Like The Queen
Whatever happens to strike my fancy, but surely some sort of fiber content.


Wait -- that was a dream? Is it true that I didn't just have a nice visit with you in your beautiful studio? That it was such a vivid dream surely means it will be so, one day.

As I was reading I was transported back to the old studio of my weaving days. Everything was just so, even in a rental house, and I spent many, many creative and happy hours there.

By Blogger Jane, at 9:26 AM  

Aah, to have a studio, with the right light, the right storage, the right FEEL. I hope yours turns out just the way you envision it, Bess.

I'm so glad we met in real life because every time I read your posts, I hear your voice in my head--and it's great!

By Blogger Nerdy Knitter, at 4:46 PM  

I, too, have been thinking constantly lately about my issue of Not Enough Space, and how I want a house with built-in bookshelves, floor-to-ceiling, on every wall in every room. Too much? I think not! I started thinking that I'll never find such a place, one that also has a Florida room, and vaulted ceilings and skylights like my current home. So now I'm toying with the idea of building.... (Apparently I want more complication in my life!)

By Blogger Mary, at 11:54 AM  

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Wednesday, June 06, 2007  


Studio Dreams

So I’m writing to C about decorating and houses in good neighborhoods that are also affordable and the little holographic StuidoFairy fluttering around my head begins chanting “What about me? What about me? What about me?’

Because I have sadly neglected her lately - that dream of mine - that studio I yearn for - that necessary space for both inspiring and allowing me to indulge in the artistic activities that are such nourishment for my spirit. Flowery language, that sentence, but as I typed it I realized it is the absolute truth. I do not have enough space! I don’t spin - not even on the Golding, because she’s heavy and because it means hauling her out into the middle of the room where one of 4 big dogs will bump into her or where the flute playing man will forget to push the music stand back down when he walks away - and it falls onto her. So she stays safely in the corner.

This is no way to live. There are large projects waiting to be started that also never get brought out into the open. I might even say the very studio planning itself is a victim of Not Enough Space! And forget any serious writing. Although I do have some quiet time in the mornings for writing - it’s difficult to spread out notes and jottings in BD’s office - a tee tiny little sliver off the den (that was supposed to be the master bedroom) chock-a-block full of His Stuff. It’s difficult to feel enough at home to write blog posts and e-mails. At least they are news or conversations or something sort of immanent. If I really wanted to write a flight of fancy I’d absolutely have to have my own space. I’m seeing now that the studio is not a luxurious frivolity. It’s an absolute necessity.

Mind Shift.

Woo. The head is wobbling from that.

Hmmmm. So. What do I want in a studio?

The plan shaping in my head is a large rectangular room - built to the Fibonacci proportions. BD designed the (original) master bedroom to those numbers and while the house was being built, before I knew about Fibonacci Numbers, I always wanted to be in that room whenever I walked around the empty house shell.

It will be off what is now the living/dining room, through the doorway put in the west wall of the house when we built it, since we’d always planned to add this room anyway. Unlike the other rooms downstairs, the doorway into it will have doors hung in it. French doors. My house is all white walls with green painted trim - Williamsburg green, please, I am in Tidewater Virginia, after all. It’s very soothing and neutral enough to go with everything. But I want this room with melon colored painted walls and white woodwork.

BD and I have talked about putting in a straight narrow staircase to the upstairs - for there will be another room up there too, but I’m not sure about the architectural logistics of that. It would run along what is now the East wall of the studio. If we do put one in, I’ll want all the space beneath the staircase to be cabinets. Deep ones with pull out drawers. Imagine pulling out a deep strong shelf and voila! There is your drum carder, all set up and ready to use. And then, when you're done, you can push all those sharp pointy things back into a cabinet and ... Shut The Door! If we don’t have the staircase, that space, to the left of the door into the room can still be cabinets. With Doors. Doors paneled with cork board for pinning up inspirational snippets, photos, swatches....

All that will be to your right as you step through the doorway and it will run the length of the entire east wall. Where that wall meets the north facing wall I want a door to the outside - to the deck outside that will run across the north side of the house up to the back porch. That will make a nice place for a gas grill for dyeing fibers outdoors in the summer time. And for entertaining, of course.

Continuing west along the north wall there will be a large window that matches the other downstairs windows. BD bought these windows when he was building the house. They are out of an old store building in Richmond and they still have those brass handles that old-time store windows used to have. They are not quite 6 feet tall. There were 6 pair of sashes. The final 2 pair have been in the attic all these many years, just waiting for their chance to let the sunshine in.

From that window - which just may have a window seat in front of it - with storage beneath - the rest of that wall and all the west wall will be built in shelves and cabinets and a built in desk. I want a corner computer space so that I can swivel in my chair to look out across the deck onto the marsh where Mr. Bald Eagle likes to dine and over the bay where the swans glide every March. Inspired, I can then turn back to my lovely corner desk, with the shelf above it that holds my beautiful peacock vase, and allow the muses to lead my thoughts from my heart onto the page.

In the middle of the west wall, the all-over bookshelves and cabinets and counter space wall, will be a fireplace. I’d really like a gas log fireplace. We have the propane tanks already since I cook with gas. I suspect BD will squawk at that, but I may be able to plead the old age excuse. I don’t want wood fires in my studio but I do like the idea of a warming flame. In the southwest corner of the room will be my DVD player machine for watching all those fabulous Patsy Z spinning videos. Along the south wall, beneath the matching Old Store Window, I’d like another window seat, this one wide enough to double as a bed. Here I would be willing to have plain walls or more shelves. There is something rather nice about not having to purchase much furniture, but having it all built in.

But there would have to be some furniture. I envision a good sized cozy sofa facing the fireplace flanked by two chairs, both suitable as spinning chairs, with Bella the Golding permanently planted in front of one, forming a nice conversational box. The sort of place friends could gather in - at least enough seating for 2 couples. BD has always wanted one of those curved sofas. I think they’re stupid, because you will never get more than 2 people to willingly sit on any sofa. Sofa sitting is just way too intimate. But I would concede to him on this issue - because, hey, you always need something to cave on when undertaking a big construction project.

Between that conversation square and the east wall will be a drop leaf table, something big enough to block a shawl on, but collapsible when not needed. In a perfect world the floor would be tile with lovely rugs. I’d want this one room air conditioned, because my wheels do not like Virginia summers, especially the Expen$ive Bella $pinning Wheel. But a window unit wouldn’t be too difficult to install.

And that ought to be that. It doesn’t sound all that much, but of course, there would the that upstairs room that would have to be added too and all the rearranging of Things Second Floor. But it would make the house far more conducive to guests, since our bedroom could become a guest room and while we are at it, we might as well take down the wall between the den and BD’s office and turn it into a library - and finish off that fireplace with a lovely mantel, and line those walls with bookshelves too. And what the heck. He can have his L shaped sofa there and I can have something smaller in the stuido.

And since we have the carpenter present - I’d like the front door redone to make it a single door with glass window lights around it and maybe a transom above.

And since I’m spending imaginary money, and thus have unlimited amounts, I think I’d like the landscapers in too, to level my lumpy bumpy yard and plant it in real grass.

And then. Well. I think then it would be time to throw a really big party. Don’t you?


posted by Bess | 7:04 AM