Thursday, February 18, 2010

The Feel of a Room

I have always had issues with the "feel" of a room. My precious husband has accused me of finding great sport in moving furniture around on a whim. There is no whim to it....I believe it is a science. I lay in bed and vision floor layouts. Then I move the furniture around and walk out of the room and walk back in (several times), testing my theory. Tilt the chair this way and that, move a piece of furniture out.
     When our daughter Johanna was four, we were moving furniture out of the living room where she was watching Sesame Street. Henry and I had had a heated discussion that had to keep going through the furniture move. Our "discussion" wasn't about moving furniture but something more personal. We are moving the sofa "discussing". It isn't anything I am proud of but we had to move that furniture right then because the carpet cleaning people were coming any minute. As we moved furniture out, the "discussion" ensued. Two days later when we went to move the furniture back in the room (we were calmer), Johanna wailed, "NO...NO....DON'T MOVE THE FURNITURE.
     Now I move most of the furniture without help (if I can) and then call on various family members to help me move the impossible pieces. I have become a master at putting my back against furniture and prying it into place using my feet to propel the unwielding pieces. Also, have my own toolbox of moving casters that are sure handy. Before they came out, I often made my own casters of recycled plastic tubs & lids. I don't ask for help not because no one is willing to help. It is more I don't really want much input. Few people understand that a room must feel the right way. The configuration must be happy aesthetically and functionally. If it were up to my husband, every room would have an oversized recliner and a table nearby big enough for snacks, the remote and magazines and newspapers. Each to his/her own domain dreams.
     In re-arranging my sewing room (aka: studio), I have put the furniture in nearly every configuration I can imagine. My main goal is to have a workable area for myself, combining an area for my computer to visit and for my lifelong passion of drawing, doodling and messy types of crafts....paint, decoupage and the like. I am almost there but have realized that my storage concepts are really lacking aesthetically. I have solicited the help of Studio magazines which has been a huge inspiration as well as the advice of friends. Some friends tell me they have taken over their grown children's bedroom closets, bought every tote system on the planet to forfeiting excess only to find themselves with need for tons of storage for other tools and fabric and more.
     Having a plethora of books and patterns, I know I need more shelves. Having more than my share of started projects (I don't call them UFOs because the term "un-finished" is a bit defeating), I need to employ the use of baskets and am working that through. I have always loved the open wire baskets that glide on runners.
     When I was recently in Denver at Lynda and Nancy's studio, they use the wire basket system to an art form with baskets ready for all their forms of machine applique. It was SOOO inspiring. I also have a lot of thread. I am thinking of systems that I have seen and am most inspired by Libby Lehman's collection and storage that I'd seen in Quilter's Home and more recently on The Quilt Show with Alex Anderson and Ricky Tims. Nancy Halvorson has sent me photographs of her custom-built system for notions and threads that is stunning and so incredibly functional.
     So, I am still taking the shared genius of these and other helpful friends to my sewing room. The stack of magazines and books next to my bed has made my puppy have to move her bed a little further away lest the stack would threaten to attack her in the night.
     Do you have things you love about your sewing space? Do you have areas of concern that you wish could be improved upon?
     all the best to you....jill

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