Sewing can often create a lot of mess with threads, offcuts of fabrics and even sharp tools such as the odd dropped pin. You might be wondering if your regular vacuum is compatible and capable.
Speaking from past experience I know how hard it is to find a decent vacuum that will collect together the fabric remanents, threads and not completely give up after the first try. That is why I thought it would be handy to put together this tried and tested list of vacuums for anyone looking to upgrade.
The best vacuums for sewing rooms are the Henry Hoover or Shark brands with anti-hair wrap technology as these handle the small parts, threads and unexpected sharp items well and are more durable.
In this article, I am going to talk about what to look for in a vacuum for a sewing room, if you can use your regular vacuum and the best vacuums for sewing rooms on the market right now.
Do I Need A Special Vacuum For My Sewing Room?
This is a really big question, so the answer is really both yes and no. While you might need a vacuum for your sewing room that has some special features, one specific vacuum won’t be the holy grail for everyone out there.
Sewing can create a whole host of questions, especially if you are just getting started. If that is the case check out my sewing basics page where I have a full list of hints and tips, useful information and walk throughs on how to get to know your machine and more.
There are three special features that spring to mind when thinking about a vacuum for a sewing room: a clear ‘bag’, compact size, and interchangeable nozzles.
First things first, let’s talk about the container that all of the things that you suck up will go into. While they might not really be bags anymore, they’re generally still referred to as such, making it easier to find replacements and the like.
The reason that they’re called that at all is original that, they were designed to be physical bags that you removed and threw away. Then, you would buy a new one, and carry on hoovering.
Nowadays, the bag is usually a cylindrical plastic chamber, rather than an actual bag itself. This means that you can’t really call it that, even though it serves the same function.
Regardless of the name, that chamber ought to have a see-through casing, so that you can keep an eye on what you’ve sucked up. For example, there’s every chance that you might hoover up a button or a needle that you desperately need to ensure a product is properly finished.
You may brush against it with the nozzle of your vacuum, only to not be able to find it without taking apart your vacuum. In that case, finding the button would be an ordeal and a half – definitely not ideal for an easy life. In a sewing room, though, you’d be best served with a clear bag, which would allow you to easily see if you’ve sucked up a button, and go from there.
While this sounds like a small thing, we promise it can be a big deal! Trust us, you don’t want to end up sifting through dust to find a missing needle!
Next, let’s move on to compact size. There are two main parts to a vacuum: the motor, and the nozzle. The nozzle is somewhere that you don’t want to save on space. Having a nozzle that’s long and even fairly wide will help you a lot when it comes to sucking up things that can be a pain to find with your eyes and hands.
The place, however, where it pays to save room is in the motor.
Take Henry Hoovers as an example. They’ve been a popular brand for a very long time, and for good reason! They’re simple, straightforward, and hardwearing. However, the drawback is that they’re bulky.
The motor and bag section of the hoover is very large indeed, and it can be extremely heavy when it’s filled with detritus from around your home. This is the exact thing that you want to avoid when selecting a vacuum for your sewing room.
Often, a sewing room will be quite a small room, all in all. They will often be third or fourth bedrooms in the home, and may therefore be particularly small. Then, after you’ve added in all the assorted bits and pieces that you might need for your sewing room, they may feel even smaller.
The important thing to bear in mind, therefore, is to minimize the size of any appliances that you’re bringing into the room. This goes for vacuum cleaners, sewing machines, and anything else that you might be able to think of.
So, to sum up, make sure that you get a vacuum cleaner where the motor and bag sections of the appliance are fairly small. This will mean that you can easily fit it into a small room, plus you can maneuver it around more easily to boot!
Nozzles & Accessories
Finally, we come to the question of what nozzles might, or might not, work well for a sewing room. Well, the thing that makes a sewing room different from any other room in the household is that you’ll be needing to suck things up that are curious shapes, perhaps even from a floor that doesn’t really want to let go of them.
The thing that stands out foremost in our minds is the idea of needing to suck up a piece of thread from a carpet. At the end of the day, what is a carpet other than a collection of chunky threads?
This means that when another thread is added to your carpet, whether deliberately or accidentally, it can be a right pain to get up off it. Most of the time, your easiest bet might be to get on your hands and knees with a pair of tweezers, and that’s not easy at all! Therefore, the best choice is to track down a vacuum cleaner that has a variety of different nozzles.
The different nozzles will allow you to pick the right tool for a job, for example, getting up a loose piece of thread. In case you’re wondering – the fuzzy circular head is the right tool for this job. It’s designed to disturb the fibers of your carpet to better pick up anything that might be between them.
While this could be a separate part of the article all on its own, it fits very well here: you also might need to look out for a nozzle that won’t suck everything up indiscriminately.
This sounds like the exact type of thing that doesn’t exist, but think about what you’ll be doing in the room, and what’s inside a vacuum cleaner. Most, if not all, vacuum cleaners have a thin, long nozzle that is designed to apply a lot of pressure to a small area.
Typically, this is used to get powders out of rugs and carpets. However, it would be great for use in a sewing room, regardless of what type of floor you have. A long, thin nozzle can reach underneath chairs and tables to allow you to grab an offcut of material.
This can be very handy indeed, especially for those projects which might look better with just a little bit of something extra added.
What To Look For In A Vacuum For A Sewing Room
There are a number of key factors you are going to want to look at when it comes to
As we said in the first section of this article, a clear bag is a wonderful addition to any vacuum that’s going to be used in a sewing room. In most sewing rooms, there’s going to be a host of needles and buttons on the floor, and there’s every chance that you’ll suck up one or two of them at some point.
When this inevitably happens, you’ll want to know about it. For that reason, having a vacuum with a clear bag (or rather a bag chamber made of clear, hard plastic) is preferable: you will be able to see what you’ve just sucked up, and thusly make a judgment about how best to proceed.
A lightweight vacuum is always your friend. Generally, when they’re being used in the home, vacuums are best to be lightweight to ensure that you can lift and carry them more freely. However, when they’re being used in your sewing room, being lightweight might be so that you can reach further with them.
With a vacuum cleaner that’s very light, you’ll be able to pick it up and place it upon your sewing table, thereby sucking up any loose pieces of thread or material. This is much easier than going in with a dustpan and brush, and it allows you to quickly hoover cobwebs out of the corners too!
Sewing rooms are usually pretty small, and this means that you need to ensure that all the different appliances and other bits and bobs you bring in there are fairly small too. Otherwise, you simply won’t be able to fit enough stuff in there to make sure it’s a good use of the space.
Therefore, ensure that any vacuum that you might pick up for your sewing room is particularly small, as this will allow you to cut down on any space wastage. Plus, it will allow you a little more room to store any of the assorted pieces of sewing paraphernalia that you might pick up!
A Variety Of Nozzles
A variety of nozzles can be a really useful thing to ensure you have on or near your vacuum cleaner. A great set of nozzles will allow you to ensure you’re always using the right tool for the job, and that you’re not wasting any time doing it wrong once before you do it right.
Make sure you pick up a hoover with a number of nozzles and take a look at any instructions that might come with your hoover to make sure that you’re using your new set of nozzles correctly.
A cordless vacuum will make things much easier. Not only will it mean that you don’t have to track down a power outlet every time you want to use your vacuum, but it will also mean that you can easily and quickly do some hoovering without any kind of setup time.
That might sound like a very niche desire, but trust us – you’ll be thankful when it comes to having a cordless hoover in your home. When you first get started with hoovering up, the activation energy that it requires can seem quite large!
You must get up, track down the hoover, plug it in, ensure it’s working, and get started. However, with a cordless vacuum cleaner, you can simply pick it up and get to work! It’s so convenient, we adore this feature on vacuums we’ve used.
Easy To Dismantle
This is a very specific one, but it’s certainly saved out bacon in a number of situations. Ensuring that your vacuum cleaner is easy to dismantle and handle will always be a good idea.
It’s pretty much a guarantee that you will suck up a needle or a small swatch of fabric at some point or another, so it pays to have a vacuum that you can easily dismantle to ensure that you can get it out again.
This is one of the things that we love about Henry Hoovers: they’re very easy to dismantle in a pinch, which means that you can easily get out missing odds and ends if needs be.
Best Vacuum For Sewing Rooms
While there are a number of vacuums that are easily great for using around the home but we all know there are some areas such as a sewing room that are harder to clean over others.
With threads and pins threatening the lifespan of your vacuum you need it to be robust and able to manage anything, you throw at it.
Here are my best vacuums for sewing rooms;
1. Shark Lift-Away
This vacuum cleaner is a particularly impressive model, we have to say. It offers plenty of functionality as both an upright, all-in-one vacuum clever, as well as having the ability to separate into a vacuum chamber and a nozzle section. Altogether, this means that you can easily hoover in a number of locations.
This is also ideal for homes with pets (and stray fibres of thread), as the pet tool of this device allows you to easily whisk away any pesky strands that might be in the way of things.
Finally, we come to a feature that’s certainly handy, though perhaps not too relevant. Impressively, the anti-allergen complete seal captures and traps 99/9% of dust and allergens. This means that anything that you suck can easily be captured within the body of the Shark List-Away.
2. Henry Hoover
Henry Hoovers have been a huge part of household life around the world for an awfully long time, now. They’re exceptionally useful and are known to be very hardwearing. The thing that makes them last for so long is that they work very simply.
They don’t make use of any additional bells, whistles, and computerization, instead focussing, simply, on vacuuming very well. This means that for a relatively low price, you can have a vacuum that will last for a very long time, and remain dependable too!
However, there are two drawbacks. These are that the vacuum bag is not transparent, and they are quite bulky too. The vacuum bag’s opaqueness means that you really need to be more careful when considering where you’ll be hoovering – once something’s in there, it can be hard to tell where it is, and how best to get it out.
The size can be a major factor for some consumers too – there’s no denying that Henry is chunky, and that may be a huge stopping point for you. If it is, then maybe consider checking out an alternative option instead.
3. GTech AirRam K9
This vacuum is certainly a heavy-duty model. It is designed with a powered brush head that spins in order to allow you to make shorter work of picking up harder to grasp items in the home – this includes things like pet hair or, more relevantly, thread and offcuts of fabric.
Another thing that makes this a particularly great model is the easy empty bin. This bin section is where your dust will gather, so it’s nice to know that emptying the bag will not be as messy or fussy as it otherwise could be.
Plus, the bin is transparent, too, so if you do suck up a button, you’ll be able to see it.
4. Mielle Complete C3 Cat & Dog Pro PowerLine – SGEF3
This is the most expensive and bulkiest one of the options here on our list, and it’s certainly very intense. The inner motor has improved efficiency, and the floorhead promises that it will be universal, working on any surface!
The impressive thing for our purposes, though, is that it is very reliable when removing hair and lint. The floorhead has a turbo brush which allows it to easily pick up pesky bits and bobs that are sure to get in the way of a nice, clean, tidy carpet.
5. Shark Cordless Handheld Vacuum
This is an ideal compact model, perfect for people who might want to save on space in their sewing rooms. The model is actually so small that it is designed to be sat on the countertop and recharged there, which might give you an idea as to its rough size.
You might be interested in checking out the model that Shark sells that’s dedicated to pet owners. This might sound odd, but pet vacuums are designed to easily suck pet hair out of fabric, and that’s precisely the feature you want!
It can be used to extract pet hair from your sewing projects, as well as extracting pieces of thread from your carpet – ideal!