For the past 3 or 4 weeks, my house has been in turmoil while we build a sewing studio in the basement. Although I’m thrilled and looking forward to having a new spacious “playroom”, I miss having quiet time to relax and be creative.
This forced sebatical has made me realize that my mood and emotional stability is largely dependent on having art as an outlet. The closest I’ve come to working was spending the weekend painting… No, not a landscape or abstract oil on canvas. More like 2 coats of primer and 2 coats of paint on the ceiling and walls.
I’ve realized that even though my sewing machine and fabrics are still here & available for use, I just can’t concentrate with all this stuff going on. It’s “cluttered house; cluttered mind”. I really need organization and quiet in order to do my best work. Some people thrive on chaos. I’ve realized I am NOT one of those people. And by the time we’re done building, painting or running back & forth to Home Depot, I’m just too exhausted to think.
This experience has raised my level of anxiety and really made me quite irritable. I’m trying to keep things in perspective and not freak out. Of course I’ll be back to work soon; it’s not the end of the world. But emotionally, I miss my creative time like I would miss a good friend.
In desperation or maybe displaced anxiety, I have taken to making numerous detailed sketches of what my work room will look like when it’s done. I’ve started taking the graph paper, ruler and labels a little too far. As my husband noted “Do you really need to draw the box of dryer sheets on the shelf? What is that, a pegboard? Do you have to draw out every single one of your tools?” No, I don’t. But it’s something to do. I can’t concentrate enough to draw a still life, so I’m trying to go with the flow & live in the home-improvement-design-construction moment.
Have you ever been “cut off” from your creative outlet without warning? What did you learn from the experience?
See below for a few pictures of my work-in-progress…
images below: we’ve painted the ceiling and walls, and installed a wanescoating panel behind the work sink. A small area of vinyl tile covers the floor under the sink and washer/dryer (installed it myself!) Now we’re working on finishing some of the built in shelves.
Left: using painter’s tape, I mapped out on the floor where my sewing desk and machines might be placed. After that, we’ll install pendants for task lighting. A decorative dressing screen will hide that water pipe.
Once all the junk is off the floor, I think it will be a nice place to work!