before and after

Before & After: A Small Nook Becomes a Sewing Station

by Grace Bonney

Keeping sewing supplies and small craft supplies organized can be an uphill battle. I’ll never forget the day I discovered my friend Llubav’s sequin and bead collection and marveled at all the tiny glass vials and containers that organized everything into such neat and tidy rows. I’ve never had that sort of organization hardwired into me, but I admire people who do, like today’s first before & after subject, Maddie Flanigan. Maddie is a passionate sewer and seamstress who recently bought her first home, a 550-square-foot condo. She wanted to find a way to squeeze in a sewing studio, but knew she would have to be clever with her planning and design. “When I first designed my sewing space, I hadn’t lived in my new place long enough to know exactly what I needed,” Maddie says. “Over time, I started to see its potential for becoming more functional for my sewing. So, over the past month, I made changes that will hopefully streamline my workflow. My goal was to reduce the time it takes me to set up and break down.” I love how much Maddie thought about her practical needs before designing this clever little space. Not only did it end up looking beautiful, but it allows her to have a dedicated space to pursue the things she loves outside of work and also produce more sewing projects and tutorials to share on her blog. Click through to read Maddie’s makeover story after the jump! xo, grace

Maddie's sewing closet, before & after.
Both closets, before.
The main closet, after. Maddie added wallpaper, shelving and a white desk from IKEA to brighten up the space. She also picked up a 1970s vintage sewing chair on Etsy with a seat that flips up to reveal a compartment for storage.
The small closet next to the main sewing closet also got a makeover, with the addition of a chest of drawers from IKEA, a removable pressing board and a cutting mat (so the top of the drawers will act as Maddie's work table). Above and beside the chest of drawers, Maddie installed shelves for all of her sewing tools and materials.
The vintage sewing stool with hidden storage.
Shelves in the closet keep all of Maddie's sewing supplies neat and organized.
Small containers store all of the odds and ends Maddie needs to finish her sewing projects.
I love the curtains Maddie added - they really elevate the space from a closet nook to a homey office corner.

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