Sew Organized!

Sewing CabinetFirst of all, let me just say that I am NOT a hoarder! I promise! I just NEED to save every square inch of fabric that I have left over from all of my sewing projects. THIS IS PERFECTLY NORMAL. Finding all that stuff again IS an issue, though. I used to keep everything in boxes, but you can only have so many boxes before they start burying your loved ones in box avalanches.
 
Realizing that I needed to address this problem BEFORE the Intervention happened, I decided to pull out those boxes in various places in my house, garage, and storage area to see what I ACTUALLY had. The goal was to somehow display all of the fabric and accessories so I could see everything at a glance and find what I needed immediately. And thus the SEWING CABINET was born. 
 
I wanted everything in the SAME PLACE. That left only one option for me: I had to build a custom sewing cabinet to house all of my things. 
 
Building cabinets is simple. It's just like putting a jigsaw puzzle together only you need to figure out how big all of the pieces are going to be. And cut them. But it's BETTER than jigsaw puzzles, because as far I know, you don't use nail guns on jigsaw puzzles. Maybe I'm doing it wrong, though...
 
Ok, WOOD: The good news is that ABX plywood comes in 3/4" and 1/2" sheets of 4 feet by 8 feet. So I needed to consider the length of every piece and subtract the width of the plywood (for each wall). Get the idea here? It's basic math. So all of those times you've asked "When am I ever going to use math?", the answer is NOW. NOW you need math. 
 
Laying Out
ALSO: If you're building your own sewing cabinet, you might want to make sure you can get your sewing cabinet into the room. We kind of had to take out the window in order to get the cabinet into the room. Not my best moment, and I don't really recommend it. Learn from my mistakes: MEASURE YOUR DOORWAY. Or build it inside the room - whatever works for you!
 
oops
 
After I laid out all of the pieces I needed for the cabinet, I started laying out the cut sheets of plywood. This helped me get the most out of each sheet of plywood and saved a lot of money. Once the pieces were cut, I started assembling it using my friend the nail gun. You can use wood screws and glue if you want, but a nail gun is better - so easy and fast! You can rent a nail gun and compressor at a tool rental shop, or you can use a screw gun or power drill and just screw the pieces together. You'll need a helper to hold the wood for you as you nail or screw. Make sure you both wear eye protection though - you don't want to get nails in your eyes
 
I added doors to mine so I could conceal the contents behind closed doors and to give me extra surface areas to hang organizing units on. If YOU add doors, have your shelves end about 4" shorter than the outer shell of the cabinet so there's room for you to hang things on the door. All the cool kids are hanging things on their doors these days!
  
Opening the door to find my accessories visible and organized makes doing projects easier and fun. Have you done something similar with your sewing stuff? Send me photos!
 
All done