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Saturday, January 3, 2015

WE WORK - Co-Working - My Creative Space Revisited



Hello, Crafty Peeples 
"Well, my friends, the time has come.
Change the studio and have some fun!"

My studio has changed dramatically, I think, in just one year.   I believe a workspace should reflect the personality of the artist.  Artists (and I do consider Paper Crafters artists) spend most of their time in their studios.  It does not matter if that "studio" is just a card table in the corner of a den, it is where the artist goes to create the change in the world that she wants to see.  The very idea of white on white built in cabinets is anathema to my creative soul.  Far  too reminiscent of my time working in a mental health facility.  No offense to all the ladies with those wonderful white on white studios, (I have seen some that are AHmazing) but they are just not ME!  I like small, intimate, homey spaces.  So, posters from The Cartoon Network,  a Michael Jordan Jersey,  a flag from the 1996 Atlanta Centennial Olympic games, pictures of the Atlanta Falcons, President Obama, and precious family photos,  are my daily companions as I make my creative trek.
Recently, I came across an interesting online magazine called We Work.  The articles were interesting, informative and fun.  I wanted to know more about the company, so I visited the main page of We Work.Com.  As it turns out, they are a co-working company that provides shared office space and services for small and very small CREATIVE FOLKS.  It was their project on Creative Workspaces. that got me to take a long critical look at my studio and to revamp it!
Here are some links so you can check them out for your self.




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MY CREATIVE SPACE
Revisited
HALLWAY LEADING TO STUDIO
Working with Architects and Interior Designers, I came to fully embrace the rule that says:
"Form Follows Function."  I also learned not to "Box" myself into a space whose function is subject to change over time. All those pretty white cabinets look gorgeous today, but could limit your ability to reclaim "Lost Space"  two or three months later. Renovations are costly and aggravating.  Before making any decisions, it is best to ask a few basic questions: 

1.  Do I need a large workspace, and if so, what is the best location in this room?
2.  How much storage do I need now plus __% (this should be based on your buying habits)
3.  Are there ways to expand my "use" of the space without expanding the space itself? 
    (example: Can I gain vertical space by adding slat walls?)

If you are strickly a card maker or scrapper,  your requirements will be different than those of an altered arts or mixed media designer.  If you believe that you want to dabble in different areas, allow for that when determining your storage plus --%.

 I avoid "built ins," preferring instead, "modular, mobile and expandable."
MY MAIN BOARD ON 12/10/2013
This was a functional workspace a year ago.  I was working on improving my Alcohol Marker Skills and used my markers daily! 

MY MAIN BOARD NOW
BEHIND THE DESK CRAFTING CREDENZA - 12/10/2013
Ah, just to think, a year ago, this was my "go to" area!

CRAFTING CREDENZA NOW
These units provide more storage and I have access to more craft items.   I actually gained usable space that was lost in the previous configuration.  The large unit here has 15 (12" x 12") drawers.  I can now store  my favorite designer collections here.  The five deep drawers hold Work in Process and large collections that I want to keep together. No more "hunting in the Paper Closet!"  Well, almost no more hunting!
The smaller unit houses frequently used embellishments and  8" x 81/2" red rubber mounted Stamp Sets. The top of both trays are ideal for what I call "In Plain View" storage for items that I tend not to use often enough.   I also use this area to display recently completed projects or projects waiting to be photograpbed, boxed or delivered.    I use the reclaimed wall space below the BB for stencils, instructions and templates I am using in current Work In Process
CENTRAL WORK AREA-12/10/2013

The worktable on the right was home for three of my cutting tools. I kept a laptop on the cutting side of the workstation for making YoutTube videos, connecting to the Eclips and Cricut, and watching DVDs.  
CENTRAL WORK AREA NOW
This area has undergone a total transformation.  The cuttting tools no longer occupy valuable workspace.  I gave the Cricut away, the eclipse sits on a side table.  I removed the laptop and placed Kindle Tablets (on this side the cover is orange) on both work desks.   This  is a far more functional use of the space.  I gained storage for  Paint/ Copics  and I added additional lighting.
 NEW MIXED MEDIA PAINT STATION NOW
I just recently began dabbling in mixed media, and I love it.  This is a better use of the space and far more practical.  I can still use this area for occasional cutting. but so far that has not been needed.
I keep my paint cloths and frequently used MM supplies in this carrier.  I love these fabric storage bins which I purchased at Dollar Tree.  Honestly, I consider it my best $50.00 purchase ever!
iMac/CAMEO STATION 12/10/2013
iMac/CAMEO STATION NOW
Here, we simply swapped the printer and iMac and added a lamp.  I store my wallpaper binders on the shelf under the computer table and hanging on the wall.  I have storage on the floor under the desk for my Craft Magazines.  
A plastic basin( from Dollar Tree) is secured between the legs of my drafting table and used to house 3D objects I plan to alter, my paper towels, hand sanitizer and other miscellany.   It is not visible in this photo,  but next to the waste paper basket is storage space under two 4' tables for binders housing my frequently used clear stamps and project books.  I have room on the right side(of the my drafting table) to store two rotary cutters three binders, and extra scoreboards.

