It’s time for Featuring Studio Spaces! Each week we will feature an artist and his or her creative space. We’ll gather lots of juicy tidbits ranging from inspiration to design and functionality.
This week we’re talking with a vivacious and truly unique soul, Patty Gasparino, whose seasonal studio has me drooling and wanting to paint everything in sight. Patty is the author of My Life Under the Bus and as you’ll soon see, she’s just as talented in the decorating department as she is with jewelry. Enjoy the interview and be sure to visit Patty afterward.
Tell us a little about the work you do in the studio.
I’ve got a little bit of the craft ADD – I’ll try anything. I love paper, glue, stamps, painting, sewing and home decorating projects – but mostly I make jewelry.
Did you have a specific inspiration when organizing your space?
When I opened the door this year it was a mess in here. I wanted something light , bright and cheerful. I wanted a place that would motivate me to work on my crankiest days!
What works especially well for you.
I recently switched all my beads over to plastic divider boxes. I wish I had done it sooner they happened to fit in an old bookshelf I put on it’s side and now everything is at my fingertips on the table! I used to have all my beads in shoe style boxes in bags or hanging on a peg board – UGH – they were all over the place!
I had been fearful that one of the boys ( or I) would tip an entire box and all it’s contents on the floor but this hasn’t happened. I’ve stored them all by color range. All I have to do is think of a color and *Poof* there it is!
I have also gone out of my way to label EVERYTHING I don’t have to guess which box is what if I move something. It’s a small thing but stops a lot of confusion and time wasting looking thru unlabeled boxes.
What is your biggest issue with storage/organization/design?
I am usually on a pretty tight budget and have to work with what I already have or get for free or cheap. My best friends are a can of spray paint, paper and glue. You can make anything better with a little paint. None of the furniture in my room is the same style but the color links them all together and I don’t think anyone notices.
I really didn’t like the two bead board cabinets I had gotten very cheaply last year and almost got rid of them. They were too high and I wanted 1 large bookshelf/storage area but didn’t find anything the right size or shape in my non existent budget. I ended up pulling the legs off of them and my husband sawed one side off each cabinet . A few new storage boxes…and now I love them!
Level of importance: design aesthetic or functionality?
I’m a Virgo, so everything has to be practical. Up to now I was happy if everything was neat and functional. The last 2 years I’ve been tired of putting myself last on the list and have gotten to the point that I want something that is pretty AND functional. I think I’ve earned it!
I’m big on upcycling – especially furniture – half the furniture in my room is from my mother in law – she’s the bomb sending things up to me! The large work table was my husbands Thanksgiving table for 20+ years and now I craft on it!
My desk is an old marble table that was too small so I took a door my husband was throwing out and filled in the doorknob hole and added paint. The cabinet behind my desk was our old kitchen island I added 3 bookcases and painted everything to match.
It makes me happy to be able to reuse things and not waste them. It’s also sweet to imagine my husband and his family sitting at the same table 20 years ago!
Is there something that you’re constantly having to work on overcoming and what have you done to rectify this situation ?
For me the biggest issue is the lack of heat in this room. It literally gets below zero in the winter and I run in to get supplies…. and run out. When we bought the house it was listed as a “sunroom” and wasn’t constructed for year round use here in the Northeast. Hopefully in a few years we will be able to re-insulate and reconfigure the space for full time use as an office.
I also have issues with having carpet. It’s not my favorite substrate but I am stuck with it for now. Finding a dropped bead is a nightmare – I use some of the boys old puzzle trays that have a lip so the beads can’t roll away. I use my soldering iron in the kitchen because it has a tile floor and I don’t have to worry about burning anything.
Do you use/prefer/need artificial light or natural light?
For me it’s natural light all the way which is one of the thing’s I LOVE about this space. The wall of windows and 2 doors fills this space with light! The kids are drawn to the sunlight in here like crazy. They come in and lie on the floor with their pets and books and bask in the sunlight!
Show me interesting tidbits about your studio.
I store quick thoughts in small trays in a paper organizer – when I’m stuck or have time I can go back and pull a tray and instantly have something to do.
I love small toys and goody bags – I have them scattered around my space. They make me smile and feel young again.
You will also find blue birds everywhere!
How has your space evolved over time?
I really had no space before we moved into this house! We lived in a very tiny 800 square foot ranch! When we saw this house and the space we looked past it’s old decor and dated look. This room really had no use so I took it! It was old 70’s paneling, vertical blinds and no light! Originally I just had a table and a computer in here.
How has having your own space affected your work?
Truly I am just happy to have a space – any space! I love having my own space – in a house with 5 boys ( including my husband) – it is sometimes hard to carve out my own niche. I feel spoiled when I can go into my room and close the door.
Since it’s off the kitchen I am close if anyone needs me but I have a space where I can close the door and don’t have to worry about a project getting ruined.
Thank you Patty!
I’m madly in love with your unique shabby chic space and beautiful jewelry!
Be sure to visit Patty’s blog
and Etsy shop
Interested in having your studio featured in Featuring Studio Spaces?
Just click the little contact button at the top and we’ll set it up!
Psst! Did you visit me on Tuesday? No? You may want to click here.