Studio Awesome Challenge Day 31: Finis…for now

Studio Awesome Challenge Day 31: Finis…for now

Alright fiberista’s Day 31!! woo hoo a month of biz and studio reorganization has come to a close. And while I am so freaking excited to have a newly rehabbed space to start my 2017 strong, there is still quite a bit I would like to still do. But the big news is I can find my shit easily and it will not take an entire day to clear a surface to work. AND I have some new systems in place to be able to approach the admin side of my business with a bit more structure which will not only ease my mind but mack my accountant happy.

 

So, here it is!! here is my studio:

The Reference Library

 

So easy to find what I am looking for now.

Mostly Shop Stash

With a couple of others things. Most of this will probably be folded into the working stash throughout the year as I get back to dyeing in limited quantities and rethink how and what I will be offering in the form of yarn and fiber in the future. It will mostly depend on what kind of dyeing I can manage own my new space.

Notions!

All in one place and organized.

The needles and hooks

Crazy organized by size.

Working Art Journal Supplies

Because I am so getting back in the saddle on the art journaling…

The Art Stuff Cabinet

The other stuff for the other art I make…although this cabinet could be a slippery slope to a small art supply hoarding problem.

The fiber closet

And damn it I just found two more straggling fleeces in a trunk. WTFF? I have a good bit of washing a dyeing to tackle.

WIP, More Yarn and Roving Stash

 

Although I could probably go through these again…and will…

The drafting table hot spot

Will clearly be a problem spot for me. This is my main work surface.

The work table hot spot

Yeah, this one too. I need to be able to access this space for reading out the big pieces.

And the hallway

Oh look a new hot spot… yeah I need to be able to actually get in and/or out of the studio to really get the work done.

So you see…less than perfect. But i am now able to start the new year with a working space. So part of my intentions was to be able to set up my space that is more in line with my main art goals: growing a sustainable business and body of fiber art.

This year I am going to keep on top of this space and do a reassessment quarterly along with a new purge(to keep from letting the languishing materials clogging the feng shui. I have also restructured my daily schedule to be a little more balanced, I tend to get lost in the admin crap leaving the art to be back-burnered.

So Happy New Year y’all. I can’t tell you how much I appreciate you guys. Your emails sharing your work and inspirations saw me through some major changes and stress of a move across state. YOU drive me to be a better artist and to do what I can to be a part of a tribe that honors each artist for their unique visual language no matter where they are in that journey to find that voice. Here’s to 2017 and all the possibilities to build lofty fibery dreams. Thank you for letting me be a part of yours.

The last task I have for the studio revamp is migrating the newsletter to a new service. So I will be back in a couple of weeks with a whole new newsletter. Don’t worry it you have been on my list, you should be migrated automatically, but if you are not on my list and would like to be, sign up below. See you next year!

Studio Awesome Challenge Day 30: what did and did not get done

Studio Awesome Challenge Day 30: what did and did not get done

One more day to go y’all.

It is hard to believe I have been at this for a month. And I am not gonna lie, I don’t feel like I will be finished. At least not in the sense of a perfectly organized studio space and business. It is something I am coming to terms with. For the most part the best laid plans for me usually fall apart in the execution. I can be quite the systems girl. And can create some killer work flows with forms, schedules, spreadsheets, and files. However I find I need a bit of flexibility to really find something I will stick with. And there is also a fine line between A clean studio, a packed studio and one where my materials are available in a way that I can see them and be inspired yet comfortable to hang out in.

So this evening I am taking inventory of my accomplishments and what is left to do. First what I got done:

  • Organized the resource library
  • Organized the needles and hooks
  • Organized the notions
  • Donated a ginormous box of needles and hooks to a local knitting charity
  • Cataloged and purged the WIPs
  • Organized and purged the spinning add-ins
  • Organized and purged the plying yarns
  • Consolidated the fiber/fleece stash to one closet
  • Organized and purged the Mixed media supplies (journaling and painting)
  • Began the news filing system
  • Found my new bookkeeping system
  • Found and began migrating new email newsletter service as well as new opt-in and lead page integrations
  • Reworked my studio schedule to reflect my new business goals
  • Reassessed my inventory management system
  • And the one thing I really wanted to achieve this month, manage a daily blogging schedule with email notifications.

