Page Buttons

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

A New Pressing Station and NTT

Happy Needle and Thread Thursday, friends!  I hope those of you in the States had a fun-filled fourth of July yesterday.  Instead of working on my Road to Tennessee quilt, I spent a good chunk of the holiday weekend transforming a vintage typewriter table into my new pressing station.

My grandmother used to work at Louisiana State Police headquarters, and many, many years ago, when the office updated to computers, she got this little typewriter table, and it has been languishing in a storage room of her house ever since.  When I saw it on my last visit, I immediately loved it, and she offered it to me as a project piece.

Let me just start by letting you know that I didn't intend to write a tutorial for this while I was actually doing the makeover, but I loved the end result so much, I decided that others might want to know how I did it.  The process is SO simple, but just know that's why there aren't photos for every single step.

To makeover the table, I used-
*220 grit sandpaper
*spray paint
        (I used two cans of the kind that already has primer mixed with the paint, in glossy black)
*pressing mat
        (I purchased a Cut 'n Press mat for this project.  You could make your own pressing mat, but I  
        chose to keep it simple)
*silicone iron rest
*sticky magnets- or you could hot glue non-sticky magnets

First, I lightly sanded the table with 220-grit sandpaper to remove any rough spots and to give the spray paint a surface it could adhere to, then wiped it down to get rid of the dust.  A coat of glossy black spray paint (with primer included), made this little table look almost brand new!

I attached the magnets to the edges of the cutting side of the Cut 'n Press mat to hold it in place on the center section of the table.  I don't want my mat sliding around while pressing, and adhering the magnets to the very edges still left the cutting grid intact if I ever want to use it.  The silicone iron rest grips nicely to the table all by itself, and when the table is folded down, it sits right on top.

And that's it!  Easy, right?  These old typewriter tables have a few features that I think make them perfectly functional for quilters.

First of all, the table has both wheels and feet.  That little lever on the bottom determines whether the feet are down to keep it stationary, or whether the wheels are down so it can be rolled.  So cool!

Secondly, the top leaves fold down, making it compact.  The entire table when folded down is only about 15" long x 20" wide.

But, the best feature of this little table is the height.  I know this is difficult to tell with a photo, but because this was originally used for stenographers, there is space for your knees, and the height is ergonomically perfect.  No more scrunched up shoulders!  In fact, the entire table slides right underneath my open sewing cabinet, which means that it sits just a couple of inches lower than my machine.

I'm so excited that I was able to breathe new life into this neat little table.  Of course, I'll still use my ironing board for bigger things, like large blocks or whole quilt tops, but this will be perfect for pressing HST's or other smaller block units, and it's perfectly portable for traveling to retreats as well.  So, if you're ever out and about and stumble upon one of these little gems, snatch it up and give it a quick and easy upcycle!

Before we link up, let's check out the features from last week's party.  Lori at Crossquilt shared this mini quilt, called Break the Code.  The design is actually the morse code for numbers zero through nine!

The Lilac Cat linked up this pretty drunkard's path variation.  Beautiful colors!

and this quilt by Patchwork n Play, called Rollercoaster, is so much fun!

Alright, y'all!  Time to link up the latest from your sewing space!

1. You can link finished projects or WIP's , but just keep it about quilting and sewing!
2. Link to your specific post (not to your home page!) to make it easier for others.
3. Please remember to spread the word and post my button or a text link.  
4. Spread the comment love far and wide!
5. Following me is not a requirement to link, but is so very appreciated!

*If you're new to the party, here's a helpful tip for linking up- select "Auto Crop"  when selecting your thumbnail photo.  For some reason, trying to crop your own image results in the dreaded "white question mark box," and we definitely want to see your awesome work!  :)


  1. This turned out great! I have an old gray metal typing table nearly identical to yours. It belonged to my Daddy who had an old Underwood typewriter on it for a few years while he was an independent insurance adjuster working from home. I inherited it from him, and it's been in my closet as a place to keep spare things at stand-up height, but now my thoughts are buzzing...... thanks so much for your tutorial !!

  2. neat idea - I had one of those pressing mats once but mine got very warped - I think it was because I used steam a lot - hope it works out well for you

  3. Genius! Isn't it fun to reinvent and re-purpose! Well done!

  4. Hi Kelly! Fantastic idea to enjoy that treasure typing table! I haven't seen this kind before. I hope I could use some treasures from our attic in Finland but not reasonable to bring something here ... perhaps I shall have one day sewing room there. x Teje

  5. That typing table is perfect, I love the space underneath for your knees, well done for breathing new life into a treasured item.

  6. Love your upcycled table! And such pretty yumminess in the links.

  7. And to think I was about to put my type writing table in a yard sale! No more. I am going to use your idea Thanks.

  8. Oh, Kelly, what a great little work station! I was thinking, "Hmm... I could sit on the couch and press stacks and stacks of HSTs while I watch a movie...." ; )

  9. Great idea Kelly! It would be ideal to have in front of the TV at night when you are pressing open a million HSTs.

  10. I have my serger on my typewriter table

  11. Great idea! My mom still has my dad's metal typing table in her basement but I think my sister has dibs on it. He was a tax preparer and had a Smith Corona manual typewriter for whatever he needed to type. He was the fastest two-finger "typer" ever! I once had to go check on him to be sure he was actually using only two fingers!!

  12. My goodness! What a great tutorial! You are such a talented lady. Isn't it awesome that it fit right under your sewing table? Thank you so very much for sharing!


Thanks so much for your comment and for visiting! I read and appreciate every single comment, and I reply to each one as soon as I can. If you don't hear back from me, you might be a no-reply blogger. :)

09 10 11 12
Blogging tips