Spring Clean Your Sewing Room

on April 21 | in Sewing + Quilting Tips | by | with 114 Comments

From Beth: Lisa from The Domestic Diva has an extensive collection of posts in her Sewing Room Organizational Challenge series. She’s a busy mom and the creative designer and founder of the Downtown Joey label for boys, but Lisa still makes time for a good Spring Clean of her sewing room. Today Lisa helps you Arrange, Brighten & Create with her condensed tips, and we also have a free PDF Spring Clean checklist for you to download so you can get right to work!

From Lisa:
ABCs of Spring Cleaning for your Sewing Room

Have you ever walked into your sewing room and just walked back out? Is the clutter stifling your creativity and messing with your sewing mojo? Not to worry! With these simple steps, you can make your sewing space a place where you’ll look forward to spending time each day.

First things first! Let’s get everything in order. Time to put away all your recent sewing supply purchases and the dozens of sewing projects you’ve been working on since the last Ice Age. Get rid of stuff you won’t use in the next 2 years (unless of course, it’s vintage fabric). Then we’ll arrange our sewing room for maximum creativity.


Now that everything has a place, it’s time to do the actual Spring cleaning and maintenance. Grab yourself some window cleaner, some paper towels, a vacuum and a mop. Now get moving…
  • Thoroughly clean your sewing machine.
  • Have your sewing machine serviced by a professional.
  • Change your sewing machine and serger needles.
  • Oil sewing machines if necessary.
  • Remove residue from embroidery hoops.
  • Sharpen scissors.
  • Replace rotary cutter blades.
  • Clean your Cutting Mat.
  • Wipe down sewing tables.
  • Vacuum and mop floors in your sewing room.
  • Clean your iron.
  • Wash your ironing board cover.
  • Donate your fabric scraps to a quilter or charity.


Now that your sewing room is sparkling clean, how about digging into some sewing and craft projects? Make your sewing room the envy of your fellow seamstresses. Here are some ideas to liven up your clean sewing room:

Once your sewing room is back in order, it is important to remember to spend just 5 minutes at the end of the day putting away things away. To motivate you, set a cooking timer. When you go into your sewing room the next day, you’ll be able to get right to work and find everything you need for your next sewing project. Happy Sewing!

Comment to win prizes from Fiskars/Gingher. This week you can win Softouch Scissors and a 12-in-1 Sewing Multi-Tool. We’re also giving away four $20 gift certificates to Sew,Mama,Sew!

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114 Responses to Spring Clean Your Sewing Room

  1. US benches says:

    I wish I had a sewing room to spring clean! These tips are great.

  2. Suzie says:

    Thank you for the list. I have already made a crochet hook roll and I am working on a craft apron. So much more to do.

  3. Deb G. says:

    What great spring cleaning and organizational ideas. I especially like the Clip It Up Organizers for fat quarters.

    Times a’wastin! I’m off to get it together!

    Thanks for the push…

  4. Heather Kaeb says:

    Love it! Thanks so much for all the super ideas! I never knew my iron needed cleaning! Learn something new everyday! THANKS!

  5. damocamelia says:

    I translated it in french … if anyone is interested !?

  6. thanks Beth and the Sew Mama Sew team! Glad my tips could help motivate everyone!

    With friendship,

  7. nichole says:

    these are fabulous tips that i need to do immediately! especially the cleaning of the sewing machine!

  8. i have on a spring cleaning kick this week and my sewing space is next in line 🙂 thanks!

  9. Fantastic list! I can practically envision this space being, well, so much more the opposite of what it is currently- by using your tips! Thanks so much for sharing that, I need to do something with my space before my sewing maching decides to run away! LOL

  10. Sarah says:

    Thanks for the list and all the great tips for spring cleaning. It helped me get inspired.

  11. Sarah D says:

    I wish I had a sewing room to spring clean! These tips are great.

  12. Joni says:

    It is always great to have the motivation in a List form that I can post and check-off daily, weekly or seasonally. I often think about accomplishing things around the House but get side-tracked or just forgetful. Lists keep me on target. We can all put on some cheerful music and think of others doing the save thing along with you. Thanks and happy Spring Cleaning everyone!

