The Creative muse can strike at any time or place, but when it comes time to act on your inspiration, where do you go to breathe life into your ideas? Some of our pastimes are portable enough to bring anywhere – but those of a crafting & creating mindset often need a home base – a place to store stuff and ideas.
Janome Canada is pleased to partner with the Creativ as the grand prize sponsor of the $10,000 Dream Sewing Studio give-away at the Fall show, October 25 – 27, 2013. Leading up to the show, we will share some ideas for making your own creative haven.
There is no end to the inspiration that can be found to pull together your space to create in. A quick search of Pinterest (is there such a thing as a quick search on Pinterest?) will inspire endless fantasy studio images. Publications like Where Women Create (WWC) and Studios add to the idea mixology. Jo Packham, founder of WWC also has a new book coming out about Quilter’s and their creative spaces.
Space-Making Basics: Space & Time
Anything from a basement corner, to a full-fledged room can be your studio space. Fabric Artist Lesley Riley started out working in her master bedroom. When her 6 kids were tucked in, she took her supplies out from under her bed and started working. Don’t let less than palatial space get in the way of making your place to create. Be it a full-time dedicated space or a part-time pop-up studio, the key is that when you are in your space, you are away from your everydayness.
A dedicated space allows you to leave and come back to what you are working on over longer periods of time. However, your ‘under the bed’ space can work equally well with a few routines: optimize your set-up & storage routines, and mark your space. If you have to stow your stuff, try to do it from a dedicated closet or other storage place that you can claim full-time access to. The sense of having A Room of One’s Own is an important need in the creative process. It honors the value of what you do and allows you and your work to thrive.
Marking your space could be as simple as hanging an inspirational postcard in your creative place. My little blackbird is perched near my sewing machine. She makes a good focal point when deciding on my next steps. Find something that speaks to you to designate your space and focus your mind on the tasks at hand.
The most lovely space is meaningless if you do not make the time to go to that place and make art. Making time to create in your space is the true key to getting things done. Make your space a place that you LOVE being in, and then be there often!
When looking for a spot to call your own, there are a few important considerations:
- Indulge: Little things can make your space a place that you want to be in and return
to. Small indulgences can put you in the frame of mind of “this is my time.” Consider small, personal luxuries that you find rewarding: a designer coffee mug, scented candles or a decadent pillow perhaps? Little things can make you want to return to your space and spend time there. (And don’t forget your personal soundtrack.)
- Comfort Counts: having a chair or table at the correct height can keep your creating into the wee hours vs. leaving you with a back ache. Fine tune what works for you.
- Natural Light: get as much of it as you can. This makes your color selection process much easier and saves you from tired, strained eyes.
- Noise factor: Will surrounding noise (like the TV) impede your work? Will the sound of your sewing machine disturb others? Consider your surroundings when planning your space.
- Power Up: Are you near necessary power outlets? Phone? or Computer as needed?
- No Access: Do you need to separate yourself from distractions like the computer or phone to delve deeply into your work? Identify your time thieves and make peace with them to get the most from your creative time.
- Protect your Real Estate: What needs to be at-the-ready and what can be stored? I rarely need a large cutting table and do not have the space for one. A drop-leaf table that I roll into the hall works for me on an as needed basis and allows me to keep my other materials close in my small space. A hide-away bed plays a similar role and gets me back all of the precious space lost to a rarely used guest bed. SIMPLIFY your supply list to make space for what you need most. Anything that does not earn its place in your precious space can be re-evaluated, ditched or donated.
Making the choice to pursue your creative instincts should not be limited by a less than ideal space. Give yourself time and a place (however small), and let your art happen. We all start somewhere and can improve our spaces going forward. Older tools can be replaced with new ones. And who knows – you may be the lucky winner of the Dream Sewing Studio – we can’t build an addition on your home, but if you attend the Creativ this year, you could win the bright and beautiful new machines and accessories that will make your sewing a pleasure. Imagine: A new Sewing/Quilting machine, a new Embroidery machine, a new Serger, the Artistic Press, Artistic Crystal Software, tables and more. Dreamy indeed!
These are just a few of the considerations for outfitting your Creative Space. Next time, we will look at Personalizing Your Space, and Your Machine.
Further reading: There are endless articles, but here are a few links:
Designing A Creative Space (Including a Preference Test Link)