Author Topic: Sewing table  (Read 10433 times)

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Offline Learn to Sew

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Sewing table
« on: September 18, 2007, 08:06:08 PM »
I need a new sewing table for my Pfaff 2036 and my Bernina 1200 serger. I currently have 2 tables of different heights in an L shape and I really need only 1 table. My sewing room is 10 x 10, so things are tight in there. I am 5 feet 2, so an ordinary table of 30 is much too tall for me to work on. I tried it last year with the tall table and my chair raised up a lot, but this was not good for me. I was not enjoying sewing at all. The legs are metal, so it could not be cut down or shortened in any way.

The ideal height for a table for me is 26-27 inches high. I would like a table 6 feet long, so I can put both machines on it and keep things I use frequently between them. Right now, things are everywhere and this is not working for me.

I currently have my cutting table all the way opened to 60 inches, as I am cutting patterns today, I can't more in this room! I run into everything. Other things in this room are my ironing board (set up and in use), a 4 drawer dresser, and a standing clothes drying rack. When I get better storage, the dresser will have to go. I can't get to the dresser as my hanging clothes rack sits in front of it. I have to move the rack just to open a drawer in this dresser.

I need the drying rack near my ironing board. I tried moving the rack to another room, but kept bringing it back in. Then there are my current 4 foot sewing table and the other 4 foot serger table. When the cutting table is only open to 36 inches, it is not so bad, but can still be cramped in there. It is never folded up all the way, but mostly open to 36 inches. I constantly use it.

Any suggestions on how to make this room more functionable for me? Where can I buy a table that is what size I want? I know I can order one from Everything Office Furniture for $346 delivered, but right now that is just too much money. I've waited a year for this table and I can see waiting another year to get it. We have no truck, so garage sales and such are out of the question.

Carol

Offline ljh

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Re: Sewing table
« Reply #1 on: September 18, 2007, 09:24:51 PM »
You can get "banquet" tables with folding legs that are adjustable in height at office supply stores or Costco.  Or if you live anywhere near an Ikea, they have desks with adjustable legs as well.  The least expensive of these aren't terribly sturdy, but many of them would work well and there are several sizes available.  Good luck with your search.  BTW, I find I'm happiest when I can fold up and put away the racks or tables I'm not using at the moment, even if it means I just have to get them back out again the next day... 

Linda
Linda

Offline BetsyV

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Re: Sewing table
« Reply #2 on: September 18, 2007, 10:23:28 PM »
Carol my mom is also 5'2" and she is using a flush door on 2 2-drawer file cabinets. It's not too tall. She also uses a (very) old desk chair from a student desk/chair set we got in the 1960's. She only has the one sewing machine but the table is the perfect height (low) and it certainly is plenty big - 30 or 36" by 72".

Actually, the file cabinets are cardboard ones and are starting to give way a bit, but they have been in place for, dare I say it, at least 25 years. We moved into that house in 1969, and it had to have been less than a year before she got it set up this way. The sewing cabinet was the only piece of furniture that did not survive the move from PA to NH.



ETC: ummm. at least 35 years. 2007-1969 = 38
« Last Edit: September 18, 2007, 10:25:11 PM by BetsyV »

Offline judic

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Re: Sewing table
« Reply #3 on: September 18, 2007, 11:05:35 PM »
I used to have the ironing board set up permanently in the SR too. It became more of a place to put things, than to use for regular ironing. I got a piece of the waterproof board that they use behind showers in bathrooms, and cut it to a better size. Then I covered it with 2 layers of wool blanket, and a piece of cotton batting. Then I stapled a double layer of muslin on it. I use it for all my pressing. I can slide it over the edge so I can iron shirts, skirts, etc.  Now mine is 24 x 48, so I can open out the 45" fabric and press it without a fold.  You could make one to fit the top of your cutting table since you 'never close it up'. You can certainly use the mats and cut on top of that mat (I regularly do), but you can also take it off and lean it against the wall, to use a larger mat.

My sewing table is not nearly as deep as most, only 21". I find it's enough for most things. and it's against a wall.  Think countertop depth. You might be able to get a piece of a countertop and put it on 2 file cabinets for support, giving you support as well as storage space. Let's see, Home depot for the countertop, and maybe an office supply surplus store for the file cabinets. I'd replace the dresser with an open bookcase, as tall as you want it - Ikea?  They have lots of options and not terribly expensive.