BIG SHOT/PRINTER/ 6X6 STATION 12/10/2013



This area was always a thorn in my side.  Both the printer and color copier had such large footprints, they rendered the space practically useless.

BIG SHOT/CUTTING/DESIGNER PAD STATION NOW
We Ditched the copier, kept the large format printer for projects requiring 11"x17" paper.  The reclaimed space stores 6"x6" Pads. I now have room for my Big Shot, Paper Cutters,  a small desk pad. I gained wallspace (needed that metric conversion table in plain view!)  I get tons done here.

Below the table is storage for general office supplies and more wallpaper books!A board placed across the well of the printer created a place for 8"x8" Pads and small stencils.  
In front of the printer is space for my exacto kit on top of which I keep (WIP) Mini album covers . Easy to remove these items when the printed is used, maybe 1-2 per month for short proof runs.

BIG SHOT PRO AND WOOD MOUNTED STAMPS - 12/10/2013
RECLAIMED SPACE 
INCLUDES: Mixed Media supplies and stamp storage  as well as:
NEW PADDING STATION
12/10/2013
SAME SPACE NOW
Wood Mounted Stamp Storage and Ecllpse Cutter's New Home
SEWING STATION ON 12/10/2013
NEW DIE STORAGE AND SEWING STATION NOW
The Big Shot Pro was relocated here!  Tim Holtz and Sizzix Dies In Pink Containers.
Other Dies are stored next to the BS Pro and on the shelf behind the Big Bite.  On the slide out shelf is stored My FabScraps and Quilling Supplies.
The Fabric Bins hold all of my Embossing Folders.  Beneath them are Big Shot supplies and Cigar boxes to be altered.

ADDITIONAL PAPER STORAGE -12/10/2013
ADDITIONAL PAPER STORAGE NOW
The Orange Home Depot "Let's Do This" bucket is where I store all my paint rags.

The Closet has not changed, but has been sorta kinda decluttered. 

FOR NEW CRAFTERS!
I would not advise beginners to go out and buy a lot of expensive furniture at IKEA or one of the craft stores.  Look around your house, try to use what you have.  Thrift stores are glorious places to find great deals. The Goodwill is a personal favorite!  Be sure this is a hobby you want to pursue in earnest before making substantial financial investments.   Look at online stores, stroll through Michaels or Jo Ann's and check out the prices. Papercrafting is not a CHEAP hobby.   I made the decison early on to use my money on stamps, paper, dies and inks, rather than fancy furniture.  It is not what you have, it is what you make of what you have!  Be creative!

THANKS FOR STOPPING BY!
HUGZ,
CHANA MALKAH HARRIS


8 comments:

  1. Wow!!!!! Chana, you have a beautiful room now. I want to come and have a play date at your house! My hubby wanted to buy me one of those drawer storage units but my room is just sooo tiny that we couldn't even find a place to put it LOL! I'm so happy for you. Have fun playing. However, you did make me look at the shelves above where I sit at my computer and I realized that it is just filled with junk. Off to fix that immediately thanks to you! Hugs, Jean (from The Outlawz)

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  2. Thanks, Jean! I am enjoying myself! If your husband is handy, you should check Dollar Tree and Big Lots. They have very small plastic tubs that can be used for storage. Your husband could build the cabinet with slide rails. Home Depot is also a good source for info on sizes to fit in small rooms. Good luck with organizing your shelves...I would love to see the before and after.

    Thanks so much for taking the time to stop by and leave a comment. I appreciate it!
    Hugz,
    Chana Malkah

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  3. Awesome workspace Chana!! Would love to craft there for a day, or week, or month, LOL
    Hugs,Sandra

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    1. Thanks, Sandra!
      Come on over! I would love to craft with you! Then I could pick your brain and find out how you come up with those fabulous creations!
      Hugz,
      Chana

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  4. I want to come and have a play date with you in this great creative space! I can feel the creative energy and mojo right through these photos! I agree with you completely: modular furniture makes for a crafty space that works in the long haul. I also have furnished my space with garage sale finds, thrift store finds and repurposed containers. I decided I wanted to spend my $$ on supplies instead of on fancy fixtures. My space is functional, practical and very user friendly. Great advice, and I got some good ideas here, too. Now I just need to boot Dale out of the studio so I can have that last wall for myself. I have it all designed in my head. Poor, poor Dale! LOL

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    1. We are going to have to make that play date happen! Better wait until I come off the steroids. My daughter has suggested that I just refrain from talking to people until I am all done with the Prednisone and my "crazy" pill. I don't know what I said, but even my son suggested that I remain silent in social situations! :D)

      Your comments always leave me encouraged! My confidence is growing...I think..keep talking to me!

      I think Dale has probably seen the handwriting on the wall! :D) At one point, Jim got it into his head that he wanted to build a unit to replace the pieces that make up what I call my Central workspace. The design was gorgeous but after I explained a little more about how I work, he decided my "thrift store" look was just fine.

      Mucho Hugz,
      Chaan

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  5. Very organized - I would give a million dollars to be that organized lol tfs!!!

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    1. Thanks, Ms. Babs! I just bet that you arek very organized, though!
      Hugz,
      Chana

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Thanks for stopping by! I appreciate your comments, they keep me motivated!
Hugz, Chana