Ever since we moved into this house SEVEN years ago, I have intended to make a corner of the basement into a craft room, where I could keep all my supplies, spread out projects, and find inspiration. But instead it turned into–well, if you have a basement you know exactly what it turned into–a Subterranean Landfill. In spite of a big table, and plenty of light, I would lug my sewing machine upstairs whenever I wanted to use it, because every surface of my basement corner was covered with junk. But I finally got motivated.
This half of our basement was finished when we moved in, with new carpet but also funky old paneling on the walls and acoustic tiles on the ceiling. We are the only ones that go down there, and so it doesn’t make sense for us to spend the money to really re-do it, and it’s a perfectly decent workspace as is. We put in good, energy efficient windows from a salvage yard to keep the room warmer. It is a long and narrow space, so we decided to split it down the middle. Tom gets the back for his Man Cave (yes, he is at this very moment shopping Goodwill for a Levitz-style recliner), and I get the front for my craft room.
I didn’t buy any furniture–everything in the room I begged, stole, re-discovered, or re-purposed. For organizational supplies, curtains, and lighting, I coupled all of the above with a judicious trip to Ikea, and spent less than $100 total.
A light curtain divides the space (I don’t want to actually see Tom’s recliner!). The curtain panels came in pairs (FAR cheaper at Ikea than if I had bought fabric and made them myself), and I only needed three panels, so cut the fourth in half and hemmed it for window curtains.
This nice work table used to be for computer work, so it has a keyboard drawer which I use for easy access to the things I constantly need. Thin, plastic placemats on the drawer and table protect the unfinished surfaces from gluing and rubber stamp projects.
I had to take my own neuroses into account: I don’t like plastic bins, and I don’t like supplies hanging on the wall from pegboards–though I know people make good use of such things, they make me feel unsettled and cluttery. So I use thrifted baskets, mason jars from the pantry, and Ikea boxes for storage. My upstairs writing studio (which I will post about soon) is more girly-pretty with lots of sage greens and rose, and I practically live in that room, so I wanted bolder accent colors here–the black and white curtains, grass green, orange, sunny yellow.
This little table has been around the family since before I was born. I used a sample bottle of sunflower-yellow paint to brighten it up.
I’m thrilled. Let the inspiration begin!!
Do you have a version of the Subterranean Landfill just waiting for recovery? What will you do with it?
(A few current-favorite craft books on the shelf: The Black Apple’s unique and wondrous Paperdoll Primer, Esther K. Smith’s How to Make Books, and Tracy Whelan’s new Sew What You Love.)