your new studio is everything that you dream it will be! A walk out basement is a great place for a studio.

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Robin, what fun!

1) Put in plenty of lights. Group them and have multiple switches so you can turn on just the lights you need. I have 4 groups of recessed lights, 2 strips of track lights, and the overhead fan with a light in it. When I'm piecing, I just turn on the lights over my sewing station. When I'm longarming, I use 2 of the recessed groups and 1 of the track lights. It saves on electricity and cuts down on the heat generated by the lights.

2) Put in lots of power outlets. My builder thought I was nuts but I have used almost every one of them at one time or another. I even have one in the floor in the center of the room. If I had known where I was going to set up the long arm, I would have put a couple in the floor under it too.

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Congrats Robin.... dream on it a few nights, or weeks, and you'll know what to put where and why.. Try thinking about it when awake but with eyes closed, and see if you can see yourself working in there, with various floor plans.. I think that will help you eliminate one or two.

Just enjoy the heck right out of it.

How far is that from your home to drive, or will it be a family move?

God Bless and success,


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As much as possible have things set up (such as lights and outlets) so that you can have the freedom to move things around and still have the lights and outlets where they are needed. Maybe even put outlets in the ceiling or at counter height so the access is easier and cords can be out of the way. You could always hang lights from the ceiling outlets so they could be moved for the best lighting direction.

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Robin, I just did a bit of a remake on our studio (my DH shares because his embroidery/heat press business has taken over a small section--and I keep it SMALL:)).

I bought a bookcase at Ikea (Billy Byom) that is white with glass panel doors to keep my fabric in. Then I used Carla Barrett's idea of the comic book archival backing boards to wrap my fabric. Sort of like the Polar Notions idea only WAY cheaper. Now my fabric is on mini "bolts" and I can see it all. I also took this opportunity to wash everything before putting on the boards so that I now know that everything in my stash is pre-washed. Polar Notions also had some boards for Fat Quarters but they're so expensive, I'm going to try cutting the comic boards in half lengthwise to see how that works.

You can get the comic boards from E-bay for the least amount of $$ (that's me...bargain shopper extraordinaire:D)

You are going to have so much fun setting things up!! Make sure you share pictures.

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Dory! You got ALL your fabric in ONE Billy bookcase??? You don't shop enough girl! ROFLOL Check out my studio pics and you'll see a SERIOUS fabric collector! At least I used to be. Now I'm on a fabric (& food!) diet and trying to use up some of this. My friends and family are fightiing over who is NOT going to look after my fabric when I'm gone; AND they're quilters! ROFLOL


BTW, that's only PART of my fabric. There are 12 more drawers at the other end of the cutting table, and the cutting table itself has bolts underneath! And the Billy bookcase on the right has more bolts.

When I first started quilting, I read that a quilter needed to build up their "stash". I took it very seriously!

Now, I'm on a diet! Have cleaned out quite a few batiks sewing for the bushfire victims in Australia. Still lots more to go!

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