Sweat Dec

 

So about that radio silence last week, between the blood moon eclipse, Mercury in retrograde, Jared’s birthday, and getting a call for set work it’s been a crazy week to say the least.  We threw a little party to celebrate on the 21st, and it has been nonstop chaos since. 

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My Life: Purses and Cardigans, Boots and Tool Belts

Wednesday I got a call for some set dec (set decoration) work, the first union job prospect I’ve had since January. I immediately went into panic mode rushing to get all my tools together in my kit and prepped for the intense day ahead. 

Set dressing is a great way to make some major money quickly, but you definitely earn it. It’s usually 12 hour days loading furniture items (or anything from appliances to tires, even coffins) and transporting them to and from each location which invariably will be out in the sun or a musty unair-conditioned space. Its rough work especially in the  Georgia summer heat, but if you get on a good crew it makes it a little more bearable. I can’t go into detail about what I’ve been doing for the last three days on set (signed a non-disclosure agreement) but I can promise you I’ve been sweating and wishing I had gotten more done in my studio when I had the chance.

Sometimes when I’m riding in the 5 ton box truck (if I’m not grabbing a quick nap) I try to write plans for what I’m going to do in the studio next. I managed to jot down a few things Thursday but quickly lost the brain power to do anything but schlep set dressing.

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American made Chippewa 8″ waterproof steel-toe logger boot

 My first day off Sunday I had to push back the studio time too because I absolutely had to get better work clothes and some new insoles for my boots. My feet have not been happy even in my awesome work boots, and ibuprofen was not helping me get through the day. I probably just blew through the money I just earned, but no regrets here because anything that makes working in 90+ degree weather slightly easier is definitely worth it.

That’s my life update, now I’m gonna try to go bust out some art in the studio while I still have time off!

 

Sad Trombone

So this was going to be a long elaborate post detailing my process for creating an illustration for my friend, but now it is a going to be a less elaborate post on why that isn’t happening.

Since I last posted Jared and I (mostly Jared) spent a week building a miniature interior of a house as a special effect for a film shoot. Like with any project we take on- it completely wrecked the house. I spent the next week trying to wrangle some laundry, clean up, and get my truck maintenanced while Jared was at a new model building job. With every step that feels like progress several steps back are required.

I haven’t been in the studio since working on the that one painting for my friend. The art guilt is just hits me in stacks, like the dishes that need to be cleaned, or the laundry piles that need addressing. It’s hard for me to concentrate on art when other to do lists are weighing on my shoulders.

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One day this space will be usable.

I did get the dishes done, the laundry wrangled (though a new crop of clothes beckons), and I took care of my truck with all the extra stuff the mechanics found wrong with it ($$$). I am working on getting my office (sewing room, framing room-not paint room) together so I can tackle other projects I have had on the back burner. I even made myself sit down and work in my planner to figure out how to bring some order back to my life.

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Planner work with washi tape!

And then last night we discovered the kitchen sink was leaky.

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*Womp womp*

Well more or less busted and we aren’t really sure how long it has been going on either but judging from the black rotty look of the cabinet it has probably been a good minute. The piping doesn’t seem to be cut right and as a result one of the pipes has detached from its connection, at least that is what I assume is happening- in my very unprofessional opinion. Our leasing office has been notified and we will soon have maintenance out to fix it.

I going to continue to try to keep a better schedule with posting and writing and working on art. I can’t let a moldy, leaky sink or an expensive truck check up or a broken french press (oh yeah that happened too, my fault though) keep me from my goals! Stay tuned loyal reader (hi Mom!) I will have more to share.

Best laid plans.

Excuse my French, but ding dang darn doodly, this past week has been crazy: we drove home from our trip to the mountains, painted and decorated a room in senior living facility, and I made a painting for my friend’s book cover.

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4.5 days later we have a whole new space

So let me backup a little and explain.

BEIGE

BEIGE

Recently, my mother asked for help with furnishing a space for her adoptive aunt, who was to be moved into an elderly living facility. Recently as in three months ago – there have been some technical difficulties. Things finally started moving and Jared and I got the green light to work on the room, which happened to be the day before the trip we had planned for our anniversary. We had already done so much prep work in the previous months – designing layout, gathering furniture and decor items, picking out paint colors – that we figured the 5 days we had to work in the room should be plenty of time to get it all together before my great Aunt moved in.

so much beige!

Beige nightmare

Spoilers: we were still decorating when she arrived. This worked out though, as she seemed enjoy all the bustle happening around her.

Like most of my carefully detailed and thought-through plans, I may have been a smidge bit over ambitious with this project. I had a master list so what could possibly go wrong?

hustle! hustle! hustle!

The studio *was* clean

Well, while chatting with my friend I remembered promising him a piece of art for a book he would be selling at a convention and, as it turns out, his deadline for getting his book to the printers was quickly approaching, so there went 24 hours. Also, it took the better part of five days to finish painting the room after I had planned on it taking maybe 7-8 hours tops. My project list quickly became less manageable:

  • Paint the room and the bathroom
  • Upgrade a simple Ikea night stand with paint and stain
  • Upgrade Ikea bed frame with wood stain and build a padded headboard
  • Paint couch sourced from goodwill to bring it from an intense floral to a soft neutral
  • Sew some pillows for the couch in matching fabric from the headboard
  • Create a backdrop focal point over the bed
  • Make some decorative art for the room
  • Arrange a gallery wall of art and objects from her home
  • Upcycle a large wall clock with clearer numerals
  • Sew curtain valances and an under sink curtain
  • Install easy lift, light filtering shades for the windows
  • Plants for the windowsills
  • Add lights to closets and kitchenette
  • Put all lamps on a remote power switch
  • Build a simple desk/table
  • Anything else I can think of

The highlighted bits describe the timeline:

Green is a task we handled before we even got into the room,

Blue is a task we worked on in the room before my aunt arrived,

Red is something we did day of or after she got there, and

un-highlighted things we have yet to do.

Strike through portions are things that I decided to pass on / weren’t going to work out.

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ahhhhhhhh.

Despite the chaos, what came together is quite lovely. My Aunt is an incredibly sweet and feisty lady with a unique personal style I have always admired. She spent a large part of her life working in Africa and I am so glad I was able to  incorporate her aesthetic and items into the room. With my mom benefacting the venture (within a reasonable budget), I was able to gather and thrift the rest of the furniture items and work on them to fit my Aunt’s style. Even though I didn’t get everything done that I wanted, the space we created for her was exactly what it needed to be: a breath of fresh air and a cozy place for her and memorable items from her home.

I really enjoyed the process of designing, even with the bits of chaos in between. I am incredibly proud of what was accomplished and my aunt seemed to enjoy her new space as well. I have several diy project tutorials to share now as well, so stay tuned!

Along with leaving no fibers behind, Wooster roller brushes make excellent pillows.

How tired am I? 10. Ten tireds.