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Topic: Entertainment Center to Sewing Station  (Read 1909 times)
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« on: February 04, 2014 10:13:19 PM »

I'm putting the "After" picture first, for those who prefer to skip the backstory.  Wink

When I moved into my first apartment several years ago, I bought this entertainment center at Goodwill for six dollars:

It had a couple of shelves

and a big hole in the cardboard backing piece through which you could poke the back of your giant cathode ray tube TV.

This thing has been through two moves with me, but hasn't been used as an entertainment center for about four years - it just sits in the corner collecting dust and random items.  I decided to turn it into a self-contained sewing station.

Inside the doors on either side of the shelves were these funky plastic slots for CDs (probably - that's the only thing I could find that would fit in them, anyway).

I pulled them out and put in shelves for my fabric stash.  I glued on strips of cardboard for supports and made cardboard shelves that I then covered in black poster board to class them up a little.

The left side holds most of my fabric, wrapped around cardboard sheets to make it look pretty.

On the right side, I put little drawers (also made of cardboard covered with poster board) on the shelves and my larger fabric bits under the shelves.

The drawers hold thread and the bits of fabric that were too small to wrap around cardboard pieces but too big to throw away.

I wanted to turn one of the original shelves into a pull-out work surface, and this is how I accomplished that without any fancy hardware:

I moved four of the shelf pegs up to the highest slots so that one of the shelves can rest on them.  The other shelf sits directly on top of it and slides out.  Up in the corner you can see the staple I put in (there's one on the other side too) that serves the dual purpose of keeping the top shelf from sliding all the way back when it's pushed in (there needs to be some overhang in the front for you to grab), and keeping the bottom shelf from tilting down when the top shelf is pulled out.  The piece of wood I nailed in on each side keeps the top shelf from tilting down.

I also hung some useful items on nails on the side.  The blue thing is a ruler, and the brownish square is a magnet for collecting stray pins.

On the other side I installed a lamp I had lying around.

I fixed the back with a sheet of poster board.  You can't see it very well, but the stool fits under the shelf.

This poor neglected piece of furniture should see a lot more use now.  Smiley


« Reply #1 on: February 05, 2014 12:10:53 AM »

Hey, that's a great idea.

Mind if I throw in some "buts"?
I sew a lot, and I found you don't need a lot of space in front of your machine, rather in the back and to the left; when you sew a lot of fabric you can hold it in your lap, but after passing under the needle it has to pile up somewhere. Judging by your fabrics I'd say you're more into patchwork and small things, but even so I fear your makeshift-slideout won't hold to well the weight of your machine, even more so when going full speed. So I'd invest in a larger shelf, even coming out a bit, but properly installed and secured.

If you like you could also add a threadholder in the back, over your machine - just a lot of pegs on a board, to slide on the spools. Makes an interesting, colorful addition too. Smiley

« Reply #2 on: February 05, 2014 02:20:58 AM »

I rocked you! What wonderful vision to repurpose this "cheap" piece of furniture into something beautiful and functional. I think you did marvelous. Cardboard comes in handy for lots of things, and you definately proved that!


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« Reply #3 on: February 05, 2014 04:31:19 AM »

Well, isn't that handy?  And, it looks incredible too. Use it up, wear it out, make it do.  Great repurpose!

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« Reply #4 on: February 05, 2014 04:38:53 AM »

Color me inspired! I have an old tv cabinet & my sewing machine is currently out in the open just sitting on a side table. Your sewing station looks great....fab upcycle! Wink

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« Reply #5 on: February 05, 2014 06:35:40 AM »

I just joined Craftster and I gotta say, "You are My People!" Especially the Repurposers; I've been looking at stuff since I was six years old thinking, "I can do something with that."

This is so inspiring to me! I love how you used stuff you already had to make everything you wanted. I rocked you before I figured out how to reply! Cuz you do!

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« Reply #6 on: February 05, 2014 09:04:20 AM »

I signed in just to Rock this. Genius ideas!
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« Reply #7 on: February 05, 2014 04:07:44 PM »

I love the after picture, the first one. It looks like a sewing machine shrine! Those hard working machines deserve it!

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« Reply #8 on: February 05, 2014 07:34:22 PM »

Aww, thanks, you guys!  Kiss

Judging by your fabrics I'd say you're more into patchwork and small things, but even so I fear your makeshift-slideout won't hold to well the weight of your machine, even more so when going full speed. So I'd invest in a larger shelf, even coming out a bit, but properly installed and secured.

The slide-out bit isn't for putting the machine on, it would never hold up to that!  It's just for laying out fabric for measuring and/or cutting.  And you're right, I pretty much just sew small things.  If it turns out I need more room, I'll look into a more permanent and sturdy shelf.  Smiley

« Reply #9 on: February 06, 2014 04:21:03 AM »

Brilliant upcycling! 
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