Running Out of Space

March 15, 2014 , In: Business Tips, General, Studio

I don’t know about you, but I constantly find myself running out of workspace. If I’m working up against a deadline or with limited time,
cleaning up is last on my list and I go from one table to the next,
until all work surfaces have been covered. Being an organized person
goes out the window and if I’m not careful I find myself working on the
floor! I think you all know about that little open workspace that
eventually closes down to about a 3 inch by 3 inch section—time to clean up!

Or pull out the little old rickety tv tray and keep right on working!

that’s me right now! I’m loving this little table—it has become my
little studio away from the (messy) studio. I’ve done almost everything on it so
far, except leather burning, as I don’t want to burn the house down if
it tips over.

the empty organizers on my jewelry table—at the moment they’re serving
no purpose other than taking up table space. They’re brand new and
intended to help me organize those boxes of stuff lying on the floor.
Right now I’m thinking it would be so much easier to fill them with new
beads that arrive already separated in their own baggies. 😉

dyed fabrics, molds, paint swatches, leather feathers… and this is
actually a tiny bit neater than normal. I know I’m in trouble when I
start stacking things on top of my pasta machine (top left)!

weekend that will end and I’ll finally clean up (and maybe possibly
vacuum too) and hopefully be ready to start fresh on Monday (or
Tuesday). I don’t like to be distracted with cleanup when I’m working,
but it does eventually get to a point where when I look around all the
stuff lying around in various stages of completion really gets on my
nerves. Not to mention all the paint dust and polymer crumbs, and
little bits of wire that are all over the place.

after a good cleaning, I feel ready to take on new things. I feel
inspired and invigorated… if that makes any sense. No? I’m not sure it
does to me either, but hey, if it works… I say go for it!

what about you? Do you like a pristine work area, or are messes a minor
issue to you? Do you love reorganizing or is it your worst enemy? Do
you have a simple work area that’s easy to tidy or does cleanup mean
cleaning an entire room or studio for you? Do share!


Rebekah Payne

Rebekah Payne is the designer and creator behind Tree Wings Studio. What started out as just a few beads for her own jewelry creations quickly grew into more than a hobby and she now spends every spare moment busy in her studio crafting beads for jewelry designers around the world… and the occasional piece of jewelry for herself. She loves fine details, rustic charm, earthy hues, and all things textural. These days her medium of choice is polymer clay, but she also dabbles in wire-working and uses various fibers and leather.
  1. Reply

    My hubby and I share (oh, dear!) a long work table in the spare bed room, which we converted into a 'craft room'. My side is super clean and neat, and on over on the other side (beyond the invisible marker line) is total chaos (his side)!!! I try not to look over there! They say 'opposites attract'…I didn't realize how true that was until we started sharing this space.

    • Reply

      How funny and what a interesting sight that must be! And good for you for keeping so neat—I'll have to invite you over to help keep me organized. 😉

  2. Reply

    I'm like you, right down to using an old TV table!!! hehehe! But it does eventually get overwhelming and them I have to do a major overhaul.

    • Reply

      Hehe! Overwhelming is so right. So far I've got one table cleared off… part of that "clearing off" meant piling things on the other still cluttered tables. I figure I'll make my round before the week is up and finish the organizing. I hope. Unless some new project consumes me first. 😉

  3. Reply

    I totally get that! I work on the floor too! Although I'm trying to do that less because I'm not as young as I was and it's making my back hurt. I've been doing the TV tray thing myself for several months now–I used to have a coffee table where all my crap sat but I found myself leaning over it too much and again with the back. The TV trays force me to focus on one or two things at a time only. I have to clean and reorganize periodically (that usually takes at least half a day) too just to free up my mind. It feels like a clean slate. It often involves putting away the half-conceived projects I know I'm not going to do. It feels good to let go of the old to embrace the new!

    • Reply

      Yes, that's it! I dream of a bigger studio area, and yet I think I do better when I'm confined to the small TV tray. I'm definitely more focused. For me it's usually a day or two to finish the clean up, but I do love the feeling of working in a organized studio with all my tools and beading supplies where they belong.

  4. Reply

    I've oozed my work space all over the house and it's all totally messy and over crowded. Cleaning up is usually last on my list but I'll have to do it some time soon or I won't be able to work any more.

  5. Reply

    I'm naturally messy – the mess just spreads and I'm too busy doing what I'm doing/planning to come back to it in just a moment to tidy up… but I do find it affects how well I work so I'm making far more of an effort (and it is an effort!) to keep things as neat, and organised, as possible… and it does seem to make creating a little easier…!

    • Reply

      Good for you!! Anything that makes creating easier is a good thing. I totally understand getting too busy to clean up. I wish I was a little better at overlooking the mess, but it gets to the point where I don't even want to enter my studio and I must clean up… I think there must be a balance in there somewhere. 🙂

  6. Reply

    My workbench was originally installed in the garage for my husband to use. He still has stuff stored in the cabinets, but as far as the bench top is concerned I've completely taken over. Even that isn't always enough space and I find myself bringing what I can into the house and spreading out either at the kitchen table or on the office floor. That, at least, forces me to clean up or anything I've done will get destroyed the minute someone else comes home!

    • Reply

      That would definitely motivate me too, Rachel! Sounds like he needs to install a new (bigger!) work bench just for you. 😉

  7. Reply

    well my space sounds like most of the commenters, lots of room to spread out and SO I DO. I just spent the better part of two weeks reorganising all the fiddly bits of findings that somehow just got tossed in any handy container. how sad that it takes being unable to find anything to make me realise how much i need to tidy up on a daily basis.

    • Reply

      Deb, I need you to come out and organize my fiddly bits of findings! I've got a few boxes of that stuff that have been mixed up for about 2 years… every time I need something I have to go digging… if I keep it up those boxes will eventually be empty I suppose. I am constantly telling myself I'll take a day off from creating and sort everything, but even for the person that loves to be organized that thought is just too overwhelming and boring to put into action.

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