Sewing/Cutting Table

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Project by harriw posted 02-14-2016 03:09 AM 1133 views 3 times favorited 2 comments Add to Favorites Watch

“How come you never make anything for me?” asked my wife. 4 months later, in mid-February, I finally finished her Christmas present. Happy Valentine’s Day I guess :) This is 95% her design, 5% my suggestions throw in along the way (“this is how it’s usually done,” or “I only have this much of such-and-such left”).

Construction is birch ply carcass, with quarter-sawn maple face frames on both front and back. Face frames are a very clear/white maple from the lumber yard. Drawers are all baltic birch. Drawer fronts and the door are also quarter-sawn maple, but from a tree a friend of mine took down and milled a few years ago. It’s quite different from the face frames, but has quite a bit of character to it. I think it goes nicely with the birch. Finish is all Watco Danish Oil. The top is temporarily thrown together from some engineered flooring left over from my brother-in-law’s kitchen remodel. I’m in a bit of a time crunch at the moment, but will go back and do a proper top with edging this summer. The drawer pulls are also temporary, until she can find some knobs she likes.

It’s designed to be a cutting table for cutting her fabric patterns before sewing them together. She’d been using a mission desk for a few years, but at 30” desk height she had to lean over too far, and wanted something at counter-height (36”). This has MUCH more (and more usable) storage as well. It has 6 main drawers in front, all on drawer slides. The bottom 2 are sized to be file drawers, but she only wanted the rails installed on one of them (she uses hanging folders to store her sewing patterns, but wanted to save the other big drawer for fabric scraps).

In back, there’s a “cubby” area built in at the 30” desk height. She has another 30” desk that goes back-to-back with the cutting table where she sits down at her sewing machines, and she wanted that space to stick her pencils, pins, and other odds-and-ends into storage pails. It does mean the top 2 drawers can’t be quite as deep, and it certainly made construction interesting, but it’s a pretty neat feature.

The door on the right hides the neat stuff… There’s a tall, skinny, vertical compartment to store her spare cutting mats and rulers. And on the left are a series of pull-out drawers with pegs to store all her sewing machine and serger thread. That idea was my contribution – I modeled it after the router-bit storage trays we all love to add to our “Norm-inspired” router tables.

It took a good 4 months to build, but I really did enjoy making this. She absolutely loves it, and she’s now the envy of all her sewing friends. Next up are a shelving unit to go underneath her ironing board, and another unit to hold her printer and embroidery machine. You know how much fun we have building shop furniture? Well, building sewing-room furniture is almost as much fun – but you get to bring it into the house when you’re done with it :)

-- Bill - Western NY

2 comments so far

View Jarrett's profile


85 posts in 1325 days

#1 posted 02-14-2016 03:33 AM

Are you sure our wives aren’t twin sisters? I’m not quite as far along as you..i just got done putting base around her new craft room and trimming out the windows. I really want to show my wife the pictures of what you built, but then again, I’m scared….believe it or not, she is cutting on a mission style table as we speak.
Beautiful Christmas/Valentine’s present! Well done!

-- Jarrett

View recycle1943's profile


2491 posts in 1820 days

#2 posted 02-14-2016 03:30 PM

very nice build and write up

-- Dick, Malvern Ohio - my biggest fear is that when I die, my wife sells my toys for what I told her I paid for them

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