Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Office/Workspace Re-do

Sometimes looking at or experiencing something inspires my jewelry.   At others, a piece of jewelry inspires something else I'm doing.  The latter was the case in my recent "Office/Workspace Re-do."

Finding Space:  What was once a small bedroom in our house functions as office and work space for the two small businesses I have.  One takes very little space actually, a laptop, Internet connection, cell phone, calendar-- the basics.  The jewelry work could use a whole lot more space! I've never been known as a "neat freak" when it comes to my desk, (anyone who knows me would call that a tremendous understatement!),... but otherwise prefer things somewhat orderly.  When I moved all my jewelry-making activities to the same area as my other business recently, I realized I barely had room to maneuver!   So it was time for an office/workspace overhaul!

Organization:  The first thing I realized, and in a hurry, was that I need more shelving, and that I needed the units to go much higher than the 3 shelves each my former 2 cases had.   I looked everywhere for book cases, utility shelving, and other storage solutions, but couldn't find units that would fit my needs, budget, and space.  I didn't want particle board shelving because it chips and bends too easily under the weight of books and tools.  Solid wood cases seemed way out of my price range or were too small.  So I started hitting home improvement stores, garden centers, antique malls, and craft/hobby stores.  Utility shelving seemed an option, but without sides, I imagined things toppling off, and the shelves were too wide for the small space I had.

I decided to purchase solid pine stair risers for shelves and use wood crates in several sizes and directions for the braces.   This gave support to the shelves without taking away space. The current shelves are 11" wide, 4 ' across, and have 5 shelves.   (Hopefully, they are arranged in a way that they will be sturdy and stay balanced.  I had planned to add another shelf , but changed my mind the higher I went.   As I've seen noted on other sites with open shelving using blocks, bricks, and other materials, this type of shelving is  not advised for use where children or others might attempt to use them to pull up or balance themselves.)   Finally, I placed baskets of similar color schemes between the crates to help tidy loose electrical equipment, tools, business and jewelry supplies. 

Color:  I wanted something different in terms of color for my "new room."   I'm not sure it had a color scheme at all before!   A few items in the room (such as carpeting, my office chair, and other furniture had--or incorporated--some medium shade of blue, but that's about all one could say for it.  

One of my favorite color schemes is the light greenish-blue of turquiose and aqua.  While brainstorming for ideas for the room,  I looked at the jewelry I was wearing (shown below), when I got the idea that turquoise and coral would be a refreshing change for that room. It's bright, cheerful, and energetic--yet can also be soothing, calm, and relaxing. 

I didn't want to spend a large amount on the room though, just put a splash of color in it, primarily using items that I already had.   So I went looking about the house. 


I found some turquoise/aqua and white cotton fabric that I used on cafe rods with silver hoops/clips for new curtains.   I draped a very long beaded necklace of the same color that was my mother's across one of the windows as a constant cheerful remembrance of her.   (She enjoyed her beads too!)

Since this aqua shade is one of my favorites, I found other pieces of aqua and coral/orange I already had in this room and others I could pull together that otherwise had gone unnoticed. 

Texture:  Because the carpet is primarily  blue, I moved a textile wall hanging from another room here that had both navy and aqua.     A desk lamp with a navy blue glass shade that was once my son's became mine.  

Finally, the coral became a slightly more orange-like accent color, used sparingly in a vase of orange sunflowers in a dark navy glass vase.   Orange fabric covers a couple of lidless baskets.  A muted coral and blue are woven into pillow cases on the room's futon (see photo above).

My walls contain a few pieces of graphic art my son has made (in the appropriate color-scheme, of course)! And I am surrounded by pegs and hangings with my necklaces on ribbons, ready for sale.

It's not fancy, and I didn't spend a fortune, but it's a much more pleasant, colorful, and cheerful place in which to work and create.   (An added bonus is I can walk from the door to my desk chair without fear of tripping!)  


See the jewelry Sharyl creates in her new room at Sharyl's Jewelry website.


G.Dowell said...

I like your workroom re-do. I agree that shelves and lots of them are needed in a jewelry studio. I keep adding to my wall more and more shelves.

sharyl said...

Thanks for your comment, Gayle! I've been enjoying the jewelry and information on your blog too, "This Artist's Journey." It looks like you might be a Kansan also?!

I really appreciated the Aug 17, 2011 entry, "Finding New Color Names to Describe Products" and I'm happy to have the opportunity to pass that on to readers here!

Please visit us again! --Sharyl

G.Dowell said...

Thanks so much Sharyl for sharing the link. It is amazing the amount of information one can find while surfing the net. Just wish I had more time to sit and do it. Yes, I'm a Kansan too, although I'm originally from Oklahoma. :o)