The studio closet is finally finished!  I cannot express how awesome it is to have all of that functional storage in this space now.  It was one of my goals this year to make my workspaces more functional and that has been accomplished in my studio and home office.

If you missed any previous posts in the studio closet series, including plans and some process pictures of how the closet was built, you can find them here…

studio closet: framing and shelves

studio closet progress: building the doors

studio closet progress: straightening warped doors with turnbuckles

studio closet progress: building the 3rd door & adding catches

So, this weekend, while everyone else in my family was occupied, I took some time to prime and paint the closet.  I used Smart Prime by Zinsser as the primer and then Benjamin Moore’s Aura in White Dove in an eggshell finish for the paint.  It’s the same color as the walls.

I applied both the primer and paint with a 6″ microfiber roller (to minimize nap marks) and a Parsons West brush (naturally).  For smaller painting projects like this, I like to use a Wooster Pelican paint pail.  It has a small “ramp” for a roller and a magnetic holder for a brush.  As a money-saving tip, I’ll use one liner several times.  I put excess paint back into the original can and then let any remnants dry before I reuse the liner.

One tip when you’re rolling on several sides of a piece, like the sides of a door and the front of the door, take a brush and “lay off” the paint immediately after rolling it on.  This removes any “ledges” left by the roller on the adjacent surface.

Even the primer made it look better!  I love how the warmth of the baskets and French easel pop against the white.

I ordered vintage hardware from the former Soviet Union off of Etsy.  I was a bit perplexed of what kind of hardware to use and nothing I tried from my stash looked right.  The scale of these handles made sense with the size of the doors and I like that they are unique.

I gave them a quick scrub with some Bar Keeper’s Friend (my go-to cleaner for stainless steel and copper.)

And I installed them with small screws…

I actually have one more handle on the way (the original one the seller sent me was lost in the mail), but I’m not sure if I’ll install it on the other door or just leave it as is.

I also installed a few hooks along the side by the door to hang my apron and my Selina Vaughan bag (I use it for art supplies and books when I’m traveling or going appointments.)

I love the little peek I get into the studio from this view in the kitchen.  It is so inviting to me…

Here is the view from my desk…

I ended up parking my rolling vintage cart under the windows behind the “guest chair”.  Of course, I’ll move it over by the easel when in use, but it’s nice to be able to have it out of the way, too.  I planned to build some shelving there, but I’ll use it like this for a while and see if I even need that additional shelving.

I have actually found that I’m doing more work at this desk in my studio simply because I love being in this space so much.  I still use my office quite a bit, but I’m using my computer in here more often, especially when I’m working on creative content planning.

I mean, can you blame me?!  I just love this room!

The studio floor will be getting a fresh coat of paint soon, but I’ll do that before I go out of town for a few days, so it has some time to cure before I move the furniture back.

Another upcoming project will be organizing the closet.  Right now, everything is put in there without much rhyme or reason, but organizing is an ongoing process, especially in a creative space!  For now, it’s all out of sight and accessible.

As a reminder, this is how the room looked when we first moved in…


  1. Julie

    What a big change! It’s so refreshing. I love the white, and blue, and green PERFECT !! Love it.

  2. Eileen

    I love this room. What a space for creativity.

  3. amy joanne mogish

    Such a hard working yet beautiful space…from ,function and beauty. Nailed it!

  4. Deborah Raney

    I love it all! Especially that view through the kitchen door. I can see why it pulls you in!

  5. Jenn

    Such an remarkable transformation! This inspires me to look at the potential in a space!

  6. Gloria Tuten

    I have a great tip for you. Use Glad Press and seal food wrap to line your paint trays with. They adhere with no wiggle and when you are through painting just pull it up and throw it away. It must be the Press and Seal brand. Regular Saran wrap will not work. Also great to wrap your wet paint brush in case you need to take a short break.

    • Marian Parsons

      Yes, I use it to wrap brushes and rollers and to cover paint when it’s not in use, but I don’t like using it for liners, because it’s crinkly! 🙂

  7. mary m

    The style reminds me of a New England Jelly Cubboard but not as wide. Usually one door
    but the same style. Mine was so primitive it had leather hinges.

    • Marian Parsons

      That’s awesome, because it’s sort of the look I was going for!

  8. Leslie

    Love it. What color white is your floor please?

