Power points.. and more storage.

Of the electrical type, not for presentations.
My sewing desk is a huge heavy weight, old style computer desk. You know the type, adjustable height, pole hole for the monitor to sit on, and internal bank of power points. Well, just 4, but that’s usually enough with computers of old.
My table is placed against the wall, set at my height. The monitor pole has long gone, and I have to forfeit two plugs for ‘house’ items. Well, I shouldn’t complain, one is for the Internet, which without, I wouldn’t be able to do this.
The other two are mine to use.
During my tidy up and focussing on having less junk, I’ve allocated one plug for a double adapter housing both sewing machines and the other has an extension cord – with double adapter attached. On this I have my iPod speaker and most probably the laptop charger or what ever else is needed. Lights maybe.

On the other wall, under all the lovely storage I made for my props is another single power point. I usually put the camera battery charger on this as it’s out of the way. But with wanting the light tent to be set up there, I had to work something out.
A double adapter for both my light poles, which can stay with that power point. And be used for battery charger, kiln, heat gun… whatever is required. I’m not going to be using the kiln or heat gun at the same time as the light tent and the charger can wait a day or two if needed. (I do like to charge it straight away otherwise it gets forgotten and is not good when I need it).

My next step in the room, is to figure out a way to store the market things slightly better to cater for the other few boxes I have. I’m already liking the big space in the middle of the room instead of tables and boxes everywhere.

We shall see. I’ll get back to my photo editing ready to upload onto the website. It’s all about bags today.

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Part two – tidy the tables & light tent set up.

I’m currently mid flu and have anti bionics for a bad ear so have been lethargic and out of sorts. I. Coming out the other side now and having a good day. Much better than yesterday. So good in fact I pottered about in my room getting the next part sorted. The last post said how I had bought a cupboard and was re working my room. Well I’m finally back in to do a it more. Hopefully this week I will have it done, but no promises.

The easiest way to work it was to do one thing at a time. Today the sewing table. I emptied, cleaned, ironed items waiting, patched a shirt that had been a long time waiting and put them all away.
Now my sewing table is sewing machine, over locker and iron. Ready to get out at a moments notice – and be able to use all three without making mess on other tables.
Next I got the table near the bookcase emptied, sorted market bookwork that needed doing and put everything where it belonged.
Vacuumed.
Then packed up the table and put the other one there. I know that may make no sense but the angle of the supports underneath are higher on this one so less chance of kicking legs.
On this table is now the tray I am working on and the pile of books I will be using. Between this and my sewing table I will have space for computer work.
I put more of my paints in the tall boy, and have two retro suitcases I want to show off but not have sitting in there way. Where to put them?

My aim at the end. To have as little scattered around the room and lots of room to move and productive areas. A user friendly and comfortable place to be.

Two days later.
I have my light tent set up, or at least for today’s purposes while I do more on the website.
This picture does not do it any justice at all, but is purely for example sake. I tried to get a shot of how it looks with lights on and lights off to give you an idea of how much better the pictures will look. But as you can see, it just looks really dark, defeating the purpose completely. And it was daylight, overcast mostly, but not dark. This was taken around 10am.

light tent, no lights

light tent, no lights

light tent with lights on

light tent with lights on

A couple of pictures of product.
The first – with lights, bright and clear.

photo with lights

photo with lights


And without – dull and not as much colour.
photo without lights

photo without lights


I don’t like to use photoshop or alter my pictures. I want to be able to show it as it is, only cropping and resizing as necessary.

I was going to get a shot of the desks all tidy and ready but they are now covered with laptop and stuff, and the other, all the bags ready to re photograph for the website.
Later in the week hopefully.

Keep crafty, Jen.

Bigger busts and a drill bit.

I went shopping today, what’s in the bag?

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Ooh, look. More busts, although the height is good, the bust itself is quite small, ah well, you can’t have it all. A tree to make (made) and paint, and some funky cool material. There was so much, I had to be very disciplined with my selection.

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And the new busts in relation to my existing ones… I’m to going to paint or cover them just yet, I’ll see how the natural look goes first.

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Oh, and a drill bit for my new toy, a dremel, so I can put holes in my glass and stones. I’m no good t wire wrapping, so holes it will be instead.

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Craft room revamp, part 2

Off I troop to the shops this morning with a plan. And a piece of paper with measurements.
All works in my favour and I load up the car with two more 8-cube units and a 4-cube unit. Even though the smaller unit will be used purely for height, I decided to buy it as a future investment. I’m not going to be in this position forever and the cube thing will always be a useful storage item.

