Photos © 2011 Curly Girl Design, Inc./Leigh Standley. all rights reserved.

The Great De-Cluttering of 2012 - A studio tour

Photos and The Biz and journal and Studio Tours

Happy New Year!!!! Oh how I love a brand new year! I venture to say that this first, fresh few weeks of the year is among the most sacred times for me. I feel energized, reflective, inspired and creative. I feel full of pride, a little relief and a touch of fatigue over the year I have just wrapped up and then, after a brief but important couple days of hibernation, immerge bright-eyed and bushy-tailed. I have big plans for this coming year and those big plans each have a thousand little steps. It is best to approach them one at a time.

In order to put last year to bed, and begin this one there are a few things I must get in order first. Things like inventory at the shop and warehouse, taxes, and travel-plans for the upcoming tradeshow season. There are also a few, ahem, cobwebs that need to be cleaned out. Places in my life where I have let things accumulate making it hard (or unpleasant) to do the things I really want to do in those places. This can apply of course to relationships, thought processes and most obviously to physical spaces. In this case... my studio.

Oh. My studio.

How can one expect to fill the world with creative genius when one cannot find a clear surface on which to put a pencil down! My thoughts go to Sherlock Holmes.

I have a 2011 wrap up post in the works, but this little studio re-org took up the better part of yesterday (into the wee hours of today) and I am pretty excited about it and wanted to share. It was a rough go. An epic organizing session. A true test of my attention span. There were points at which I thought the studio just might win the battle.

It started like this:

Not so bad you say? That's just because everything was shoved into the closets (we did have guests for Christmas after all...)

Not bad, but it would get worse before it got better. About 3 hours into my studio smack down it looked like this:

I had to stop for a snack. I sorted, I stashed, I chucked, I purged, I was merciless yet careful, thrifty yet thoughtful and above all... clever. The best thing I can't believe I didn't think of before was getting this pantry rack for the inside of my art closet door!! It pretty much doubled my storage space for 'small stuff' and made me APPEAR to be far more organized than I actually am! Double points!

I took these photos in the wee hours, so they are kind of dark, but I think you get the picture. All in all, I am pretty excited about how it turned out and can't wait to get in there to make some new cards!

Top 10 great or weird things I found while cleaning:

1.) A letter from a former student that she wrote me after I left the school for a job in Boston. She was secretly my favorite, and attached was her 1st Grade photo. She is now in college!

2.) A Year 2000 U.S. Mint Proof Set of Quarters (my Dad puts them in our stockings and I never know what to do with them!)

3.) A photo booth picture of me and Coach in Italy, right after we got engaged.

4.) The book my friends made me for my 30th birthday...full of letters and photos!

5.) My old retainer. Gross.

6.) A note my Dad left on my desk after they helped move me to Boston.

7.) My ear buds (totally been missing those!)

8.) Both of my LOUIE awards! (better dust those babies off!)

9.) My old 'design files'. Binders full of magazine pages with stuff I liked on them. Life before Pinterest!

10.) A stash of my wedding invitations. Feels like just yesterday and a million years ago at the same time.

So there you have it. As far as my studio goes, it's hospital corners for right now and I'm feeling pretty good about it! It's amazing how much energy you can get from moving some energy around. It sometimes stirs things up a bit, but I have never regretted doing it.
Are you harboring some energy somewhere? Burying a little light? I'll bet you are. We all are. Here is my official plug for getting to it this month. DO IT!! YOU WILL FEEL SOOOOO GOOOD! Promise! And don't worry, you will have plenty of time to go ahead and mess it right back up. That's what life is all about.

What do you need to get to? Say it out loud here. Maybe it will help!


By Leigh 01.03.2012 – 11:12 am


Photos © 2011 Curly Girl Design, Inc./Leigh Standley. all rights reserved.

Studio Tour - Michelle Allen

Studio Tours

Hello! and Happy Friday! Spring is upon us (supposedly, it snowed here yesterday...) and that means it's time for packing away the turtlenecks, mittens and gloves, tidying up the garden, dusting off the lawn mower and polishing up your ice cream spoon. What? You don't have a dedicated ice cream spoon? Rookie. Among our other day-to-day tasks we must add a little spring cleaning. For me, this will mean re-organizing my studio. (I actually laughed a little when I typed 're')

But no matter. It's time. I always love seeing other people's creative spaces and how they organize and display their inspiration, tools and supplies. It is so inspiring and motivating! That, plus a good re-watch of "Mary Poppins" and I am ready to or-gan-ize!! Spit Spot!!

I recently had the pleasure of visiting the studio of Michelle Allen (of Allen Design Studio) and one of my teachers from last year's Artfest. Michelle has an out-building on her property that serves as her art studio and is just steps away from her home in Battle Ground, WA. The room is spacious, warm, and filled with cozy couches and colorful art. The centerpiece is a huge worktable that you just want to pull up a stool to and get your paint on! The details of Michelle's studio are what captured my heart though. She has such a wonderful style that mixes vintage, industrial, bright and goofy. Everything is so organized in unique and visually beautiful ways that you can see how it translates into her artwork. You can actually see how her environment influences her artwork. I love that.

So enjoy these photos, hopefully they will spark something new for spring! Have you seen a beautiful studio we should know about?? Something clever and creative to organize all the tiny things? Share them!


By Leigh 03.25.2011 – 10:35 am

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