Tuesday, August 28, 2007


I've been working away at organizing my basement, which houses my studio. It's been a big mess for years. I'm a collector and I've dealt in collectibles in the past. When I closed my space in an antique mall about a century ago, I brought home a lot of stuff. I kept adding to it and my health was poor at the time and I just lost the will to organize. I'm happy to say that I'm now well on the way to a workable space that is much more pleasant. I got inspired last week to empty a bookcase in our TV room because it was just too crowded. I knew that the bookcase would be a good place to display my beautiful jars full of doo-dads. Since it was a run-of-the-mill Dania-issue 90's black bookcase, I thought I might be able to make it a little more "me". At first I thought I might take off the cardboard backing to the shelves and put in chicken wire. My partner, Herb, assured me that the backing, even though it was cardboard, was indeed lending structural integrity to the piece. I knew this shelf would be holding a lot of weight, so I went to Plan B. I have a lovely giant roll of brown kraft paper which I thought would look nice with a smudgy coat of white paint. I used a semi-gloss cream colored interior latex on the pieces of paper I measured to fit into the spaces above and below the permanent middle shelf. Even before that paint layer, which left some of the brown paper showing, was dry, I began painting on big brown swirls using craft paint. Nice! I knew I wanted another color, and I knew I wanted this to be a bold, graphic design, so the next swirls I added were black. I so loved what I'd done that I stood and admired my work for quite some time. I could have stopped there, but gold is just too tempting. I accented just a few swirls in each section and it was just the touch I was looking for. Up went the pieces, using carpet tape to adhere. In went the shelves and m-m-m-m. I love it. It was full in just a few moments and it's very pretty to look at. I have another shelf exactly like this one in my studio and it's stuffed with books and ephemera. I think it's going to be transformed next.

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