I have 2 pegboards mounted on the walls. One, behind the sewing machines for scissors, etc., and the other on the wall by the cutting table, with my rotary cutters and rulers hanging right where I use them. I also have a corkboard on the wall - it's surprising what you can hang up on the push pins! I also have more bookcases on another wall - not just for books. I put adjustable shelving in the closet - after removing the doors. Bins and those small drawer units fit nicely there.   Think of what you can hang on some kind of a board on the wall - and open shelves instead of cabinets. 
Oh, I just took another look around the room. One of the doors into the room has a 7" 'lost area' behind it.  DH put some shallow shelves there that are perfect for the plastic shoe boxes - now I have storage there all the way to the ceiling (with the step stool that is nearby.) Just be sure to put a label on the side of the boxes so you know what you have in each one. I have buttons, zippers, bias, elastic, belting, velcro, lace, and all kinds of things there. 
Good luck and be creative - You don't have to use things especially designed for sewing in your sewing room.
Sewing helps keep me sane.

Offline bettyny

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Re: Sewing table
« Reply #4 on: September 19, 2007, 01:46:39 AM »
I have a table with metal legs that was just to high.  Out came the old hack saw and in a few minutes it was the right height.  I used the rubber cups for leg ends to finish the ends of the legs.  Good luck.

Offline fzxdoc

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Re: Sewing table
« Reply #5 on: September 19, 2007, 06:41:48 AM »
Carol, here is a link to the type of table that Linda was talking about.  I have one and just love it, since it is height adjustable from 25" to 28".  It also comes in a 6 foot long version.  I would rather have two of the smaller sized tables, since they are easier to arrange, and I like having a different height for some of my machines than for others.  This way I can customize the height to the machine.

Adjustable table at Sam's Club


photo credits at www.samsclub.com

I have seen this same table have this same table at Walmart and Costco as well, both in the 6 foot long and the smaller versions.

Kathryn

Offline Learn to Sew

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Re: Sewing table
« Reply #6 on: September 19, 2007, 03:40:24 PM »
How do you sit under it? With the legs in a cross over pattern, is there enough room? Why do you just love it? I have never seen anything like this table. We have a Costco, so I will have to check it out. The link did not tell me how much the tables cost.

Carol
« Last Edit: September 19, 2007, 04:04:37 PM by Learn to Sew »

Offline fzxdoc

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Re: Sewing table
« Reply #7 on: September 19, 2007, 03:57:12 PM »
I love it because it is lightweight and stores flat.  I do not have room for all of my machines in my current sewing room.  So I pull that little table out and set up whatever machine I want to work with.  It only takes a few minutes. 

I have no problem getting my feet and knees under the table.  I usually put the foot pedal where the X is, and I don't notice bending over unnecessarily to reach the machine.  However, I usually have my embroidery machine, embellisher, or coverhem on that small table, and I don't work at any of those machine for hours at a time.  I have a big sewing desk for my sewing machine.

It's a handy little table.

Kathryn

Offline Learn to Sew

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Re: Sewing table
« Reply #8 on: September 19, 2007, 04:28:44 PM »
You posted as I was editing. I asked what size cost how much. I think it might work for an ironing table for me, but I would like the legs to be more open under it. An I-beam type I think will be what I have to have. I just can't afford what I really want, and hate to settle on something I have not sat at. I am glad it works well for you.

I need to buy a bookcase and get rid of the 4 drawer dresser. Currently I have the dresser and 2 large see through bins for fabric storage. If I bought the table you suggest, I would not have a place for my plastic bins. They sit under my table for the serger right now. The table is an old sewing machine type. It has an area that opens up so you can put your sewing machine in the low spot and bring the arm down, so that it becomes a flat surface at sewing bed height. An old version of the modern sewing machine cabinet-but in table form. In the low spot is where I have my serger. It is 6 inches lower than the rest of the table. The table takes up too much floor space and it is a 'catch all' right now.  I also have too much stuff in that room. Now that I am thinking of changing tables, storage is important.

Would a 6 foot bookcase be a good place to store fabric? It would not be near a window, but behind the door. Or, I could put the bookcase in the spot I currently have the too large and big seger table.

