Learn how to use your long arm frame for an ironing station. It’s simple and you can customize it to your needs.
The first time I got a long arm – years and years ago, I found that it took up a lot of space.
I have the 10 foot frame, and it takes up a bit of space. There wasn’t much area in my sewing room at the time and using every bit of space was important.
Every quilter needs space for ironing, cutting and sewing. So, while I was looking at the arrangement and how I could get the most in the layout – the ironing area was the ‘easiest’ to move.
The long arm machine I found was the perfect spot to add an ironing station on. The bars that the quilts are on are metal, thick and strong enough not to bow. There is clear and open space above the bars (except my back bar) leaving this area a great place for a table top.
While it does sit a little higher than a counter, it’s not too high for me to stand at and press. I love this solution.
Building an Ironing Station
1- Measure the depth. This measurement is from the front bar to the first back bar. Mine is around 24″
2- Decide how wide you want the ironing station to be. My first board was smaller than this one. For this one, I measured the iron cover – ironmatik – and went around 6 inches wider so my iron can sit off of the ironing mat. I use an Oliso and it sits plate down, so it can burn the fabric under it after a year or so of using. So I took this into consideration this time around. Plus, it allows me to have a spot for the spray starch bottle as well, which is nice.
3- Cut your board to the correct size. I used a piece of plywood. Use whatever you have on hand, but just make sure it’s not super heavy as you will be moving this board every time you use the long arm to quilt a quilt.
4- Sand down your edges so they are not sharp. Sand down the top and bottom as well so you don’t get any slivers. Again, this will be moved every once in a while.
5- You can cover the board if you’d like, leave it plain (like I am) or paint it to make it cute. The choice is yours. The ironmatik cover I use I like to move to other areas in the house, so I don’t want it permanently in place. In the past I have covered the board and really liked that option as well. You can check that out here – make your own ironing station.
Here are more ironing helps-
Spray Starch info
Homemade Spray Starch cheaper than store bought!
Mini Iron Travel Bag Tutorial just in case you travel with your mini!
Make your own portable iron station
Iron or Press? Which one is right for your project?
More Ironing board stations inspiration