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Friday, July 12, 2013

Where this blogger creates!

I'm thrilled to participate in Karen Valentine's "Where Bloggers Create" event for 2013. Click on the logo on the right to visit My Desert Cottage to see all the creative spaces featured!

When my antique card catalog cabinets and art supplies threatened to take over the guest room, the kitchen, the den and -- frankly, our whole house! -- my husband suggested we add a room to our home.  We built my dream studio off our dining room --  with high ceilings, lots of windows, and an exposed brick wall (the one that used to be the outside of our house!)

I'm excited about giving you a peek into my happy place.

Below is one of my most treasured furniture pieces, an oak 42-drawer apothecary cabinet. On top is an antique display case with sliding glass doors.  Here it has some of my rubber stamps, but sometimes it showcases a collection of vintage art supplies. It's fun to change it out. On top of the showcase I keep art parts such as Scrabble tiles, Bingo numbers, and other game pieces in vintage jars.

Antique apothecary cabinet, showcase and vintage jars for game pieces and supplies.

To the left of the apothecary cabinet is a vintage oak postal cabinet designed to store postal forms. Instead of drawers that pull out, these panels lift upward like a roll-top desk to reveal what's inside. In these spaces, I use acrylic picture frames as trays for rubber stamps, filed by subject.

Vintage postal cabinet stores rubber stamps by subject

I'm very fond of card catalog drawers -- they're great for organizing small items like office supplies, art supplies, and small tools. I've been lucky to find several card catalog cabinets over the years, and I have put them to good use.

Vintage card catalog cabinets hold small tools, supplies

The postal cabinet below is one of my favorites because the drawers are large and deep, and because it began as a dull, dry, ugly cabinet and I brought it back to life with lots of furniture oil, elbow grease, and help.  In a photo, it looks like a card catalog cabinet, but the drawers are much larger -- 8 inches wide and 2 feet deep!  Each drawer has a small brass plaque that reads "Files/Auditor for the Post Office Dep't."  

This intriguing brass label is attached to each drawer

Large postal cabinet with drawers 8 inches wide and 2 feet deep.

Along with drawers and cubbies, other favorite storage pieces are my collection of plaid picnic tins from the 1950s and '60s.  These colorful and useful tins hold everything from tax paperwork to seasonal rubber stamps.

Plaid picnic tins are handy for out-of-sight storage

Vintage packaging is a great source of inspriration. I love the bright colors and cheerful graphics.  These are some funky collections in view around my studio.

Old games and toys in a red toolbox.

More vintage games and toys in an old gas station map case

Vintage office supplies in an old battery display shelf

More vintage office supplies in a spice rack

Vintage art supplies 

I love this ticket roll.  Tickets cost 9 cents plus 1 cent tax!

Vintage children's watercolor paint sets

Back to the working space in my studio, here is a countertop against the brick wall that was once the outside of our house.  It holds my Genesis Trimmer and other tools, plus a very tongue-in-cheek sign about keeping the area clean.  (Trust me, the counter is RARELY this clean.)

Genesis Trimmer on counter against exposed brick wall

Hmmm, Blogger is not allowing me to upload additional photos to this post, so it looks like I will have to continue the tour in a second post....

I hope you've enjoyed seeing what I have shared so far.  More to come, if you aren't tired of seeing OLD stuff!

To be continued.


marie said... I'm going to have drawer envy for the rest of the day. Fabulous display/storage pieces!! Love your picnic tins too!

Kayesi said...

Oh wow! How gorgeous! And what fun memories of the days when I was a kid and practically lived at the library.

Nowadays, when I take my grandkids to the library, it's all computerized. Being fairly geeky, I thought that was grand - until the day their computers were down and there were no card catalogs to be found!

I'm so glad to see that many have found a great home with you.

Thanks for a delightful visit via "where bloggers create"

Art and Sand said...

