Friday, 8 February 2013

Where the magic happens

My little sister Ellie is embarrassingly, horribly talented. She's only sixteen and the artwork she creates is already enough to send grown artists slashing their canvases and cutting off their ears in despair. Her Facebook page, where she posts under the moniker 'Paint Dipped Pixie', showcases her emerging talent.

The only consolation I have is that she still has to go to school and do exams. With this is mind she posted the following plea a couple of days ago:

Now, I often see fellow crafters posting pictures of their studios online and they are generally airy, beautiful, co-ordinated spaces, with complex and attractive fabric storage systems, inspirational art on the walls and handmade angora throws on the ergonomic furniture. The sort of place, in short, where a creative soul might waft about, creatively, sipping herbal tea while gazing at the moors out of the window waiting for inspiration to strike.

So I originally wasn't going to make my space public AT ALL. But in the end I felt I owed it to all those crafters - I know you're out there - who divide their working time between Facebooking, searching for your pincushion for the seventeenth time that morning, shooing the cat off the ironing board, desperately trying to find a single clean cup that you haven't already used to put tea in then left somewhere and forgotten about, and occasional short bouts of feverish creativity. We don't normally show off our 'creative spaces'. Often because we can't find them under all the mess. But I'm going to let you peek in to mine, right now. (Not a euphemism).

All of my sewing room can be photographed from the doorway. Thusly:

Note inspirational view of brick wall.

At my feet, where you can't see them, are the cats' bowls. I have the luxury of a cutting table on the right, there, which only has one wobbly leg. Banana the Bernina sits faithfully on an old Ikea desk, while my laptop (for Facebooking and listening to audiobooks), is propped on boxes of fabric.

Come with me, if you will, all the way over to the Other Side of the Room. 

No. I don't know why the air compressor' is there either.
EVERYTHING lives on these shelves. Except for what is jammed into the drawers, which is mostly fabric:

My name is Lemur Lady and I have a hoarding problem.
The Fabric Drawers of Joy are my second favourite bit of the room. My favourite is the Accidental Shrine of Inspiration:

OK. Now I realise it looks a bit obsessive and murdery. 
The mantelpiece and the wall above it have sort of acquired lots of handmade bitses and pieceses I have bought or been given from other crafters. The picture at the top is my all-time favourite quote from Three Men in a Boat by Jerome K. Jerome, done as a letterpress print. Under that is my FionaT original 'Dawn of the Thread', which makes me smile every time I look at it. Then we have a drawing done by the aforementioned Ellie a few years ago - me as Wonder Woman getting a piggyback from the Wolverine (the Significant Otter's alter-ego). You may also spot another couple of FionaT's (I promise this isn't a stalkers shrine. Honest.), and a Little Black Heart ACEO along with a Quernus Crafts teacup mouse and my wonderful Prince Charming Adam Ant-Mouse.

Also, *cough*, my lanyards from the preview week of the Doctor Who Experience which S.O. took me to for my 30th birthday. It was brilliant. There were daleks and EVERYTHING.

Not pictured:
  • Enormous poster of David Tennant looking all brooding in Hamlet, 
  • Very precarious shelf barely supporting carrier-bags of half-finished and forgotten projects
  • Slightly OCD arrangement of hooks above desk holding scissors and other Important Things so I don't spend hours looking for them every day
  • Three half-drunk mugs of tea
  • Cat litter tray
  • Cat

So. I hope that wasn't too disappointing, Ellie. One day I will have a grown up studio with big sweeping tables and those slanty desks that you can stand up at and draw things, and not-dead pot plants. But it'll still be full of tea cups and the cats will want somewhere to sit, so don't expect too much.


  1. I wish I could just stick this whole post onto a prep-sheet, instant full marks for having such an awesome sister. That is what I'm being marked on right?
    Thank you :D

  2. LemurLady, you should take a picture of my desk and send it to the Paint Dipped Pixie so that the world can see where I do all my crafty stuff... (mostly digital, admittedly)...


  3. I'M SO INSANE-ly proud to be featured on your stalkers shrine wall <33

    your studio is inspirational. i know you think i have a 'proper' one because you once saw a bit of flat white paint that i photoshopped a bit, but really mine is much like this.
    except for the litter tray.

  4. Ooo, a Stalkers Wall.. I have one of them too - and a Stalkers side-of-cupboard - where I have my FionaT and Little Black Heart things....
    My Lemur Lady stuff is acutally not on the Stalkers Wall, because then I couldn't actually USE it. It's in my bag (purses) and bedroom (kindle cover) and the gorgeous summer shopping bag is hiding in the hall basket, waiting for some summer to occur.

    Your workroom looks too tidy. I think you need to work in there for a few days, so it starts to look Real. Like mine. Mine looks Very Real. Which is a problem actually, since I have to photograph it for a "Supporting Artits on Etsy" blog piece about my Studio, which is due on 1st March... hem hem...
    Anyone want a job, tidying my studio? Free chocolate and biscuits are included...

    I love your creative space. It is small, but perfectly formed. And too tidy.

    BTW, I didn't know that The Paint Pixie was related to you. No wonder she's talented and clever.