My Favorite Birthday Present EVER!- by Bev Hilton

A Perfect Miter Every Time Present
Using the Quarter-Inch Marking Point
on Crafty Bev's
FussyCut 3in1™ and Big Sister Tools

Sharing, or "Do unto Others" - by Bev Hilton

Bev's Semi-Annual Sewing Studio Revamp - by Bev Hilton

Creativity, Comfort Zones and Order
- by Bev Hilton

Using a Center-finding Ruler
- by Rick Hilton


Attic Antics
A Quilt Top Project
Using the FussyCut
3in1 tool
- by Bev Hilton


Sewing & Quilting Guilds, National

American Sewing Guild
(national website)

Sewing & Craft Alliance

International Quilt Study Center & Museum (Lincoln, Nebraska)

Studio Art Quilt Associates

American Quilter's Society

Quilters Club of America

Sewing & Quilting Guilds, North Central Florida

American Sewing Guild Ocala (FL) Chapter

American Sewing Guild Central West Coast Florida (Nature Coast) Chapter

Quilters of Alachua County Day Guild

Tree City Quilters' Guild

Studio Art Quilt Associates Florida Blog

Florida Quilt Network

Sunshine State Quilters

Friends of
Crafty Bev

Quilt University

Ami Simms

Marjie McWilliams' Dyeing Studio

Maya Schonenberger,
Fiber Artist

Margaret Moorehead

Fabric Decollage by Debbie Jones

Ben Fox,

Quilt Shows

Broward Quilt
Expo 2011

Jacksonville (FL)

thoreau quote

FussyCut 3in1 Video

Bev's Semi-Annual Sewing Studio Revamp


by Bev Hilton

Every two years or so I GUT the sewing room -- totally empty it of EVERYTHING. Before the process actually begins, I give thought to how I want the room organized in its new incarnation, how I want to improve on what I did the last time. Then I proceed with the restoring.

I go though all the items I've pulled from the room and first decide if I even want it any more. Interests and perspectives change, and the sewing room contents need to change accordingly.

I determine what items should be grouped and stored together. For example, buttons have their own whole section, closures (zippers, buckles, etc.), elastics, stabilizers, threads (sewing, embroidery rayon and embroidery poly, quilting, serger, etc.), rulers, fabric (quilting, garment, specialty), and so on and so on, depending on how much stuff I've managed to collect since the last time.

There are some very specific things I do during this organization process.

I maintain a set of standard tools at every work station, including all machines and ironing surfaces. Appropriate scissors and snips, needle inserter, seam gauge, seam ripper, tweezers, point turner -- any standard tools or notions I would use at that station, the station gets its dedicated tool. By doing this, I never have to chase anything down mid-process. It's always right there.

I discovered during a studio makeover class taught by Myrna Giesbrecht at Quilt University that if I put something away in a drawer, it has vanished forever. (Who knew?) So now I store nearly everything in clear(ish) plastic boxes that I can see through, at least somewhat.

This class also taught me to use templates and a floor plan to get the best use from available space. Think about how YOU work to create the systems and layout best for your particular work style.

I always use the same brand and line of container. I use the Sterilite line because they're reasonably priced and always available at Walmart, but the brand doesn't matter. What matters is that the sizes will stack and nest, making for a cohesive look to the work space and best space utilization. Two smalls stack on a medium, two mediums on a large, and so on.

One deviation from this, I store patterns in file cabinets. I use those corrugated plastic dividers that create two rows front to back and include a half dozen or so name tabs for categories. I label the front of each drawer with its contents.

I label everything -- drawers, clear plastic boxes, anything you store anything in, label it. Put it there, and when you are done with it, put it back where you've established its home. I even label my bookshelves. Just like grandma used to say -- A place for everything and everything in its place. And you'll never have to chase anything down again.

I give myself time to put it all back together. Creating this space can be a big job, and doing it to best result demands a certain thought process. I think in terms of function and location -- where will I be using the item. And I think in terms of grouping -- what goes with what. It's an exercise in logic, logistics, and personal preferences.

This process can be a lot of fun, too. You'll know your studio better than you ever have. And the result -- a studio that enhances the creative process and helps avoid wasted time and energy -- is definitely worth it.


Beverley Hilton
the Bev from

Copyright 2012 Theta Publishing Company