I am in love with:

-your colorful space
-all the fantastic drawers
-game boards and picnic baskets
-all of it

I am your newest follower so I can come back for more

The Old Parsonage said...

Love Love Love it! What a fun space - the furniture is gorgeous!!


Bonnie said...

The library was one of my favorite places as a child, too! Maybe that's another reason I love the card catalogs... Thanks for stopping by and thank you for your nice comments.

Bonnie said...

Thanks very much for visiting and commenting!

Bonnie said...

I understand drawer envy completely! I even have a Pinterest board called "Drooling over drawers."

Thanks for visiting my blog. I appreciate the nice comments!

Bonnie said...

Thank you for the nice words. I am glad you are following. I'll have some wonderful ephemera to share here soon.

Unknown said...

Love your PO Boxes and Apothecary.
You are so lucky to have such amazing treasures!!
Thank you for sharing your space.
I look forward to seeing more!!

Happy Crafting

Something Special said...

I am crazy about your vintage picnic tins and all those oak drawers, and library filers are to die for! Thanks for sharing! I am a new follower here.

Scrap for Joy said...

Hi Bonnie,
Your room is beautiful and your use of storage pieces is awesome! Love the tip about using picture frames for stamp storage. And the picnic tins....oh my, the best collection I've ever seen. Thanks so much for inviting us in. I will sign up to follow you!

StasaLynn said...

Oh your studio is FANTASTIC! You have a great collection and I love all the color! I am with ya when it comes to catalog cabinets... I would love to have some of those myself. My sewing room is not decorated like the rest of my house - but my house kind of looks like your space! Thank you so much for sharing. I will definitely be back!

Unknown said...

gorgeous room and love love those post off drawers!

Maureen Hayes said...


I love your space and especially your card catalogs and vintage postal cabinet. I just moved to ATL, about a month ago, and would be so grateful if you would email me so I could ask you about good places to go thrifting, antiquing, etc... I do not really know anyone down here and am trying to create my very first dedicated craft space and would be very appreciative of any help you could provide.

Thank you for sharing your lovely space with all of us!

Julia @ Vintage with Laces said...

Wow, I'm totally in love with all your gorgeous antique furniture, sigh. The apothecary cabinet is amazing and both postal cabinets and the card catalog drawers are fabulous as well. Gorgeous, gorgeous finds!!! Thank you for sharing!

ImagiMeri said...

Okay, we need to hook up. You and I have a lot of similar tastes.........I covet those card cabinets! Love all the vintage goodies, especially toys and circus related. Stop by and check my space out, I think you'll agree we need to become buddies.


Kathy @ Creative Home Expressions said...

You have some of the best storage pieces I've seen, Bonnie! I just love all those antique cabinets and that display is great. What a pleasure it must be to open those drawers to find the supplies for your next project.

Leanne said...

I am in *love* with your cabinetry!!! *sigh* especially that apothecary's display cabinet. Be still my beating heart!

Mari Brown and Colourblob said...

OMG, I so love all the vintage and antique furniture, the display cases and the storage things... The apothecary cabinet is stunning and I can see why its your favourite. I would be very happy person if I would even find fraction of the lovely pieces you have. Too bad you couldn't get pictures so we could see your work space, so have to come back and see it later : ) I hope you don't have the same problem I have right now with uploading pictures (had to use my old mans computer to get mine for the WBC event).

Brilliant stuff, thanks for sharing

Marlynne said...

Gosh your old storage cabinets and tins are to die for! Thanks for sharing. I guess! Ha!

Karen Valentine said...

Can you say... JEALOUS??? Cause that's what I am!! Oh my goodness those old storage cabinets are too die for!! Thank you so much for sharing your space and making us all green with envy!!

Diana Seal said...

WoW, Bonnie, love your vintage storage cabinets and collectables! Thanks for sharing your wonderful space!
Have a great weekend!

Judith @ Lavender Cottage said...

