the rearranged studio

by | Oct 6, 2021 | Home Studio, My House | 19 comments

It’s amazing how much upheaval one little piece of furniture can cause in a room, especially when you are absolutely determined to make it fit and you know in your bones that it will fit.  Such was the case with the antique post office register I shared Monday.  It was just too perfect of a piece for an art studio for it to not find a home in mine.

antique oak post office register cabinet | miss mustard seed

After scooting, rolling, and sliding some things around, the key to making the newly acquired cabinet fit was to swap the drafting table and easel.  And, actually, I like both of these pieces much better in their new homes.  The drafting table is a beautiful piece (it’s a reproduction you can purchase HERE) and it’s nice to have it be more of a feature when you walk in the room.  It also seems to fit better here than in the corner in front of the closet.

arhaus drafting table | art studio | miss mustard seed

With the easel moved to the corner in front of the closet, I was able to nestle the post office register between the easel and hardware cabinet.  When I shared this arrangement on Instagram, several people inquired about my easel.  It is a new piece that is still available – it’s the Counterweight Studio Easel by Sienna.  The price and shipping for it have both gone up since I bought it, unfortunately.  It is an awesome easel and I’m so glad I invested in it and myself early in my oil painting journey.  I am planning to do a video review on it to show how it works and adjusts for those who are interested.

antique hardware cabinet | art studio | miss mustard seed

The register cabinet acts as a nice extension of the hardware cabinet and provides some more storage for art supplies.  It’s also a nice height to have by the easel, so I can use it to set up a still life and have brushes, oils, and mediums handy.

antique hardware cabinet | art studio | miss mustard seed

I also added one more of THESE ledge shelves to hold more pigment bottles (I was running out of room.)

antique hardware cabinet | art studio | miss mustard seed

It’s not only artist’s pigments in those bottles, but crushed shells I collected to make pigments and a collection of sealing wax bits.

antique hardware cabinet | art studio | miss mustard seed

bottled artist pigments | art studio | miss mustard seed

I might end up moving around the chalkboard and art behind the easel, but we’ll see.  I wanted to swap things around immediately after I got the furniture situated, but it’s sort of growing on me the way it is.  I’ve learned to let changes happen slowly and to not feel rushed.  Change almost always feels a little “off” at first, but that’s usually simply because it’s different.  I’ve learned I  need to give myself a little bit of time to acclimate before making too many decisions.

sienna counterweight studio easel | art studio | miss mustard seed

And, as I shared on Monday, I still need to organize all of those wonderful cubby-filled drawers!  I want to take my time with that part, too, so it will likely be a slow and steady process.

antique post office register cabinet | art studio | miss mustard seed

The rest of the studio remained the same, although I am continuously shuffling things around as new books and supplies come in and as I work on different projects.  I find that continuous shuffling to be good for a creative space, so there’s something that always feels fresh and new and invites me in, even if it’s just having a few pencils sitting out on my work table instead of upright in a jar.

kaweco pencils and lead clutches | miss mustard seed

My worktable is getting a little cluttered.  I joked on Instagram stories that I brought this table in because I felt like I needed more open workspace and then I have this great open workspace to full with all sorts of goodies and supplies that I want to have sitting out!  I know…hopeless.  Instead of shaming myself for how I like to set up my workspace, though, I’m embracing it.  I imagine myself as an old lady, snuggled in a chair surrounded by tall stacks of books and art supplies and I’m really okay with that.

art studio | miss mustard seed

Books are slowly taking over my yarn shelf, but the yarn is still holding firm in its spot.  For now.

built-in shelves | yarn storage | art studio | miss mustard seed

And I rearranged a few things on the rolling cart.  My original idea for this cart was to use it as a palette (which is why I had a piece of glass cut for the top), but once we got cats, that was no longer an option!  The cats have a knack for stepping right into a pile of wet paint and, after cleaning paint off of too many paws too many times (a traumatic event for both me and the cats), I keep all of my paint safely stored away unless I’m using it.  It’s become a nice little storage piece, though, and an overflow for books.

antique metal rolling cart | art studio | miss mustard seed

The studio is definitely my favorite place in the house.  I could get lost in there happily for hours, weeks probably!  There is certainly enough to read and do…an endless supply of learning, work, and play.

sketchbook pile | art studio | miss mustard seed

If you need a little help thinking through the work & creative spaces in your home, I wrote an entire chapter about those rooms and areas in Feels Like Home.  It comes out in just six days!

antique typewriter | art studio | miss mustard seed

PS – I’m a guest on the Decorating Tips & Tricks Podcast today, sharing about my business story, decorating, and Feels Like Home!  You can listen to the episode HERE.


