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Need Suggestions/Input for purchasing a quilting/sewing machine table

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Aleta posted on Sun, Jan 1 2012 9:38 PM

i have my quilting studio now.  Yeah!!!  I'm using a 7-foot long  35" wide old (my husband thinks it was homemade; he found it somewhere) buffet-style  table to sew on.  My machine is at one end and at the other end I have my large cutting mat on a piece of OSB that my husband cut for me, setting up on blocks to bring it up to comfortable cutting height.  It works okay but I'd like to have something nice and something that doesn't take up so much long-wise area in the room.  I plan to purchase a separate cutting table - probably.

I have the brochure for the Horn furniture and I like the looks of the "Super Quilter's Dream" set-up, but I'm not sure if that would give me enough room on the other side of my machine for the quilt as I'm quilting it.  I have a Bernina machine and I generally do smaller quilts.  The largest I have done was 80" x 88" and that was really tough with my machine.

What do you all use?  Should I maybe try to custom-make one?  I can have my husband do it (add one more thing to his "honey do" list!) but I'd rather be able to buy one if I can find one that suits.

Thanks!

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Patti replied on Sun, Jan 1 2012 10:03 PM

I was watching a video a couple months ago, and was amazed at how some of the big prize winners quilt.  Many don't have long arms but use domestic, or mid arm machines without a frame.  To help it glide and move easily under the machine, the quilt was hanging from a series of pulleys and clasps with just a small workable portion of the quilt actually on the table.  And no drag!  So a really big table is not necessary.  I hope to get something set up like that.

Patti

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Annie replied on Mon, Jan 2 2012 6:42 AM

Aleta,

I had an idea of modifying a piece of counter top into a sewing table.  As I was looking through and Ikea catalog, I came across a 27"X96" piece of 1" butcher block.  My DH says he can jigsaw a hole the size of my machine and drop it in so that it is flush with the tabletop.  That way quilting a larger top should be easier.  He wants to put in a lift but I don't really care and know the simpler it is the quicker it will get done.  I haven't decided on the legs yet, was hoping to use drawer units as legs as storage.

I would love to hear from anyone who has modified tabletops in this way.

Good luck Aleta and post some pictures :)

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I longed for one of those thousand dollar sewing tables for years but could never afford one.  I decided to started checking craigs list on a regular basis (3-4 times weekly).  The first sewing table I found was an old Horn (well over $1000. new).  The lift was off the track so I phoned Horn and they sent me the instructions and parts at no charge.  The price on the table was $20. but the woman gave it to me for free because the caster broke off when we were loading it.  I couldn't get the lift to work so I gave it to a church yard sale.  The next table I found was gorgeous with an electric lift and storage galore, it even came with an Elna sewing machine both for $70-$80. (can't remember).  WooHoo!  So...start checking your local craigslist and thrift stores.  The money you save can help build your fabric and thread stash.

Andrea

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wow Andrea, what a great find, and a good idea for shopping Craig's list, I never think of that when looking for a table for my sewing room, I finally purchased a 5 leg table cutting hight from Joann's, NOT the 4 leg one they have now, reviews are terrible on that one. Anyway when I need the help with weight of a project I roll it over to behind my library table that my machine sits on and it gives me the room I need for the project. Now that said, the library table was a thrift store find $40 ten years ago, sits my machine at the perfect hight using a special machine riser. I found it in EBAY. they are cut for your machines. Mine has a drawer for smalls, and I love this piece.

Happy Sewing, Quilting and Embellishing with Embroidery!!
Carylanne

I am going to find the riser for you all, I have to find the old invoice first, then I will post the link ,  for anyone interested in looking, it truly helps my back and shoulders, of course if you have a cabinet with a lift you are a lucky duck..
I like the idea of a cutting table I saw in a magazine article, the table was made using OSB  covered with just one of those huge cutting mats for fashion fabrics, or flannel I don't remember, but anyway under the cutting surface you place the retractable folding legs, now this unit was connected to a wall ( I don't have another wall) and had hinges to fold up flush to the wall using some sort of  pulley system. I am sure if you have a handy man for a husband you can get him to make you a perfect for your space unit. Then can I have him for a week?? Love ya,


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abcd replied on Tue, Jan 3 2012 9:31 AM

