AND AFTER! WELL, DURING!Crzylady at Home Grown Insanity who is apparently both organized and an organizer has given me lots of food for thought and inspiration for reorganizing my creative space. She has this great checklist, perfect for creative spaces, and a wonderfully gentle manner. I'm planning to post my progress weekly, along with a project or two that I can actually work on as I gain space and order - and a feeling of peace.
As you can see, I have a long way to go - but I'm taking the first "baby steps" as Flylady decrees. (Flylady, in case you aren't already familiar with her, has a free online organize-your-whole-life-even-your-body website that has been very helpful to me in general, though not one bit with this space...). I'm throwing stuff out as well as shifting some things to other places, and creating some better homes (and labels) for the stuff I keep.
I took Crzylady's advice to start by clearing one big space, both to give me working room and a sense of encouragement - and it has helped. I got my drawing table cleared off of most of the unnecessary junk, re-established my stations and cleared the floor enough around them that I can fit easily in and out of my chairs. Phew! And then I even started clearing out the shelves on the wall behind. Look! There's some empty space! (Probably won't stay that way for long - but I'll settle for order.)
Anyway, I got things tidy enough to get working on my Christmas card (that's what the little Christmas tree in the foreground goes to), to make good progress on the sketches of two picture books, and to nearly finish this gift I started making a while ago. SPOILER ALERT, MARY LOU - don't peek.
It's a drawstring knapsack for my walking buddy. On Saturday mornings we visit estate sales and then take our walk in the neighborhood around it. I'm making her a bag to tote her loot, and I've used all thrifted materials I've acquired at the sales. The main fabric is blue and white ticking from a vintage pillow cover, the calico lining (shows at the casing) was a vintage fabric I bought from a crafter's huge stash (it was really something - and it takes a lot to impress a hoarder like me), and the pocket on the front is from an embroidered hand towel. The bag also has a couple interior pockets. I used the excellent tutorial for a lined pack with interior pockets on Break It Down Design here - and, get this: I followed practically all the instructions. Maybe that's why it came out so well.... (Changes: I folded the lining to the front to make the casing for prettiness' sake, added an exterior pocket too of my own "design," and used grommets instead of button holes - partly because I can't remember where my button hole attachment is, partly because the fabric was too heavy for my little machine and would never have been able to manage them.) The tutorials are free, but she accepts donations, and I'll make one when I finish - the tutorial was really a big help.
Here's a close up of the tea towel pocket. I probably should have lined it.
I'm filling the bag with some other thrifted treasures - a small measuring tape, a notebook and pen for keeping wish lists and jotting measurements, etc., and an old tin I lined with felt and filled with some quarters and a few dollars (we're very cheap - but it's nice to have a little mad money for those things you absolutely don't need but really want). Any other suggestions of vintage-y things that would be useful?
Sorry my photos are crap today. Waited until it was dark to take them and the lighting is less than optimal at night.
Head on over to Kootoyoo to see all the other wonderful creative spaces, including hers. Thanks Kootoyoo!