  13. Staci Tomb says:

    I was just trying to get inspired to clean my sewing room this morning! No joke! Perfect, now I have the inspiration and the checklist. I’m off to do a little (ok a lot) of cleaning!!!

  14. Kiki says:

    This was just the inspiration I needed to get started! Thanks!

  15. Krista says:

    I’m at that point where I do walk in, then turn around and walk out. How did you know? Thanks for the encouragement to get in there and get organized!

  16. Kami Mandell says:

    Thank you, for your awesome links. I am drooling over your beautiful tatted ribbon. I desperately need to clean out some of my stuff. I will be coming back to refer to this often.

  17. Libby says:

    I’m spring cleaning right now. It gives the new year a fresh start.

  18. Stacy says:

    I only wish that I had a sewing room to brighten….
    I get the kitchen table!

  19. Have you been peaking in at my sewing room – How did you know that I needed a little nudging?

  20. What a fabulous (and timely) post! I’ve bookmarked it and will be back (several times, I’m sure)!

  21. Tabitha says:

    This I need to do! Thanks!

  22. katie says:

    Very useful list- THANK YOU! Now if only I had the time to do it…. 🙂

  23. Chris Clark says:

    These are great ideas. I can always get more done when my space is clean and organized – and bright and cheerful! Also, taking the time to get your machine serviced is always a good thing. In fact, I just might have to do that myself now that you’ve reminded me!

  24. Sherri says:

    This is the most wonderful post with the greatest collection of information and links and projects! Wow…I just love everything here!!!

  25. LO MAY says:

    I just finished moving my sewing room into the smaller room. It was a 10 day ordeal. It is very organized, new paint and clean carpets. Its always worth it when you finish. I recyled a lot of paper. I also put aside a lot of fabric for charity. You know the fabric that’s been on the shelf for the last 15 year. Believe me, if you haven’t cut into it yet, you won’t. I plan to donate to Providence. They make quilts for terminal patients. Now i just need someone to carry the box down the stairs….. Have fun with your spring cleaning. Theres nothing better than working in a clean and organized room to help with your creativity.

  26. Jodie says:

    Motivating list! Especially with the beautiful Spring weather. I’m ready to open all the windows and doors and get organized.

  27. Jen says:

    This is great!! I am in the process of rearranging my sewing room and I’m going to be using a whole bunch of these ideas! Thank you for putting the list together.

  28. Barbara Sindlinger says:

    Got some great organizing ideas from this. thanks.

  29. Deb V says:

    Thanks for all the great ideas. I will need to put my sewing space on my spring cleaning list.

  30. Annette W says:

    Since I just started sewing, I’m not sure my tiny stash of fabric needs to be reorganized, but I really should clean my machine!

  31. Shelley C says:

    THese tips and ideas were so helpful. I want to redo my sewing room and find the task very overwhelming. I”ve been ‘thinking’ about it for over 2 years! Well, today is the day to at least paint the walls; so I moved most of the clutter out and left only the big pieces Ican’t move by myself. (hubby has no interest in helping much…but I will really need to BEG to get shelving in so I can organize properly). I have a vision of what I want it to look like, but don’t know if that’s how it will actually turn out….

  32. Jessica T says:

    Would that I had a sewing room to spring clean! 🙂 That’s a great list, I really need to get my sissors sharpened.

  33. Monica Gee says:

    What a thorough list! Thanks for the tips!

  34. Cheryl says:

    Another great post! I read through the list. I noticed in one category it said to clean your cutting mat. Mine is just a mess. I had cut a lot of fleece several months ago and can’t get it off. Just how do we clean our cutting mats? Do we use soap and water? I never read anythign about how to clean it when I purchased it.

  35. Sarah says:

    Thank you for posting this!
    It is inspirational, and helpful all at once.
    I just put spring cleaning my sewing room on my weekend to do list!

