Quilt Storage

Way back in 2011 I posted about a wonderful feature in my studio I call my “Magic Box”. This is where I keep my art quilts that shouldn’t be folded – since I don’t have an unused bed to stack them on. I recently had an oops moment with the box, and thought it would be a good time to share this creative idea, especially since many more quilters are viewing my posts now. This was my intro back then:

“There are many options for storing finished quilts. Wallhangings which contain fusibles can be particularly difficult because folding can leave virtually permanent creases. When I was blessed with the opportunity to have my new studio built, I wanted to come up with a workable solution that wouldn’t take up a lot of space. After a bit of brainstorming my husband came up with the winning idea – the Magic Box! Think “Murphy Bed” hidden behind the design wall.”

mg-closed-from-side

My design wall is made of two fabric covered styrofoam insulation boards. They lean against the Magic Box when it’s closed (yes, there is always at least that much stuff hanging on it – no matter how hard I try to stop myself).

mb-design-walls-up

To open it, I pull the boards to the side,

mb-design-wall-half

mb-closed-front

unhook the hooks:

mp-closed-pulley

And gently allow the box to drop down to the floor:

mb-open-angle

mb-open-clamped

There are weights (pvc pipes filled with concrete and covered with quilted tubes), connected with ropes through pulleys, that counterbalance the weight of the box/quilts, so I can lift the weight.

mb-weights-and-pullies

The quilts are held in place by batting covered boards, that clamp at the top and middle.

mb-clamp

It has all worked wonderfully well for almost a dozen years, until a recent small snafu. I’ve been twisting the clamps gently because I didn’t want to put any undue strain on the quilts, but I think I was under-doing it. This was my most recent opening:

mb-oops

The center board held, but the top was too loose and all the quilts slid out from under it. No big deal. I simply removed the top boards and re-stacked the quilts. This system has worked very well for me. It takes up very little space and holds a lot of quilts! It’s too small for bed quilts (65″ x 65″), and it’s too cumbersome for small projects, but for large wall hangings it’s the perfect solution.

How do you store your quilts?

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Treasured Quilts of Wisconsin

I’m very excited to share that Wendy and I will be featured in the upcoming PBS special “Treasured Quilts of Wisconsin”. It will be hosted by Nancy Zieman and will air twice: Tuesday, November 29, at 7pm-9pm and Saturday, December 3, at 10:30am. To read more about this special go to:  http://wptblog.org/2016/11/treasured-quilts-of-wisconsin-showcases-tradition-innovation-and-inspiration/

A Monday morning added note: One of my readers emailed me to ask if this program will be aired in Milwaukee, since she couldn’t find it on their schedule. I contacted the originators of the program and here is their answer:

“Unfortunately at this point, Milwaukee Public Television hasn’t picked it up. We are hoping it pledges well and the station will pick it up for March pledge. So you will be able to see this program anywhere in the state except for Milwaukee. But if viewers in that market have access to Wisconsin Public Television in their cable or satellite package, they should be able to watch it.”


2 Opinions

  • Bonnie Camp said:

    My wall quilts (fusible or not) are hung in the closet using skirt hangers. Quilts that we use during the year are on quilt racks in each of the bedrooms. I fold my large quits that are not in use with the wrong side facing up on the top shelves in the bedroom closets. I also have 2 design walls made with insulation covered with fabric in the finished area of the basement where I store my extra machine and ironing board and fabrics. The design wall is perfect!!!

    Reply
  • Lorraine Bahr said:

    I use an over-the-door clothes hanger on the back of the spare bedroom door to hang small wall hangings. I have a large piece of cardboard where I lay larger wall hangings face down. I then slide the cardboard under the guest room bed.

    Reply

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