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Let’s Bee Social # 219

Posted on: March 14th, 2018 by Lorna McMahon
Welcome to the Let’s Bee Social!
Things are starting to settle in. I finally did some sewing.

These are the new Christmas Sweaters I’m working on. I showed the fabrics in this post, if you’re curious about them.

This quilt design is reminiscent of the Ugly Christmas Sweaters I made as my first finish of 2016. But I thought the best way to break in a new sewing room…. is by starting a new project. I felt a bit disconnected while starting out in the new digs. My ironing board is now on the left instead of the right from my work area. And although it is wonderful to have two lovely windows for all that natural light, it is really a bit warm. Any suggestions for window treatments?



Have some Christmas fabric looking for a quilt?
You can find the new Christmas Sweaters pattern here in my shop.

Christmas Sweaters finishes at 66″ x 80″


Now… It’s your turn for Show and Tell!!!

What have you been working on?


Sew Fresh Quilts




Thank you to all who have kept us in your thoughts and prayers. And for your many emails and notes of encouragement and support. Also for the virtual flowers and actual card mailed to us,  welcoming us into our new home. You are all greatly appreciated and I am blessed to have so many quilting friends from all over the world!

Keep On Quilting On!




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31 Responses

  1. Nancy J says:

    Love that light .Can you move your machine along to the right a bit further? A sun block blind, that can be lowered part way? Or fine gauze? Muslin? Make a roman blind in light weight pale fabric? Or move the table to where the ironing board is? If none of these help, wait for a cold day!!! So glad you have this space, enjoy the new room and more.

  2. Marsha says:

    I have mini blinds that I can adjust as needed. For decor I just use tension rods with patterned open weave fabric underneath on one rod and in front of that, another rod with easy gathered pretty fabric and the pattern from the open weave showing underneath. Hard to explain. It took me years to figure out what I wanted so mini blinds were it for years. I was just telling a shop worker Monday about your ugly sweater pattern. The shop carries and loves your patterns but she had never heard of it!

  3. What a beautiful sewing room!! Such lovely natural lighting, but I can see it being too warm. How about those nice white blinds from Home Depot – they cut them to size for you and they are perfect for deflecting the outside light to where you want it. They are (or were) very cost efficient. Love, love your new Christmas sweaters quilt!!

  4. Kerry says:

    And she's up and running! Whoohoo!We installed a fan – which operates by remote to change speed – in the room that I use because it was very hot in there – my son had his TV's (yup, one for programmes and another for gaming!) and the sun was at the hottest on that side of the house. We have curtains because after he had moved out, it still doubled as a guest bedroom. The curtains are handy for diffused light, but my cousin in Toronto used to have a film over her windows – it was black but lots of tiny holes that still let in the light, but it felt a lot cooler. Now she has shutters type blinds to adjust.

  5. Elaine says:

    Love the space. Love the light. I sew in the basement and it's COLD these days. ENjoy!!!!

  6. I like my mini blinds I can turn them up or down depending on how high the sun is in the sky. or open them up to let in more natural light whens it's dreary outside. Enjoy that new space and in no time at all you'll be used to the new setup.

  7. Natural light is SO important, having spent 5 years sewing in a one window corner of a basement…Loving the set-up! I see you've got snow up there too. Yesterday, no snow; get up this am and the grass is nearly all white, like enough already!

  8. I understand your problem with the new room :-). When we built our house 9 years ago I initially had my set up right under the window, but I found the light (and heat!) coming the wrong way. I like the light coming over my shoulder more…maybe try and L shaped set up with the machine perpendicular to one window and the light coming from behind on the other side? I moved quite a few times before settling on what works best. I also set my ironing board up away from my sewing machine so I have to get up to press…makes me move or I get too stiff. I found some awesome blinds for my sewing room at Lowe's….the brand is Project Source and they are cordless wandless tilt blinds. They work very well…you can put the blind tiling up or down which lets light in but the bright sun out. I have one 23\” x 42\” that I bought by accident…if that fits your window, you can have it :-).

  9. It's funny how we get used to having things set up a certain way and then any other way feels weird, isn't it? I'm willing to bet it won't take long before the new set up starts feeling natural 🙂 All that natural light looks amazing, but I can see how it would really heat up a room. Good luck finding a solution. I'm a simple curtains kind of girl, but my SIL swears by roman shades she makes herself.

  10. I'm a fan of blinds as you can have them up or down and when down they can be partially opened so you can see out of them

  11. Preeti says:

    Beautiful room, Lorna. May the new house bring you lots of joy and creativity. I am so happy for you.

  12. Hi Lorna! I agree with all of the above, and have the same issue in my sewing space. I love my blinds, and find perpendicular placement of the table and sewing machine much better. I can still see out, catch breezes in the summer, but not be blinded by the light. I have wide wooden blinds. I have found that the slightly heavier blinds are much sturdier and easier to clean, the cheap ones break from light damage after a year or two. Sending successful blessings to you and your family. Been there, you got this! Love, Jane

  13. My sewing room is sunny too, it faces south. You could try black out shades or black out curtains or both.The sun, or just natural light is wonderful but there are days it is indeed too warm. I like to be the boss of that!! 🙃😂I love the sweaters. It does take a while to get the placement of equipment to your satisfaction, so just try different set ups.I love all of the shared blogs so I will check some out

  14. Frieda says:

    I have shutters now in my room and open them to let the light in how I want it. Also, if you do not want anything to obscure your view, having tint put on the windows really works. Our main living area opens to our backyard and we had the windows tinted. It helps with the heat and does not allow any fading of the furniture or floorings. Hope you find a solution that suits you.

