by Staci Louise Smith
Storage has always been a problem for me, especially in the realm of art supplies and beads. Over time, the problem has only grown (due to my ever growing collection of supplies- due to my ever growing desire to learn and take on more and more mediums).
Although the pictures may make it look big, my studio is quite cozy. I can sit at my desk on one wall and reach onto the work bench on the opposite wall. So efficiency is a must.
When the hubs and I re-did the studio last year, we ripped out the carpet (and I painted my floor- best decision ever) and he built me workbench's I didn't have much $$ to invest into furniture. (below are pictures of the studio after we totally re-did it. my hubs built the workbenches and I painted the floor).
below is the corner that got the new drawers- the end of my bench here had files and papers and junk all over it- the drawers gave me back the bench)
So I got the plastic drawers from Walmart (the rainbow ones, and the white ones) and went a long my merry way. Downside, they are flimsy, and the drawers are deep on the white one, which I don't need. The other one is just tooo flimsy and the drawers don't even stay in the racks.
These were the ones I replaced
We did build the workbenches so that they were high, this way I could work standing, and I could store beads underneath of it. At that time, I did invest in these bead cabinets on wheels. (ripping up the carpet served a couple purposes as well. 1. I was ruining it anyway 2. I could now store things on wheels, and wheel them out as I need them...and wheel around in my chair as well)
bead cabinets under the workbench
This winter I started to pull out my old art supplies, and get into painting and mixed media a little bit more. Then I bought more supplies, and paper, and canvas's.....and once again, I needed more space. I don't have pics of how cluttered it was. Let me just tell you, I could barely see that floor.
Thank goodness for Ikea and the Alex collection. The Alex collection is perfect for arts and crafts rooms and studios. The drawers are shallow but deep (reach far back) so there is plenty of space, and you can see what is in it at a glance.
I got two of them, and can't be happier with them. I was very surprised at how easy they were to assemble, and how sturdy they are. I marveled at the sheer genius of Ikea- the people who design this furniture, like a puzzle, from the assembly to the packaging.....its pretty cool.
So I organized and cleaned and purged. The nature of these pieces allowed me to re-arrange many things, and unclutter a bunch of area's.
These aren't the best pics, but here is the corner that had the rainbow drawers, all re-done.
I not only fit everything from the drawers in there, but I also fit all my spare cards, bags and show supplies that were on a shelf before, and I fit office papers, reciepts and income stuff that used to just pile on my desk. PLUS- i was able to move the magazines and files from the workbench to the top of the drawers.
ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhh......that feels so good. I hate cleaning, but I do love organizing (once in a blue moon).
My beading desk got a tall Alex dresser next to it, and instead of having all my tools on my desk, they fit nicely into the drawers next to it, in perfect grabbing reach. I was able to not only transfer everything from the plastic white shelves, but I fit all my wire and tools! Look at all that space!
Now I am ready. I have a couple really big projects to complete this week /weekend......and then its playtime again. Nothing like a clean studio to make you want to work!
Here is the link to the Alex collection on the Ikea website. (I get no money from them to promote it or anything, I just love them)
No more storage wars in my studio, at least for the rest of this year.