~ time lapse while I build shelves ~

I now have blisters on m hands after screwing 50 odd screws. Not happy, Jan. About the listers, happy that I now have shelves and room.
I have used a smaller table instead of the 4-cube shelf with two slabs of timber to distribute the weight better. And it looks good. The second shelf still needing to be finished, jus the back pieces, but boy in the bedroom behind the wall is trying to sleep, and I am now tired, so happy enough to give it a break.
Once it is all nailed, and placed on the boards I can start filling it.

~ more time lapse as I sleep and then get its off to school ~

A full day time lapse. Certain amply matters had to be sorted out first.
Shelves, finished, and put into place.

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And semi stocked. There is still tweaking to be done.

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Design, Perfect. Layout, perfect. Construction, average. But working within my means I am very happy with how it looks.
And there is so much more space, I can see all my props, and no mess in between markets any more.

Have you done a big studio/craft room revamp. Did it work out,or did you have to change it again?

Jennifer 🙂

Craft room revamp, part 1

I posted the other day about a small chest of drawers I bought for my market display. They are lovely, with a pretty vintage looking flower design on them.

20130902-205813.jpg Problem. The front is solid porcelain and the back is only half the height making it front heavy. For dressing table purposes this is not a problem. For display purposes, where I want to have the drawers open a bit and jewellery draped over the edges, it is.

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After playing around with it, adding weights will make no difference as they just fall to the front and are no help at all.
What I figured out, is adding some height and a weight of some sort to the back so it doesn’t tilt forward and is kept in position with the weights. Easier said than done. Not that hard really, but tricky. When hubby gets home I’ll ask him to help me.

Yesterday at mums I as flicking through a magazine and saw the best storage system. Well, it’s pretty basic, but the idea was what got me. The ladies in question were using hardware shelving in their wedding business to store all their props. And it immediately got me thinking. I keep all mine in the boxes I take to market, and those that get left behind, are left in a mess, and there is always a mess.
The picture that started this whole mess.

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Now if I had a shelf, I could have everything in position, I could then pick just the things I need. And no mess is left behind.
I thought more about it today, decided I could do it, and as is the way I work I had to do it. Yesterday. Meaning, today, right now.
The next step is making sure I bought just the things I needed, so I searched out the shelving unit I’d like – matching the one I already have – and then putting all the props in the cubby holes – must make sure things fit – all good nice again.
Now the tricky part. I have two filing cabinets, and a heater (I don’t use) that sticks out 10cm (makes a huge difference believe me) and the only power point on that wall. That I do use.
So now I have to wangle shelving around the heater and power point.
Before.

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My idea is to have the plastic market boxes underneath ready to fill as required, so a solid table/trestle/plank of wood on bricks is needed.
Before I finish, I’m off to see what mum and dad have that might help.
Bingo!!
After some renovations early in the year there was a door frame left over. That would be perfect, mum said yes, dad said yes, so I went to it with a hammer then wrapped it in a tarp and took it home.
Now for the hard bit. Moving everything to see if I can make it work. On paper – and in my head – it works quite well – will it transfer the way I want it to? I think it does. A few minor alterations, and finding a small table or similar is all I need now.
After. Incorporating the heater and power point easily. And one of two table tops I have covered. The toner is only half this, but still needs a home.

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Part 2 soon.

Jennifer 🙂

Fitted Tablecloth – I must be mad!

Today I finally got around to making some fitted tablecloths. I’ve wanted some since, well, a long time ago but never really did anything about it.
I want tell you where to find the instructions, there are oodles on the Internet depending on what style of table you have and how fitted the cloth should be.
I tried to make a go of it myself, but it wasn’t going to work the way I wanted it to, so I checked out google and found a pattern.
Basically, the idea is to cut a piece the size of your table top + hem allowance, and a long piece for the skirt. This skirt is then gathered at the corners to make a nice pleat.
I decided not to do it that way as I was using bed sheets and didn’t have the length or quantity to do it – I cut a separate piece for each side and end.
The small table half way done. Pinned, test, sew, test….

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While not perfect, they certainly look better than having corners dragging on the floor or tucked up and being chunky on the sides.

All went well until the needle got stuck and the only way to rescue it was to break it. I really don’t like having to do this, even though they are pretty cheap to buy. Thank goodness for heavy duty wire cutters.

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Back into it and around 2 hours later (from start to finish), exhausted, I have my fitted cloth. For the small table! There is still the full size one to go.

I have lunch, and scrape out the freezer – what better time to defrost it than while I have the house to myself and am busy – then get back into cutting the second one.

This was slightly quicker in that I knew what I was doing. Each cloth was on the table, off the table, pinned, sewn, on the table, check shape and length, off the table, pins and sewn….

