Thursday, May 06, 2010

He believes

I ached for a space of my own. I think I have since I was a little girl. Being a middle child...well you probably know what I mean.
I have a workspace on one side of a 10x12 office in our home. It is my studio. It began crowded. But, it was great after working on our kitchen table for a couple of years.
First I had to get rid of a sofa and side table, bringing in a writing desk to work on. I then quickly added
two wire shelves to store my bins.
It was adequate. I designed a lot of pieces on that desk.
But, you know I soon outgrew all of it! Things started piling up on the floor. Folders, projects, beads in plastic baggies, paper sacks full of goodies. I'm not saying that still does
n't happen.
But, not nearly as much.
Last summer, just after our anniversary and right before my birthday, my husband ask
ed if I wanted a carpenter who had been next door doing work for our neighbors, to design a work bench for my studio. What? Mean it? Why....YES!
So, he and I sat down and designed a huge work bench/station. I still can't believe it! It is incredible, and it was completed at the end of September.
It has a tower on each side of the center work table, with double pull out trays that are 18" deep and are like the ones you might find under your kitchen cabinet. In fact, there are 6 pull out trays in each tower, just to my height, then above that are three additional d
eep shelves, making it 7' tall. It is a total of 8' wide. My work surface/desk, located between the towers, is 4' long and 2' deep. It is the best present I could have ever gotten.
At that point, this very point was when I knew..... he believed i
n me. In my passion for art and my jewelry. It isn't that he really didn't. It's just that he has known me for 30+ years. He has seen me go thru stages and phases of more things than even I can remember. But, it was at this point, with this very act, that made me believe that he believed. And, for that I am so very grateful and so very blessed!
It has changed my creative world.
I have often wanted to share it with you since then. If you knew me....really knew me, you would know that I wanted everything to be perfect before I let you into my new space. To show you just how gorgeous it is. How useful. How perfect! And, it is. But, I came to realize that my space is never perfect. This is something I share with my stu
dents, as I work thru my own thoughts on perfection. Perfection is just an excuse not to try. To not do it. It can be a huge stumbling block in our artistic worlds.
So I share all of this with you, saying there is still always
something on my floor, and pieces all over the desk. But, it is okay. This is my work station. It is the place where what has been spinning around in my head, comes out. It is my space. My little part of creative Heaven.
And, IT is perfect!
(Click to enlarge the picture)

Just this last Spring, my daughter and I found the cutest little pink chandelier in Warrenton to hang right under the shelf that spans across the top! It is just the right size for the space I wanted it to hang in. Right above it is the long shelf that holds the towers together. All this was securely built in place, but we made sure it could easily come apart, just in case we ever decide to move.
I know this top shelf should be full of supplies, but I am such a collector, that instead it holds some of my books. With no particular reason these few are here, as I have so many more in an armoire in my spare bedroom. It is also my little vignette full of beauties from friends. Fellow artists whom I adore and love, and/or have made trades with!
Other pieces may be from swaps. And some I bought, because I took their class and truly appreciate their art.This jar was also purchased this past Spring, at Marburger Farms, and it holds hollow quail eggs I bought from my good friends,
Agnes & Carla in Tent W.This l
ittle girl, which you might have seen on my sidebar, stands in the back leaning up against a vintage baking rack. She was made in the class I took with Stephanie Rubiano, called Magnetic Personalities. Those are real waxed butterfly wings which Stephanie showed us how to do that day! What fun!
Right in front of her and to the right, is the space that holds one of the pixies I bought from Stephanie. I am in love with vintage baby pictures. I have quite a collection of leather baby shoes, along with vintage cabinet cards of babies, so Stephanie's pixies are very precious to me. Just left of this collection stands a gift received in an art exchange. It is a tiny chair, made by none other than a fellow class mate of mine in the Stephanie Lee class I took in California a year ago, Connie Freedman. She makes the most unique art seats, and mine is called "Rambling Rose". How appropriate is that?Now on to the top shelf of my tower to the right, holds a couple of gorgeous pieces one of my mentors, Diana Frey, gave me this past March when she came to Houston for Adorn Me! I have been so blessed by this lady, as she helped answer my questions when I first decided to submit pieces to the Stampington magazines.
She is truly, truly a good friend, and art sister to me.
Isn't this the most gorgeous bottle that Diana soldered? And, of course she added some divine hand-dyed silk & ribbon she is famous for sharing, maybe from her designer Robin Kaplan.

