Monday, January 16, 2012

Transforming the Beast

My beast of a studio, that is.  I wish I had taken more honest-to-goodness "before" pictures.  But once I was overcome by the spirit of "must fix this now!", there was no time for before pics.  There was mainly time for throwing sh!t out and daydreaming about trips to Ikea.

Here's what happened:  we had a Christmas Party.  We do it every year, and it's super fun (and also somewhat exhausting), because we do it on our last Holiday Market date of the year, which means that, in addition to the birth of Christ, we're also celebrating the end of standing in parking lots selling jewelry for the next few months.  And honestly, by that point in the year, one seems about as exciting as the other.  (But only for a few days.  Then the earth returns to its proper order and I'm back to recognizing the birth of Christ as having perhaps a little more significance.)  So anyway, in one day we work two markets and host a party for 50 people.  I didn't say it was smart, I just said it was fun.

As you can imagine, getting ready for the party requires a significant amount of prep beforehand.  And that's where home overhaul comes in.  The last couple of years it's been a catalyst for change that resulted in good marital harmony.  The first year Clark and I had a knock-down drag out fight (which is fairly unusual for us) over the thousands (yes thousands) of paperback books I had stored all over the house.  I was attached to them.  I LOVED them.  I re-read them all the time.  And they were driving Clark crazy.  And also probably not a good idea for a person with occasional allergy and asthma problems (me).  So finally I recognized that he had a point, gave a fortune in books to Goodwill, and bought a Nook. (Well, except for a couple hundred books I *knew* I was going to re-read again.)  But now paper books no longer cross the threshold in our home, and marital harmony reigned again.  At least it reigned until this year's party.

Because getting ready for this year's party brought up the subject of my studio.  And how not fit for public consumption it was.  For example:

 These don't fully tell the story, because they were taken a few years ago before the jewelry making had fully entered the scene (I was mainly making lanterns and lamps at that time), but trust me when I tell you it had only gotten worse.

So just imagine this scene doubled with stuff.

And here's what happened when I cleaned out the closet.  Seriously, all of this was in the closet.  (That's really a pretty embarrassing picture.  Please don't call Hoarders, just wait until you see the next pictures.)

So anyway, the Christmas party was approaching and through much covert action and sly hiding of crap, the studio looked sort of not as bad as usual.  But not great.  And then I was wandering about on Pinterest, and came across some lovely studios.  And I thought - WTH, why can't I have one of those?  And needless to say, Clark was all over it.   My studio was formerly our guest bedroom, so there's really no escaping it in our house.  (Well, you can close the door, but you still know it's there.)

So, a studio overhaul frenzy took place. I should mention that this also coincides with my getting out of the candle and lantern business, and focusing solely on jewelry, which means it was time to simplify things anyway.  (And, as an aside, if you want any candles or lanterns you might want to head up to Woolworth before they're all gone.  And if you want any candle making supplies I'm going to have a craigslist fire sale in the near future.)

Clark and I threw out literally dumpsters full of stuff.  And then I grabbed my long-time BFF (we met first day of college!) who also happens to be an Interior Designer, and drug her to Ikea with me, and here's what we came up with:

It's like it's not even the same room.

See that closet to the right?  That's the one I was attempting to clean up a few pictures ago.  It's crazy, I tell you.

It's kind of so what I wanted that I don't even want to mess it up by actually working in it!  But I'm getting over it.

p.s. - if you haven't joined Pinterest, and you want to, I think it's quicker to get on if you have an invitation.   If you run into that problem, just email me or leave a comment and I'll send you one.  It's crazy good fun.


  1. Thanks Lee! I'm still at the stage where just looking at it makes me happy. :)

  2. This is awesome - I've seen it in person and your space is AMAZING! It might inspire me to re-do mine!!!

  3. Fantabulous! I can honestly say I was gobsmacked!!!! You should also mention, in case it's not obvious, that you got your hair did to boot!

    1. In fact the title would be equally applicable to my hair - Transforming the Beast indeed!