  36. Libby says:

    Cleaning never sounded so fun!!! Thanks! Libby

  37. Paula in NH says:

    Perfect timing for this checklist. I need to convert my studio into a guest room for the upcoming visit from my mom. This list will come in handy for the process. Thanks for posting the list!

  38. kelly says:

    you are so right.
    thanks for all of the hidden tutorials, too!

  39. Pam says:

    Wow! Great ideas, now if only I can get myself motivated to do them all!

  40. Linda says:

    Some really uselful ideas! Thank you!

  41. Levineke says:

    thanks for the great list – i will use it to ‘autumn clean’ my sewing area – it’s in desperate need for a tidy up as we’re in the middle of school holidays and my daughter has decided to teach her friends to sew……oh my……they have made a mess! but at least they’ve had fun.
    thanks again

  42. Robin says:

    These are great ideas! Wish I had my own sewing room (due to apartment constraints, I sew on the dining room table), but these tips are still extremely handy even if one is limited to just a sewing cupboard.

  43. What a great post!!! I have been doing spring cleaning in my own way, but this will help me out so much! Thank you for sharing!

  44. Lorraine says:

    Thanks for the lists! Yes, I need major maintenance with my sewing room indeed.

  45. Rachelle says:

    Thanks for all these wonderful ideas, I need to get cracking on some of them this weekend. I have sew many ideas but not enough organization to keep it all straight.

  46. Cheryl says:

    Lots of great ideas! Thanks for the push!

  47. Gaby says:

    Thanks for posting this. I need to clean my craft area as it starting to spread out over the house.

  48. Becca B says:

    Ahhh. Spring cleaning. I really should get on that. 🙂

  49. Mary on Lake Pulaski says:

    Great to have a list to start with – first the sewing machine and then the sewing room. I’ll get right to it.

  50. Susan says:

    Great tips and perfect timing! We had a professional organizer talk at our monthly guild meeting last night and all this information goes along with what she was saying!

  51. michele m says:

    haha–love it—just did all of this just this last week–yippee!!! All done

  52. Rebecca says:

    that is a great list! I am so excited to do it and have a clean sewing area 🙂

  53. Di says:

    Great guide. Now, Lisa, when are you coming to do out my sewing room??

  54. Melissa B. says:

    Where is D thru Z? I need all the help I can get!

  55. Karin says:

    Thank you for a list! Practical and fun ideas, too. I know I am lucky to have a dedicated room, but it is such an overwhelming mess, that I sew in the kitchen! Having someone else make the plan helps to motivate me.

  56. Beth says:

    Oh my, what an exceptional post! Organizing my sewing room is my hobby. I also dabble in actual sewing. I had tear in my eye just reading about the wonderful options of storing ribbon. I’m totally laminating this list.

  57. Jordan Durbin says:

    what an inspirational list. If I were going to be home this week, I might have to jump on that. but I will be home eventually, so . . .

  58. Becky says:

    So did this 2 weeks ago when the clutter was keeping me from even walking through. Turns out all it took was about 2 hours and I was ready to roll again….first project was fixing something sitting on the repair pile for way too long.

  59. Tina Kay says:

    Great Check list!! There are things on there that are very inspiring. I think my room is going to have a make over!!

    Have a great week, Tina Kay

  60. Jenny says:

    Oh, I needed this list! LOL

  61. Liz says:

    maybe i will have to make a sewing space in the basement, so i have to clean it. 🙂 or i could just start with my sewing bins…eeek. this is a timely post!

  62. Jennifer says:

    Thanks for the prompting … really need to get in and sort, tidy, clean and rediscover exactly what is in my sewing area. Grin!

  63. Kerri says:

    You got it! Clutter kills our mojo, in every room, not just the sewing room! Thanks for the encouragement.

  64. Erin says:

    I know I NEED to clean… but do I ever really WANT to? Hmmm… well, at least this list makes it seem feasible. Just a couple of steps, right? ABC.

  65. Jessica says:

    This list is great! I just started sewing and there are some awesome ideas for starting out organized. I’ll definitely be making some of the organizing tools! Thanks so much!!!