I have GOT to rethink that room. I can't function in it.

I have 2 large sewing baskets I got for Christmas 2005. I put a sewing basket on my Christmas list and got 2 of them. I should have taken one back, but I could not decide which one I liked better. I don't know if I want to keep them or not. I am thinking of getting a stackable bin in plastic so I can see what I have for things I use all the time. Rulers, tape measure, etc. Table top, with see through drawers. JoAnn has them all the time.

For pattern storeage, I currently have 1 bin about 12 inches tall by 15 inches deep. It is full and I need more storage for patterns. I do not have more than 30 patterns, but they are starting to get out of control. I do not want to go to a notebook system at this time. Not for only 30 patterns. What size of plastic bin is good for storing patterns? It has to fit either under my sewing table or in the small closet.

I forgot to mention I also have my dressform, Meme in the room. She is next to the ironing board and in front of the closet. What I need is a bigger room!

Carol

Offline peter

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Re: Sewing table
« Reply #9 on: September 19, 2007, 06:31:14 PM »
Carol, my sewing room is also 10 X 10 and it doubles as my office space.  Living in NYC allowed me many years of mulling over how to use a small space efficiently.  Here's what I've done in my room:

I've removed both the entry door to the sewing room and the closet door.  This is an older house with a 24" swing door for the closet.  You would be surprised and how much more space that gives you to work with.  All the wall space behind the doors is usable and the visual impact is worth having no door into the room for me.  If you don't like it--just put the door back on.  Leave the hinge intact and just slip the pin out to see how it works for you.

I avoid putting any furniture on the floor.  OK, this sounds nutty.  If it can be hung on the wall instead I do that.  This works for shelving and a big working table.  Having the floor clear of large objects will make your room feel larger.  All of my shelving is the metal bracket type with pre-made shelving.  All white and all the same.  Keeping things as unified as possible also helps.  I've got two full walls covered in this shelving and I'm very happy with it.  Because it's open and it hangs (floats) on the wall it doesn't feel confining.

Now for my table.  I ran a full length of worksurface across one entire wall--the full 10 feet.  In my room it's the wall opposite the door you enter.  It's supported by heavy duty shelf brackets on 3 sides and one drawer unit in the front--at the middle.  It's made from MDF--medium density fiberboard.  Since it's supported by wall bracing it can be placed as low as you want it.  The drawer unit was a short one that I already had and I have some 2X4 wood scraps under it to bring it up to the right height to support the worksurface.  You can't see the 2X4's unless you get down on the floor as they're set back from the edge of the base.  I've doubled the thickness of the MDF to make my top very rigid.  It's at HomeDepot or any building supply co.  They can cut it to size for you.  My top is for separate pieces screwed together with the seams offset from each other--eg:  2-6' lengths and 2'4' lengths.  MDF is very heavy so you'd need an extra hand to help you.  I love having one big continuous surface that I can use for anything.  My machines can be pushed out of the way or brought to where I want to work.  Because there are no legs you've got a nice open area under the table.  I can stand on it--it's very rigid and strong and inexpensive. 

One wall has floor to ceiling wall shelving.  The lower shelves are deep and can hold big plastic bins for fabric.  I'd post a photograph of my room but the hard drive where all my photos are stored has just crashed.

HTH
Peter
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Offline Learn to Sew

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Re: Sewing table
« Reply #10 on: September 19, 2007, 07:27:43 PM »
Too bad we can't see how this all works, but I do understand how it is when a computer crashes.
 
I have thought of taking the closet doors down before. My closet opening from door casing to door casing is 46 inches. It is wider than I thought it was. I was thinking it was 40 or 42. I store some of my husbands summer wardrobe in there on hangers. It is possible I can get those things in our dresser, but the dresser is pretty full. Maybe I can store them on the upper shelf in the closet. I have room up there.

I moved his coats to the hall closet. The hall closet is 30 inches wide and after cleaning it and getting rid of some things we no longer need, it is clean and I can see the small floor in it again. That gives me a good feeling. Yesterday I cleaned the hall and sewing room closets and gave away3 bags of stuff to Goodwill and I have another bag half full of trash stuff. That was only 2 closets. 

