Studio Space – Starting From Square One

So, recently I took a couple of months away from art in order to pick up and move to a different state.  Part of that involved moving my studio into a different, much smaller space.  Those of you who know me know that I am the kind of an artist who hoards a fair amount of stuff, so you can appreciate the challenge I faced.  I mean honestly, where am I going to put my five sewing machines?  What will I do with the fabric?  And that says nothing about the jewelry supplies, paints, pots of glue, bottles of ink, boxes of interesting tidbits, etc., etc.

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I have found that having studio space helps me to make time for art in my life.  That said, I have never before had an entire room devoted to being a studio.  It always seems like I’m cordoning off a corner of the living room in order to make something.  In the last iteration of a studio I had, I had a corner of my very large living space in my three-room apartment devoted to art, a large highboy dresser, storage in the furnace room, and a large closet as well.  Whenever I was working on a larger body of work, I would modify the rest of my space in order to make it work, so the dining table became a layout space, the corner by the fridge was where I propped up pieces to finish the edges and so on.  (If you are interested, here is a photo set of my work space changing over the years)

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Well, suddenly, I have a three bedroom house.  This means a studio.  This also means a purge, since I’m no longer using my entire home as work-space.  The never ending artist dilemma of what to purge!  I wound up cutting through a fair amount of my fabrics, a few projects, and some out-dated patterns that I will probably never use.  These were posted up online and sent out to some lucky Facebook fans.

Then came the packing.  Endless, endless packing.  Followed by endless unpacking.  I told Kyle my plan was to make it half studio/half office in there so that he could work while I was designing jewelery or working on a piece of art, and his disbelief that we would both fit in that one room was palpable.  Looking back on the photos, I understand.

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Previously, I had a highboy dresser containing most of my fabric along with some supplies such as specialty papers, yarns, etc.  Unfortunately, that didn’t really work in the space I had.  Just about every piece of furniture needed to have a surface I could work on, considering that the dining room table was going to be on a different floor of the house.  And then Ikea to the rescue!  I’m still organizing drawers, and the closet is a bit more full than I’d like. (only three totes I don’t want in there, which is not so big of a challenge in the grand scheme of things, right?)

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Honestly, I think the takeaway is USE WHAT YOU HAVE BEFORE BUYING MORE FABRIC/PAINT/WHATEVER.  Which is what I have been working on with projects like curtain making for the house.  Also, super fab bonus is basement storage for things like spraypaint, large pieces of wood and the like.

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I have already been in there working, and I have to say it is IMMENSELY satisfying!

 

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