the details of design

First of all - thanks for all the great feedback I've received on my workshop studio!  It has been quite the labor of love and I'm thrilled with how it turned out...and can't wait for the art parties to begin (mmm...have you signed up yet...what are you waiting for?!  details HERE)

The best part of this project was using materials I had at hand or if needed, able purchase economically...my largest expense were the IKEA tables and chairs (2 tables and 8 chairs for less than $200...the chairs stack and the legs twist off from the table tops so both can moved when needed)

Many of the ideas in my workshop space are easy to replicate and I wanted to share the details with you...adapt as you want for your own use...if you can't make it to a workshop, I hope I can inspire you from afar...

Overall, two of my favorite words for this undertaking - conduit pipe!  

I knew that I would need to partition a section on each end of the room to have an area for storage...I have no garage so this basement has to store the lawnmower and garden tools as well as the Southern Man's bicycle.  I figured that I would hang a partition made from canvas drop cloths across the width of each end.  A curtain rod to cover this distance would easily cost $60... using two pieces of half-inch conduit pipe with a connector cost me a total of $3.75. Since the 9' x 12' drop cloths were already finished on all four sides, all I had to do was hem them to the length I needed; metal curtain rings clipped to the top required no sewing...slipped the rings onto the conduit pipe, secured the pipe to the ceiling at 4 locations using galvanized pipe brackets and it was done...
With the pipe I had leftover, I cut individual pieces to fit (with a pipe cutter - simple tool that is easy to use in cutting lightweight pipe) between two of the studs on the supply wall...each piece of pipe is held up by a large nail on each end that runs through the stud and into the pipe...

On one of the pipes I have rolls of tape and admission tickets; on the rest of the pipes I have tin cans hanging from S-hooks to organize supplies.  I love tin cans for organizing art supplies and tools - great patina, variety of sizes, and free - what's not to love!  A hole punched at the top (using a metal hole punch leaves a clean edge) enabled me to either hang from a hook or, in the case of the large cans, attach directly to the wall with a large nail.

With my power drill, I made two holes at each end of 5 vintage bread pans (picked up for 50 cents at an estate sale, grand total of $2.50) and then screwed each pan onto the wall for additional supply storage...

Right next to the bread pans are my paint can covers, which are now mini-message boards...and then the door stops that are now coat hooks...and three well-loved paint brushes that I thought were a fun accent to complement the can covers...

Along the other wall of the studio, there's a couple of unique display ideas...using a combination of quality wood frames I already owned paired with a few quirky metal accents make up this gallery display...a vintage skirt hanger makes changing out the art print a snap while a single rusty nail and a length of jute twine lets the wishbone show off its simple elegance...

Lighting for the space was a challenge...in terms of need and expense...while I primarily concentrated on lighting for the work tables, I found that there were dark spaces that prevailed even after I hung three 200 watt warehouse pendants.  I love the look of the current trend of bare edison bulbs hanging haphazardly in a space...but the initial lights I found were $40 (and others I found were more expensive...)  My solution...I removed the metal shade and clamp mechanism from an $8 work lamp...added an vintage-style bulb ($7 - when you get a real "edison" bulb, the price goes up) and draped the fixture over one of the ceiling rafters...a metal cage picked up for $3 at an antique show is the extra bling...

And lastly...a few ideas from my welcome table...the wire stand from a metal cone food mill is the perfect pedestal for a stack of dessert plates...while an old metal brush holds an art photo...

Other ideas that you might have gleaned from the overall photos in my Reveal post...baby crib mattress springs offer visual interest behind hanging artwork...old metal waste paper baskets hold wallpaper rolls, galvanized metal panels covered with vintage book pages disguise the opening for the furnace...and oh yes, those polka dotted boxes...that's my IKEA hack...details in my next post...

joining the Junk Party over at Funky Junk Interiors where there's a theme of salvaged workshop spaces...


  1. Amazing! I am always fascinated with the many ways you repurpose. An inspiration indeed! (You must wander the aisles at Lowes during your breaks just looking for ideas...I know I do when I go to our local store!)

  2. I love all the repurposed organizers!!! Each element looks like it was made to be part of the scene. You have a keen eye for style (and you're not afraid to edit).

  3. Absolutely wonderful! Love all the re-purpose ideas! Nicely done!

  4. I think Martha Stewart should come for a visit. I love this space that you have created. :-)

  5. So COOL! I like the paint can lids!

  6. So cool and creative Amy, but the best part is your generosity in sharing with us, Thank you!

    And, fyi, for some reason the photo after "Right next to the bread pans are my paint can covers, which are now mini-message boards...and then the door stops that are now coat hooks...and three well-loved paint brushes that I thought were a fun accent to complement the can covers...
    " didn't show up on my screen, but I tired to use my imagination! ;o)

  7. What a beautiful and fun filled space. I can only imagine how wonderful it is to create in! How delightfully creative you were in all of its makings. Congratulations on such a wonderful and creative space!

  8. I have a laundry room that doubles as a place to store my hoard, I mean my decorative items. I am going to use your idea to make curtains and hide everything . Thanks!

  9. Oh how fantastic, thanks for sharing your ideas and I love, love, love the old bread pans and I (sad to admit) didn't even notice them in your prior post. My eyes were flitting all over the place just basking in all your creativity. thanks again for being so generous with your ideas. Blessings and smiles, Emilou :-)

  10. So much great creativity in this space, Amy...how fun!

  11. I love, love, love how you re-purposed the items in work space!!!!!!! Ingenious!!!!

  12. Amy,
    You are brilliant! I love this new space you have created to share with others. So many cool ideas, my hands down favorite are the mini paint can lid message boards, going to steal that one from you to use with my magnetic poetry in a jar, perfect size for playing with mini words. Thank you for sharing!

  13. I love all your great upcycled storage ideas, Amy.

  14. What a wonderland of creative energy! I wish I lived nearby so I could join in.


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