19.4.07

Another fine mess...

Well. That was - interesting. If I had known just how long or how chaotic THAT was going to be I might not have bothered. Or maybe I would. I am now the satisfied (if somewhat frazzled) tenant of a nice, spacious studio. Albeit a little rammed with books and general bumph. Moving everything from one room to another was a labour of Hercules. Actually, I think even Hercules would have been daunted...


I also changed computers and went broadband. In the end it all worked well, but there was an initial shock at discovering that new PCs don't have a dial up plug...loathe to change to BB, I trekked to P
C World and picked up an external modem. I have only one word to sum up my recent computer experiences - Vista. If you don't know what I mean, let's just say that the new Windows operating system is like an ultra-smart kid who doesn't know how to fix a nice cup of tea. The modem didn't work. I gave in. I got BB. It worked at once. I was amazed. Now I know what the fuss is about; blogs which usually take ten minutes to download flash up like magic. Video clips actually appear. Sites don't crash. I can listen to the radio online.


So, I got a few bits of cheap furniture, which only added to the muddle. The futon base had to be stored in the bath, while we slept downstairs...oh what fun.



Shifting heavy furniture about in a few inches of space - and then realising they didn't work - and moving them back again. Trapping myself in the room with piles of books. Just a couple of the happy moments from the last three weeks.



But at last I have a dedicated sewing area, with all my craft and needlework books in one place - and my dear old jalopy of a machine ready for use. I haven't used the poor thing in seven years. I found an unfinished sock, with lovely wool which Stuntmother sent me two years ago. I discovered the blocks from a patchwork quilt I had pieced but never joined. Story of my life.


Some of my best books and toys on a lovely oak bookcase I picked up for next to nothing. Fairy stories, toy reference books, nursery rhymes, 'Brewster's Dictionary of Phrase and Fable' - everything inspirational on hand and not in a pile.



We even got to sleep upstairs again, and some lovely people rebuilt this six foot square bookcase for us. For the first time in my life I can reach my books without having to negotiate them out from the middle of a heap. (Although I still have piles of books in odd corners - who hasn't?) I love going to sleep in a cocoon of books.



So now what was a bedroom...


...is now a lovely, light studio. My portfolios are tidy(ish) and art materials organised. Best of all, my creative doldrums disappeared amid all the carnage; I'm ready to work again, and come back to the real world. I owe people emails, presents and general thanks for support. I have blogs to catch up with...what have you all been doing? I'm going to find out.


Being a bit of an anal type I kept a record of the whole process. If you are busy procrastinating, have nothing better to do - or even just enjoy watching someone else dig a hole, you can find the set on Flickr, here.

23 comments:

Ash said...

I am SO relieved to know that you were not suffocated under an avalanche of books - you may be touched to learn that I checked you blog most days to see if you had surfaced, gasping for air and gleefully clutching uncovered treasures! Welcome to mid-April and to broadband!
xx L

Soozcat said...

Oh, it's beautiful!

You have done exceedingly well on the creative and difficult process of spinning order from chaos. And now ya gots broadband too, so it's all good.

Best of all, it sounds like your sense of creativity has returned!

Man, I wish I could say my new place were as well-organized. I have several still-packed boxes calling my name right now, and I'm studiously ignoring them.

Joanna said...

So glad the move went well, I was getting worried you had got lost in a pile of books. The shelves look fab just what you needed. K has promised to help sort out my work room after the weekend, he says I need more shelves. His right its no good getting work done when you spend all morning looking for something you need. I'm looking forward to seeing all the wonderful work you will produce from that bright sunny desk. All your books look amazing, I bet you have somelovely books. I could look for ages at your flickr pics trying to work out what books you have and I love all the toys.

Francie M. said...

HOORAH ! I was getting ready to send the Royal Mounties out after you...yes I know they are in Canada but that's the best I could think of :)
You surely have accomplished a lot and I am so happy for you. You inspired me to gather up all my "stuff" and put it in our front room.
Looking forward to hearing from you, did I say HOORAH !

Daisy Lupin said...

Some of those photos remind me of how my workroom looks at the moment, one tiny road leading to a desk that is piled high with books and papers. I am desperate for more bookcases, I just missed two the other day on freecycle. Still it will get sorted soon.