  66. Ashlee says:

    Being very new to sewing, I really needed this. I have tons of patterns that have been handed down from both of my grandmothers and great aunts. I have found they fit perfectly in the long woven baskets from the dollar tree! I love finding a good deal!

  67. helena says:

    This is such a great list. Better get started, my area looks like a bomb exploded.

  68. Beth Q says:

    Are you a mind reader??? I came into my sewing room at 5:15 this morning frantically looking for something. Couldn’t find it. Wasn’t where it should have been. Then I realized I have such a mess I will never find it until I get some cleaning/organizing done. While I was at work today in the back of my mind I was thinking about where to start. Planing. Making a mental list. Couldn’t wait to get home to get started even though I wasn’t exactly sure where that would be. But first things first. I have to check my email and blogs before I do anything else. Your post today couldn’t have come at a better time!!! I know right where to start. Better get busy!!! Thanks for your help!!!!

  69. Alissa says:

    I am still excited from yesterday about the tips to clean my sewing machine. I have so many other great projects on my list, but I think my excitement is going to make that my #1 tonight after the kids go to bed.

  70. Aimee says:

    My sewing area is a complete disaster! I really want to clean it up but have felt totally overwhelmed. Thank you for giving me a step by step list. It will really help me keep on track and get it done. Hooray! I feel like I can really look forward to a clean creative space now!

  71. Deanne says:

    The pdf is so pretty! Thank you, there are a few things on this list that I haven’t thought to do in a good long while.

  72. Rochelle says:

    Just the motivation I need!!! Thanks so much!

  73. Marissa says:

    I so need to do this but it will have to wait until I get the queen sized quilt done for my sisters wedding. Then look out here I come sewing room!

  74. Kate M. says:

    OOO I’ve been wanting a new sewing machine cover. Maybe I should jsut make my own. I worry about it fitting tightly enough though– wrinkles on your cover lead to wrinkles in whatever you’re ironing.

  75. Andi says:

    Wow! This is great! I started my clean-up last week-end, but I see from this list I could do a few more things. Here’s a tip for threads and bobbins: I recently bought a June Tailor thread organizer, which I love, but I really wanted to keep each bobbin together with its corresponding thread. So, after discovering that the dowels could easily be pulled out of the organizer, I bought some dowelling the same size, cut it into longer lengths and popped the new dowels in. Now my bobbins easily fit on top of the thread in the organizer.
    Happy spring cleaning everyone!

  76. Leah says:

    Okay, no excuses, guess I gotta do some spring cleaning! thanks for the motivation! and the great ideas for some new fun things to create.

  77. MaryAnn says:

    Great list to keep on hand for any time of the year!

  78. Holly says:

    This really is going to help me get back on track! I started doing this in January as a New Year’s resolution and never finished!

  79. Bethany says:

    Great List! I definitely need to do this and I think a list like this is a great way to keep me on task instead of getting sidetracked when I start cleaning. Thank you!

  80. Julia in MI says:

    This is great! I have my work cut out for me. But when I’m done with this list, I’ll love my sewing area.

  81. Barb says:

    Thanks for all of the info…a must do to add to the list!

  82. Melissa says:

    I was already thinking along these lines! Now I really am going to get started. I am going to set a deadline for painting and new curtains so my space will be pretty and tidy!

  83. katie says:

    I’m ready for spring — but my sewing room is not! Thanks for the nudge. (Oh, and I’m ready to win something, too. Keeping my fingers crossed this week. . . . )

  84. KZ says:

    i think this will really help me get my spring cleaning finished this weekend.

  85. Kelli says:

    I know what I’ll be doing this week now. Thanks, I could really use this advice!

  86. Anne says:

    These are all such great ideas – thanks.

  87. Darla says:

    I wish I had a sewing room…I’d clean it from top to bottom! Instead I’ll just sort out my projects and supplies, then make a plan for what projects I’m going to do this spring.

