Craft Room 1

Lotta Work to Do

When I moved into this two-bedroom apartment, I thought that having the spare room for crafts and guests was going to work out splendidly.  I thrive on having separate spaces for separate activities…I’m one of those people who cannot work at home, but happily forgets about home when at work.  The geography seems to switch my brain.

I had hoped to create a tunnel-vision crafts space in this room, but that never really happened.  I guess walking into the extra bedroom wasn’t enough of a trek…I never really found a way to focus in there.  Also, you’ll notice the place is a mess.  Which was pretty much a constant this year: having a mess in there while the rest of the house was tidy.  I tidy my office every day before I leave, setting out on my desk what I want to start out with the following morning.  Clearly, good habits never made their way into this room.

I have been looking for a way to have studio space outside of my home.  And this week I was super-psyched to get a call from SPUR Studios telling me that they had some open space.  And I was at their building the next morning to check it out.

I was trying not to get my hopes up because the room could easily be too big or too small or too pricey.  Well, the available studio is almost exact same size as my current crafts/guest room.  Not too big, not too small, has a window and a locking door.  And the price: slightly more than $1/square foot.  And the building (this is a huge selling point for me) is shared with other creatives–visual artists up top, musicians down below.

Right now, the studio is in rough shape.  But, I’m allowed to modify it as I see fit, so I’ve taken careful measurements, and worked out a plan.

Everything here is depicted is to scale.  These pictures were made for free at
What a great service!  You can put in the exact dimensions of the room, put in windows, doors and the rest of it in the exact spots they go, and then add furniture that is exactly the dimensions of what you’ve got!  Switching between 2D and 3D really let me visualize the space.  You can even add people and adjust their heights! Using this tool, I developed a good sense of how to set up the room and what furniture to move over there and what to leave at home.

My official move-in date is July 1, but I’m allowed to get some work done in there beforehand.  I’m going to paint the room the same color as my current crafts room (a soft/cool gray/green color painted by some previous tenants).

The big project/question is the floors.  The carpet needs to come out.  I would love to put in cork flooring–sound and shock absorbing, eco-friendly, and lovely to look at–but cork tiles price out at around $500 for the room.  $300 for the cork, and $180 for the adhesive (ah! glue! why are you so pricey?)

This laminate from IKEA would do the job for $220.    I wish laminate looked like it’s own thing, not like fake wood. I just hate having fake things. The only think going for the laminate is that it’s better than the carpet and relatively inexpensive.

Depending on how the concrete looks once I pull up the carpet, I may just paint or stain it and throw down a few rugs to absorb noise.  That would be the cheapest option: $30 for concrete stain + 60 for a simple rug.

Anyway, I’ll update the ol’ blog once I’ve made some progress, but I’ve just joined Instagram, so if you want to follow me there there will be quick little updates.

Oh, and the title of this post is “Lotta” work to do because I wanted to tell any of you that might have your own moving, decorating, or dreaming going on that I’ve really been enjoying Lotta Jansdotter’s interiors/life book, Handmade Living.

She has such a clear vision of what she seeks in her spaces and it remind me of what I seek in quilts, “When I think of Scandinavian Style, I think of simplicity, functionality, and unpretentious classic forms.”

There’s also a good discussion of mid-century modern forms, which you know I dig, “Mid-century Scandinavian designers made us of natural materials and relied on traditional craft principles to create high-quality pieces with a handmade feel that would last for generations.  The result is a style that is classic, elegant, and modern.”

Sigh.  So good.  The Amazon listing has a decent-sized preview of the book if you wanted to look it over there: Handmade Living.

This Post Has 13 Comments

  1. That's so exciting that you're getting a studio!

    I know it's really wacky, literally off the wall, but I wonder if cork board sheets could be used as flooring? You couldn't walk around on it in heels because it's so soft, but it's cheap and since it comes in big sheets you wouldn't need to glue it.

    1. I think just bumping into the furniture would probably tear the type of cork used in notice boards. I hear what you are saying, though! And I might put up a cork wall for the sound absorption and ease of pinning up inspirations.

  2. Wow congrats on the new space!! If you did the laminate, how much of the floor will be seen with the furniture in place? Could you maybe put a large low-nap rug in the biggest area? I can't wait to see the real pics – exciting!

    1. There's no great big expanse of floor that is exposed, but most of the walkway (the space behind the computer desk, for example, it's in the upper right-hand corner in above pictures) are a yard wide. And you'd see the floor under the cutting table and all around, so that amounts to a fair bit of space. I'm really hoping for stainable concrete…. or a financial windfall : )

  3. How exciting to have space like that and be near other creative people!
    I have laminate floors in my studio and love them. they're low maintenance, scratch resistant, and, since they are floating floors with rubber underpad, they are shock absorbant and quiet.

    1. Yes, we pulled up the carpet yesterday and there are some weird tiles under there…probably full of asbestos…and then under there, the cement. I'm leaning towards finding some laminate to lay down. It has a lot of "pros" for sure and if I can find some that isn't too distinct looking, I'll go that route!

  4. If the floor is concrete, and cost is an issue, think about painting the floor a color that you like.
    Our second bedroom is my sewing room. My first place where just my stuff resides. Not a spare bedroom, or anything else.
    It had carpet, not good for cleaning, or my allergies. So up it came. Now I have the original hardwood floors and to clean up is only a swiffer away.
    Hope your new space inspires you…K

  5. Wow, that is awesome. I'm jealous – she says as she wipes down the dining room table after dinner to set up for work. And thanks for the tip on the floor planner site.

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