Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Other folks' spaces, part 1

Welcome to June!  It's been nearly 3 months since my last post.  My "summer resolution" (Yes, that's a thing.  I just made it up, so of course it's real.) is to post more frequently.  If I don't, feel free to e-mail me at traci@creative-pursuits.biz to give me gentle kick.

Here's what happened since my last post:
  • I was a vendor and participated in the Make 'n Take event at the Madison Art Glass and Bead Show.  It was great fun but also an awful lot of work.  I look forward to doing it next year, but I've asked Steve to help me.  It was a bit too much for me to do on my own.
  • I recovered from the Madison Art Glass and Bead Show.  :)
  • I've had a few health issues.  Nothing serious, but it's been annoying.
  • My mother's cancer has come back.  We're pretty worried, as the treatment is harsher this time, and her blood isn't cooperating very well.  Along with harder chemo, she's going to get stem cell treatment.  If you'd like updates on how she's doing, please check out her page on caringbridge.org: http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/anneliehinks.  You can even sign up to get e-mails when I update her journal.
  • This past weekend was the Bead&Button Show.  I did a lot of marketing for my class, "Tubed Key, or Not Tubed Key", but unfortunately I had no registrations.  They kept the class open as long as they could, and they let me keep my table at the Meet the Teachers reception.  That was a lot of fun as was working the Loose Bead Society table and shopping.  Lots of shopping.  Poor Steve's feet nearly fell off.
But we're here to finally see the creative spaces that people sent in for free Zinio magazine subscription contest.  Since I have information and/or pictures of nine different spaces, I'm not going to show you them all at once.  We'll do a few in each blog post, and I'll try to post a blog a week.


Our first space is Judy's.  She and I frequently discuss storage as well as details of running the business such as pricing, branding, table displays, keeping up an inventory program, and much, much more.  She participated in a panel that the Loose Bead Society had at the beginning of the year on how to store your stash.

Like me, Judy is fortunate to have a dedicated room for her studio.  She reorganizes it as much as I do, too.  When she sent in the pictures she told me she was getting a new desk that matches the L-shaped desk in the below picture.  She writes:
Originally, I was just going to buy a black "writing desk" with a drawer to complete the "U" but figured I'd rather have it match the desk if possible since I've already got such a hodge-podge of "furniture" in my studio.  I wanted the drawer to hold my earring cards, tag ribbons and the like so that packaging material would be at my fingertips all the time.  The matching desk I ordered has a keyboard tray which I'll used to store those "finishing items." Not exactly what I wanted but I think it will look better overall.  :)  Now to get more Ott-Lites and more drawers.  I will wait until the desk arrives for those.
At this station she stitches and has her computer for inventorying and the all important Facebooking.

 To the left of this desk there's a closet, and to the left of that are these amazing sets of drawers:

She has all of her beads organized by size, and the bright colored stickers you see below have her inventory numbers on them:

I should mention that the inventory program she uses is the same one I use, Jewelry Designer Manager.  Our friend Cindy uses it, too.  It is an awful lot of work to put your stash into the program (both parts and finished pieces), especially when you start out, but it's a great way to help you price your items.  You can also keep track of who bought what finished piece when and what colors of Delicas you have and where they were the cheapest.  After shopping at the Bead&Button Show I have quite a bit of entering to do.  I'm procrastinating on that by writing a blog post.  :D

To the left of these drawers is the door out of the room, and turning the final corner is her hutch:

Judy was one of the inspirations for me getting my old china cabinet into my studio (you can read about that here).

Annelie (Mom)

After the original contest deadline, I still had a number of spots to fill.  I relaxed the rules and extended the deadline.  I requested full name, e-mail address, what craft(s) are done, description of the creative space with or without pictures, and what magazine folks wanted.  Then I put pressure on my mother to send me something, since entries were not flooding in.  Here is her response:

My name is Annelie Erika Kant Southern Hinks

The craft I do most is crocheting and knitting.  I have also done cross stitch and various other projects.

I mostly have the project I'm working on in a big wicker basket in the living room.  I also have a closet in the sun porch which holds all my extra materials.  I have so many different yarns that I have purchased over the years to do something or else and never got around to it.

The magazine I would be interested in is Simply Crochet.


She took me quite literally with her full name, huh?

My mother likes to crochet large afghans which usually have panels.  Panels are a pain in the butt because if you're not consistent in your gauge, you can have one panel a good three or four inches longer than the last one.  Mom keeps herself busy by crocheting and taking apart panels and crocheting them again.  She also likes the complicated patterns, where I'm happier working with solid colors or simple patterns.  She does amazing work, and she has donated many hats, lap afghans (lapghans), and full afghans for various causes over the years.  My stepfather, John, recently bought her a pattern to knit an Airedale.  Yes, he wants her to knit an actual dog, not just a depiction of the dog.  John's sister is involved with an Airedale rescue, and they have an auction every year.  The last few years Mom donated full afghans, but next year John hopes they can donate a knitted dog.  I'm thinking we should teach him to knit so he can do it!


Let's do one more with pictures.  Sue and I worked together what seems like a hundred years ago.  We lost touch, but through LinkedIn (If you're on there, look me up!) and Facebook, we've reconnected.  In her own words, her space needs a lot of help, and she would love any advice anyone can give her:

Okay, here's the pics...as you can see there is NO system whatsoever!  It's all laying out on a table or hanging from a corkboard.  Yuk!  I do like having everything where I can see it...I am kinda visual, and out of sight out of mind definitely applies to me.  I'm just trying figure out a way to have everything within eyesight but to not take up every inch of table space.  I don't need the findings to be out so those can be in a box of some kind, but I need to be able to see the beads...it helps the creative process. Any advice is welcome!

One thing I suggested is that she put the beads in the muffin tins into baggies.  I can't count the times I thought something loose like this was safe but it went flying.  She has a corkboard on one wall with finished pieces on there.  Perhaps the pendants in the second picture could be pinned up there as well so they're still in sight but off of a horizontal surface.

I completely understand the out of sight, out of mind thing.  When I was moving beads I rarely use from tackle boxes to baggies so I could put them in drawer organizers (see the blog post about the china cabinet, sixth picture), I kept saying, "I forgot about these!  I should do something with them!"  Since I don't do a lot of stringing anymore, I was happy to put them in drawers.  I plan on taking a lot of time between now and the Donna Lexa Memorial Art Fair I'm doing on August 17th to string a number of necklaces, bracelets, and earrings to use up some of these beads.

For Sue, though, I think she would benefit from having clear boxes and drawers that she can keep out on her table.  I saw a number of them the last time I was at The Container Store, and I just did a search for "clear jewelry box" on their website.  They have closeable boxes, small drawer boxes, clear acrylic trays, an acrylic necklace keeper, and more!  No, I don't get commission.  I should, though.  I like the necklace keeper because you can see what you have without dust getting on everything.  Same goes for the boxes and drawers.  I have a few items from them I bought years ago with the same construction as this three drawer box.  The sides are soft, but there's metal reinforcing the edges.  They're durable, and I love that you can see inside.  I have a six drawer box that holds my loose ribbon.

Anyone else have ideas for Sue?  E-mail me at traci@creative-pursuits.biz, and I'll pass it along!

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