I saw something a few years ago on tv, and now I can't remember if it was Alex Anderson on "Simply Quilts" or another quilt show, BUT - they showed how they put their studio together for TV.  They went to the hardware store and purchased 2 flat doors - you know, the ones that you use for closets - and then got a couple of generic, "from the show room floor", cabinets - the cheap ones you can buy for your kitchen in your house - and put them flush on the floor, with the doors side-by-side on top and screwed (nailed, whatever) INTO the "tops" of the cabinets.  One cabinet had shelves, the other just a big space with an open door.  Then they put a large cutting mat (or piece of plastic, I can't recall) over the entire top.  This did not have a cut out for your machine, but it was a beautiful piece of sewing studio stuff! Large, and CHEAP considering!  Great looking, to boot!  I have a basement, and "one of these days" I am clearing out a space for a sewing studio, and that's a fact. If you have the space, don't purchase the Horn or Koala cabinet system if you can do more for less expensive (also only if you have a handyman).  It depends on whether you are putting something together for your "sewing area" in a room in your house, or a STUDIO, I think....  (wow, now I want to do some deep cleaning downstairs!)  ;D

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John's risers http://embroiderymachineriser.com/Home.html 


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Aleta replied on Tue, Jan 3 2012 10:05 AM

Thanks to everyone for your input on this!

Does anybody actually have a Horn Super Quilter's Dream, and if so, how do you like it for quilting?

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Annie replied on Tue, Jan 3 2012 10:22 AM

Caryl Anne:

Caryl Anne,

At the risk of sounding ignorant, why would you need a riser, I'm always trying to lower my machine to make it even with the table...

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Thea replied on Tue, Jan 3 2012 10:33 AM

Aleta - i don' t have the Horn but have the Koala - when I first bought my very first Pfaff sewing machine they were giving the tables away - I was in the market for a table that day so thought - why not - I do like it - but have a complaint - on mine - it is supposed to be the quilting one - they left the space to the left of the sewing machine open... so I have to put another table there to hold the weight of the quilt when sewing  - not sure I am explaining this - lol - my table has a table that lifts up behind the regular table - like a leaf - but it goes up behind and to the right of the sewing machine - I need the table to be to the left - for years DH has been meaning to move it over for me - lol - hasn't happened - maybe one day.... my other complaint is where my machine sits- my left leg comes right up against the wall under the sewing machine - they didn't leave enough space there for me to be comfortable - I do make do though - 

I, also, can barely get my Janome 6500 in the space - it just fits so a larger machine would not fit - so in looking for one make sure you have your sewing machine measurements... my pfaff fits with room to spare - but you have to leave room on the right side for the cords...

 

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Thea replied on Tue, Jan 3 2012 10:34 AM

in saying all that I said and I do ramble - I would like to have one made one day to my specifications... 

 

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gini replied on Tue, Jan 3 2012 11:18 AM

aleta, i can't remember what brand of cabinet i have,  but i got one with as much space behind  and to the left  as i could,  and a drop in hole for the machine.  i love it.

gini in north idaho

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Vickie replied on Tue, Jan 3 2012 11:28 AM

I waited and waited, then looked and looked...I purchased a Horn sewing machine table last year. Well worth the investment. I love having a single height from which to sew. My space was limited. I recommend having a catalog with all of the dimensions and measuring the space where the table will go not twice but three or four times.  My table required the addition of a plexi-glass insert that was cut precisely for my sewing machine.

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Annie:

Caryl Anne:

Caryl Anne,

At the risk of sounding ignorant, why would you need a riser, I'm always trying to lower my machine to make it even with the table...

Annie, I purchased this great wide library table at a thrift store more than 10 years ago. It is perfect as a reading table however, not the correct height for sewing.  I was finding my shoulders, neck and back aches hard to handle( arthritis), and therefor the riser. I no longer have to sloop over the machine to see where I am going, and I can sew longer without feeling the effects the next day. I sew, craft, quilt, or embroidery nearly everyday, so it was very useful for me. At one time I too wanted a new cabinet made for me with all the bells and whistles and the cutting surfaces that koala offers, but as I didn't have a winning lottery ticket, I have to do with other great items.. You know what else I like about this piece?  It has the cut out at the side where I can place my snips, tweezers, awl, and other needed tools .

 Carylanne

 


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Vickie replied on Tue, Jan 3 2012 11:44 AM

That is the model that I wanted; however, I didn't have the floor space in my sewing area for it. I did notice that Horn has several models where a serger can be placed to the right of the machine. Since I don't have a serger I didn't see the need for the right-hand extension for it.

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