Friday, 7 June 2019

Studio move and make over

In December of 2018 my hubby got an offer to transfer within his company from Cape Town, South Africa to Berlin in Germany.  He had to be in the Berlin office on 1 April!  (no Joke :) The major thing was that we opted to take my aging mother with us so this entailed selling our house, her house and packing up our house after being in it for 17 years and her house after she had been in it for 39 years as well as my teaching studio which I had run for 20 years!  Oh and selling our 3 cars between us!  That was a tall order, but we managed it and flew out on 25 March 2019!

Fast forward to May 2019 and we had managed to find ourselves a 100m squared flat in a nice area close to my son's school.  The flats here are seldom more than 3 bedrooms in the city itself and we didn't want to be on the outskirts of town as we are using the public transport system to get around.

The photo below is a section of our lounge dining area.  I have managed to make it work as my new studio space.  This will be where I create, be it art, craft or mixed media.

I have become great friends with my tape measure and have the floor plan of Ikea ingrained in my brain as I have been there so many times for so many different things!
The tape measure marks off where the Kallex units will end.  The total studio space is 2.5m x 3.5m .
 The Kallex units in place ready and waiting for my stuff to arrive.
 8 May and our container arrived all the way from Cape Town!  I was so excited to see it again!
 Thankfully we have a patio area where we could store some boxes while we got organized inside.
 I just stuffed the boxes I had used in my Cape Town studio into the Kallex unit to get the stuff off the floor!
 I then went back to Ikea to get their boxes that fit the Kallex unit and slowly sorted my stuff into these huge boxes.  They really "swallow" stuff!
 I would unpack a box onto my drop side table and sort it into the Kallex.  I used masking tape and a koki to mark what was in each one.  I still need to make proper labels for them, but am still deciding on what I want them to look like and am also still reorganising some of the stuff that I put in them.
This is what the studio looked like on the other side of this wall...
 Then I set up my folding table and moved my paper storage cubes.
 I had been given these cubes by a friend who was moving house a few years ago and always meant to paint them, but was too impatient to move my paper into them and so I never did.  To quote my Dad "There is nothing more permanent than the temporary"  So before this became the same situation here in Berlin, I went of to the local hardware store and got some white paint.  It was a tedious task, but quite meditative to paint inside each shelf.

Here they are stacked in their new home.  It makes such a difference to how my small space feels.  They are no longer dark and imposing.
After painting the paper cubes, I got hold of the printers tray given to me by the same friend.  Back in Cape Town, I had sprayed it with 4 cans of black spray paint, but ran out without doing a perfect job.  I am now sitting below this unit which was on a different wall in Cape Town so I hadn't looked up into it before.  It doesn't help that here there is no overhead lighting yet, so the floor lamp exaggerated the awful paint job I had done.   Below you can see where I had painstakingly painted some of the rows black with acrylic paint and a brush.  Yes... more meditating....
 I got hubby to put the die storage up on the wall and then my printers tray as well above my desk.
 I then set about unpacking more boxes of stuff into all the shelves.  You can see there is still so much stuff on the floor that needs to find its forever home...

I also went back to Ikea to get some drawers to put under my desk.  At this stage, I am still using the folding table as my desk, till I find what I need.  I just folded the legs into the table and balanced it on the two drawer units.
 It took an entire day of unpacking and putting things away before I could see both my desk and the floor!
 I brought all my B's with me as well as the words that I had above my desk before.  Basically, I have crammed 2 studios worth of stuff into the tiniest corner of our flat!
 I still have all my steampunk stuff in the plastic storage containers on top of the Kallex unit.  I kept the stamps in the drawers I had had them in in Cape Town and each one gets its own cube with a giant art book!  The black and white boxes will stay, as these were purchased for all my art materials back in Cape Town and they are really pretty.
 To the right of my desk are my two trolleys.  The one has crafting stuff and the other, art materials.  Its nice to be able to roll them around to where I need them.  
 In winter, I will need to find another place to store my art trolley as it is in front of the radiator.  Something I have never had before!
 Here you can see the space without both trolleys.
 And back again!
 The white metal notice board from Ikea was perfect for my movers and shapers dies.  This corner is really hard to photograph right now without overhead lighting.
The last major thing I had to tackle was this set of cubbyholes that my hubby had made to fit over my windowsill in Cape Town.  It meant that there was a piece of  "leg"  at the bottom of each shelf that used to sit next to each other, not stacked like this.
Here they are without their extra space and with the pretty Ikea boxes on top.
All I need to do is sort out my labels for all my boxes to make it look even and pretty as well as being functional, so that I can find the things in my boxes.

