Follow Up – What’s Near Your Sewing Machine?

Sew, sew, SEW many great comments were left from this original post about What’s Near Your Sewing Machine?, that I had to do a follow up.  It may have come to light as well that some of the pictures were perhaps staged.  Okay.  I admit it.  They WERE staged.  Mostly the one drawer for a very good reason.  You really didn’t want to see all the key-rap that was underneath those nice FMQ ideas.  Friends also nicely shared some of their workspaces, too.  So here’s all the scoop on the follow up!

On My Sewing Table

Newly found clamp and small Ott light are constant companions on the edge of my sew table.  Occasionally I pull over the Ott light, like when I’m working on dark fabrics.  The issue is that it gets in the way of bigger projects.  I really need to get one of those extra lights that stick directly to the sewing machine.  I have to laugh because my quilting table does NOT look like that right now.  It has a big ‘ole quilt sitting on it with my quilting gloves laying helter skelter on top of it.  Here is the truth picture on the right – with the quilt in a heap and the gloves laying there.  Also, one pink basket holding important items like a new rotary cutter still in the package and some Rainy Day strips.  I did confess that the picture was not true though.  How do I get the tips of my quilting gloves nice and clean without damaging them?  Anyone know??

This picture also wasn’t quite accurate.  Missing was our extremely sophisticated quilting pin storage method.  A baggie.  It had met its demise earlier that day when it had a run in with an iron.  The iron won.  Never fear though – that baggie has been replaced with a bigger Ziploc bag.  Easier to close AND it can hold more pins!

Right Side and Top Drawer

These two pictures are very accurate.  The only thing that has changed is a clean water glass (!!), and one additional marking pen has joined the black mug.  Even the quarter is still there – why don’t I put it away, somewhere else?!!  What could I possibly have needed a quarter for by my sewing machine?!  Several friends have some good suggestions that I’ll share in a bit.

Second Drawer Left SideFMQ picture

Staged but I confessed:  This drawer looks neat but it isn’t.  I stuffed these ideas for FMQing in there, printed off during a class with notes to myself about where to use them.  Underneath are some blocks and fabrics that Sue didn’t want to deal with and I didn’t want to throw away.  I don’t know what to do with them either so they’d better be close and very handy.  In case I find inspiration.  My quilting gloves live here but they are on top of the table right now.  Having just been taken off mid-quilt, they don’t go back in the drawer until the quilt is finished!  Do you clean up your area each night as you quit for the day?  Does everything go back in its place??

On to the Good Stuff!

This picture on the left was shared by Bernie at Needle and Foot.  It struck me as funny that the router for the entire house has to sit ON HER SEWING TABLE.  It allows for the best reception there.  Heehee.  I don’t feel too badly for Bernie though – look at these nice windows she has, and the inspiration on the walls!

Another suggestion was from Jayne at Twiggy and Opal.  She had some great suggestions like phone charger, chap stick, notebooks, and washi tape.  I really do need some washi tape.  One last item of importance by Jayne’s sewing machine is a paper mushroom.  What is that, I asked?  Until recently I never heard of washi tape, so I thought it was something similar.  Here’s Jayne’s explanation, “My son use to make these crazy 3D paper ‘things’ and one was a mushroom.  When he moved away nearly two years ago I kept the mushroom as a daily reminder of him.  It fits perfectly on the bobbin winder on top of my machine.”  I hope one day I have something just as special from our sweet boy!

More Good Stuff

Kathryn, my favorite friend from New Zealand and also her blog named Kathryn Quilts has another great suggestion.  A small woolen pressing mat that she ordered from the USA but is made from NZ wool!  How ironic is that.  She awaiting its arrival as shipping is very slow.  I have heard great things about them – have you tried them?

Wendy, a dear sweet friend from Pieceful Thoughts suggested this light for my low-lighting situation.  She isn’t using it and that gooseneck end looks pretty handy!  I offered to pay her for it but she wouldn’t take my money.  Well!! (She actually offered to give it to me – we were negotiating but talks have fallen apart.  She wants a union, more pay and better working conditions.)

Rochelle (I cannot find a blog for you??) shared a picture of her light, along with some other helpful suggestions.  One was a dust rag.  What is this you speak of??  Dust??  Chop sticks – I could have used those today, and baskets for keeping projects organized are a few of her tips.  Those baskets would mean more than one project is going at a time.  I have Sue to keep me organized – no need for baskets!!  HAHA!  Plus who has more than one project going at a time?!!

Fretting Over a Water Glass

Several friends shared their woeful experiences with beverages too close to their sewing space.  Not wishing to bring myself bad luck, I am making no comment about these suggestions other than they are good ones.  Ann from Laughing Gas Quilts shared her nifty place for water.  Having recently gotten back into her sewing space after dealing with LOTS of water (a.k.a. a flood), her suggestion really carries some weight!  Her shelf is on the right side of the photo.  It keeps beverages from spilling, and her mug pin-free.  I love seeing all of her neatly stack fabric.

Anns-Beverage shelf

More Lighting and Pounce Tip

One more light entry from Vicki at Vicki’s Crafts and Quilting, along with a photo of some pegboard and baskets behind her sewing machine.  Vicki and I chat often, and while she assures me her sewing area isn’t neat, it looks to me and I have to say it doesn’t look staged.  Her gooseneck lamp is placed so it can swing both ways, as it were.  I mean between sewing or cutting.  HAHA!  I wonder what’s in the pretty white cabinets??