  88. Rebekah says:

    Great instructions!! My sewing/scrapbook room definitely needs some TLC!

  89. Leah says:

    I love the organizational ideas! All of my fabric is stuffed into clear storage drawers, and my notions/threads/anything else are just wedged in there as well. I appreciate all of these suggestions and look forward to implementing some of them very soon.

  90. Sarah says:

    great inspiration! thanks for the printable list also 🙂

  91. Missy says:

    Oh to HAVE an entire room devoted to sewing…sigh.

  92. Melanie says:

    I so need to do this! I need to compress all of my sewing and craft supplies to the point everything is portable, since we are making the office/craft/sewing room into our daughter’s room. I, too, smell a weekend project. Or several.

  93. Kristin says:

    Such great ideas, I wish I had the time do do them all.

  94. LittleA says:

    I would love to do every single on of these things! But it may have to be summer cleaning for me.

  95. Marcia says:

    Great ideas. I’m going to link to this too! Thanks

  96. Jaime says:

    Wow what a list! I’ve been sewing so much lately and have scraps and bits all over my work table, I think this is good time to get cleaning!

  97. Shannon says:

    Oh I needed this! I so need to clean my area and get in the mood!! Thank you!

  98. Christine Bolin says:

    Yes, I’m bad about putting everything away at the end of crafting time. I’m going in to start now (because I feel guilty about not cleaning up.)

  99. Ms.Cleaver says:

    I am so in need of a craft corner cleaning, hopefully I’ll be able to do it soon!

  100. meri says:

    It’s perfect!
    So many useful ideas! Thanks!

  101. Jerilyn Grow says:

    This was exactly the project I undertook over the past weekend! For those of us not blessed with a dedicated sewing room or area, a tip: Organize all your sewing tools in an inexpensive tacklebox. I can’ tell you how many times I’ve taken a trip across town to buy a tool I already owned just because I couldn’t remember which box/drawer/basket I put it in after the last use. Also, I save all those tiny ziplock bags that come with articles of clothing and contain replacement buttons. I find that putting small items such as bobbins, hooks, snaps, and trims into these tiny clear bags helps prevent tangling and chaos. Now if only SMS had a checklist to clean the rest of my house this spring…

  102. Erin says:

    Is this timely or what? My sewing room is such a disaster area I didn’t even know where to begin tidying.
    No excuses now!

  103. damocamelia says:

    Great list… I love the last part best!

  104. Ananda says:

    My sewing room looks like WW3 hit. These tips are just what I need to get me started. Thanks.

  105. Katie says:

    I like the idea of spending 5 minutes tidying up at the end of a sewing day. I do my best to keep my workspace clean because I share the space with my husband and since he works from home, it’s important every thing’s tidy as much as possible. Thanks for the post.

  106. tina says:

    Lots of good tips, and a great list to check off. Thanks!

  107. Ellen Ban says:

    Great timing! I’ve been pulling out heaps of fabrics from the last 10 years(sometimes wondering why I even liked some of it/Tastes change quickly and there’s always something new to buy!) and sorting and folding to get organized and destashed! It may take all Spring and Summer to do….but I’m going to get CONTROL!

  108. Corvus says:

    As my sewing room is my bedroom and is currently totally covered in fabric and notions and pattern pieces and come-what-may, this is something I definently need to work on.

  109. britt says:

    I love that you added some ideas for creating in the spring too!

  110. Joy says:

    Great list! Wish I had a larger sewing room!

  111. Julie says:

    What fantastic tips! Thanks for sharing!

  112. Christine says:

    I would love to do all this stuff but alas I don’t have a sewing room….I have a sewing mini corner. So I have decided I will make my sewing machine and drawers as squeaky clean as possible. I do like the ideas of creating new bins and the ironing board caddy.

  113. Barb Dominey says:

    Oh, you SO got me on this one! Creativity-stifling clutter and all. I see a weekend project ahead.

  114. stacy smith says:

    What a great list!! and perfect timing, too. I am just about to clean and re-arrange my sewing room. Thank you so much!!

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