I really need a bookcase and better shelving in my sewing room. I am not sure how much weight wire shelving can handle. I bet we could find the studs and add more support brackets so it can handle the weight of fabirc. I need the bookcase for my sewing books and for gardening books. I have several sewing books and then my few gardening books, and they are too heavy for the shelves to handle. They are on top of the 4 draw dresser. We did not put the shelves up. When we bought the house a few years ago, the small bedroom had only 2 shelves in the closet. One near the top with hangers below it for hanging clothes and another one 2 feet below that. We added another shelf 3 years ago. I went and looked in the closet again. If I can find a place to put the summer clothes, I could buy 2 more shelves for that closet and do what I have always wanted to do. Have all shelves in there and no hanging space. I do have a portable hanging rack for drying clothes, so I could always use that for sewing in progress that needs to hang. I'll talk to my husband and see what we can do about this closet. Thanks for the ideas. Just by saying the doors should come down has made me remember how I wanted it when I began sewing 3 years ago. I had forgotten. It would be much easier to have it open and accessable. Oh, I also folded up my ironing board for a few minutes. I'll need it today, but not right now. I keep the iron when not in use on the cutting table.

The door to the sewing room must stay. My husband is always closing it and I go right behind him and open it. I like it open--even if my room is a mess.

Carol

Offline Ironmonger

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Re: Sewing table
« Reply #11 on: September 09, 2008, 02:22:31 PM »
Thanks for the advice.

I have just sorted my sewing room out with the ideal table. A dark pin board  is on the wall behind me. Unfortunately my husband has found the height is fine for working on his laptop which he used to use in the kitchen. The dark background is stopping reflection onto the screen and the door handle is ideal for his jacket!
 
How do I get him out now that he has found my retreat. Lock the kitchen door?

Best Regards,
Joanne the Ironmonger..Keen sewer and webmaster..or is that webmistress :-* ? of:
http://www.kitchenbin.co.uk
Norwich England

Offline Liana

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Re: Sewing table
« Reply #12 on: September 10, 2008, 07:09:56 PM »
Hi Joanne the Ironmonger!

Well, it's nice that he wants to be near you when you're both working, but perhaps he only lusts after your decor!  ;D  I don't know what to suggest.  I guess it depends whether you want him to go away or just not take up too much room.  Maybe another chair?  ??? :)

It's nice to have you here, and I'll post my welcome info for you. 

You may already know that this board has lots of neat features that you may want to try.  If you have any questions or need help with anything, just ask the Administrators or Moderators. 

There are a couple of threads that may be of interest to you as you look around the site, and which can truly answer almost any question about how to post things here, including photos and avatars and signature links. 

The "Are You New, Please Read This Thread First" is a good place to start, and

Forum Decorum & FAQ is Answers Central, where you'll find each post titled with its own subject, so it's easy to find exactly what you are looking for.  :)

And there's the ever-popular Sandbox where you can try out all the features, and which is a very easy place to get help or have questions answered when you can't quite get it from the FAQ.

There's also a very good Search feature, and you'll get the best results if you use the Advanced Search button.

Again, welcome, and it's great to have you here!  :)

Offline Ironmonger

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snowed under with kitchen recycle bins... but still sewing
« Reply #13 on: September 11, 2008, 11:32:14 AM »
Hi Liana,

thanks for you advise and the links to get a feel for the site. i think another kitchen chair is the answer.. ill take a look aound the site when im not snowed under picking and packing all these kitchen bins  :-\, well at least it pays the bills. I just finished sewing a repair to my sons jeep (soft top) which was hard work so i think its time for a nice cup of tea and a browse.

all the best for now, Joanne  :)
« Last Edit: September 11, 2008, 11:34:18 AM by Ironmonger »

Offline cmarie12

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Re: Sewing table
« Reply #14 on: September 12, 2008, 03:09:30 AM »
Ohhhh, I just updated my sewing table!  A couple of years ago, I bought one of those tables that Joann's sells but it never worked well for me, so I ended up with the table top on top of a craft table.  Finally it really started to get to my back, all of that bending over, so using the table top and adding storage baskets and frames from IKEA, I ended up with a table that I love.  Plenty of storage, the perfect height, everything at my touch when I'm cutting out...it is PERFECT!