The small table cloth is a fully enclosed one. It usually sits next to my big table at markets but if I am going to have a table on its own, it would be this one.
The large table is only skirted on three sides – one side for easy access during markets – but I will make a couple of fully skirted ones for other markets and situations.
A good queen size sheet made the large table cloth and would make a fully skirted one as well, and only cost $13. Not bad for a couple of hours.

Small table, fully enclosed.

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And the large table, 3/4 covered.

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The corners are a bit wonky here, but I didn’t cut enough for this overhang. It won’t be seen so I’m not too worried. This weekend is my next market and I will post pictures to show you what it looks like all dressed and accessorised.

Have a great crafty day
Jennifer 🙂

Craft room madness again – jewellery storage

I’m at it again. Re-sorting my room. Just one small part of it this time. Part of the made jewellery storage.
After my screen seemed to work for market display and transport, I re-jigged it and added business cards to the necklaces to help them hang better.
Today I went one step further.
My jewellery is currently stored in some great stationery drawers but the only place to put them means that the top ones are too high for me to see into clearly.
Bring back the business cards and one of my spinning racks. Ta-daa.
Have all my jewellery attached to cards. Everyone gets a card on purchase anyway. This way I can hang anything on the screen, and if they are on the spinner at home I can keep an eye on what I have, and organise it so the same things don’t go to two consecutive markets.
As you can see – crappy night pictures and all – they hang nicely and I have the top spinner for my bracelets.

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These drawers are what I am using currently for storage. The only problem is that I can’t see into the top three without getting a step stool. Sure the rack is taller and I have to stretch to reach the top, but I can see instantly what is there, and if I don’t mind some of the longer chains sitting on the base piece the I can lower each section to a more manageable height.

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This is only a portion of what I have in stock, I need to find or get more cards first.
How do you store your jewellery?

Small screen alteration

My screen worked well today as you can see from the pictures, it looked alright and the necklaces hung well. One small change I will make though. So they have a bit more ‘shape’ to them I will tag them with a business card.
Take no notice of the prices, this was just a tester to see if it would work, and how it would look. I just need to find a way to cut the corners so they are all the same now.

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Stay cool. Or warm
Jen 🙂

Screen time. At the market.

It’s the end of the school holidays, and I decided to skip the felting class – I know, I missed out on learning new things, but I am happy with that, as I got to do other good things – and I have a market on Sunday.
Being the organised person I am (so totally not) I somehow left it until yesterday to sort my boxes from last month and think about what I was taking and how I would display them.
I have been on a constant lookout for a new way to arrange and display my longer necklaces so they aren’t tangled with the prop and people can see the whole piece. As the busts I like are expensive I noted something a little different.
Phase one. Google market display images and see if there is anything that takes my fancy. I want height and something visually creative but also easy to store and transport. This is key as I don’t have my own car (I never know on market day if I have to share it with my boys and not be able to take up all the room).

Something caught my eye. And from what I noticed after a separate google search. Not many people are doing it. I haven’t seen many do it at the markets I’ve attended or visited. This is good. If people see a display that has a visual difference, a points of attraction, they are more likely to come back. I hope anyway. Different = memorable = return people.

I went for a little shop and I suppose it’s my own fault, you get what you pay for. $10 is a bit cheap to expect a nice size photo frame, so they went back as they were plastic. But not before I ruined one, ah well, I can use it elsewhere.
Next shop I found some that for the price – $25 ea – means closer to the real thing.
The hinges I bought earlier will fit it, so this evenings work will be to drill holes and get them ready.
Just in case I couldn’t do this I have packed my boxes ready for display with out the screen.

~ several hours later ~

Well, the job is all done.
Measured several time, drilled, screwed, unscrewed, and turned hinges around, screwed, added hooks to the top edge, inserted necklaces and…. Looks fabulous! If I do say so myself.
I’m not useless by any means but I don’t usually wield the drill. Just give instructions.

I stuck the hooks on with blu-tack and then held the frames closed to see if they would fit together, or would I need to turn the hooks sideways. All good, they work. The space was measurement and mini holes drilled and hooks screwed in.

Then the tricky bit of getting the hinges placed evenly top to bottom without it getting twisted. All sorted, holes drilled, carefully and screws screwed. Pity I didn’t look the first time and had to turn them around, oops.

Necklaces placed on hooks and in an hour, all done.

Frames ready to be screwed.

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What I had in mind, my idea

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And the finished product

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What do you think? Have you done something like this for your markets, or seen similar?

Have a great sweetened
Jen 🙂