Working from home with a little man has posed all sorts of challenges (it’s a wonder I get anything done) but the biggest challenge to date, has been baby proofing. The new boss-man gets into EVERYTHING.

Future Postmaster General

My studio is ripe with sharp, toxic, messy, dangerous, and costly things.  Even before Elliot arrived, I had been feeling as though the walls were closing in on me.  So overwhelming it seemed, I enlisted the help of Susan Brun, owner of Neater Stuff.

First off the list….PURGE!  Susan, being a third party (and a reasonable one at that), had no personal attachment to my stuff.  She pointed out that I didn’t need every single blue bird from my wedding or bins upon bins of supplies that rarely, if ever, got touched.

E Studio Purge

It was a truck full!  Most of which was donated to local school art rooms or goodwill.  To think I had all this unnecessary stuff packed into my closets…no wonder the walls were closing in!

Now onto a bigger problem.  I had been using two rickety old bookcases to house all of my inventory.  I was terrified that my little explorer would pull them down on top of himself and there was no safe way to anchor them to the wall.  (not to mention how unsightly they are….they aren’t even twins) I like to be able to see my stock of paper goods, so Susan suggested a china cabinet or furniture piece with cabinets on the bottom to keep the toxic paints locked up and open storage up top.  We both spent a week hunting garage sales, antique stores and the like, and both of us kept coming back to this 1950’s piece from Two Women & a Warehouse.  It was already painted, solid and a steal at only $220.  Checkout that bakelite hardware!

Studio make over

The closets followed suit…

closet reorganization

My packaging newsprint is now easy to reach and doesn’t require me pulling half of it out onto the floor for a few sheets.

closet organization

Why I ever thought using hangers to organize was a good idea, is beyond me!  I managed to purge 2 whole bins of useless supplies, which allowed for me to move my packaging supplies off the floor and into the closet.  My wrapping paper is now neatly contained in a corner bin, and Nick built me this super awesome ribbon holder…

ribbon holder

Susan is really great at re-purposing old items and working within a tight budget.  During the great purge, I was tempted to completely discard an old scissor caddy.  It was home to about 12 different fancy scissors, that maybe got used twice a year to make gift tags.  Instead of throwing it out, we packed the fancy scissors away and moved the round caddy to my drafting table.  It’s the perfect way to store the scissors and tools I use regularly.  (I’m a total scissor snob, can you tell?)

Studio desk reorganization

The overall transformation is HUGE!  I can see the floors, Vayda and Elliot can look out the window, I can allow Elliot to play at my feet in the studio without fear that he’s going to guzzle a pint of toxic paint when I’m not looking.

Studio overhaul

If you’re local to our area, I highly recommend Neater Stuff.  I don’t think there’s an area, be it kitchen pantry, garage, commercial or residential that they couldn’t get organized.  They can work with any budget and help you maximize your space.  I finally feel like I can breathe over here.  My space is functional, aesthetically pleasing, and most importantly, BABY PROOF!

Studio Monster

Though he still likes to rummage through the mailers and recycling bin!

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It’s here! It’s here!

February 11, 2010

Quicker than I thought even…Did you see it? We hope you’ll enjoy the layout…I’m most excited that you can now view the murals full screen (it did them no justice to have them at 400 px wide, when some are 24 feet  in real life)…Oh and speaking of which, we finally added my Anne Bonny Mural to the site.  Now that it’s all rolled out, I owe Nick about 1000 sketches, so it’s time to get back to work…but in case you’ve forgotten the old layout…here are some before and after shots..

Before on the left…after on the right…