Studio space

Conundrum…

Let’s talk fabric. You may find that along with roving (and other things) it’s a weakness of mine, but also a necessary evil for my work. I need to figure out how to tame the monster in this new configuration and as I go forward with a smaller footprint. I’m trying to *gasp* work my way down and use what I have on hand and not buy to “just have on hand for future projects”. This can be frustrating when you get into the middle of making something need a certain color for a pocket, or accent, fill in the blank and don’t have it. Then you have to stop in the middle of your groove until you can get to a store to find the right fabric to finish that project and change gears mid-project to move on to something else at that moment. Oh well…

I digress… so I need to find something to put my fabrics in that I can either tuck under the table my sewing machine and serger are on, or some sort of boxes/bins that I can store upstairs for the time being and bring down as needed. I’m thinking something open and airy so I can somewhat see what is in there as well as allowing the fabric to breathe would be better than enclosed boxes. They will be away from sunlight so I don’t have to worry about fading. I came across the following at a certain craft store that I’m considering –

The baskets to the left would go in and out if I stored fabric in those and eventually when we move might be stored on shelves in the room. The little cabinet to the right would go under the table in the room now I think. The drawer fronts are chalkboard and I can put solids in one drawer, separate by colors, whatever I decide and label them. I can see me ending up with at least 2 of those if not more! LOL If I use the lidded baskets on the left who knows how many I would end up there – it could be quite a few of those.

So, out of sight, out of mind and I would forget what I have, not use it and end up buying more fabrics so the baskets would be a bad idea? Or is that better because it keeps me from jamming more “stuff” in the studio and making it cluttered? You do get to a point where you can’t see the forest for the trees you have so much in there.

I know I’m fortunate to be faced with such a problem. There was a time when we could not afford craft materials for me when the kids were little and my husband was in the military. The Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society has (had?) a program called Baby’s First Seabag and part of the items given to first time parents were baby layettes and afghans that were hand knit and crocheted by volunteers. You could go pick up the yarn “kits” to make the items and then drop off the afghans and layettes to go into the bags. In about 4-5 years I had over 5,000 volunteer hours with them. I also designed custom counted cross stitch pieces for a local gift shop and would stitch for them. I had to create and the only way I could make things was if the supplies were paid for like that. I couldn’t afford my own “stash” like I have now. So I am thankful and maybe that’s part of why I have gone so overboard with some things, because I didn’t have it and I’m afraid I’ll run out. LOL

No matter, I’m now dealing with trying to figure out how to wrangle my fabrics, how to whittle the stash down to a “manageable” level, and how to organize it to find what I need easier when I need a particular fabric.

Studio space

Unconventional living…

Okay, I admit it – my brain works a bit odd at times thanks to my “artist brain” right side brain dominant, think in circular non-traditional ways… So what does all that mean you ask? It means that as I’m cleaning out, going through things and trying to downsize in a nearly 2,800 sq. ft. house as we prepare to move into a smaller place later this year I decided to turn our dining room into my studio/reloading space for hubby.

We have an “eat in kitchen” with a smaller table in there (that table may be featured later when I refinish the table) and the large table we had in the dining room went to our kids because they needed it in the house they are currently sharing. Decent size room left empty, with the exception of a huge desk, on the main floor. Okay – desk into the living room and TV goes on it, dog kennel inside where a chair would go and the TV stand goes to the kids – that gives a totally empty “dining room” now!

inprogress

Okay, still work to be done, and the kids need to pick up the TV stand in the corner so we can set up the reloading bench in that corner but you get the idea here… Gotta raise the “Game of Thrones” chandelier that I have to watch out for or I’ll scalp myself and if we weren’t renters colors and drapes would be changed. That chandelier would be gone too. LOL I still need to figure out storage for fabrics that can be swapped in and out since I have none of my fabrics in here really. I have 4-5 bolts on the top shelf of that unit, but in my old studio I had an entire shelf unit filled with fabrics. I’ve had to downsize all that and I stupidly boxed most of them up already.

Some of you may look at this and say this is downsizing? I know that room is bigger than many have for their studio/crafting space. It’s bigger than what I had for years. But for the past 8-ish years I moved my studio into the room over the garage which is approximately 300-350 sq. ft. I then overflowed that into a master suite room that was probably another 200-300 sq. ft. once I got my Schacht floor loom. Okay, so that did share the room with the queen size bed for guests and such, but still I had a lot of my weaving and spinning supplies in there.

In this “new room” I have space for cutting/measuring; my serger, a sewing machine (and I have many more of them); most of my spinning fibers; all of my threads for sewing, zippers, buttons, elastics, etc.; my Sizzix machine and dies; origami supplies; my start with resin supplies… I’ve got a 3 drawer bin and a 3-4 cubby thing with craft supplies for our grand daughter for when she comes over. I have a stool that I can sit her at the end of the one table in the foreground and let her work on things there.

Looms are still upstairs and I will need to figure out where to place them once we move but that’s a bridge to cross when I get there.

Sheers are on the way to be hung across the opening to block it off from the entryway so that I can somewhat hide the mess when we have friends over and they come through the door.  It’s a start, and I’m sure as we use the room it will change and adapt to what we find we use the most and how it suits us best.