After making three stripy scarves, I decided to take a little break from felting. I did some chores and decided to tidy up my workspace, AKA The Dining Room. I really loved my dining room when it was just the dining room. The dining room soon morphed into the Art Studio. I was able to keep all of my supplies in a built in cupboard on one side of the fireplace. So it did look like a real dining room most of the time. But when I started to paint all of the time, it was easier to have supplies available in trolleys. That is when the dining room stopped resembling anything like a dining room. It didn’t matter too much as we could still eat at the table. We don’t really entertain so that wasn’t an issue and if we did have family to stay, there was plenty of space.
That all changed when I took up felting last year. I used to store all of my supplies in bags. Then it morphed to large plastic shoe boxes. Now I have plastic storage shelves that are stackable.
It was difficult getting everything in frame as the table was in the way and I was backed up as far as I could go. The stacked shelves have six drawers. The drawers came in different sizes and I mixed and matched to get the right height. I could probably use another row, but that would probably be going overboard here. My wool and accents are color coded and are at the top rows as I use them the most. Sewing supplies, fabric, beads, odds and ends, felt and pre-felts, needle felting and other bits are at the bottom. The large plastic shoe boxes now contain items I’ve made like scarves, hats, brooches. These were supposed to be for a craft fair that got postponed. I have an antique trolley that I keep my sewing and embellisher machines on.
Above all of my storage, I have paintings I have made over the years. I had more on the wall, but the wool took over and I had to take quite a few down. I like trying different ways to paint and I paint for fun. They may not be to everyone’s taste, but I enjoy trying new things. I have only ever sold one painting. My twins have a nice collection of my work. Once we are able to have car boot sales again I shall have a big clear out. All of my painting supplies now live back in the cupboard next to the fireplace and I use the trolleys for felting tools. I haven’t had the heart to get rid of my painting supplies as most of it is Artist’s Quality and expensive. I am also not quite done with painting. It is just on pause.
This side of the room has my storage. I live in a small Victorian house that was originally a two up and two down. The cupboard on the left is built in and has deep shelves and was probably added when the fire surround was added, which is Edwardian. The Billy bookcase is from Ikea and has my art books and more art supplies. The next time I am in the vicinity of Ikea, I shall buy another extension for the bookcase as I have quite high ceilings and can use the storage space. I have felted a lot of vessels. I have more hidden away. They are one of my favorite things to make, but I really don’t have anywhere to store them. I have only sold one so far.
You can now see my dining room table that I work on. It is Danish and had quite a few scratches on. There are leaves that extend to make it just over 7 feet long. I hand painted it in two shades of green. Before I started painting any type of art, I used to restore and paint furniture for my personal use and for sale.
Here is a photo before the room got decorated to how it is now. I’ve sold those chairs.
Sorry about the quality of the photo, but the light was reflecting through the window. I bought the hat and scarf stand for the craft fair and it had been living in another corner of the room until my tidy up. In this corner where the stand is now I have had an electric clothes airer. It stays in the dining room in the winter as I use it to dry clothes that can’t be put in the tumble dryer along with wet felted items. It dries clothes very quickly and I would recommend getting one. I have the extra large one. I also have a mannekin in my size. I have a hat form for pretty much every size of head. I also have a couple of hand made wooden hat forms, wig forms and some hat shapers. I really don’t have room for them on this little table I restored and painted. The table used to live in the living room. I haven’t had the heart to part with it as it is very cute and useful, but it does have to go as I have no room to walk around the table when both leaves are out.
You can see my trolleys and some more of my art. I also used to do printmaking. I also have a couple of unfinished pieces on top of the dresser. The dresser, as with most of my painted furniture, was a charity shop find. It turns into a cocktail bar. 🙂 After taking this photo, I moved most of the hat forms to the top of it and put the more delicate hats from the hat rack on them. I just need to make sure that I keep on top of the dusting as I have nowhere else to store things.
When I first moved into my home, it was just me and the cat. Now I share it with a husband and two dogs. I never thought I would try creative things like painting and felting. Otherwise, I would have bought a house with a garage and loft conversion, or bigger yard with a shed!
I have to say that the amount of items around the house is overwhelming to me sometimes. One of the reasons I stopped needle felting is that the felties were taking over. I gave away almost all of them. I think it all takes over, and unless you are selling them, something will eventually have to give. While tidying up I had a good clear out of some of my artwork I had lying around for a few years. It is interesting to see the progression. I had a huge cull.
In this time of self isolation I have had a another chance to think about what is really important. Creativity is really important. I realise that I have been really lucky to be able to try new things even though I may be getting on a bit. Some things I am better at than others. I am a bit skint at the moment due to the situation, so I am having to use what I have (though I seem to still have loads) and not purchase anymore wool. When one is limited, one needs to think out of the box. I will probably be making a lot of hats and accessories until the wool runs out.