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5.01.2020

colorful office may-keover

art, Blast from the Past, color, color palettes, crafting, creative spaces, DIY, diy decorating, fast cheap and easy, inspiration, makeover, neutrals, room makeovers, style, weekend makeover, What Matters, home decor, office decor, colorful decor
i thought i'd start off the month with a #MAYkeover story!
a week ago, i undertook a massive purge / cleaning/ reorganization of my studio/office.
while it has needed a deep clean for over six months just to get rid of things i don't use anymore,
the truth is that this project was the result of color overload...

before we talk about how my creative space ended up having a BAD effect on me,
we need to go back a bit... to my 'neutral phase'....
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you've seen my neutral-tone studio that i created in my farmhouse on an island.
i loved that peaceful, serene room that allowed me to focus on my work,
and for over a decade now, i've embraced neutrals as the basis of my home decor.
sure, i sometimes add a small 'pop' of color each season to the porch or other rooms -
but i've kept my creative workspace neutral. it worked in the past, so i stuck with it.
until i realized something about myself...

continue reading for the story of how i got from there, to here, and what happened in between!
early in the fall of 2019, i had an epiphany about my creativity: i was not feeding it.
i was not filling my brain and my eyes and my imagination with things that inspired me.
i wasn't playing. and play is necessary for creativity.
office decor, home decor, creative spaces, diy decorating, vintage style, vintage, repurposed, upcycled, salvaged, thrifted, diy decor, neutral decor, weekend makeover, #MAYkeovers, color palettes, room makeovers
i was sitting in an office/studio that was neutral and warm and comfortable and cozy.
(not the one pictured, but a similar vintage-style neutral setup)
it was beautiful. but it was BLAND. and so was my creativity - 'meh'.
and it suddenly dawned on me that although i had worked with color in my projects for years,
what was missing in my creative space on a daily basis was COLOR!

as a result, i set out to embrace color in the room where my creativity has space to grow.
so last September, i literally dug through EVERY decor box & bin in the garage,
unearthed elements in every color of the rainbow, stored away for various seasons,
and proceeded to put them in my office. everywhere in my office:
art, Blast from the Past, color, color palettes, crafting, creative spaces, DIY, diy decorating, fast cheap and easy, inspiration, makeover, neutrals, room makeovers, style, weekend makeover, What Matters, home decor, office decor, colorful decor
WOW! the color-bombed result was FUN and energetic and whimsical and made me smile.
and starting last fall, my creativity and imagination went into overdrive.

until.... quarantine2020.
like all of you, i've been spending a LOT more time at home for the past two months.
that means more time in my small studio. not a bad thing...
but  i realized that while i was still creating,
i suddenly found myself overwhelmed with constant visual stimulation. 
there wasn't a spot for my eye to rest.
while increased creativity is a positive thing, feeling hemmed in by STUFF isn't -
so i needed to come up with solutions to 'corral the clutter and color'. quickly.
(i think this is why most people don't use color in their homes. it can get overwhelming fast.)

for two long days, i emptied, purged, cleaned, rearranged, and reorganized my space.
on day three, i brought back in the colorful stuff. but i displayed it differently this time...
rather than a hodgepodge explosion of color everywhere, i was purposeful.

i decided to make use of a practice that we utilized in merchandising at Disneyland:
'color order'. Red-Orange-Yellow-Green-Blue-Purple-Pink. or 'rainbow order', if you prefer.
also known as ROYGBIV (and i add 'P' to the end, for pink!).
by employing this method in my visible storage areas, i was able to control the color chaos:
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by grouping like items by color on shelves and combining collections by color not subject,
i was able to overcome the visual cacophony that was OVERstimulating my brain.
other storage areas got 'the rainbow treatment', too -
books stacked next to and on the credenza, and my craft supplies, are also arranged by color.
the funny part? there are actually MORE colorful accents in the room now than before!
because i grouped them, they appear more orderly and calm to my eye - and mind.

the color now inspires me, makes me smile, and fuels my creative eye without overwhelming me.

by creating some areas of 'white space' in the room
(the neutral bare wall space, my giant white wood gate and other white doors),
 i was able to give my eye a resting spot between those colorful areas.
my view from my desk shows the 'white space' that i see, along with the color:
art, Blast from the Past, color, color palettes, crafting, creative spaces, DIY, diy decorating, fast cheap and easy, inspiration, makeover, neutrals, room makeovers, style, weekend makeover, What Matters, home decor, office decor, colorful decor
the result? order restored + creativity-inspiring color retained!
color makes me happy, and now my creative space does, too!
(fave Insta tag: #colormakesmehappy

after i shared one of my new office decor projects on Insta, 
i received the most wonderful comment...
a sweet gal said that my recent posts remind her of the little shop i had over 20 years ago.
she shared how much she loved to visit it, and her kind words took me back in time
to a place filled with hand-painted products that my husband and i designed & made: 
furniture, handcrafted rocking horses, art, and decor accessories (including painted tin can pails)
it was a tiny little shop, but it was loaded with bright happy color that i painted on everything

i have been thinking a lot about that shop, and how much i loved it, 
loved creating products for it, loved painting custom art for clients...
how happy that work made me. how happy COLOR made me.
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when i walk into this room now, i feel HAPPY! 
and if you go back to my post about my Word for the Year 2020...
yup. HAPPY. and HOME. Happy Home. it's a leitmotif in my life this year, apparently.

with a 'Stay At Home' Order in effect around the world,
i'm paying attention to what i CAN do about my environment and my actions.
'making home happy' is part of that focus for me.
perhaps in our world today, we're all looking for a little bit of happy...

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