2 great products to help organize your sewing machine area

Happy New Year everyone! Here’s hoping 2021 will be healthy, happy and prosperous for us all! Usually, in January, people put away their holiday decorations and turn their sights toward getting their houses organized. I’m no exception, except I usually spend more time getting my sewing room organized than any other area of my home. After a couple months of machine quilting for customers, making presents for family and friends, and using my cutting table as a gift-wrapping station, my sewing room usually needs a good tidying up!

So, this week, I’ll share some of my studio organization tips and some great storage and organization products from well-known brands. I’ll also show you how to make a sewing machine mat with pockets and a thread catcher to help organize your sewing machine area.

Before and after pictures are always so fun to see when there’s been a transformation, so I’ll let you see my studio at its messiest. Here’s my sewing table – threads, pins, bobbins and scissors are all over the place! Throw in a seam ripper and some sewing machine needles and you have a recipe for disaster. I’ve wanted to replace my pin cushion/thread catcher for years now, so I’m looking forward to this week’s project!

Christine’s messy sewing table

The first product that will help me get my sewing room organized is the Clover Create-a-Pincushion kit. This kit lets you easily create your own one-of-a-kind personalized pincushion with your favorite fabric, or with any other handcrafted work like embroidery or patchwork.

Clover Create-a-Pincushion

I decided to use this super cute fabric to make my sewing machine mat, and I’ll use a 5 square of it to make my pincushion.

Cut a 5″ square of fabric.

Inside the package of the Clover Create-a-Pincushion kit, there are three different parts. The center which will be stuffed with filling, a silicone band to secure the fabric, and the outer ring.

The three parts of the Clover Create-a-Pincushion.

The center part is stuffed with Poly-Fil Premium Fiber Fill and your chosen fabric is placed on top. The silicone ring is then placed over top to secure the fabric. Next, the excess fabric below the silicone ring is trimmed.

Trim away the excess fabric below the silicone ring.

Once the outer ring has been replaced, the pincushion is complete! If this fabric gets dirty or stained (or you’re just bored of it and want a change) simply disassemble and replace the fabric!

The completed Clover Create-a-Pincushion.

Another great product is the GRABBIT Scissor Spot/Pin Place Magnetic Holder. This simple, yet ingenious product attaches to your sewing machine with a suction cup and holds your scissors securely with the handles ready to grab! You could also press the suction cup onto the side of your machine or locate it just above your sewing machine pressure foot to instantly deposit pulled-out pins as you continue to sew.

The Grabbit Scissor Spot/Pin Place Magnetic Holder.

I want to try the Grabbit Scissor Spot/Pin Place Magnetic Holder to hold my scissors, so I’ve attached the suction cup to the side of my machine on the inside of the throat. I think my scissors will be super handy there! Later on, I’ll move it to try it with pins to see which I like better – or I may just need to buy a second one!

The Grabbit Scissor Spot/Pin Place Magnetic Holder holds my scissors in a convenient spot.

Materials needed for the sewing machine mat

I’ll be making a sewing machine mat this week, and here’s what you’ll need to make your own version:

  • ⅔yd [0.6m] fabric for the top of the mat
  • ⅞yd [0.7m] fabric for the back of the mat
  • ⅝yd [0.5m] fabric for the binding and inside of thread catcher
  • an assortment of fabric selvedges
  • 20 x 20 muslin
  • 8 of hoop and loop tape
  • plastic ice cream or margarine container
  • batting

Step 1 – make the quilted base

The first step of our sewing machine mat is to make a quilted base. Determine how big you want your mat to be – make sure you have enough width to go all the way under your machine and extension table and add about 6″ to the right-hand side to attach the thread catcher. The length needs to go from the back of your machine, all the way under your machine and add 4″ to the front for the pockets. My mat needs to be 36″ x 21″ so I’ve cut my top fabric 37″ x 22″, and my batting and backing 42″ x 27″. I’m using Odif 505 Temporary Quilt Basting Adhesive Fabric Spray  to stick the layers together.

Baste together the layers of the table mat with 505 Spray.

Now, let’s quilt the mat. We don’t need to do anything fancy since most of the quilting will be hidden under the sewing machine. I used my walking foot and quilted gentle wavy lines from side to side across the entire length of the table mat.

Use a walking foot to quilt gentle wavy lines across the width of the table mat.

Once you’ve completed the quilting, trim away the excess batting and backing. In the next post, we’ll make the pockets and attach them to the mat.

I’m so pleased with how my Clover Create a Pincushion turned out and very happy all those loose pins have been controlled and the Grabbit Scissor Spot/Pin Place Magnetic Holder is just perfect for keeping my scissors handy. My sewing machine table is starting to look a little bit more organized. Tomorrow I’ll talk about organizing all my sewing machine accessories using another great product.

This is part 1 of 5 in this series

Go to part 2: Organizing your sewing machine accessories

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