Many people have started cottage industries during the pandemic, either due to job loss or because they simply took the time in lockdown to explore their creative side and start a small business.
As a result, there are many people working from home creating all sorts of wonderful craft gifts from cushions, door wreaths, art, pottery, keepsakes, flower arrangements etc. You only have to look at the fantastic website www.shopinireland.ie to see the full range of Irish craft products available.
This week I thought I would share a few simple tips on optimising your craft room.
Space saving solutions
Not everyone has the luxury of a dedicated craft room, so sometimes you must think outside the box. Perhaps you could update a guest bedroom to have a smaller daybed or a pull-down murphy bed to give you more space to focus on your business, but still have the functionality of a guest bedroom for occasional guest. See www.bbtfurniture.ie for their full range of space saving furniture.
Another option to consider is to have bunk beds to allow two children to share the same room rather than having two separate bedrooms. If updating a bedroom isn’t an option, then consider the area under your stairs, an existing closet or corner desk.
Once you know the space you can then consider zoning different areas eg, a space to create and a different area for packaging, this will save you time in the long run as you won’t need to clear away everything to deal with an urgent delivery.
Storage plays a vital role for crafters to store all the necessary equipment and supplies. Whether it’s an easel, pottery wheel or sewing machine, you need to choose the right storage solution for your craft. Having a good organisational system to hold all your materials and tools is paramount.
Pull out drawers are great for tools, whilst adjustable shelving is great to accommodate larger items. Consider labelling drawers to make switching from one project to another easier. A great idea for smaller items such as buttons is to use magnetic spice jars with a wall mounted stainless steel rack. This will enable you to store your button collection by colour and size and give you an easy visual of the items. Transparent organisational containers are ideal to allow you to see stock levels clearly.
Flooring is a key factor to consider for your craft room. Laminate flooring, luxury vinyl tiles and vinyl are all great options as carpet will attract fabric cuttings, wood chippings etc. In addition, if you work with liquids such as paint etc then these flooring options will be much easier to clean than a carpet.
Display a sample of all your favourite creations on a feature wall. Don’t worry if your items are too large, simply photograph them and create a stunning picture gallery showcasing all your favourite products. This will also act as a great marketing tool if you have client consultations from your workroom/craft room. Another idea for a feature wall is to keep newspaper cuttings of any PR that you might have received and frame them to create a showstopper picture gallery of all your business highlights.
It’s vitally important that you keep motivated when working from home. Add some motivational quotes like ‘You can Do It’, ‘The world is mine to conquer’ etc to your wall. If your family are your motivation, ensure you display a family picture.
Natural light is best, but when at a minimum add strong desk lamps and floor lamps in addition to your overhead lighting.
Peg boards are great to store items that you need on a regular basis such as scissors. Cork boards are another great option and can be great to hold your inspirational images and motivational quotes. Lastly bring the outdoors in with a touch of greenery.
I hope you enjoyed reading my column and that you found some inspiration to create or update your craft room.
Louise is a former winner of TV3’s Showhouse Showdown. Contact 086 3999926; email firstname.lastname@example.org; www.aspiredesign.ie
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