be proud of me, folks. stand up and applaud and cheer and stomp your feet and yell out accolades, which i will proudly accept because this - this! - was no small feat. i worked and toiled on both saturday and sunday, cussing and fretting and crawling under spaces, pulling furniture out and in, moving boxes here to there, filling FIVE large plastic bags of garbage to overflowing (don't ask), and standing in the middle of the room for more times than i care to admit and wailing, "where do i begin?!". it wasn't pretty. i was a mess, and my body at the end of yesterday, as the light begin to dim outdoors, was an aching lump of muscles that had not been used that way for years. but - and i exaggerate not when i tell you this - when i finished as much as i could for this stage (there is one wall left to conquer, and no, you will not be seeing photographs of it, i do have some smidgens left of pride inside of me), when i finished i stood back like a proud little girl, beaming, and blurted right out loud, "oh, i am just tickled pink!". this is not something i tend to say. pink is not a color with which i am enamored - but say it i truly did, and then noticed beyond the dark studio doors a glimmer of the sunset skies draping themselves across my living room windows. how wonderful - o! how wonderful.
i sat here and imagined showing a photograph of myself standing at the doorway of the studio, all dolled up in a 1950's taffeta dress, hand outstretched, beckoning you into the newly redecorated splendor of my workspace, and had to laugh. here i sit, in pajamas, black framed eyeglasses (as you see in the photo above), hair looking not much different than it did when i first got out of bed. i'm proud, though. the studio does look good. i can see the surface of my table for the first time since i moved here, 2 1/2 years ago. it's white, or a dirty cream, an old church table that i purchased for all of $7.00 a presbyterian rummage sale and then covered with pages torn from an old french/english dictionary. i never see that surface anymore - how lovely to see it now again, ready for action. ready for magic. ready for inspiration.
i've walked in that room countless times last night, and again this morning, just to stand and stare. it makes me feel good to see my familiar trimmings and trinkets lovingly arranged, as opposed to thrown in piles haphazardly, fabric with paper, sticks with beads, tangled beyond recognition. this vintage desktop calendar organizer now brings me enormous pleasure, holding as it does some of the sticks and dowels that i use in my artwork and jewelry. no longer are half of them on the floor, or mixed up in barkcloth and linen. i use a great deal of vintage ribbon in my work, and if you'll go back and look at the shelves to the left of my table in the previous post, you'll see a great writhing pile of minerva-like strands tumbling out and over and down to the floor. at least now, for this time being (shall we time it?), the ribbons are contained in an old amber glass jar, as well as in a little three drawered chest - that is, until the first time i need the snippet that is assuredly at the bottom of the assortment. you don't want to be here when that happens.
it's daylight now, and a sunny day, so it's hard to imagine the wonderful effect of all those tiny lights on the tree branches and the vines draped across the window and (mighty heavy) antique mirror i've hung to add more light on the wall behind my table. but seeing these lights makes me actually long for the first snowflakes of december, and cups of chai and my favorite classical music floating in through the door. my goodness. a minor miracle has occurred, then. i'm actually wanting to be there, in that dark little room, and begin to work my fingers like an elf far up at the north pole, nimbly fashioning magic into ornaments that will bring comfort and cheer to those who carry or wear them. i look around me and see little vignettes of magic - a house here, a gathering of tiny dollies there - and do indeed feel surrounded by stories and comfort and all things sweet and serene. as i should be, in the place where i work and create. what's wonderful to imagine is the stories these little dolls may carry from here to there with them, when they leave their world of tree branches and tiny white lights, and go out into the greater world beyond, sent out by someone who has given them the beginning of a story, and urged them to tell the rest to those who will wear them close to their heart.
so. now you have seen the bad, and the good. the mess, and the tidy results of a maddening weekend of cleaning, sorting, throwing away. rearranging, hanging, huffing, cussing, wailing, and finally, standing back in utter amazement and puffing up with pride and thanking myself for taking the time - making the time - to pull off such a monumental feat. remind me, won't you, from time to time, that this nice look is good? and that i need to strive to keep things at least halfway this way? xo