30 December 2015

King's River Cottage - the studio

When I had to move house earlier this year, it was especially hard to leave behind my beautiful garden studio that I had had built in my old garden. It was my happy place. Always calm and always a great place to escape to.

My new house had a much smaller garden, but I was determined to build a new studio to house my business. Even though the garden is smaller, it has a little 'river' (shallow canal type waterway) at the end of it, and before I moved in I was imagining myself working away in the studio in the Summer, with the doors open and the swans floating past.

I decided to get used to where the sun went before working out where to build it. In the meantime, my bench was shoved into a room that had once been a garage, and that was the general dumping ground for the removal men of lots of our belongings, that we couldn't fit anywhere else.

Despite looking out over the river, I found it impossible to work in this chaos. I tried to have a sort out, but that didn't help much.

Then, when I did get on with work, I began to see the potential of this space. It had a few big advantages. Being in the house meant it felt nice and secure, and importantly, it was easy to work at night. I am single mum to two boys, so when I had the garden studio, I used to be back trying to work on the kitchen table when the boys were in bed, as down the garden seemed a million miles away. The room also has great light; windows at both ends (blind closed in below photo). One side I can see the road, and the other side has french windows looking out over and leading on to my garden with the river beyond.

Drastic action was called for. More belongings had to go (the downsize has been tough, yet liberating because of this.) The green carpet and wooden blinds were stripped out. The magnolia walls were given a coat of white paint. My 'new' studio once again oozed peace and tranquility.

I bought this whitewashed oak flooring very, very cheap in a sale and laid it myself. I bought two glass display cupboards for a steal in my local auction room, the one above I painted grey.

I arranged my workbench, tools and bits (including my 'This is my Happy Place' print especially done for me in pink by Snowden Design & Print). It has become a truly lovely work place. Importantly it also has space for me to run workshops again in the future. There's still more to do. I need to finish a bit of floor and install a longer workbench; but for now it's perfect. 

My dad bought me this little potted Christmas tree for the garden studio a couple of years ago, it moved house with us and it was lovely to bring it in to the new studio and decorate it.

Best of all, I get to look out the window, and see this sort of thing...

... Not bad hey? I'll leave you with a few more views from the studio window.