In my next post, I will show you how I have finished it all off using every last square cm of wall and floor!  That will take me a few days as I still have to sort out the labels etc!


Tuesday, 4 June 2019

#52 Cafe Journals Prompt no 5 over at Maremi's Cafe





I've been busy sorting out my studio in our new rented flat in Berlin.  I will do a post about that as soon as we have wifi...

But for now, the first thing I have created, just for the sake of creating is this journal page!  I joined in over at Maremi's Creative Cafe on Facebook where there are weekly prompts.  This is #5 of  #52  Cafe Journals.  Marta posts this when she gets a gap in her week.  Here is the prompt:

No photo description available.
I started by spraying the middle of my journal with Picked Raspberry Distress Oxide spray and the edges of the page with Dylusions Shimmer spray in Bubblegum pink.
I then added some stenciling using Picked Raspberry distress ink
Chose a cupcake napkin
Cut it out and placed it
Then after adding the napkin with gel medium, I cut the title for my page and a few other die cuts.
To use the lace effect prompt, I stamped my lettering with two different lace stamps in Archival Jet black.
Once I had glued everything down, I started adding drop shadows.  Here you can see the way it makes the word LIFE pop of the page a bit better.
I followed the shadow with a white highlight as per the prompt to do white doodles... well technically mine aren't doodles... but I used a white pen!
Using black acrylic paint and a brush, I then blackened the edges of the page.
The page looked a little unbalanced to me, so I added a Tim Holtz cupcake to the doily on the left hand page.
Finally, to fill some of the gaps, I used a stamp with Picket Fence Distress Paint.

Friday, 5 April 2019

Deliciously large cupcake tags

Hello there

Who knew I would be back on my blog so soon?  Hopefully a trend for the future!

I am having a blast with the stuff I bought from the StempelBar in Berlin.  My latest purchases were the new Distress Oxide sprays and some stamps.

Today I decided to give the sprays a try on some tags.
Here you can see the base tag is a purchased set of size 8s and they are quite yellow, so they affect the colours slightly, even though the Oxide sprays are quite opaque

I sprayed the colours onto the craft sheet and dipped the tags into the puddles of colour... Because I had to travel light when we moved to Berlin, all I have with me is my hair dryer which I thought would be fine... Lesson learned .. It blew me ink off the tag!

I then stamped the cupcakes onto white card stock and painted them with a combination of mustard seed, picked raspberry and peacock feathers distress ink and paint using my water brush.
After fussy cutting them out, I glued them on using glossy accents and stamped the Ranger sentiments with Jet black archival ink.  I also went round the edge of the tags with jet black archival ink which I learned from Marjie Kemper.

The tag with the 50 on is for a special friend and the other two are for my stash.

Monday, 1 April 2019

Colourful Tags

Mid December 2018, my hubby got transferred from South Africa to Berlin, starting 1 April!  It's amazing how fast things can be done and how quickly time goes, because today I am writing this in Berlin as my hubby sets off for his first day of work and I take on the new role of home maker and home hunter!  We have temporary accommodation for 2 months while we search for our own place.

I have brought a small collection of craft stuff with me in my hand luggage as the rest of my crafty stash sails its way over in a container!

I knew I would need some sanity in this new city.

On Friday last week I went on a mission and found an art/craft shop and a pukka gem of a craft shop..

At the first shop Edelhoff... I was very well behaved and only purchased one stencil...

It had the most incredible selection of stuff... everything from wool to craft to art equipment.
 It is massive!

Below I am outside the Stempel Bar ... My  new heaven on earth!

I was very happy to see the Ranger sign!  Apparently the notice above it says "Your husband called and you can spend endlessly"  Wouldn't that be wonderful!  For good measure... I took mine with!


I think I am going to be very happy here!

Although the things I purchased at this store will have to wait till I can use them as my Vagabond is on its way in the container!

Inspired by being in such awesome creative shops, I set about playing on a tag.  Amazing how much stuff one can fit in the little bag!

 working on the dining room table...
 I started with distress paint through my new stencil in Mustard Seed, Picked Raspberry and Peacock Feathers.
 When this was dry I inked over the top in the same colours of distress ink.
 I found my Letter it set of stamps by Ranger and added some wording.  Then I chose some pre die cut things from my stash which I had brought with me to cut up and add to my tag and filled in with a few stamped images and dot fade stencil work.
 The black edges did not show up on the black table background... amazing how different the same tag looks on a different colour!


Last night I set about creating some tags to while away some time...  This time I played with my new gradient stencils in circle, square and hexagon.... using the same distress ink colours again:  Mustard Seed, Picked Raspberry and Peacock Feathers.

Here they are: