Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Me and my big ideas!

We have been hard at work for more than a week on "Operation Organization" - we had a good plan in place and were off and running.  I needed some new shelving so we made two trips to Ikea (New Haven, CT and Paramus, NJ - good thing I live in the middle) and two to Home Depot.  I love the value of "self-assembled" furniture & shelving but that stuff is HEAVY! 

Supplies in place, Valerie began the process of clearing out the areas that the new shelves were going to.  And that led us to my first photo, the "Omigod what have I started???" stage.....

Which led to the "Who brought all this stuff into the house??? stage....

First, I know three solid reasons for my rediculous stash of art supplies.  Reason 1: When I was a kid, I had to have the "big" box of Crayola 64.  I wasn't happy with the little box of 8, or 16 crayons.  I had to have ALL of the colors (my favorite crayon was, and still is "Midnight Blue").  Reason 2: I managed my Mom's flower shop for fourteen years.  Fourteen years of having a fully stocked work room with supplies in every size and color at my fingertips led to me replicating the same thing at home (minus the flowers, that is).   And, Reason 3: My art supplies make me happy - some women want shoes & clothes, I want tubes of paint and fat quarters of fabric.  Call me crazy, I consider it a compliment :)

Here's another shot of the crazy mess...

I should mention that this is only the STUDIO part of the space we are working on.  We're also working on the basement area (also known as the Studio Annex since half of it is full of my overflow art supplies and equipment), and the "Library" area (basically a back foyer with built in bookcases), and the Utility Room (also known as Studio Annex Two since half of it if full of the rest of my overflow supplies). 

Here's a shot of the mess in the "Library"... I will be sorting through the books & selling the ones I don't want in our tag sale.  The leftovers will be going to our local library for their book sale. 

Sorting through these mountains of supplies, fabric and UFO's has been and interesting reminder of how much my interests and style have changed through the years.  Purging the things that no longer interest or inspire me is very freeing - I can already feel the clearer "air" in my studio.  I am anxious to be done with this project so I can get back to creative work!
Val and I have assembled four large Ikea bookcases, two "cube" cabinets, two "bin" cabinets and a great little rolling cart.  The white shelves in these photos are among the ones we assembled.  They went together pretty easily - by the time we got to the third one we barely looked at the assembly instructions and didn't even look at them for the fourth. 

We are now in the process of of sorting supplies and deciding what should be where. 

Here is the new cube we assembled for my larger pieces of fabric. I already had the one to the left, an old post office sorting cabinet that I purchased at auction.  That holds my fat quarters.  The new cabinet is for cuts of one yard or more.  It is all pretty yummy looking, don't you agree?

If  I live to be a hundred, and don't buy another inch of fabric between now and then, I could never use all the fabric I have.  The same goes for ribbon, art paper and beads.  It really is sort of like having my own personal store.

We also assembled four sets of steel shelves from Home Depot, for the "Studio Annex", AKA, the basement.  My studio is in the finished half of the basement, the "Annex" is in the unfinished portion.  It is a great place to store things like stretched canvases, tools and bulky supplies. 

We are making great progress - it is a ton of work but it will be SO worth it in the end.  Come back next week to see how far we've gotten!


  1. All the pretty colors -- from the fabric to the bins! You're going to be creating soooo much stuff in that lovely space. Fun, fun, fun.

    P.S. I think I'd like to have a studio annex. Now that my oldest has left for college, there's hope.... :)

  2. will there be a viewing party when you're all done? yes? please? I wanna come and see your store...er...I mean studio!

  3. I should show it off when we are all done - it may be the only time it is perfectly organized! You know what happens when you start pulling things out to work on them! Creative chaos!

  4. Vivien, I failed to mention "Annex Two" which is the Utility Room... I have stuff stashed in there too! I am ever thankful for my patient and generous husband who is happy to let my studio "stuff" take over the house!

  5. Wow! What a lot of work, but your finished area looks very impressive. Now don't be afraid to mess it all up when you start a new project.

  6. I'm anxious to be done so I can get back to working & make a creative mess! Lots left to do though - it will be a busy weekend!