    • Marian Parsons

      It is just a bright white out-of-the-can.

  9. Janet in Kansas City

    This room…what a dream. : )

  10. Jeanie

    It looks awesome!!

  11. Jenn Anderson

    It’s lovely. Such a wonderful creative space!

  12. Cheryl

    Very welcoming, functional and beautiful!!

  13. Jackie B

    What a gorgeous room! I would want to be in there all the time if it were in my house. You knocked this one out of the park!

  14. Betty Bashaw

    Love this space. I’d be in there all of the time, too!

  15. Dee

    All these years watching and I have never noticed the Biblical quote above the door in the house before….so appropriate. Lovely

    The office looks soooo good. great Work!

    • Marian Parsons

      Yep, that is where my name came from. A sweet reader made it for me. 🙂

  16. PJ

    What a beautiful transformation! I would have a hard time pulling myself away from such a bright and inviting room.

  17. Leslie

    You have fashioned an adult version of a playroom in which to be creative and to let your imaginative, poetical and artiscal talents come to life. The transformation is a splendid example of what you can accomplish with your talents. Looking forward to your innovative projects that will come to life from this room…….Just love the room too!

    • Lisa

      So true Leslie! I would LOVE to have a playroom like this. Great job Marian!!

  18. Tori

    It’s simply amazing.

  19. Sue

    Absolutely lovely! I would love to work in that space. It’s so bright and neutral to allow fresh creativity.

    Let the creative juices flow!

  20. Bev

    A beautiful space to work in….. great for creating so many wonderful post.

  21. Karen

    I love it all!!! You are inspiration and a role model.

  22. Kathie

    It really is a beautiful space. Your vision for the room coupled with your patience in sourcing (and building) just the right pieces has really paid off. The closet looks original and compliments the room. It really allows the other pieces to shine. The painted floor makes the room so light. It’s beautiful! I wondered if it was a different material to the floors in the other rooms? Congratulations on creating a lovely space.

    • Marian Parsons

      Thank you so much! Yes, the flooring in this room is decking, so it’s different from the rest of the house.

  23. Linda Latt

    It looks beautiful. What a wonderful room. No wonder you like to spend time there. I am envious to say the least.

  24. Irene Kelly

    Just Love the new closet it turned out so well ! You are so creative ! The green cart needs some work is there anyway you can hide those paper towels they take away from how well you organized everything in your studio ! Really do not want to be so negative just a suggestion.

  25. Sue

    What a transformation! I love the room also and it isn’t even mine to use, enjoy.

  26. Kathy

    I am so smitten with this studio space. It is perfection!

    • Marian Parsons

      Me, too!

  27. Lisa P

    Ditto all the love for this room! It must feel so satisfying to have created such a functional AND beautiful space. And I notice your lemon tree has produced a big ? Fun!

    • Marian Parsons

      It produced three so far! I’m like a proud mama with my lemons.

  28. Bonnie

    I love the functionality and the inspiration of this space!! One thought, since you are known for distressing and creating patina… rather than a fresh coat of paint on your floor, perhaps a good intentional distressing would be in keeping with your esthetic- plus you can roll around in your chairs and not care!!

    • Marian Parsons

      I actually don’t mind where the floor is “distressed”, but there is a spot that is only primed (it’s under the green cabinet where the hardware counter used to be.) Since I need to paint that, I’m just going to put a fresh coat everywhere and then leave it be.

  29. Michele M.

    AWESOME!!! That before picture made me gasp – your creative space is beyond dreamy…..well done, MP.

    • Marian Parsons

      Thank you, Michele!

  30. Amy Kaminski

    I love this room. The combo of the blue, green, warm wood tones and brass is so welcoming and calming at the same time. Totally inspiring!

    • Marian Parsons

      I love that mix, too. 🙂

  31. Hannah

    I can’t believe the before and after shots of the same space—you’re amazing!!

    • Marian Parsons

      I sometimes forget how it looked before! It is a dramatic transformation.

  32. Kimberly Carnegie Bruhn

    Love “your” room! Quick question…remember way back when you taught a painting class and you used step stools or footstools…did you buy the two-level ones from Ikea? I chair (the chaos) a local childhood cancer charity here in Southern Oregon and want to do a “paint class” for Mum’s Day Out and wondered what you used since they turned out so dang cute?!