  1. Babs

    Your studio is delightful…just like you. I totally agree with your comment regarding “change”…it does take a little getting used to. I think sometimes we know immediately if a change is right or wrong but sometimes it takes some time….two weeks usually does it for me. I also think if I am not totally on board with something I shouldn’t proceed. To me “doubt” means “don’t”. I have learned the hard way to trust my own judgement…it took many years but I finally do.

  2. Kaycee F

    Your have created such a beautiful studio in this space. I
    Have enjoyed watching it come together. Your post office register is an amazing piece and it fits in perfectly. I would have loved to find a piece like that too, it is gorgeous.

  3. Rosie

    Wow! Love your work studio. It gets better and better. I could definitely get lost in that space, there’s so much to look at and absorb.

  4. Anita

    What fun you’re having! Makes me want to rearrange my studio too. I agree that it stimulates creativity to make changes in a working space. It doesn’t have to be big change either. The new storage cabinet is a big plus for you, a working space (kitchens too) can never have too much storage space. I can see your yarn supply finding a new space, a cozy corner someplace else. I don’t expect it to be long either. 🙂 Exciting!

    • Vikki Nay

      Love the new piece. I found a lovely piece here at a great price, but walked away from it and I have regretted it ever since. Got to grab it when you can. I am still trying to get my studio put together. Unfortunately it has to do many duties from sewing and reading to knitting and painting. But with your inspiration I am sure it will come together.

  5. Alli for Short

    Argh! Love love! Something about endless drawer space and cubbies… just seems full of possibilities. And things on little wheels! Be still my heart.

  6. KathieB

    I love the new cabinet and layout looks great. At the risk if encouraging more book purchases, I thought the you could perhaps move the yarn, knitting needles, crochet hooks etc up to the sewing room and free up art book storage space!

    • Addie

      KathieB….that is exactly what I was going to say!!! Keep knitting and crocheting supplies in the sewing room. Putting the yarn in baskets?….to keep it from getting dusty and faded…..or getting fly away paint on it. Then look at all the shelf space for MORE art supplies and books!!!!

  7. Martha Bradford

    Could you tell me the source for the brass lamps?

    Thank you,


  8. Janet in Kansas City

    I love everything about this space, it’s all beautiful.

  9. CathyR

    Your studio is a dream for sure, one I can only imagine having. Every change, tweak or addition seems to enhance it even more.
    At least your family will always know where to find you!

  10. judy fisher

    What all is above your windows – colorful – embroidery thread?

    • Marian Parsons

      It is painted samples of all of my milk paint colors. Even though I sold the line, that is my “signature palette” and I love having them there. 🙂

  11. jthorntonwilson

    I adore your studio; it has long been my favorite room on the internet! I am also an artist (with many other interests, too!) and I struggle with keeping things neatly stored in my space. I love seeing all your organizing solutions. Good luck as your book launches — I’m eagerly awaiting my copy!

  12. Nancy L Janssen

    Marian; I am in awe of your studio. I’m also a shuffler, all through my home! I tend to be minimalistic, but never mind a full room as long as it’s functional. I just have a problem with having things just to have them. I love that you use and enjoy all of your things! Also, I can’t wait for your new book. I preordered it immediately when it came up on Amazon.

  13. Carswell

    I hear you about cats and stepping in wet things. I currently have kitty footprints all over my bathroom floor, the girls go into the shower after I’ve finished just to check what’s been happening in there and then wander out leaving wet prints everywhere. Fortunately that doesn’t require cleaning anything but the floor. LOL

    I have to say though that I wonder how your yarn shelves survive – they would be shredded and balls of yarn would be everywhere with my two.

  14. Theresa

    Yes please to the video of how your easel works! Love your studio. Mine just doesn’t feel quite right. I look forward to reading that chapter in your new book and getting some fresh ideas.

  15. Michele M.

    Just spent a solid 8 minutes expressing my adoration of your studio, your talents, your personality – Marian, I absolutely am a groupee, haha.

    That studio is as perfect as I think you are. You give so much inspiration! Thank you so much for that!

    • M M

      I meant 8 full minutes (probably more) expressing adoration about you to my husband!!!!


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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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