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Marsha Nichols

planning a quilting room need lighting suggestions

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HELP, I am in the planning stages for a sunroom teardown and converting it to my quilting/computer room shared with my DH. The room will be 30'X30', have two exterior doors with slide up windows, one door to the garage, and three windows by the computer table for natural light. I need help on deciding the best type of lighting over the cutting table, sewing machine and Mille (yet to be shipped). I am leaning toward LED can lights above each task area and corner LED sconces when not using the quilter, cutting etc. I will have dimable table lamps by the computers for late night surfing. The room will also have a seating area by the pellet stove. There will also be bookshelves and storage cabinets. Any suggestions will be appreciated since this is the only time I will get to build a room. Thank You. :)

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When we built my studio, I had to made lighting decisions early in the roughed in stage of construction stage so the electrician could wire before the drywall went in. I had a pretty good idea where I wanted things but just in case, and to allow for flexibility, I went with track lighting. It is very easy to add to the tracks and veer off to wherever you need to. I did find that I needed more lighting over the cutting table so we added pendant lights to the tracks and they work great. My room is a little smaller at 20 X 36.

Also, since we live where we see a lot of gray skies I have many, many windows and 3 skylights for a lot of natural lighting in the daytime.

I would be worried about heat from too many LED lights especially if I lived where it gets pretty warm.

There are pictures in my webshots if you are interested in looking, addy below.


Lynda Newell

Seaside, Oregon

Millennium

http://community.webshots.com/user/newellyn

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I put in natural florescent bulb fixtures (holds two bulbs about 30" long). I put two side-by-side above my Millie and one unit above my cutting table. It worked well, but I still could have used more lighting coming from the sides toward my longarm, rather than only directly above.


Joan

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Guest Linda S

You know, a lot of people really go all out with their lighting. I installed absolutely none when I built my studio 7 years ago. There were two basic light fixtures in the ceiling, and that's all there is now. I rarely have them turned on. I do have a side light that is mounted on the machine that shines across the quilt top. Let's me see all I need to see, along with the light from the machine. I don't want any more light either!

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Thanks for all the suggestions. I didn't think about side light on the quilt frame. Lynda, your studio is wonderful. Since my DH will use his computer in the room I will have to have some extra lights. Zoning the area to only turn on what is needed will be helpful. The ceiling plug for the Mille will be great.

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I would definitely look into LED. Whenever we get around to renovating the basement, that's what we'll do.

Up front cost is much higher (going down all the time), but payback is less energy/heat and very long life on the fixture/LEDs. I recently got my first fan/light that was LED and I love the illumination. To me, it's less tiring on the eyes.

Anita

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Thanks Anita, I am going to Lowes today to look at their display. My DH found LED sconces online that have possibilities for lighting in corners when you don't use overhead lighting.

I know the cost is higher but this is the only time to do this room and once it is done I have to live with all the descisions.

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I already had the ceiling fan and lights in my room when I redid it so all I did was add the other three strips of lights. I got them at Lowe's. I put one strip over the Liberty, one strip over my cutting table (also covers the ironing board) and one strip over my sewing table (also covers the Studio Cutter and closet). The cost wasn't bad...a little over $100 a set I believe and they came with the lightbulbs...the electrician was a bit more, although he put in extra plug receptacles in the floor for me at the same time. I had him put in switches so I can turn each of these four light stations on one at a time. That way if I am sewing I don't have to have the lights on over the Liberty or if I'm quilting then I don't have lights on over my sewing machine. This was a GREAT idea.

I chose these lights because I am able to turn them to shine on different areas if I need to, I liked the way they looked and they were not expensive. I've had no problems with them casting shadows or being warm, but that may be because I have a vaulted ceiling. I don't know. This is just an idea.

My suggestion is to have as many lights in the ceiling as you can. Try to avoid lamps or lights that have to be plugged in and require cords. Those cords will eventually bug you.

I'll include a pic.

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Serendipity: The discovery of something wonderful quite by accident while looking for something quite different.

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I recently added new lighting to my studio...the original 4 tracks with 3 heads each were not enough light and the lights from the ceiling fan were useless. I bought some inexpensive track lights from Lowes which came with 3 heads. I bought an extra head for each track. We managed to get 10 tracks on the ceiling by using each electrical box to power two tracks. The kicker is that I used compact florescent bulbs...the do take a minute to come to full power but they are very bright, use lots less energy than the incandescent bulbs and they don't warm up the room. I can aim the heads to give me plenty of light over my sewing & quilting machines, cutting table, etc.

Now I'm a happy quilter :D Nancy in Tucson

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I could take a photo of the ceiling, the rest is not photo-ready right now :D I'm up against a couple of deadlines and it is CRAZY in there! I will take a pic or two tomorrow when the light is better, OK? Nancy in Tucson

PS, can anyone advise me on how to add more than one photo file to a post? You'll need to dumb down the instructions for me ;)

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I have both "warm natural" fluorescent lighting in one part of my sewing space, and LED track lights in another area of my sewing space---I'll take the Warm Natural fluorescent lighting!

The LED track lights create heat, and no matter how I turn the individual small heads, they still create some shadowing over my cutting table and ironing table. Plus the heat the small LED's put out may feel nice in the winter, not so in the Summer.

The track lights look nice, but are not as functional. So, to decrease the shadowing the fixture makes I have set up lamps near the cutting and ironing tables. I'm considering removing the track lights and putting up fluorescents. The warm natural light fluorescent tubes cost a bit more, but the light is so natural looking, not at all like regular cool fluorescents.

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Here you go, Marsha. Photos of the track lights from Lowe's. Each track comes w/three heads (about $99 if I remember correctly) and I purchased extra heads (each $10)...the compact florescent bulbs draw so little power, I was able to put a total of 33 lights on the ceiling! It does take them a minute to come to full power but no heat is generated even when I leave them on all day long.

Hope this helps, Nancy in Tucson

post--13461906939177_thumb.jpg

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thank you Sparkle and Mrs A for your input and the pics. I have track lighting similiar to yours in the sunroom we are going to demolish. I use the CFL in the tracks but they still produce alot of heat and shadows that is why I was considering LED.

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I notice that all the lighting examples are a variety of heights from the machine. Does anyone have the closest and fartherest distance from the machine that produces the best light? My ceiling will be standard height of about 8'. I wasn't going to put a light bar connected to the frame.

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My main concern with the height of the lights was to have the shades just high enough to shade the bulbs so they didn't blind the operator. I bought the shades from gammill, they are the ones used on the overhead light bar that can be purchased from gammill.

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