 

As I mentioned, there is still a good bit I need to do. And I will continue to work on as I begin my new work flow next week.

  • Inventory the dye blanks
  • Inventory and catalog finished work
  • Go through the stash yarn one more time(I have already gone through it 4 times in the last 2 years, letting go has been..um.. a process)
  • Organize office supply shelves
  • Tackle the nightmare that are my computer files

So there is is! Like I said not perfect, but done to the point where I can focus on next years business goals. And that my friends I am going to share with you tomorrow along with pictures of my studio!

Studio Awesome Challenge Day29: the home stretch

Studio Awesome Challenge Day29: the home stretch

3 more days y’all

At this point I am down to the Plowing through to make a deadline phase. When I started this challenge 29 days ago the intention was to get my shit together so I could start the new year with focus and boundless creatively. And to blog daily…

Aside from the blog part I have tackled the studio challenge totally and completely imperfectly. As I look across my room, It is still a hot mess and I have a lot to do in the next couple of days. But the hot mess has a definite direction and I do not feel at a loss looking for my stuff.

Scheduling check-ins

One of the things I am definitely going to do is schedule a monthly check in to go through the stuff, and make sure my set up and stash is still serving my business. If there is one thing I learned about this studio purge and reorganization, it is I tend to overlook a lot of supplies and tools out of habit. Things that I have hung on to because they had always defined some part of my work. But my work and business has changed so very much over the last 10 years. And it seems for some things it has taken having to look at them objectively more than once (sometimes 5-6-7 times) to really be able to let them go.

I know it is all just stuff. As an artist, stuff represents a path to visual language.

Alright off to bust it out! Tomorrow I am taking inventory of all that I have done.

Studio Awesome Challenge Day 28: The other art I do

Studio Awesome Challenge Day 28: The other art I do

I have more than just fiber in the studio, I have all kinds of other art supplies that help me make art. And they too are a hot mess!!!

Part of what keeps me creatively productive has to do with other mediums I use to make art. What I mean is, sometimes I get creatively blocked when It comes to fiber art, and I need to be able to step back get a new perspective on the visual language I am trying to communicate.

Most of the time that means art journaling. If you have been following me for any length of time, You know art journaling is my jam. I would like to say it is my daily jam, but truth be told the daily part comes and goes in waves.

I also have picked up painting in the last couple of years and am in love love love. It is such a great way to take some of the pages from my journals and flesh them out into a more direct representation of that idea.

When we moved, I have been able to finally set up one of my favorite pieces of furniture, my big ass industrial old stool drafting table. It was a gift from my late great graphic design business mentor. I have schlepped that thing almost 1000 miles. It sat in my scary basement for 10 years. Surviving a home remodel, basement floods, and passing thoughts of letting it go. I am so freaking glad I never gave it away. I love working over it. It reminds me of my design roots, College days before the industry moved to computers.  My first job at a paper company making labels and logos for bags. My second job at a major magazine, specing type, waxing galleys and making perfect mechanicals ready for the printer. Skills of precision measuring, cutting, inking. Building mock ups. Assembling gigantic board presentations for the advertising sales team. All things I still love to do despite the fact they are obsolete skills for the industry. They are still awesome ways to make art. Hand made books, pages and pockets in my journal that provide a 3D experience even if just for myself.

So yeah…I have a bunch of other art shit in my studio that is very dear to me. These days much of the old stool graphic skills fall under the term mixed media. So I suppose you can say I am a mixed media artist as well.

I am not gonna lie, the ephemera part of the art supplies can get a little out of hand. So I have decided that I am only going to allow myself a tall cabinet, one wirecart and the drawer of my drafting table for my art journal/painting/mixed media stuffs. If it doesn’t fit here, its gotta go…wish me luck.

