Sunday, January 12, 2014

The Creative Space Lie

It is said that if you tell a lie, you have to 20 more in order to cover it up, then it just becomes a mess?
Well, my basement studio is in a similar boat.
In the last 8 + years it since we have been in our house the basement that I have claimed for my business has gone from clay bead production area to jewelry making supplies hoarding area with a side of holiday decoration storage.

And I've been moving and patching things up down there for years
and it was time that I finally said ENOUGH!
I cannot function even in a tunnel vision mentality to only look at my desk space
because there was just not enough room to do even the simplest things.
The lie has to stop!
And by lie, I really mean, those little patches of sorting and organizing.
It just was no longer working and my creativity is suffering greatly!

So it all got cleared.
I have been snapping pictures of the clearing and rearranging as I remember.

Luckily with my small clean-ups and organizing through the years, most of my supplies are in smaller containers - or in areas where I can put them into a small container then sort later.

And I have a lot of shelving that I have purchased for storing so many things.
But is is all just patched into the space as it was bought.
What a lie to build upon!!!
Not only to myself, my space, but to anyone that has had to walk down there to find anything!
Just embarrassing.

All of the holiday supplies are now in the back and up high where we have quick access.
The shelves are put back in the back corners to function as shelves and not catch alls.
Good scrap carpet is put down where I will design and "work".
The planned torching area is in the clay studio space where there is no carpet.

With experience and frustration, everything is finding its place now.
Crafting items are no longer separated into small "one day I want to use them" spaces
but rather into "I need to use that and I know exactly where it is" spaces.

And yes - it looks horrible during the in-between stages - extra tables set up to catch all.
Shelves in weird spaces to act as a holding place.
But it is SO worth it.

And a huge benefit to this purging and rearranging?

We may actually get to use the designated 1/4 of the basement for our family wreck room area.
Since the older cat is no longer with us (and all that smelly stuff that goes with caring for older cats) we will be able to get that room finished.

I can have my foam floor pads for the studio again.
They are serving as temporary flooring in between ripping out the old cat used carpet and a new one.

And we can have bean bag chairs, a small couch, and the family games and kid toys can go in there.
We can put out the really nice gaming card table I got my husband years ago (functions for "poker" related games, table top games or for a beading night!).

So far it has been 4 very long and tiring days working on this move
and there are more days to go.

It feels great to have the space, and all the resources here with me. 
No extra money has been spent at all because it is all here.

And I appreciate my Aunt Julie coming down to the studio space on Christmas Day and taking a look at my area and giving me some insight about how to arrange it to get rid of the clutter.

And to my good friend Jenny Davies-Reazor who will be coming over and helping me with the layout and flow of the functioning areas for torches, enameling, jewelry bench, etc.

I was just so overwhelmed I could not even function.
It was creeping into my everything - slowly like a virus just taking over…

Are you organizing, cleaning or purging your studio space?
Would you be interested in a blog hop for sharing your progress?
I'm fiddling with ideas for a blog hop here through LMAJ…

And no worries about your space not looking like a magazine spread.
I know mine will never be at that point in this house where we are now and I am ok with that.
It's about functionality and flow for me.


Karen McGovern said...

Man, can I ever relate! Right now, my studio space is A CRIME SCENE OF DISASTER. I know I simply have to get organized, but it feels completely overwhelming. Yet, like you discovered, the med has reached that level whet it is directly impacting my work. Sigh. Thanks for sharing, and yes, I think photographing the progress is great. I have photos of my studio all clean and organized... time to step up and face the mess! Wish me luck...

Keith@ Vintage Crab Jewelry said...

I just moved 3 rooms of scattered mess into one tiny room. It took building shelves and days of sorting but I got it all in there. I just did a blog post about it and I would love to share in a hop. It would be helpful to see how other artists manage their studio. Yours looks so much better and I am sure your creativity will surge as a result! Thanks for sharing!

Sharon Driscoll said...

It's gotten so bad here that plastic boxes take up one closet(thank goodness they are labeled). I use half the basement and now that the kids are grown - half the family room and it still spreads. I am purging and organizing and a hop would be great. The second lie you have to watch out for is this:

putting things into a box to "sort later". I have some of those that are 5 years old. LOL

Artisan Beads Plus said...

I organized mine and it feels great!!! I am trying to keep it as organized as possible. I would love to have a studio blog hop one day!!!

Ema Kilroy said...

I have a couple of seperate areas in my home where I work (and then I spread from there). I long for one dedicated room but like you I am making it work. My jewelry design area is out of control and in need of serious attention. I bought some storage containers before Christmas and I'm planning to reorganize this month. I'll take photos, starting with todays disaster area so I can write a blog and join in the hop. It's great to see your area come together. You've inspired me.

Cathie Carroll said...

The more clutter the less I can see, and I am flying blind right now.
I would join a blog hop to reorganize my work space.

stregajewellry said...

The first blog hop I ever entered was the "Messy Workspace" blog hop. I've had on down on their luck person or another living with me for the past 10 years and NOW my spare room is finally free! Well, almost. I just had new flooring installed in the "living room" and until I get it painted, all the stuff from there is in my spare room. I am so looking forward to getting organized and having space of my own. Have to wait until spring when the painting gets done and then its a go. Your space is wonderful!

Marsha of Marsha Neal Studio said...

Thanks for all the comments everyone! I totally believe in that 2nd lie Sharon - not only does that relate to "supplies" but also those piles of home, garden, and crafting (insert any and all kinds of crafts) magazines that one day projects, inspiration, and possible collage projects are going to come from.


I'm going to approach the LMAJ bloggers about some topics pertaining to keeping creative studio spaces clutter free and flowing. Maybe a tips and techniques from those people that love to organize and have a great flow - to those of use that struggle with it.

I feel a pinterest board coming into play in this one too!!!

Shaiha said...

What a difference! My studio isn't that bad but it is starting to get there because I have gotten over my 'have to organize before I create' analness. My creativity has increased but studio has taken a hit.

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