  15. KaHolly says:

    Love your new sewing space! You’ll get used to it. I used to sew in a south facing sunroom, completely surrounded by glass. I had to put up those grass-like roll up window shades, which were all I could find that were large enough. It really helped. In the dead of winter, it was the most delightful place to sit and Sew!

  16. Yay for settling in! The light in your room and space looks lovely. 🙂

  17. Nita says:

    I love the light in your sewing room! I have my cutting table under the only window in my room and it's amazing how the natural light affects the way I see the colours. :). In contrast, my sewing machine is on a desk my husband built in the closet, with lamps for lighting. He took the doors off and built the desk & shelving inside – it's awesome. For window coverings, I'd just put white miniblinds up for a sleek look. Maybe a bright topper. I'm not much for drapes myself.

  18. Hi Lorna,I would suggest light filtering blinds that rise from the bottom and top. That way you can have the sun out of your eyes yet the light still filtering in, and the neighbors will only be able to see what you allow them to! I'm so glad you are getting settled into your new home and work space. Soon that iron to the left will just be natural and you'll wonder why you ever had it on your right! ~smile~ Roseanne

  19. Unknown says:

    I love having a large window in my sewing room, but it faces South, so lots of sun/heat all summer long. I purchased a roller shade from that is white, sun-screen fabric. It rolls up or down with a looped cord on one side. You can still see through it, but it cuts the heat/light considerably.

  20. Dots says:

    Hi Lorna, Inexpensive and 'make do' temporary solution is to use pellon stabilizer on those expanding spring rods from the dollar store. It would be a filter for the heat. Even shower curtain liners from a dollar store can be cut to fit. I realize after a move money can be tight for a while. I know Lowe's use to have this place-and- press window vinyl that is easy to cut and fit, too. I've been there, and done that, so I know you get creative. Which on top of the process of many changes- some you haven't encountered yet, can feel like over-load. But it will level out for you. It takes time.

  21. Cathy B. says:

    What a great space with that natural light. I find that a lightweight curtain on the lower half of the window only is enough to cut down on any glare and afford some privacy. Easy to do with tension rods. Hopefully it will help with the heat too. Many congrats on your new place!

  22. Kathy says:

    So wonderful to see you sewing again! Super happy for you! I was reading the last comment by Dots and I swear she has visited my sewing room! I was in a bind when I moved into my place and I used shower curtains! I have two windows that are both a bit odd shaped and didn't want to pay for custom anything. I purchased spring rods, cloth shower curtains and some hangers and POOF…instant window treatments! Well, maybe not so instant…I had to cut them to the length I wanted but hey, it was quick and easy! They are still hanging there today! ha! I don't get any heat, no direct sun, but I believe that a hardware store will have some sort of film coating that you can put on to take care of that and still get the benefit of sunlight.

  23. Julie says:

    I would want both privacy and light control in the room. If I'm up in the middle of the night sewing, I prefer to know someone isn't able to see me from outside. I vote for some kind of solid material/louvered blind in that case. But it's also nice to have something sheer so you can have the light, but not so much of the heat. You may have to start with something simple and add on as needed. But in the meantime, Lorna, I hope you enjoy your beautiful light!

  24. Brilliant as always Lorna . Those polo neck sweaters also remind me of the sweaters those cool jazz afficianados wore in the 1960s . I'm glad you are settling into your new home . Onwards and upwards ! X

  25. Sewmom18 says:

    Sew happy to see you moved and back to sewing. I have windows with blinds in them. I have the sun shine in the winter when the room is freezing and tilted in the summer to help keep the heat out but light in.

  26. Glad to see you're doing some sewing. You'll probably do a lot of re-arranging until your find your perfect set up. Good luck.

  27. Sewmotion says:

    Great to see you back sewing, and what a room! I have similar problems in my room, the sunlight is lovely and cheers you up on a dull day, but boy is it hot. I bought some white curtains from Ikea, they're kinda of sheer but thick enough not to see through. They actually soften the sunlight and creates a nice glow in the room, nice for photography too! Enjoy breaking in your new space.

  28. My sewing room is the hottest room in the house. It has 3 windows that get direct sun from mid morning till night. I have new mini blinds in there, as of last summer. This year, I'm going to put some of that UV blocker film on the windows, and see if that helps any. I have a ceiling fan, and a floor fan that sits in front of the AC vent. By summer, I will pull out another floor fan, and put it in the doorway, to get air moving as much as possible. Our HOA (hate HOA's) won't let me put in a window unit. If you find something, let me know PLEASE!

  29. dq says:

    Adjusting to a new sewing space will certainly take time. Yours is so bright and so filled with light. I bet it does get hot though.I love your shirt quilt.

  30. I'm envious of all that light but yes, it can be warm. When first setting up my sewing room I put my machine right in front of the window. Between the angle of the sun and the heat that didn't work for me. I had to re-arrange things several times. I glad to read that you're all moved now. Getting everything there was a huge accomplishment. Take your time and enjoy settling in.

  31. Christine S says:

    Love the sweaters :)I hope you are getting settled in and things are going well for you! Your house looks fantastic!