  33. Sharon Rexroad

    oh wow, Oh Wow, OH WOW!!!!!!

    I think my favorite tiny touch is the painted samples in “your” colors above the window.

  34. Susan

    I believe this might be your most dramatic before and after. WOW! The perfect creative space.

  35. Cindy

    Love it all! Once again, your creative touch is not only inspiring, but truly amazing!

  36. beverlee lyons

    I understand your desire to want to be in there. Very inspiring! I would be there every opportunity. It is perfect! Does Jeff have an office? Or, does he not work from home? Just wondering…

  37. Rhonda

    With the extremely cold weather in MN this winter did your heating unit keep this room warm enough? If you ad to do it over would you still.choose this make and model?

  38. Mary Lou Puller

    Such a wonderful room and work space. You are such a natural talent. You inspire me to get moving and start creating

  39. Janine Tremble

    What am amazing difference! It is a gorgeous space!

  40. Dawn

    Beautiful and inviting room! I’m enjoying your site so much, very inspiring, thank you! What color & type of paint is on your door?

  41. Catherine

    What a wonderful workplace! I love the whiteness and the new closet for storage is amazing. Looks like it’s always been there!

  42. Dee

    WOW!!!!!!! What a transformation from “before” to “now!!!!!!!!!” I LOVE it and I’m certain you’ll have many hours to enjoy your “new” space. It’s definitely worth all of the work you and hubby put into changing it!

  43. Angela

    I am in love with this room and every single thing you have in there! I would never leave! (Side note, I love following your blog and instagram! My favorite by far! So thanks for all of your work!)

  44. June M.

    It’s a dream space, hard not to be creative in such a beautiful and well thought room.

  45. Suzanne

    Thank you so much for sharing all these photos with us. I love every single thing about this room. I would never leave it. You definitely have a gift, Marian.

    • Suzanne

      I guess I would leave it, because the rest of your house is also so cute. But you know what I mean.

  46. Phyllis

    Hi Marian. I love your blog, your decorating style and creativity. I have a favor to ask. Fairly recently you posted about some of your favorites, and I saw a product that I would like to try. Intended to keep the email for reference because of poor memory but now can’t even find the email. It was a toilet scrubber or scour, just remember the brand. I know how busy you are but hoped you could let me know by email. Would appreciate it. Thanks!

    • Marian Parsons

      Oh, was it from my toilet-cleaning post? It’s a Pumie Scour Stick and it’s awesome for cleaning up toilet rings, etc.

  47. Susan

    I am in awe of your office. I have looked at all the pictures to figure out why all those unique components work together so harmoniously. For me, it’s that green chest with your lemon tree ! Did you custom mix your paint for that or did it come that way? Is that green warm, cool or a neutral? Anyway, your office is a glorious success!

    • Marian Parsons

      It is a custom mix of Boxwood and Lucketts Green from the MMS Milk Paint line.


    Marian, your studio is just lovely. You have put a lot of work into this and it has certainly been worth it. Everything is arranged so perfectly! It will be so nice for you to work in such a well-thought out and arranged space. You are so talented and everything you do is absolute perfection! Enjoy your studio! Blessings!

  49. Talana J. Knox

    It seems like everything you do comes out to perfection. This room as with the rest of your house is so wonderful, and I love how each detail is so thought out. What an enormous change from the before picture. Thank goodness, haha! Very inspiring spaces!

  50. Rhonda

    That cabinet is exquisite ! I need it like I need air LOL
    is it an old hardware store counter with drawers ? and did the hutch come with it or was that a happy accident ?
    Any tips on where I could find a piece like that ? And if I did find something like that…would I expect to pay several hundred dollars ??? TIA for your response. LOVE ALL OF THIS !

  51. Debbie

    This is perfect and my dream studio! What an amazing place to create! I love the easel chair and have been looking for one like that but unable to find it. Could you possibly share where I may find one like it?

  52. Jessica

    I absolutely love the dresser/ hutch shelf. Where did you find it? It’s gorgeous


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Marian Parsons - Miss Mustard Seed

I’m Marian, aka Miss Mustard Seed, a wife, mother, paint enthusiast, lover of all things home and an entrepreneur, author, artist, designer, freelance writer & photographer.  READ MORE to learn more about me, my blog and my business…

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