I came back from Connecticut in a fantastic, relaxed, happy mood…until I walked in the door of my house. It is so hideous, so cluttered, so full of crap, with ugly mismatched furniture, no art on the walls…To make me even more miserable, my office/den/craftroom/bedroom was equally horrific. I immediately went from happy and excited to miserable and depressed.
Spending a week with my artist/goddess/friend was ultimately inspiring. Three days ago, I stopped whining and thought, I can do this. I woke up on Thursday morning and scoured Craigslist. Although I am still dedicated to spending as little money as possible, I can pull off a lot on a tiny budget. It doesn’t hurt that I live in Garage Sale central.
On Thursday, I found a little four shelf cabinet, much like a lawyer style bookcase, but the top shelf has two tiny doors. It’s cute as a button, and perfect for all my “specialty” yarn; glitter, fluffy, furry stuff that I generally use for accenting projects because they are too much of a pain in the ass to crochet an entire project with them. However, they are beautiful skeins and deserve to be shown off. I love yarn, I love touching yarn, I love looking at yarn. To me, yarn is, in and of itself, art. Seeing my yarn on display makes me happy. So yes, $30 can buy happiness.
It fit perfectly in front of my fireplace (hello, south Texas…I can use that fireplace twice a year, and I refuse to lose the wall space!). Next to it, I put a Closetmaid cabinet from Target, and the matching two drawer unit that stacks on top. Now my fireplace is covered so only the brick wall shows, and I have more storage space. Cost? $0. They were just taking up space in the living room and the back porch.
A had an IKEA coat rack that was in the shed, so that came out and fit perfectly, down to the millimeter, on the wall next to my fireplace. I had five pretty, daisy embossed metal pails, so I put all of my jewelry tools in two of them, long bead tubes in another, with pens and pencils in the last two, then hung them on the coat rack hooks. As soon as I can find a small phillips head screwdriver amongst the mess, I will hang my rolls of wire from the hang rod. On top, I put a few IKEA magazine holders that I covered in scrapbook paper, and a purple wicker box that I’ve had forever. Cost? $0. I already had it all.
Under the coat rack, I placed the sewing machine cabinet that a friend had scavenged from the side of the road for me, months ago. It has four little drawers down one side, so in the top drawer, I put my dremel that I use for cutting my chain maille rings, and the guide that I bought to hold the wire so it can be cut. A very cute, vintage “desk” that I can use when I make jewelry. Cost? $0
While hitting the garage sales on Friday, I found a cool wood cabinet that matches the sewing desk perfectly. It will eventually be attached to the wall, but for the moment, it is resting on top of the desk. It looks a little like a dartboard cabinet, but inside it has lots of tiny shelves, much like a spice rack. I put my spooled wire in it, and will eventually have all my jewelry findings and charms in there, too. Cost? $5.
On top of the cabinet is a long, narrow wire basket. It is perfect for holding all my small tubes of beads. The top of the basket has circular loops all around the edge, and looks perfect with the looped tube stoppers that the tubes hang from in the store. I feel the same way about beads as I do about yarn, so seeing them on display, like a piece of art…it also makes me happy. Cost? .50¢
The huge splurge of the weekend was a comfy chair and ottoman that I found at the last garage sale. I hadn’t planned to buy a chair, but once I sat in it and put up my feet, I didn’t want to move. It is the perfect chair for crocheting, reading, or having a glass of wine while flipping through craft magazines. My neighbor happened to be outside when we pulled into our drive after the morning garage sale run. We drive a Camry. Our plan was to unpack the car, then go back and somehow get that chair strapped to the car. However, my neighbor owns a truck. We’ve lived here for almost a year now, and he and his wife are always waving and saying hello when we get home. Even though I don’t know him very well, I asked if he would mind taking me to pick up the chair, since it was just a couple of streets over. He was more than happy to oblige. So not only did I get a chair, I had the chance to get to know my neighbor a little better. Chair cost? $30…and worth every penny.
Along the garage sale way, I picked up some framed art that has a cottage feel, a tiny black laptop desk that’s super adjustable, and a few small knick knacks. I even found some Ball jars that I intend to fill with more beads, once the pickled smell is gone. My total budget for the day? $50, including the chair. Now one side of my room is clear and adorable, minus paint. However, my artist/goddess/friend is coming down for two weeks to help me decorate. She is a whiz with paint, so I’m leaving that to her. In spite of the missing paint, that wall is the beginning of my happy place.
“I have been asleep so long now, all locked up without a key. I have tapped my feet, impatient for a change to come to me.
I’ve been hanging my hair outside of this tower, waiting for a savior when all along I had the power to save myself.
And I can tell it’s gonna be a better day. I think I’m gonna be okay.
Got a little air to breathe. It’s allright with me. I got a little light to shine. You can’t take what’s mine.
I’ve been down so low, nowhere but up to go, so go ahead, bring on the rain…It’s gonna be a better day.”