Like most artists, I struggle with to keep my studio space organized and clutter free. In today's guest post, Lisa Smalley of Smalley Saddlery shares three of her best tips for maintaining a useable work space. Thank you, Lisa, especially for tip number three!
by Lisa Smalley
Hack One: Organize Tips with a Magnet Bar
Here's an item that has worked out great for my work space: a magnet bar! I have a bulletin board on the wall above my desk. My magnet bar is mounted on that.
I put frequently used tools on the bar. In this photo, I have a hole punch, burnisher, awl, pliers, cutters, leather punch, scissors, and there is even a chasing hammer (metalsmithing) up there sometimes, too. The utility knives just happen to sit nicely on top.
The best thing about this is that I don't have to get up or dig around for a tool when I'm in the middle of a project- I can just reach up and grab it. This saves time and aggravation! It also keeps extra tools off my desk. It's so useful, I plan to upgrade to a secondn bar eventually!
Magnet bars can be found at home improvement stores and Harbor Freight often has them on sale for a few dollars!
Hack Two: Recycle Containers to Hold Small Parts
I like using ketchup/condiment containers when working with hardware, especially when I'm cutting apart Rio Rondo photo etched parts. Cutting small items directly into a container prevents them from firing off into space when t cut, never to be seen again!
Yogurt cups are great for things like holding small scraps of leather to keep your work space clean.
If you need something a little larger, single serve cups from things like Velveeta Shells & Cheese or Rice-a-Roni work great, too!
Hack Three: Is Spilling Leather Dye Your Worst Nightmare
Try keeping the bottle of dye (or other product) in a mug like this to keep it from falling over! A roll of tape will also work in a pinch, as it should keep the bottle from completely falling over. Don't have any old mugs handy? Stop at a thrift store or dollar store to pick up some inexpensive mugs!
Please visit Lisa's Etsy shop to see some of her work!