Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Craft Room Redux

This past Spring I wasn't so busy with stuff and decided it was time for a major craft room overhaul. We're talking moving large pieces of furniture, pulling everything out of drawers, getting rid of stuff and completely reorganizing. I actually got down to the bottom layer - any of you who are junk collectors like me know that is a big deal! My basic overhaul usually only skims the first few layers. It took me several weeks of digging and hauling and at one point the floor was so cluttered that you had to climb over stuff to get through the room. Here is a photo of the flamingo pink craft bunker mid-overhaul:

I originally had visions of posting spectacular before and after pics worthy of the organization issue of Martha Stewart Living. Well, that was back in May and if you read my previous post, you know that my life isn't exactly in line with Martha. The room is never going to look picture perfect...do you know why? Because I actually work in there!!! When my work is in full swing I have stuff flying everywhere in a creative frenzy. That's my reality and I actually like it that way.

I remember seeing an issue of Martha's magazine several years ago where she showed her craft room re-do and I instantly thought "There's no way in hell she actually does anything in that room!". It was way too perfect to be a space where stuff was created on a regular basis. Now don't get me wrong...I LOVE Martha...I think she is hugely responsible for the resurgence of craft in this country and I love her for that. Encouraging folks to make stuff is a good thing. It's the perfection that irks me a little - making people feel like they have to live up to a certain standard. Not a good thing.

So here are some recent pics of my craft room in action...it is cluttered and real and lived in and I love it.

That cutting table may be my favorite piece of furniture - it has big, deep drawers where I keep a ton of fabric and the top of it is my main workspace. I bought it at a senior center rummage sale for $10 and had a hell of a time getting it down the stairs to the basement. After the removal of a railing + a step and one unhappy husband...I think it comes with the house if we ever sell it!

This chest of drawers is equally handy and houses my metal and tin pieces that I use in my found object shrines. It was almost as hard to get down the stairs but didn't involve removal of any structural pieces...just alot of sweat and muscle. That handy paper roll holder on top of the drawers was a recent find in the IKEA "as-is" room - I think it was supposed to be a laundry hamper but it is perfect for my rolls that were previously all over the place.

Stuff! I love Stuff! And what do I love more than stuff? Little bins that hold the stuff!

This used to be my desk but it has pretty much been taken over by my son. He loves having his own space to do his paintings - note the Mr. T painting peeking out from under the table.
My favorite improvement that came with the re-do is that strip of shelves that I added along the top edge of the wall. It consists of several inexpensive shelves from IKEA that I spray painted pink and hung together in a row to create a plate rail for all my knick-knacks. All those little things were previously taking up valuable shelf space that I needed for books and supplies.

That pile in the left hand corner is my craft fair loot - essential stuff I bring to every fair. I figured I might as well just leave it all together in one neat pile so it is all ready for my next fair. I like piles.

Sewing area - where the magic happens! Well, sometimes it feels magical and other times it feels like my own personal sweatshop. Those shelves overflowing with fabric didn't quite make the cut during the major overhaul - they will have to wait until next time!

All my smaller supplies that tend to look sloppy are hidden behind the cutting table on this shelf. Pretty sneaky!

A scary child mannequin that I bought at the Daisy Kingdom closing sale with the infamous disco stereo 8-track player in the background. That mannequin has got to go - it has scared the bejezus out of me one too many times.

My craft room takes up pretty much our entire basement. We live in a very small house but having this extra space makes all the difference. My previous work space consisted of our kitchen table and having to clean up mid-process everyday in order to eat dinner really affected how I created. Being able to spread out and leave my mess has been amazing for me. It's a dream come true!

I remember the first time we looked at this house and I came around the corner of the basement to gaze upon my future craft room - it was a magical moment where I knew that I would paint it pink and fill it up with all my favorite things and live here for a long time. Sigh. Now that's perfection.


susan b. said...

Love all your stuff and all that PINK! super inspiring!

Skyline & Sunshine said...

it's like a crafty heaven! so jealous!

Nicole said...

wow! It's amazing!

diana said...

You're lucky to have a whole basement! I have a mobile studio that moves around the living room (and it leaves trails of messes).

Love the before and after pics!

FeltedFinery said...

Love your room - it's amazing how much work you did in there! I'm motivated now!!! And, if you seriously want to find your little child mannequin a new home, lmk. I'm across the river from you, and could definitely put her to use as a model. :)