Wendy shared one other tip for my Pounce and stencil task on Rainy Day.  At the MN Quilt Show she learned to spray Best Press lightly over the chalk.  This sets the chalk a bit, yet it will easily be removed in the wash or with an iron.  Neither of us have tried it but I will when I get back to that project.  And get some Best Press.

Conditioner for Thread!


I never heard of such a thing!  Vicki was the first to suggest this product, and sent me a link to it found at Joann’s.  I went in search of it last weekend and of course they didn’t have any.  The manager said they don’t carry it, even though I could buy it online AND pick it up there.  Okay.  Whatever.  It’s a beading thread!  Cherie from Cherie’s Quilting Journey also confirmed that she uses thread wax all the time.  Lastly, Susan from Quiltfabrication mentioned Thread Heaven.  Unfortunately, that is no longer produced but a similarly named product called Thread Magic is a replacement.  Another product that is available to order online at Joann’s but not to be found in the store.  Grrr.  I take that to be a BIG sign.  I am worry about it later.  Everyone’s friend, Amazon, has it of course.

Still Lusting After Maybe?!

I still want these two items from the original post!  My friend Quilting Gail just sent me a cool pattern that she designed (list it on Craftsy please!).  It uses the Easy Angle ruler which I may need to have.  I really DO want to make the pattern.  And Wendy just recommended the Olfa Endurance blade.  I think Carol M. told us about that back in April.  Mary from Quilting is in My Blood tells me that she often has a cat on her sewing table.  I would love that or even more, a dog at my feet.  That is not meant to be though, unfortunately.  I am really allergic.  She also has a modified ironing board ala Quilting Jetgirl.  I have wanted to follow that tutorial for a while!  Finally, tweezers and old sewing needles for my 2019 paper piecing quest are also great suggestions from Mary.  Great – now I have to save old sewing machine needles.  They can go in the staged drawer along with all the other junk!

One Last Confession

Here is the mat that I ordered a long, long time ago (earlier this month).  It is still on the floor – not in use yet by Susan Marie.  Yup, I just threw my VBF under a stopped bus.  I don’t want her to get hurt!  I have almost gotten hurt myself MANY times by trying not to step on it though.

Mat truth

Thank you to everyone that gave such great suggestions!!  I didn’t mean to omit anyone’s, and I apologize if I did.  It has been so much fun reading everyone’s emails and laughing over some pictures.  I kept my promise – some things just cannot be shared.  Like Sue’s actual working table space.  She would kill me.  Literally.  Then I wouldn’t be able to write any longer, or share Dominic pictures.  That would make me sad, if I weren’t dead.  Also, I am trying to talk her into a new cutting table to replace her 1986 vintage folding table.  We go look at them tonight.  I can be VERY persuasive.  Some people may call it nagging.  Whatever works is what I say!!


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12 Responses

  1. Brenda Ackerman says:

    Hello Roseanne, How fun both of these posts are to read! I can honestly say my sewing table is completely bare, except for my computer, right now. I had to put everything away because we are hosting Thanksgiving Dinner and my husband was not going to try and set the table with our China around my sewing machine and extras. LOL. Thank you for sharing all of this fun post with us. I hope that you and Sue have a fabulous Happy Thanksgiving!

  2. Great follow-up post! And I’m definitely not posting any pics of my sewing area any time soon!

  3. Vicki in MN says:

    Your post is a hoot!! Buttons and thread and some wool and perhaps stuff I don’t remember even having is what is hiding in those white cabinets!! And there is usually more fabric and projects sitting out on those counters. But I do have to say I keep my cutting table top cleaned off most of the time. It would seem many of use are trying to help you spend your money, LOL

  4. Such a fun post, Roseanne! Somehow I missed the original, so I’ll have to go back and read that one, too. What’s near my sewing machine? It depends on where (and when) you’re looking? Some days I might show it off – other days not so much!

  5. Kathryn says:

    I thoroughly enjoyed your post – you have the knack for writing! Love looking at all the photos. Ah and that stack of fabric that Ann has. Wonderful. My mat has arrived to my excitement and I am using it. I am sure it makes a difference! I only got a small size but probably should have got the next size up but this one 9″ sq is good for pressing pieces and small blocks.

  6. Rochelle Summers says:

    Just love your presentation and the suggestions from your fans. I have no blog. I want to quilt!! Can’t do both!!

  7. chrisknits says:

    You are just persistent, not naggy. It’s for her own good, right?

  8. farmquilter says:

    There is a reason my quilting room is upstairs away from the public areas of the house!! I’m the only one who can find anything up there!!! Too busy doing other things to constantly be cleaning up…you know, like keeping up with blogs!!

  9. quiltinggail says:

    LOL!!! What a great chuckle before I head off to work! Happy quilting 😃

  10. So I could maybe sweeten the pot (all I really need is an address) and tuck in some Thread Heaven (I have another thread wax, so no worries). AND I might have an Easy Angle, maybe, somewhere. Hmm.

    • Roseanne says:

      Oh, taking the negotiations public are we?!! Hmm, that may be against all rules somewhere. HAHAHAHAHA! ~smile~ Roseanne

  11. sandradny says:

    This blog post topic keeps getting better and better!

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