Your vintage storage cabinets are wonderful and I love the collection of plaid picnic baskets.

Cindy said...

So many old cabinets! I give a little 'hum!' excited noise when I see one and you have many!!!! Lucky girl! I have signed up for email updates, and look forward to the rest of your tour! Love the collections and what I have seen so far! Hugs!

bobbie said...

I've really enjoyed seeing all your vintage goodies ~ what a fun space to craft in!! Thanks for showing us around...

cathy @ ma vie trouvee said...

I hope it allows you to post more photos! I enjoyed peeking into your studio – awesome cabinets you have. Cheers from Singapore.

fairyrocks said...

WOW miss Bonnie, so lovely to meet you. I have to say I may have a crush on your husband....'HE BUILT ON TO THE HOUSE FOR YOU !!' now thats is a rare man indeed. Your library files, apothecary cabinets, and postal boxes have me fair to swooning too. Love your space, I just want to visit and open all your drawers...just for a peep you understand, I will bring the coffee and sweets??? Keep smiling and creating, and thanks for sharing

Bonnie said...

Thanks, fairyrocks! I'm not telling my DH about your crush. Anyway, he did this for self-preservation! I will put drawer-peek pics in my next post, but you are still welcome to visit (especially if you are offering coffee and sweets!)

Bonnie said...

Thank you so much for hosting this party, Karen, and for allowing me to join in! Appreciate the kind words, too!

Bonnie said...

Thank you for visiting and commenting, Tracie! I'm off to read your blog now.

Bonnie said...

Thank you for stopping by and thanks especially for becoming a follower! I'll share some fun ephemera soon.

Bleubeard and Elizabeth said...

This is one gorgeous studio. I wish you could have loaded the rest of your images, but these were enough to whet my appetite, and more. I love your old cabinets. They are superb. Thanks for inviting us into your studio.

Beansieleigh said...

Somebody catch me, I'm swooning! (0; LOVE, LOVE, LOVE.. EVERYTHING I see here! Thanks for sharing your creative space. I thoroughly enjoyed my stop here today! ~tina

Kathy said...

Love love love all those drawers. Your studio is cubby heaven and I can't wait to see the rest!

Maureen said...

Awesome room Bonnie! I remember visiting last year and falling in love with your space. All the wooden cabinets, vintage office supplies and storage ideas are wonderful!

Unknown said...

This is a wonderful creative space. I love all of your antique storage units and I love all of your collections. I hope you tell your husband thank you for the lovely room.
Thanks so much for sharing. Mary

Devon Smith-Breidel said...

I was really wanting to see much more!! Darn Blogger. So glad your dream for your own space came true. Your antique cabinets are in beautiful condition and I love what you have done with them. Your collections are so fun and unique. What a gem!

Unknown said...

Bonnie, how great to have a room all your own. I love the apothecary cabinet, the card catalog and all the others too. I would love to create in there.

Tea in the Library said...

Awesome! I'm drooling. Especially liked seeing your tin baskets which I love to collect. Thanks for sharing really enjoyed seeing your space.

Derrith said...

Bonnie: What a fun and unique approach to designing a studio. I LOVE all the bright vintage components and the clever way you have used them for storage. Very inspiring!

suziqu's thread works said...

Wow Bonnie what an amazing studio. You have some of the best timber storage cabinets I have yet seen in some studios. Love all of your vintage art collections. Fantastic!
Have a great tour!

CatieAn said...

You have such beautiful antique pieces in your studio! I love all of it. I can imagine how fun it is to be in there working.....thank you for sharing such unique storage and displays.

Nanna said...

I love how you surround yourself with antiques, I've never seen picnic tins, I thought they were baskets lol! you have a beautiful space to create in!

Debbie-Dabble Blog and A Debbie-Dabble Christmas said...

LOVE all of your antiques and vintage treasures that you have surrounded yourself with!!


Great space!! Thanks so much for sharing!!