Monday, August 30, 2010

Make-it Mondays: Organize a Studio at Home

If you are an Etsy seller you are most likely working from your house, apartment or a small rented space in your city. For those working from that "extra room" at home, it can be difficult to keep the space under control and keep tabs on all of your projects. Not only does it need to be an art making space, but a business space where one keeps track of sold items, receipts, and packaging. Here are some suggestions for the Etsian working from home.

Zemphira's studio space from Etsy Studios,
a blog dedicated to Etsy artists and their creative spaces.

  • In tight space? Build up. High shelves, peg boards, even old silverware dividers from dishwashers work to keep your clutter off your table space or the floor.
  • About tables. Get something sturdy and mobile. Wheels make it easy to move one in-progress projects out of the way and the open spaces of most folding tables leave room for storage or smaller pull-out tables.
  • Get a storage system. I recommend clear containers as the easiest solution for knowing what you've got. Another option is to color coordinate. Fabric stored this way looks beautiful.
  • Create stations. Everything needs to have a place and artists in the middle of work are notoriously chaotic. I have one area just for packaging, weighing and printing labels. All of my materials are kept on moving shelf carts and my table is left for in-progress projects only.
  • How about equipment? I had to find a small, portable way to photograph my items. See the tutorial here. I keep my larger tools, like a sewing machine and a table loom under my work table unless I use them. For even bigger stuff, consider renting from a local art gallery/museum, an art community center that offers classes or a guild in your area. Many times you can rent their space or tools for a single project.
  • Tailor your space to your palette and aesthetic. I can't paint my rented walls, but I can tape up my favorite paint samples for free from the hardware store. Surround yourself with images/materials/quotes that you love.
  • Finally, do weekly weeding. Try to find one day a week to get rid of junk you aren't using or don't need. Put away what you aren't using and mail out sold orders to make room for new.
Leave me your ideas and creative solutions or send me a pic of your space to add to this post :)


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