22.1.10

The big clear up

Well, we survived that and the snow is gone. I've been out of the village for the first time since Dec 13th - a quick scenic spin on the motorbike. Time to survey the damage to my pots and round up the causalities. I seem to have lost most of my herbs, including some old friends like my twisted rosemary bush, which had such a pungent aroma. Andy's been clearing the ground for our new big poly tunnel, his Christmas present from his parents (thank you very much Mr and Mrs M) which will take up most of the left hand side of the plot.
My poor little studio has not been tidied for weeks and I could barely see the floor. I didn't really want to either, as the rug was almost grey with - stuff - in places. In my defence, I had confirmation of my other illustration job this month, and am now juggling it with the design work. Both of these have spring/early summer deadlines and both are full time jobs in themselves, so things have slipped somewhat. Look away now, if you have delicate nerves.
There were roughly forty jars of chutneys and jams shouldering each other for space - why have I got them in the studio? Because at some point last autumn I was dead set on labelling up each and every one, a thankless task which had to be abandoned for more important work-related things. Some had almost become part of the furniture...
Look, there's a herd of them sheltering beneath the wastepaper basket -
Eventually they were herded up and returned to their rightful home - the stores cupboard - labelled or not labelled. Which might be interesting at some future date.
Now, observe the difference;
What are the picture books? OK, here's a larger close up for the book lovers - click on for detail
There is even room for my legs under the table at last.

30 comments:

frayedattheedge said...

Jack and Jill Book 1963 ..... oh is that the comic? When I started school, I can still remember my very great disappointment that I couldn't read my Jack and Jill comic after my first day!!! I shall have to show Malcolm the photos of your studio - he thinks I have a lot of stuff!! I hope your garden recovers - some of our shrubs are starting to revive after being flattened, so fingers crossed!!

PG said...

Yes, it is the annual of the comic; I used to get it in the late 1960's, wonderful stuff!

Content in a Cottage said...

My studio/office makes yours look neat. The Cotswolds is my favorite place. Rosemary

Twiglet said...

So glad to see you are blogging again.
What super books you have on your shelf. I have all my daughters old books and won't part with any -hubby would love a good clear out but they are such treasures!!
We have been busy creating our little blog shop - pop over if you want to see what we have been up to(follow Sisters Crafty Creations link from my blog)

Flat Lauren said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
pinksuedeshoe said...

Your books are beautiful. Absolutely beautiful.

Deb said...

your working space is beautiful gretel. i love all the little bits you have, hear and there, round and about. i would love to sit at your bookshelves and look through each and eavery book.i am in the midst of a super mega clean at the moment but it will never be a homegrown cosy area like yours.dx.

janet said...

I can make no derogatory about your studio as mine needs a good thorough straightening. Is that a brontosaurus high up on your shelf? Love the tidied version of your studio. Who plays the guitar????

Menopausal musing said...

You won't be able to find anything now you know......... I know this from experience.... and why aren't there cats draped over everything?
Great collection of "stuff".......just great!

Jill said...

An 'organic' room, it definitely evolved and wasn't the result of intelligent design!

tut-tut said...

I think I would feel quite at home there!
Am determined to make jam out of all the frozen strawberries I have. THIS WEEK! or maybe next

Claire said...

Personally, I believe it is an impossibility to be creative and neat and tidy at the same time!! You studio looks like it has a lot of treasures and inspiration packed into every nook and cranny.
Love the books.

Frances said...

Well done, PG. I did a bit of a clear out in this apartment yesterday. Woke up this morning, took a look around the place, and didn't see any improvement at all!

Guess I have to give it another go next week. Funny thing is, I actually do better with a certain degree of clutter around me. Friendly folliage, indoors style.

Hoping that some of your garden will have the power to survive.

Best wishes to you as you juggle those assignments and explorations. Thanking you again for your comments and also for letting us go along with you on those walks round the great outdoors! xo

Caroline B said...

Glad you are free of snow - that's our job for today, clearing all the snow-created debris from the garden & taking it to the dump. A poly-tunnel eh? What are you planning to plant? Exciting!
As to your studio, that makes me feel a whole lot better about my houseful of stuff (no studio to confine it to!) I must sort out my 'art corner' now, having finally got the OK that the potato illustrations are finished. What am I going to do now??

Natasha said...

I find it impossible to keep tidy and I'm sure too much tidiness is the sign of a deranged mind!

PG said...

Janet, yes it is some kind of *saurus*, she's is called Flo. I used to play guitar, and I try to get a bit of practise in, but I never do - but I keep it handy, just in case!

PG said...

Cathy, there are NO CATS allowed in the studio, and they don't even try. I can't afford to have cat hairs in valuable work or have my felt things trashed, so it's a no-go zone for all felines. I'm actually pretty anal when it comes to knowing where things are, so hopefully nothing has been TOO tided away!

Decadent Housewife said...

And in the midst of it all you produced even more beauty. Looks like home to me.

Jessie said...

I have a few of the same books as you and I WANT ALL THE OTHERS TOO! I love your studio, it's filled with inspiration and comfort. Thanks for the visit Gretel! :)

jfidz said...

Looks exactly like a extremely creatives work space should look! Cluttered = inspiration everywhere.

Chrissie said...

Everything looks so comfy and intruiging - mine's just a big mess even after it's tidied! I had a big laugh about the jars of jam and chutney, it was a very familiar scenario .....Looking forward to seeing what you grow in the polytunnel.

knutty knitter said...

Labels? What labels! Mine are just a jumble on the shelves mostly although I did use some heat set ones on the jams.

Looks tidy to me before and after. Mine is much worse at present mostly due to a spot of kitchen renovation - all that stuff had to go somewhere for a while :)

Seriously though - how can you be creative and work on several things at once and be minimalist tidy. I look at some of those magazine pics and wonder if anyone even lives there, much less if they do anything useful.

viv in nz

the casbah kitten said...

Ahhh, a good clear out is wonderful isn't it? I'm overdue for one too. And I'm SO glad to know that I'm not the only one with unlabelled jars in the cupboard...I think it makes dinners much more adventurous.

Vikki said...

I am so glad to see that someone elses house does not resemble a show home all the time. I think it's the flip side of being creative that sometimes we leave our stuff to gather. Having said that however Mason du Rose is looking particularly 'windswept and interesting' at the moment and we've got a burns night party tonight, ooops. Vikki xx

Soozcat said...

And behold, it is well and truly tidied! Well done.

Sorry to hear about your herb casualties, though.

d. moll, l.ac. said...

If things didn't get untidy I just don't think we would like it so much when they were, I know I wouldn't.....poly tunnel sounds very exciting.

Sue said...

Sad to hear about the loss of some of your herbs. It's a shame when a long-standing friend doesn't make it through the winter. Your garden looks about the same size as our new one. At the moment it's just lawn and path and I've had my head in my gardening books trying to see what I can fit in! Espallier apples along the fence maybe...hmmmm.....
I can match at least 4 of your books; Jack and Jill (mines circa 1958),Masquerade,Grandma Moses and the Shirley Hughes. Great stuff! And I think your studio looked creatively untidy.....true creatives don't do pristine! I know I don't!

Stephanie Roth Sisson said...

That was quite a storm! Those picture of the snow blanketed village are just perfect- I can almost hear it...that muffled snowy sound.

I just tidied my studio too and I know what you mean about having it serve other funtions...mine winds up being a catch all for the rest of the house. When I'm working on projects thefloor is covered with papers...i am very envious of Jarret Krozaska's (totallybutched his name)studio. he has a whole wall where he can pin up a whole story board! Mine wind up down the hall and in the bedroom...Andyhow- how nice to have the stage set for new creations to begin!

xoSteph (and Jocko- he says "hi")

kate smudges said...

The village looks so beautiful covered in snow. It was fun to have a peek into your office. You have such a creative mind. Oh, and I had to show Fishy one of your books, "How Fishes Live". She was most happy to see this book among your collection. (almost choked when I saw all your labelled Chutney jars. I had over 100 jars of jam and spent a few thankless days labelling them all. I figured I would give them out as presents at Christmas. Somehow I only got rid of about 10 of them.)

Graceful Moments said...

I feel so much better about my messy studio now...although it's worse than yours, at least it is absent the jams and chutneys!
Would love to spend a week or more in your studio digging through all of those lovely books!