 

Carolyn
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Offline Karendee

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Re: Sewing table
« Reply #15 on: September 12, 2008, 05:21:13 PM »

Carolyn,

Your cutting table looks wonderful. How high is it? Most of the cutting tables I see are 35.5" and I want a 38". If the baskets were high enough, you could make whatever height you needed. Where did you get the table top? Is it wood or formica? Perhaps IKEA. Thanks for the info. I want a cutting table like Carolyn, so my sewn clothes will look just like hers. LOL! :rotfl:

Karen

Offline LauraS.

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Re: Sewing table
« Reply #16 on: September 12, 2008, 07:32:12 PM »
My sewing room is a spare bedroom.  If it's not 10x10 then it's close to that.  I have one wall that has 3 hanging shelves on it and a 5-shelf plastic piece that you can pick up at Home Depot or other such big box store for around $45 or so.  All of my fabric is stored on the 5-shelves.  The home dec and not touched often fabric are on the bottom 2 shelves and misc large pieces on the top.  I get the empty cardboard bolts that fabric is rolled on from Joanne's and usually put 2 pieces on a bolt. This is on the other 2 shelves.  One of these shelves will hold quite a lot.  The top hanging shelf holds misc, don't touch hardly at all stuff, the eye level shelf holds 2 plastic tool boxes with small drawers that holds buttons by color and other misc sundries.  The bottom wall shelf holds items in the sewing queue.  I had a banquet table I bought for around $30 from Craigslist under the wall shelves which holds 2 sergers and a simple SM.  The end of it butts up to the standing shelves.  You can get a lot of storage under a table like this and still have leg room.  Velcro a skirt around it if the clutter under it bothers you.  Perpendicular to this is my sewing cabinet, which is really an old TV console cabinet.  It's the right height and tho it may not be proper, I prop by feet on the bottom shelf and have my foot pedal on the shelf sometimes.  I can also put all of my machines in there when I need to clear the table off for cutting or I'm not using them.  The next wall has a computer table against it.  The last wall, the door wall and closet wall, has an IKEA Anaboda 3-drawer chest that I got for $20, again, from Craigslist.  This cabinet will hold patterns 4 across, even the larger vogue patterns.  I have stuffed a maximum of 250 patterns in a drawer! So they do hold a lot.  I would suggest Gorilla Glue-ing the bottom of the drawers to the frame if you put a heavy load in the drawers.  This is an MDF cabinet.  New at IKEA, I think it costs around $60.  I keep the rest of my sewing notions in one of the drawers.  I also have a small shelf for books next to it. 

So with 2 chairs and an ironing board and a dress form and all the rest of the furniture, I still have a good expanse in the center of the room.  More than enough to stretch out or lay out fabric on the floor if needed.  My goal is to get rid of the computer and have a cutting table the proper height (which I have the makings of in the basement).  I may raise the banquet table if I can figure out what to do with the rest of my machines.  (sorry to have gone on with this, but it helped me think the room through.)

laura

Offline Karendee

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Re: Sewing table
« Reply #17 on: September 12, 2008, 09:07:54 PM »
Laura,

Sounds like your room is nicely furnished to accomplish all kinds of sewing. You could probably get another shorter banquet table to sew from, if that would work. One nice thing about the banquet tables for cutting, is that you can purchase those bed risers in increments up to 10" to raise the height of those kinds of legs. Then the 'ole back doesn't hurt.

Karend

Offline cmarie12

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Re: Sewing table
« Reply #18 on: September 13, 2008, 12:52:05 AM »
Karen - the table is 35" high.  The table top is from a Joann's table that I didn't like.  But it's all the baskets under the table that I really like...it keeps me organized and I can always find my scissors, pins, and tape measure.  Plus I've stored all of my lining fabrics and interfacing in the drawers so they are easily accessible when I'm cutting!
Carolyn
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My blog:  http://sewingfantaticdiary.blogspot.com/
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Offline LauraS.

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Re: Sewing table
« Reply #19 on: September 13, 2008, 01:17:38 AM »
Karend, that's exactly what I was going to get to raise the table.

laura

Offline Karendee

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Re: Sewing table
« Reply #20 on: September 13, 2008, 08:01:50 PM »
Carolyn,

Thanks for the info. I like your table top and would be happy with it, but I really like the baskets under it. It is wonderful to keep the basics to cutting out all right there in one spot. Including your linings etc. in that area is great.

Laura,

Great minds think alike.

Karend

 

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