Monday, 26 August 2013

My New ARTHaven–Bringing More Stuff In

The second of two posts for today.

I spent most of today unpacking boxes and putting things in my new ARTHaven. I am unable at this stage to organise things as I go, and am simply offloading things into the relevant zones around the room. There will be plenty of time to sort the finer details and find proper homes for everything, but until it’s all out, I won’t know what I’ve got and how to sort it.

Here is my black shelf unit with some more things on it. I’ve decided (at least for now) to keep things for altering, my Cynch and binding wires, and various other things I don’t use very often. I shall probably change my plan when I discover things that are too big to store anywhere else!

01 Black Shelf Unit

My tall storage unit, left behind by the previous owner of the house, is going to prove invaluable for storing bulky items. I am thrilled with the way my large Really Useful Boxes exactly fill the centre shelves, and in the cupboards I can store bags of knitting and rug yarns and shapeless bags of wadding etc.

I have also decided to store my frames, small canvases and Ikea mirrors in these shelves as they fit nicely.

02 Tall Storage Unit

Moving on around the room, my textile area is beginning to look a bit overwhelming! I will have to unpack all these boxes – some of the larger quantities of stuff like wadding (seen here on the top right shelf of the wall unit) will have to go in the tall storage unit or the black shelf unit.

On the right side of the top shelf of the narrow floor unit you can see my table-top ironing board. This is going to be so useful once I start sewing, but it is covered with rather grubby calico with no padding underneath, so I think it’s in line for a bit of a makeover!

03 Textile Zone

I am thrilled to be unpacking stuff for my display zone. Note particularly on the mantlepiece on the far right, two tiny easels. I bought these on Ebay months ago – the little gold coloured metal one came from America, and the beautiful carved wooden one I bought from an antique dealer – it is hand-carved wood from Bavaria in Germany – I did have to go quite high with my bidding but I’m glad I did, because I am so happy to have it! Almost immediately after its arrival, it was packed up in its box again and not opened again until today. These two small easels will be used to display ATCs and other small art works.

On the left of the mantelpiece you can see my precious little leather album my hubby found for me, which I am using for painted artworks – really a sort of art journal, but not with journalling as most people do it, but on any theme that takes my fancy. I am looking forward to getting back to working on this little book.

04 Display Zone

On the worktop under the mantelpiece you can see my mum’s antique box on the right (empty at present) with a book stand which my dad made – I am not sure what I shall use these for yet. The boxes contain earlier bits of art I’ve done in the past, and artworks sent to me by others – waiting to be unpacked and put on display!

The next picture shows that absolute chaos which constitutes my main work zone. The large space above the worktop has to be organised for storage of small items within easy reach. On top of the red plastic box (which has 2 drawers) is a small chest of drawers from Dad’s workshop – it is extremely dirty and oily and I intend to steam clean it and paint it, and use it for storage of small items.

At the back on the left are my pegboard hooks. I am not sure where (or even if) I shall use my pegboards, and I may cut pieces from some large sheets of hardboard pegboard that my hubby found for me a while back.

In the foreground you can see a portion of my mum’s pine table tucked under the curve of the worktop. This table fits exactly in front of the balcony door, between the sink and the doorway, and once I’ve put castors on it it will be easy to move around where I want. It is a very good size, and very strongly made, but not too heavy, and ideal for my purpose. I’m glad Mum didn’t want to keep it – anyway she wouldn’t have had room for it.

05 Main Work Area

Finally, the mixed media zone. Right on top of the wall unit you can see my clip on lamps. I am intending to rig these up with a DIY photo booth which will be foldable, and able to be stored out of the way when not in use. The lamps have daylight bulbs in them.

06 Mixed Media Zone

The space between the narrow (fixed) floor unit and the doorway is just the right size for my two large wallpaper sample books which our local decorating shop gave me several months ago. On the shelves of the wall unit, along with my gel mediums etc., are stored my Friendly Plastic, glass paints, wooden printing blocks and various other bits and pieces that I was delighted to find when unpacking my boxes.

Moving out of the ARTHaven proper and into the office, this is how it looks now – absolute chaos! The banana boxes on the desk contain ring binders and lever arch files which can’t be stored until I’ve got my shelves up – likewise with the various boxes of papers, thermal binder covers, clear document pockets, acetates, etc. etc. On the shelves of one of the bookcases I’ve dumped a whole lot of small tools from Dad’s workshop which will have to have homes created for them.

07 Office

Boxes of CD cases, photos, wrapping paper, spare stationery etc. under the desk will also have to have new homes. On the bookcase on the right is my pretty blue china wall ornament which I’ve never yet hung (bought years ago in Spain), some small pictures, spare envelopes, etc. etc.

I sometimes wonder whether I dreamt having that major clear out of my old ARTHaven, and the humungous amount of downsizing I did. I’ve got sooo much stuff! There are still loads of boxes waiting to be unpacked, although I have made major inroads into the piles of boxes in the spare bedroom! Watch this space over the coming weeks as all this clutter miraculously disappears into its proper place… (I hope!)

There’s so much sorting to do, and I am keen to get on with it so that I can start creating again in the way I really enjoy – something I haven’t been able to do for many months as everything was packed up for so long.

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