And, look at this journal she made and also gifted me that day.
I am in awe of her many talents.

This is a trade piece from another friend, as well as the art which hangs down each side of my two towers. All made by a beautiful artist from New Mexico, Paula Snyder.
So, what's in the towers? You might see anything from cigar boxes full of ink pads and rubber stamps to several sizes of shipping labels. You can never have enough shipping labels! I have oodles of ribbon and vintage seam binding. This is not even a glimpse of my stash, but it is the only lot on my shelf at this moment. Some may be sitting next to my sewing machine in another room. The rest is....you guessed it. In a paper sack on my floor waiting to find a home on one of my shelves. I can't possibly show you all the gemstones, beads, crystals, pearls, vintage jewelry, brass filigree, found objects and findings that are crammed onto my shelves. Trust me, I have filled every inch of my pull out drawers with either a vintage jello or candy mold, muffin tin, tiny box, glass ramekin, cigar box or plastic bead holder. All called to hold my precious goodies.
Vintage rosary chain.
Rows of vintage rhinestone screw back and clip on earrings.
Brass filigree, both vintage and new.A grouping of vintage mother of pearl buttons and freshwater pearls.
A large sterling silver mold full of typewriter keys.
And, then you might see some of these things on top of my desk
(right now).

Right under one of my two Ott lights, sits the gorgeous frame my dear art sister, Riki Schumacher, made and gifted to me in an art exchange. This picture reminds me just how much fun we had in Stephanie Lee's class last year at Carol Park's Studio in North Hollywood. Riki is truly another great friend, art sister and mentor.
We call ourselves the three amigas!

There is always work in progress.
Etched cuffs that have been oxidized, ready to be sanded, and then layered to perfection!
And, then there are some tools of the trade.
Pliers lined up like colorfully dressed soldiers.
A basket of favorite sanding blocks, sand paper and pads.

I could share more, but if you hung in this long, you are way better than I!
Hope you enjoyed seeing where I create. It has been a long time coming!

I am surely blessed.

39 comments:

stregata said...

I loved seeing where you create - and it IS perfect! It is not just about the supplies and the tools - it is about what you love and what inspires you. Thanks for sharing this very special place!

Molly Alexander said...

Thank you so much for sharing your amazing space, my friend! I have always tried to imagine what my art friends' spaces are like, and I just knew that yours would be full of beauty and nostalgia to inspire you.

As far as husbands go, there really is that 'aha!' moment when you realize that he truly does recognize you as an artist and not just a 'crafter'; I realized it earlier this week when my hubby told friends that, ..."she is really good at what she does." (The words don't sound as great written out here, but they sounded fabulous in context...)

Have a fantastic close to your week, and thanks again for sharing a bit of your world.

:-) Molly

romantic decay said...

What a wonderful place to make art. Thank you for sharing!

The Joy of Nesting said...

Lady Di,

What a wonderful "Me" work space you have created!!! Isn't it one of the most amazing and precious gifts your soulmate can gift you?? That moment when they truly believe in you. They still might not "get it" but that is no longer the important issue. In fact it make the gift all the more precious. They are willing to believe in you because they love and are committed to the real you!

I know when LW hauled home and lovingly reconstructed the old produce bench to be my work bench, my heart and soul nearly burst with love and admiration. It was then I realized I don't really need anyone else's admiration or to believe in me. Oh don't get me wrong, it's a wonderful compliment when you are given the admiration and acceptance of fellow(gifted) artists. It just doesn't carry the same importance it once did. In fact I'm perfectly happy making my art knowing LW is there supporting and loving "me" :) It became incredibly freeing and is the key that opened the door to let amazingly positive things to begin happening!!!

Oh gosh I didn't mean to go on babbling like this but your post reminded me of how very blessed I am!!! Oh I'm just sooooo very HAPPY for you!!!! What a wonderful life affirming gift you have been given!! Thank you for sharing it with us dear kindred sister!! :)

Pattie ;)
Mazatlan Mx.

Katsui Jewelry said...

Oh, my gosh, I am so envious of you. Your work bench is beautiful and what a nice guy you have for a husband! I am anxious to read the rest of your blog...it' really beautiful.

