A room of my own

I’m so excited about the studio space in the garage. We’re (or I should say Pk and our contractor Sean) are still doing some framing so the space is quite rough. I’ve been gathering up inspiration images to show them so we’re all on the same page as we go forward. Right now we are reframing the interior so that we can add more space for insulation and make the structure stronger. The garage is original to the house but has had new siding relatively recently. Rather than knock it down and start fresh (which would be a zoning nightmare) we are adding new framing and shoring the structure up from the inside.
We plan to leave the ceiling vaulted like in the above pics and add 4 large skylights. There will be a big window looking into the backyard. Once it’s insulated we’ll sheath the walls in plywood (instead of drywall) and paint the whole space white. Kind of like this, but painted.
Plywood walls are great in work space because you can hang stuff anywhere you want.
The original electric to the garage was super scary overhead lines (think fried squirrels) that we tore down before we moved in. Last year in 2011 we trenched to bury electric and plumbing lines.The space will be plumbed for a sink, a must in a ceramics studio, and we will add special circuits for the kiln and heating/ac unit.
One side (the side with the carriage doors) will have a storage loft for household items. All the other studio furniture (my wheel, tables, cabinets, shelving) is stuff we already own that’s been living in our storage locker. It’s all portable so the furniture can come with us if we move (and the space can easily convert back to a swanky garage.) We may have to add some cabinetry for all of our house tools that will also live out there, freeing up space in the basement.
We’ll be adding a wood stove that we already own to heat the space as well as an electric heating/AC unit so it’s comfy year round.
The floor of the garage is already a cement slab, and I don’t want to do anything to alter that since the space should technically stay a garage if we ever sell. I’m thinking about maybe adding some removable rubber or cork floating floor tiles to add some cushion and insulation though. Whatever we use needs to be able to be mopped.
For lighting I’m thinking six large industrial pendants in white, maybe these? I’ll probably add some task lamps too.
That’s the plan folks! I’m positively giddy at the thought of having studio space again. I haven’t since Lucinda was born and we moved out of old house. The garage studio will basically quadruple the amount of space I used to have. I expect this project will take a few more months depending on Sean’s schedule. He’ll be custom building carriage doors for us out of cedar. That way we don’t lose any space inside the garage to garage door track and it will bump up our curb appeal tremendously. More to come as this project continues!
Happy Monday

this is real purty.

I can’t stop thinking about this whimsical wallpaper mural I spotted on Anthropologie’s website.

It’s by the artist Rebecca Rebouche. I think it would be totally perfect in a child’s playroom. It would be an amazing backdrop for creative play,  inspired by the dreamy landscape she’s created.


Anthropologie also is carrying a dinnerware line based on her work and I love the saturated colors. They are lovely (and on sale!)

Find more of her work in her Etsy store.

oooooh. pretty.

Do you read Elle Decor? I’m always so pleased when my favorite things converge, so I was happy to see a lovely feature article on the work of the potter Lucie Rie in Elle Decor May issue. Rie is, hands down, one of my very most favorite ceramic artists.

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images via Gallerie Besson

Her pieces are so elegant and strong, and her textured glaze work is positively luscious. There is a very strong graphic element to the surfaces, yet the forms are very feminine and refined at the same time.

Rie passed away in 1995 and her work has become increasingly collectible (and definitely far out of reach for yours truly and I’m guessing, most of you.) Thankfully, its popularity means that there are often shows featuring her work and it’s heavily catalogued. A really intriguing and thorough history of her life and work can be found here. Elle Decor’s May issue hits newsstands April 17th.


Don Squirrelio returns.

So, I consider myself an animal lover. I’ve always had pets, enjoyed other people’s pets, and generally admired the animal kingdom in all its wonder. No longer.

Friends, I have reached my limit of animal loving. We have squirrels living in the roof above our second floor bathroom. Not just living, partying. All. Night. Long. These are some uppity mother truckers if I do say so myself. There is nothing more disconcerting than hearing a squirrel scratching at the drywall just next your head while you reach for the shampoo. We finally added an access hatch to our attic, so this weekend, without pity or mercy, we will be depositing a bucket of poison in the attic, in the hope that our furry friends will vacate the premises.

I know, I’m heartless, but we’ve already rescued them twice, by cutting  a HUGE hole in the wall of bathroom and leaving an open window to allow them to escape. The stubborn little bastards returned, and enlarged their entrance hole in our roof. Jerks. So I’m going to be cruel and use poison and quick dial a roofer to patch things up once they are gone.  Hopefully I’ll find some way  to patch up my guilty heart.

I much prefer this type of squirrel…

I spotted these mugs in this months Real Simple. They are ever so clever, and not too pricey for the animal lover on your gift list.

I think the fawn is my favorite. Porcelain perfection.

Find them here.

Have you had to deal with any furry infestations?



Jennifer Allen Ceramics

I wanted to share some images of work by a very talented ceramic artist – Jennifer Allen . Her work blows me away, not because it’s necessarily my style, but because the detail and glaze-work are amazing…

One of the things that I love so much about ceramics is the elevation of mundane objects to works of art. I think her work demonstrates that concept beautifully. It’s a quality I hope for in my own work, although I approach it a bit differently. There is a lovely attention to detail and form in these pieces. It’s not just decoration applied to a vessel; in Jennifer Allen’s work the wheel thrown and altered pot and the intricate glaze work are integral. Her unique handwork translates to the finished piece, lending them a kind of intimacy.

The last paragraph of her artist statement is wonderful.

“Determined to keep “handmade” an essential part of the contemporary home, my ongoing focus is to reinforce personal sentiments of beauty, joy, nourishment and celebration through porcelain tableware. Whether it’s a festive meal shared by many or a cup of hot cocoa indulged by one, I remain motivated by moments when pottery is in use. By making thoughtful, useful handcrafted pottery for the domestic landscape, I am inspired to enhance the home, engage the hand, and nourish the spirit.”

I couldn’t have said it better.

What are you all up to on this rainy Sunday? Pk is filling in the trench to the garage (in the pouring rain no less.) He’s leaving for a week long trip tonight. 4 countries in 7 days. I’m amazed by him. And, of course, terribly lonely when he’s gone. Sigh. Hopefully I can whip this messy house into shape while he’s gone.

xoxo, H



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