Sherry Rogers said...

Awesome!!! Congratulations! It looks wonderful! Thanks for the whole story.

natural attrill said...

Well done Gretel, your new workspace looks great!
Penny.
xx

carolyn said...

I'm so impressed, will you come round and organize my books, please? The mountain beside the bed is getting quite out of control, right now it brings a whole new meaning to "climbing" in or out of bed.

Tommy-Rocket said...

OMG!
I love your new studio!
Like they say, a change is as good as a rest.
I'm so glad to hear it's re-charged your creativity.
Brilliant!

Erica
xx

Emm@ said...

Welcome to the wonderful world of broadband! A TV, then broadband. I hate to think what's next!

Only joshing. Your new space looks great. If only I was as motivated to get my bright red and blue bedroom redone!

Emm@ xxxxxx

SueC said...

You made it!!! I was beginning to wonder if you'd buried yourself alive behind a bookcase somewhere and would be lost for the entire cricket season :-)

I find decluttering and clearing out my studio tremendously head-clearing and motivating too.

Well done. x

Sue said...

Hooray! You must be exhausted! But what a result! It looks amazing, tidy and cosy at the same time. Love that new big bookcase!And how on earth did you lift that nipping press onto the sill? It must weigh a ton!
All this and broadband (radio 7 listen again is my mainstay!)

Well done you! :-))

Anonymous said...

Hi Gretel! I was beginning to think you were lost amidst your books and such as well. Your new space is lovely. That reminds me...I think I'd better get my messy space cleaned up. (LOL)

Donna said...

Wow Gretel I was exhausted by your efforts and I was just an onlooker! I looked at every photo on your flickr site with amazement. What a feat but how worthwhile. Your new space works beautifully and I can just imagine how lovely it is to work in that bright sunny space. Well done you :-)

paula said...

It looks great gretel! If I didn't know any better, I would have thought your house was actually made out of books and toys...

Stuntmother said...

It's wonderful and inspiring. Change can be so liberating, even the moving of things around. Suddenly everything seems fresher and lost books reappear and the sun shines brighter.

Wonderful.

tlawwife said...

Makes me tired looking at all of that work!! The results are fabulous though and I know that you will enjoy it tremendously.

Barb said...

Oh, Gretel, I'm sorry, but I was laughing out loud as I read about the before and after of moving spaces around...all illustrated with some very cluttered photos that took ages to view, as I kept squinting at everything on every shelf. At the same time, I was wishing I could have been there to help, just so I could be a nosy parker and poke through everything. I know what it's like to live in a small place...I couldn't swing a cat in mine. I tell people it's like living on a ship where every single thing has its own place. At times, I long to cull out the thrift store finds and accumulated junk, but it's all so inspiring...to me, anyway! Hat's off to a job well done. The freedom of being able to move about and put your finger on this or that, will make for such a creative atmosphere to work in...who knows what will come out of it!

OldBagNewTricks said...

Gretel, this is all lovely and so quyickly come together, really. Doesn't it feel like a brand new shiny life to start with a fresh clean work room? And broadband too --- you are indeed in high cotton. (Psst, that's a good thing.)

Jenny

judie said...

Whew! That was a lot of hard work and I am exhausted now! :) Congrats on your new studio space and I LOVE that big bookcase!!!

Cotswoldgent said...

Another excellent read PG. Funny just as I was reading the climax with you getting everything in order and tidy, and at the same time I am peaking to the wonderful sound of tubular bells, goes very well with this particular post!

Tommy-Rocket said...

I got VERY excited when I discovered you have a webcam!
But all I can see is blackness...

:o(

I'm going to have to get one of them!

June said...

Well Gretel, I take my hat off to you. What an amazing achievement to have coped with that studio move AND computer change!
I started reorganising my studio workspace last year, and I know how the chaos gets worse before it gets better... and I still have piles of stuff outside the studio door that I need to 'sort out' and bags of craft books and fabric in the attic! Having no room to sort anything remains my excuse.
I simply have too much stuff, but I like having it all, especially the books.
Well done on keeping focussed, and good luck with your new found creativity.