We are also jewelry artists. My daughter (Kat!) and I just started a blog a short time ago and would love to have you visit. She actually created it for me as a gift :-). Our address is...

http://katsuijewelry.blogspot.com

It really isn't all about our jewelry...that's just the name we had to settle for!

Suz

Karen said...

I love this post. It truly makes all the difference. And I am jealous of your space. It looks great. I hope to see it in person one day! Enjoy Diane!!

Charlene said...

What a great post!!!! You need to repost this for Karen Valentines Studio Event. Go to my sidebar & click on the button. Karen did this last year & had over 150 artist participate. This year Jo Packham (Where Wome Create Magaine Editor)is going to be in on it. She just put the button up & in the first 2 days had over 100 signed up. This post would be perfect. Or add on to it!!!! As for me... my studio is such a mess I can't even stand to be in it!Can't wait to see you in 2 weeks! HUGS! Charlene

vintagesusie & wings said...

I Loved seeing your work space & I did hang in there & I do want more!!!! I didn't want it end. How wonderful of your hubby to think of doing this for you...you are blessed friend. And one of my favs you have on your work station is...the little molds filled with just a few pearls or buttons. I love those little molds & have a ton & never have known what to do with them. Once upon a time I thought I would make soaps & use them for that, not so much now. And you said you love baby cabinet cards & vintage baby shoes, so do I! I have them all over the shop cuz, I love them!
Thanks friend for sharing your work space & you are right...it is PERFECT!
Hugs,
Susie

Cindy said...

Diane
I've been waiting to see this wonderful piece from your husband ever since you first mentioned it a while back... it is indeed incredible, just as you described it! I remember being amazed at the pull-out drawers and the little chandelier..so it is so neat to actually see them in pictures. What a wonderful space to create...and filled with so many special pieces of art from your friends. I can see why you are always so inspired! Thanks for taking us on this tour of your beautiful studio. :-) Oh, and the sneak peak of your current projects look so beautiful!

connie said...

what a wonderful studio!! I truley enjoyed the tour! and sweet are you to post "rambling rose"? ahh stephanie lee's class, wonderful memories of you three art sisters! loving, warm & generous! how blessed was I to have come upon the 3 of you...

connie said...

what a wonderful studio!! I truley enjoyed the tour! and sweet are you to post "rambling rose"? ahh stephanie lee's class, wonderful memories of you three art sisters! loving, warm & generous! how blessed was I to have come upon the 3 of you...

Barbara Lewis said...

Diane: I feel like my heart is pounding out of my chest! I love your studio ... and visiting the talented ladies, Carol and Robin, was an extra treat. I'm so glad I made a visit today! Thank you!

Piper said...

Thank you so much for sharing your inspirational work space! ♥ Piper ♥

Katsui Jewelry said...

Diane,
Thank you so much for visiting our blog! I do adore my daughter....there is nothing that is quite like a daughter, is there? Of course, we do irritate each other sometimes (she is back living at home after twelve years away) but mostly we just get along so well. She becomes a better friend to me the older she gets...but she's still my baby, too!
Fondly,
Suz

Daryl said...

I am green with envy over your fabulous work space...

Gail said...

I'm so glad I found your lovely blog (through Susie at vintagesusie)! Love, love, love your work space, doesn't it make all the difference in the world to have your own dedicated space...just for YOU?
I've been blessed also with my own room for my "stuff" and it makes me so very happy, thanks for sharing yours...
Best,
Gail

Seth said...

Amazing shots of an amazing place. I do love to see where people create!! Thanks for the tour.

Chris said...

Diane~~
How lovely is your workspace!!! I do relate to how beloved one feels when one receives such lovely support~~~gorgeous~ And so fun to "visit" all of your shelves and collections, to feel your workspace atmosphere. So beautiful, just like you!

vintagesusie & wings said...

Miss Diane,
You are too good to me friend...
Thanks so much for stopping by my blog & leaving such a sweet comment!
I hope you have a GLORIOUS Mother's Day Friend!!!
Hugs,
Susie

Anne - Fiona and Twig said...

Hi Diane,
What a wonderful creative space you have! Thank you for sharing this, it is so inspiring!

Thank you so much for your unbelievably kind comments on my last post, they truly did touch my heart.

Wishing you a very Happy Mother's Day!

Anne

Lynn Richards said...

Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful!! So organized, it must give you great pleasure to work in your studio! I am going to do a "where bloggers create party" on june 19 over at Karen Valentine's at http://mydesertcottage.blogspot.com
come and join us!!
lynn

Riki Schumacher said...

What an amazing design space Diane. It is heaven, you must be so incredibly pleased. It truly is perfection, love every square inch of what you thought out carefully and created. Congrats. We all want it badly!! Great job mi amiga, hugs. Riki

Debra@Common Ground said...

Hi Diane, love your studio and set up, it's really functional and beautiful.
I think the Seed Box is working on more "spring" wreaths, so I hope you can make it to UM. Glad you came by the blog, hope you come visit me on my own blog, Common Ground! I just joined you as a follower, have a wonderful week,
Debra

Diana said...

Ahhh! I could move in....may I??? How wonderful to have your own creative space now and so very organized it is too! I all too well know about striving for perfection and have decided that striving for excellence is a lot healthier for me. No matter where you design, Diane, your creations will always be excellent and darn near perfection....luv ya.
Diana

Marcia Antle said...

OMG, Diane, I love-love-love your work space! That is absolutely awesome and I can just picture you sitting there wrapping wire!!! Will you be selling any of your etched cuffs? Those are gorgeous. I love the photo of you three amigas - I could tell you were all really close friends when I saw you in Houston. What a great, artsy, fun group!!! I sent some photos to Jewelry Affaire and they requested the actual pieces for publication consideration. I'm not getting my hopes up, but it would be nice. Did you see my bead embroidered cuff in the last issue of Belle Amoire Jewelry? The ones I sent this week are the mixed up remakes from combination of new and vintage pieces. The one I made in your wonderful class is one of them!!! I get so many compliments on it, I wish I could take 100 more classes with you and the other great gals. Congrats on your work space, it is indeed perfect for you! QueenMarcy
mantle@piedmontcenter.com
www.queenmarcyoriginals.typepad.com

French at hArt said...

Wow,
Nice work space. My 19 year old son moved out months ago and my husband and I are finishing up painting his room which will be my "artist's studio" I am very excited as it will be my first! Thanks for sharing this with us.
♥Danette

HappyDayArt! said...

Wow! You have so many treasures. I love the way you have arranged them Diane.

You made it all look so beautiful!

I love getting a look in there.
Catherine

Connie Eyberg Originals said...

What a thoughtful husband! You have such a nice space. I love that you filled it with creations from friends as well as your own supplies. Happy weekend! Connie

mairedodd said...

what a fabulous space! starting out with that great foundation of a workbench that was given to you with love, it seems you have surrounded yourself with beauty and meaning... i think you may have found a corner of paradise there...

Lovey said...

Whoa so much to see! So much to use to create! I love your space...it's a place to really make the most beautiful things...Thank you...I'm feeling so inspired!

Paula S In New Mexico said...

Diane, I can feel you smiling through this post. You are a truly lovely and tender person. I'm so glad to know you.

Liz said...

Very beautiful! Love it all! There is so much to see and take in!

Thanks for sharing!

~Liz

Susan Sager Brown said...

Oh Diane what a wonderful space to create in! I just love hearing about your realization that your husband believes in you!! How beautiful!! You are one very talented, very deserving lady! xoSusan
ps I'm still holding out for my mexican calendar girl necklace!!!
pss thank you for mentioning me in the article!! It was a pleasure and an honor to be there when it all started for you!!

Linda said...

Diane, It is like being in a dream. You workspace is just so lovely. A beautiful creative and comforting place to be.

Linda

Magpie's Mumblings said...

Isn't it nice to know your husband 'gets' you and was willing to have this created for you! Thanks so much for letting us see.

donnaj said...

what a great space filled with wonderful things. fabulous work bench-thanks for sharing~

Karen Valentine said...

Diane I loved this post! I really think we are lucky when the men in our lives accept the things that bring us joy (whether they understand them or not)and do whatever they can to make our dreams come true! Thank you so much for joining the party and sharing your beautiful studio, filled with so many wonderful goodies!
xo,
Karen

Renee said...

You have a wonderful space. I love your new storage unit.

marnie said...

Lots and lots of yummy stuff in your studio! I'll be right over to "borrow" that heart art piece and your cross work-in-progress--I think they really need me! lol

You are really blessed to have great art buddies (I am too) & have gorgeous artworks that you have exchanged with them. Love the frame of the three angels - pretty! :D