 

Joining me in the 31 Day Studio Awesome Challenge?

I am posting progress and info on setting up my studio over the next 31 days. I will not be blitzing my main email list daily…but if you DO want an email notice when daily posts go live, sign up here:

Studio Awesome Challenge Day 27: Weaving and other fibery WIPs

Studio Awesome Challenge Day 27: Weaving and other fibery WIPs

Like my spinning WIPs, the weaving WIPs for the most part are just a freeform, on going kind of thing. I do however have a couple of projects.

As I mentioned in yesterday’s post this is my current working bin.

By no means is this the only yarn I am using on my current weavings. I tend to collect bits and toss them here.I do have just a couple of weaving projects in the WIPs

The lap loom prototype

This is another project under deadline. Consider this a sneak peek at a live one-day workshop coming to my LYS as soon as I nail down this prototype.

Hand woven zippered pouches.

If only I can get the materials for thes 2 zippered pouches in the same place at once. In fact, the woven part of one of these is actually missing. I have bought zippers and lining material TWICE. GRRRR. It will come together eventually.


The other fibery art I am just starting to dive into is felt. I intend to use some of my vast collection of fleece in projects. Both wet and needle felting is slated for studio time in 2017. I am really exploring the idea of nuno felt scarves, as well as some hats and slippers.

So, there it is the fibery WIPs all catalogued and ready for storage. I am in the home stretch of the studio re organization and purge. I would love to say I am in the middle of a nice neat space, but honestly it appears to be a hot mess worse than before. But It is all over the place because I am mid organizing it all. Okay…we are gonna finish strong… WOOT!

Joining me in the 31 Day Studio Awesome Challenge?

I am posting progress and info on setting up my studio over the next 31 days. I will not be blitzing my main email list daily…but if you DO want an email notice when daily posts go live, sign up here:

Studio Awesome Challenge Day 26: My Spinning WIPs

Studio Awesome Challenge Day 26: My Spinning WIPs

My spinning WIPs are really closer to a perpetual WIP kind of thing because I usually finish a yarn in one sitting. But there are a handful of specific unfinished spinning projects that I have come across.

For the most part my spinning project stash is this:

Yep that is a closet full of fleece and spinning fiber.

And that is really not all of it. Just last night I found 2 fleeces stashed in a trunk that normally houses my fabric stash. Suffice it to say I have yet to fully inventory the fleece stash yet. So the perpetual spinning project for 2017 is to process this wool. I may venture into using some for my growing felting interest. But for the most part this was intended for art yarn. I have ordered a large jug of power scour, and I am READY!!

The fleece to sweater project.

I have been hoarding a couple of tri colored fin fleeces for a cabled sweater knit in a traditional manner based on Priscilla Gibson-Roberts’ book Knitting in the Old Way. I has test carded an spun a few samples. I have decided to use the tricolor fin because I love the way the 3 shades of wool become a beautiful heathered yarn when carded together.

Art Yarn in Progress

This was a getting back to the art yarn exercise. Probably have 2 more spindles of this stuff in the bin.
Whatever this roving is…

Not sure what this is.

I think this was languishing inventory I decided to spin out of mercy for roving that had been there WAYYY too long. I also think this is what in currently on the espinner… I think…

Misc tiny art yarn for the weaving.

I think I just need to skein it up and set the twist…unless I decide to go ahead and ply it.
Not sure I remember where I was going with this one.

I am not sure, but I think these were intended to be spun together.

I feel like I have really fallen away from spinning. I am so ready to hit the dyepots, get back to my carders and make some yarn. I am especially ready to dive deeper into working with my pat green super card. I have always loved this machine, but I have been a little intimidated by it. It is the complete opposite of my art batt carders. For what ever reason, it is calling me.

Alright fiberista, tomorrow we are going to look at the weaving WIPs and other fibery things I am contemplating.

Joining me in the 31 Day Studio Awesome Challenge?

I am posting progress and info on setting up my studio over the next 31 days. I will not be blitzing my main email list daily…but if you DO want an email notice when daily posts go live, sign up here: