It’s a beautiful thing . . . . an empty freshly painted white room (even the ceiling) . . . . that echos in the night . . . . longing to be filled with creative energy.
Okay, okay, back to reality. Long story short. Youngest son moved out and to assuage my feelings of being an ‘empty nester’, I am gutting his old room and making it my new studio (insert happy dance). It is slightly bigger than my old craft room, has MUCH more natural light and already had an awesome shelving system in the closet (ELFA). Who doesn’t like a fresh start!!
I had a layout of the room designed almost a year before he moved and would look at it periodically and dream. And when the room was empty I used painters tape to mark out the placement of the furniture and sat in there . . . quietly taking it all in!
So far this story sounds pretty good right??
Well as I slowly prepared for the move, I got rid of a few bags of garbage, combined, sorted and generally went through all of my supplies. This started fairly well, but then I got bogged down in the stuff! There were many moments of ‘what the heck was I thinking’! Why am I saving every badge from every conference/retreat/ workshop I ever attended? Will I ever use this or need this? So how many carrying bags does a girl need??
The room is officially done and it is beautiful. It is organized and clean. I can generally find things quickly.
I love my IKEA Alex drawer units. I have three of them under my shelving system. They are large but shallow drawers that allow you to easily see what you have. I took my time filling them and finding the best way to sort things. I used a lot of box lids from the holidays for shallow trays that keep like items together. I even made some of my own by folding heavy weight papers.
My peg board from the previous room was cut down to fit under the shelving. I love having the colors from the paint tubes displayed along with some jewelry I have done. Take note of the two washi tape garages to the far left, they will be mentioned later.
Meanwhile just outside the door of my beautiful new studio space lies a mountain of remaining items to go through. This is where the tough love begins and my trash, donate or sell boxes get filled. I also have a problem with an impressive collection of storage boxes from big to small and from plain to fancy. I don’t want to fill the new studio so that it is overflowing and ruins the great vibe I have going on. And while I may need to keep a few of the storage boxes, most of them must go!!
This project has been very interesting, a unique combination of a slap in the face and an educational experience. Things I have learned:
- Make do with what you have.
- If you are going to purchase something – save and buy good quality.
- You don’t need to keep every scrap of paper/fabric, leftover bead, experiments gone wrong, etc.
- You don’t have to finish every project – it can be very liberating to select the elements to keep (if any), ditch the rest and move on.
- One ‘garage’ for my washi tape was cute, two was a warning and if you need three there should be an intervention.
- Do not buy storage boxes until you really, really need them (not even if they are VERY cute) and try to use what you have first!
- I am not sure I am a hoarder (technically) but I can squeeze 10 pounds of supplies in space for 5 pounds!
The opportunity to start fresh is amazing. Even if you don’t have a new space to move into, just going through what you have and sorting/combining/purging can give you a boost and refocus some creative energy!
I hope I can keep the studio looking great. And I can’t wait to show it off to my local peeps.
And the son that moved out . . . . lives 5 minutes away . . . . and is doing great!