The "design wall" is actually attached to a wall that separates two small bedrooms. I've been asked why we don't we just knock down this wall between the two rooms, and make it one big sewing space. As it is now one room is the sewing machine fabric stash room, the other adjoining room is the cutting-ironing- table room. However, if we took out the wall, then there wouldn't be a design wall space as the rooms are small with corner windows, and really not much wall area.
There are a few things I can be without in the Itsy-Bitsy sewing rooms, but the design wall is not one of them!
The design wall is approx. 8' ft. wide x 6' ft. tall. If I could have it twice that wide or more I would! If I could wrap it around the corners of the room and run it down the hallway, I would! I truly feel you can never have too much design wall space. So, if you are contemplating a design wall in your sewing nest. Make it as big as possible! Height is not very important as about 6 or so feet is about as tall or as high for you to comfortably reach anyway, unless you stand on a step-stool.
This is my design wall space.
It is made from two 8' x 4' foot sheets of Homasote cut down to 6' feet in height. A type of paper based fiberboard. It is sold at Home Depot and Lowes or local building supply sources. It is rigid type material, but porus enough so that you can stick straight pins into it easily.
Making the wall: After we determined the size I wanted the Homasote, both pieces were layed out over one large piece of Warm and Natural batting which was spread out on the floor and cut 4 inches wider all the way around both pieces of Homasate. We butted up the two center edges of the Homosate, and ran a piece of packing tape down the seam to help keep it secure while we attached the batting.
Then we pulled the edges of the batting around over the back side of the Homasote and stapled down the edges with a staple gun every 5 inches or so on all the way around the back.
Next you need to determine where the studs are in the wall where you may want to attach the design wall, as it will be screwed in place with dry wall screws with washers under the head of the screw to keep the screws from sinking into the Homosate as you secure it to the wall.
It will take two or three people to lift the design wall up against the area in your sewing space where you want to have the design wall. One person to hold it in place, while the other person uses a drill to make the screw holes and secure it in place. Two sheets of Homasote covered with batting can be heavy and awkward to lift and move. The design wall appears to be one solid area, but it's two 4' x 6' pieces covered with batting.
My design wall has been in place for many years and had many quilt blocks and quilts placed onto the surface of the batting. Once in awhile I vacuum the stray threads off the batting. But that is all the upkeep it has needed.
Here is a picture of the progress on the diamond log cabin.
I finished adding the borders and piecing the backing on the bright tie-dye flannel quilt top, and it's hanging on the long arm waiting for some quilting design inspiration.
I hope the directions are helpful and that you also can find a space suitable for a design wall in your sewing space.