I have always loved this corner of the studio… the oak hutch with the bird pulls, filled with art books. The vertical row of brushes and the dress form flanking it.
Having a good storage piece seemed like the best solution for that wall, but once I started really using this space, I realized that the oak hutch only provided a fraction of the storage I needed. I had bulky photography equipment and video lighting and tripods and stands tucked all over the house and I really dislike work stuff encroaching on spaces meant to be just our home. (I know it’s a fine line, but I try to keep the spaces distinct as much as possible.)
So, over the Christmas break, I made a list of things I wanted and needed in my workspaces. More storage was at the top of the list and that had me looking a little harder at this corner. I drew out the idea of a built-in closet and then I pitched it to Jeff.
Thankfully, he’s handy with a saw and willing to do woodworking projects for me! He agreed this would be a doable project, so we drew up more specific plans and a materials/cut list and we made room for the new closet when we did the great workspace furniture shuffle.
We were plastered with almost a foot of snow Saturday night and then had a “ground blizzard” on Sunday, so church services were canceled. With a rare free Sunday, Jeff started working on the closet. As a side note, I had never heard of a ground blizzard. It’s when the winds are so strong that they blow around all of the snow on the ground causing massive drifts and whiteout conditions. Given that we’ve had almost 40″ of snow in February, that was a lot of snow blowing around and it created havoc in our area.
Anyway, the ground blizzard meant the studio could get a closet.
We designed and built a simple frame out of 2 x 4s…think garage shelving. It doesn’t have to be pretty, because it’s going to be clad in v-groove boards to match the painted tongue and groove boards on the walls and ceiling. It just has to be strong.
We worked on it here and there through the day and by the end of Sunday, we had the shelves built and I already moved my stuff in. Anyone else like that? You just can’t wait to populate a new space, even if it’s unfinished?
All of the work that remains is on the outside of the closet, so stuff on the shelves wouldn’t get in the way. It’s not organized, yet, so I’ll make better use of the space once I sort through everything. It was so nice to get all of my bulky recording/lighting gear in one place, though! It was spread out over the laundry room, garage, hall closet, living room, and the basement storage room! I found that I hardly pulled it out to use (even when I needed it) because it was too much of a pain to track it all down!
Jeff has Mondays off, so he worked yesterday on attaching the v-groove planks on the side and tacking poplar 1 x 4s on the front to finish off the 2 x 4s. We’ll then build doors out of the v-groove planks, trim the top and bottom, and paint it all out the same color as the wall.
Initially, I thought I would use this room for more furniture photography, so I felt like I needed to keep a large stretch of wall empty. This bit of wall between the art cabinet and the closet will be used for that purpose. (And I have some furniture projects coming up!)
The chalkboard just hangs on one nail and the drafting table is on sliders, so I’ll just move those out of the way when I have a piece of furniture to style and photograph. And, when I’m not using it for that purpose, I can make good use of the space.
And, speaking of the studio, having this beautiful new space (along with an arm that is working a bit better) has inspired me to spend more time at the easel and my drying shelves are getting pretty full!
I made my latest hare along with some landscapes and still life paintings available for purchase on Society6. I also have a pretty sizeable stack of paintings I’ll be listing for sale later this week.