I call it creative organization…
When in-between projects, it is so satisfying to clean up and make my space fresh and ready for the next creative adventure. With so many great things to work on, I have been trying to keep some kind of handle on the chaos during a project so that the cleanup time is less work all at once.
Some things that have worked for me are simple and may save you some time, too:
Trash - Easy access to a trash can is a must. I have a large one by my cutting table and a small one right by my sewing machine.
Compartmentalize - Keep like things together. Try to use specific items and tools together in a specific area. For example, I keep cutting tools and rulers at my cutting table and my Best Press and pressing tools by my iron. This makes it quick and easy to pick up those areas as I go.
A Clean Machine - The best thing to have when working on a project is a well working and clean machine. It is summer, so you might consider sending your machine in for service sooner than later. Why wait until the fall when everyone else is sending theirs in and you are feverishly working to get your fall and holiday projects done and cannot stand to be without your machine.
Scraps - Determine the minimum size a piece of fabric needs to be to keep in advance. Put those scraps in a bin grouped by color. Throw the rest away right now!
Threads - Wind the thread tails up on the spools and secure them. While your machine is embroidering, put up the colors that you are done using.
Little Bits - Keep a small handheld vacuum to quickly vacuum up thread tails and small snippets of fabric (like trimmed dog ears from piecing). I like the Riccar Gem, he works awesome and keeps the area tidy and thread from getting caught in the wheels of my chair.
Little Itty Bitty Bits - A set of vacuum micro attachments in your sewing space is very useful to clean out your machine (bobbin area as well as the thread area), not to mention the keyboard of your computer.
Smudges - If you have a touch screen on your machine, keeping the fingerprints cleaned off with help keep your visibility clear and crisp. I have just recently been introduced to the "E-Cloths" that we have in the stores. I LOVE them! No chemicals, no scratches and it cleans so much better than any cleaning cloth I have ever used. I even keep one in my car to make sure my glasses are smudge free.
To Be Continued - For ongoing projects, have a container, bin or spot in a drawer to keep all the "in progress" pieces together and easily accessible.
Cleaning your sewing room between projects can help you feel ready to take on your next sewing adventure.