Studo Conversion Day 1 – We’re Off…!!!

 Yes – the time has finally arrived and work started on Studio THEA today which is great as I was beginning to think I was dreaming it all! Nothing very interesting to show at this point though. This is how things looked when I woke up at the crack of dawn – Christmas has nothing on this you know…

 And this is how it looks at the end of the day…

Much the same but with some tools I hear you say. Well, yes but there has definitely been some activity – I know because my ears are still ringing from the pneumatic drilling that made the entire house shake. The cat has taken refuge in a padded cell in the wardrobe and I might just join her if there’s any more of it to come! As a result of all that drilling we now have the footing for the new wall…

And a big bag of waste – not the last I’m sure.

I was quite surprised when the electrician turned up but is seems he has a busy week so we had to grab him while we could even if it was day one – no argument from me as there’s nothing worse than coming to a halt because you’re waiting on a specialist. Consequently there are also now lots of holes in the ceiling (more drilling!) and lots of cables waiting to be run behind plaster board and under floors.

So as you can see we are well and truly underway – the bricks are coming tomorrow and the window arrives on Thursday and then it will begin to look like something is happening. It won’t start to look like a studio until well into next week but I will post regularly to show you what’s going on. I’ll also set up a dedicated blog page so that all the posts can be read together.

OK – I’m off to remove a film of dust from the kitchen so I can prepare an edible dinner!

Back soon.


Lesley

Ready for Action…

Operation studio is almost underway and the finalised start date is 30th May…next Thursday…less than 6 days away!!! Can you tell I’m excited….

The garage was cleared today and and all that’s left is my firing kit and a few odds and ends that I need to find temporary homes for.

This works out quite well as I still have a few things to fire for a consignment which I can do over the next few days but then I will be packing the kiln away for a well deserved rest. While the builders are in I’ll be catching up with some jewellery making and hopefully dreaming up some new ideas to get to work on once I’m settled in my new home.

And of course I’ll be blogging regularly on the evolution of Studio THEA so you’ll be able to see how this unprepossessing space develops and how over excited I get!

It’s the spring bank holiday weekend in the UK and I believe it’s Memorial weekend in the US so I hope you all have something lovely planned and have a really great time.


Lesley

This Weeks News…

Finally! The news I’ve been waiting for…planning permission for my garage conversion was granted on Wednesday and I now have a start date of May 27th, just ten days away – yippee! Which means of course that I will be spending part of the weekend sorting out this mess although, having had a false start it’s not as bad as it was.

I’m quite conscious that under those empty boxes are a lot more full of perfectly usable household items and clothing which have ‘somehow’ accumulated but which I just don’t need. I don’t have the time or resource to deal with this myself at the moment but hate the thought of it going to waste so I’m using an local ‘Eco Clearance’ company who aim to recycle and redistribute as much as they can to the most appropriate area which will leave me with a clear conscience at the same time. Then we get get down to the business of turning it into something a bit more like this…

I’ve still got lots of decisions to make about things like flooring, wall tiles and paint but I think I need to get a feel for the space before I can do that properly. Needless to say excitement is mounting.

I’ve been building  a log list of things to I need for the new work space when it’s finished but I haven’t been able to resist buying a couple of new toys already, the first being this Silhouette Cameo Die Cutter. It’s widely used for sign making and paper crafts but thanks to some very inspirational people in the field I’ve discovered it can also be used to create beautiful jewellery.

Caroline Dewison of Blueberri Beads has designed some beautiful etched pieces using vinyl cut on the Cameo  which achieves a much crisper edge than many other methods.

And Wanaree Tanner, doyenne of the metal clay world has developed a process for using it with sheets of dry metal clay to produce gorgeous cut out work. Check out their work and you’ll see why I just had to have one of these.

Photo by Wanaree Tanner

I’ve also treated myself to this little bench polisher. I’ve always done a lot of my finishing by hand but when I was preparing for the Big Bead show I started getting pains in my hands from the sheer volume of repetitive work and I’ve noticed that I can’t do as much now without my hands beginning to twinge. Obviously it would be a disaster if I couldn’t work because of this so it seemed that this would be a sensible investment.

I haven’t tried either of these gadgets out yet but the Cameo will be trialed on some display cards I need to make for a consignment of components I’ll be sending off to a Bricks and Mortar bead shop in the next few weeks (more of that in a future post) – cheaper to practice on card than clay methinks!. As for the polisher, I’m sure it won’t be too long before that gets a spin…I just need to find it a temporary home.

Something else I’ve been doing this week is making a bit more jewellery and I’m really enjoying it since I’ve been so consumed with the component side of things it’s great to have a bit of a change. My jewellery shop has also been a little neglected of late so I’ve been trying to make some new stock and use my own components more…not always easy when you have a huge stash of other peoples gorgeous goodies.

I will also be concentrating on jewellery whilst the building work is being done as it’s going to be difficult to do much component making. This means there will be no major THEA too updates until after the studio is complete but the shop is well stocked so there is still plenty to choose from. Likewise I won’t be able to make custom orders but am happy to take them for completion in the latter half of June.

Another little bit of excitement for me will be the publication of my first project piece in the June edition of ‘Making Jewellery’ which hits the shops on May 30th. I can’t show you what it is yet but of course I’ll post some pictures when it’s published…It’s a bumper issue with 100 project so worth a look.

Well that ‘s my news for the week..things are about to get a little hectic as you can see but while the building work is going on I will be writing regular posts to show you how it’s progressing so watch this space.

Have a fantastic weekend.

Lesley