After having recently contributed to the San Francisco Bay Area real-estate insanity, my partner and I have been grappling with the problem of allocating the space in our coveted "third bedroom". Being away from most of our family and friends, the natural choice would be to use this room as a guest bedroom to accommodate out of town guests. However, I'm well aware that the needs of a quilter outweigh the needs of the many, and that without many quilts, there's no point having guests sleep over anyways. Alas, after deliberating over many different solutions, we settled on the only answer that seemed fit for our Silicon Valley home: A Box.
This isn't just just any box, rather, I think of it as a magical transformer box custom made by a local carpenter. Innocent and cabinet looking, the first thing you'll notice that is a little strange is the double stacked cabinet top. Inspecting from above, you'll see two oddly placed grommets, a couple hinges, and a seam (that has been carefully cut while maintaining the woodgrain across both panels).
The entire cabinet is made of maple, and the distinctly stained knobs invite you to open the cabinet to explore its treasures.
Welcome, your sewing machine and notions await!
Note, the interior drawers have been set to the exact width of an Aurifil spool.
And the stained horizontal piece attached to the top of the door? That pivots when the door is open. And then there's a small piece of brass sticking straight up, as if it was designed to fit into a grommet somewhere... I guess you see where this is going...
Wait for it...
And of course, the right-hand side door is setup in a similar fashion:
Here's a view of the entire table, fully opened. The tabletop space is twice as large as when closed, due to the double stacked folding top.
Once deployed, access is granted to the sewing machine via removing the top panel which is inset into the table top: (The corner is cut out to allow for cables to be fed through the tabletop if working with a smaller/lighter machine).
Housed in the cabinet is a Janome 1600P, this beast weighs over 30 pounds (14.5kgs), but is balanced on a hydraulic lift, so a minimal amount of effort is required to raise the machine to tabletop height:
Sewing with giant gaps around the throat and needle would prove to be incredibly difficult, so there are L and I-shaped fittings to make for a smooth work surface.
The lift has two height settings, just in case you wanted to work at table height (instead of flush).
I was informed during the photoshoot that I forgot to raise the thread guide. Here it is, setup properly...
I didn't quite understand what all of the extra desktop space was for- apparently sewing machines like to have friends.
The two cubbies on the right hand side are made to fit a cover stitch machine and serger. One last thing to note: When designing the table, we were very careful to center the needle of the sewing machine (rather than the machine itself) on the table:
Countless hours were spent designing, planning, building, modifying, and then finally installing this thing in our spare bedroom. Is it madness or is it perfection, or maybe both? Vote below, or better yet, leave a comment :)