Thursday, April 15, 2010

A Space to Create

If you are at all creative, you have probably spent time sewing, scrapbooking, creating cards, beading or painting on your dining room or kitchen table.  My family has had to make room for many projects over the years when there were pattern pieces and a sewing machine, or boxes of beads, pictures and cutting mats where dinner was supposed to be.  I now have an office/studio dedicated to my interior design business but it also functions as my sewing and crafting room when necessary.  Not a far stretch when I'm drafting a floorplan, rendering a room concept or creating a design board, everything is in one space.  I had been hanging on to fabric and rubber stamps thinking that I would get to it 'someday'.  Realistically, not gonna happen.  So being brutally honest, I purged and got rid of some things (if anyone wants some yarn and knitting needles, let me know...I am knitting challenged). 

I began looking for inspiration of organized spaces that could work for both of my needs.  All I can say is, "wow".  There are some beautiful, thoughtful and awesome women out there with amazing spaces in which to create.  Some of the best are featured on a website and magazine titled appropriately enough "Where Women Create".  Of course they had me at the title.  Even if you don't make a thing but coffee, you will love looking at these wonderfully photgraphed spaces of some brilliant artists.  Started by Jo Packham and the folks at Stampington, it is only one of many ways that artists and craftspersons are celebrated.  Jo Packam herself is a tour de force in the creative arts; as publisher, stylist, designer and one time proprieter of three shops in partnership with her daughter.

Ready to be inspired...

I love this project board for what looks like a wedding by Coco + Kelly

Something we can all strive for...

Cute way to store ribbon...mine are in clear tubs but look nothing like this.

This lucky person looks like she has a basement to use for her creative space.

As opposed to this space that looks like an attic or a french atelier.  Love her bunting proclaiming her studio space.

This is where Craigslist would come in handy.  These look like store display fixtures.  Brilliant for seeing what fabrics you have on hand!

I have always loved this picture for a design studio.

This is almost too beautiful for words...I don't know the source for this picture but I love it.

Country Living Magazine


Here's one featuring the Color of the Year...turquoise.  Love it with the lime green accents and bold colors.

This island is great for small spaces
                                                 Pottery Barn

The key to these spaces is organization.  My office/studio, especially when I'm working on a project and have sample books all over the floor, can look like a hurricane just went through but what makes it work is that everything has a place to go back to. Baskets and shelving like the pictures you see above are lifesavers and look good too.  Baskets can be woven, wire or cardboard.  Even better is when you label them with what's inside so that when you're working on a project you can go right to that box that says cardstock and not searching through store bags trying to remember where you last saw it (I speak from experience).  Shelving units are available everywhere from Target, Ikea, Home Depot and Lowes in all price ranges.

I used the Billy shelves from Ikea and configured them with doors, filing drawers and open shelving.  The possibilities are endless, depending on how much space you have, whether you want to hide things behind doors or display it all on open shelves.  The right organizational planning can be the difference in letting your creativity sing or squashing it when frustration at not being able to find what you need, when you need it rears its ugly head!
So here are some tips for organizing your creative space:

  1. Decide where the space is going to be, and yes be a little selfish in claiming that space.
  2. Lay it out...this will give you an idea of what will fit where, where outlets are and is there enough light.
  3. Go through all your craft supplies and really inventory what you's probably way more than you think.  Is some of it outdated?  Will you really use those beads?  Get rid of what you won't use.
  4. Kind of like when you clean out your closet (a previous blog post), sort items into boxes.  This will give you a good visual of what you have.
  5. Make a list of the organizational tools you already have and what you need; ie. you might have labels, folders and a bookcase but need a table/desk, baskets and containers for pens, scissors, etc.
  6. The fun part...put it all together.  It might take baby steps but you can do it!
  7. Create an inspiration board for projects you see and want to try.  Hang it where you can look at it as your working.  This will get the creative juices flowing and get you motivated to create.
  8. Last and most important...have FUN! 
Here's to your interior view,


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