Help: Turning My Room into Craft Room with a Bed (IMG Heavy)

So I have a LOT going on with my room and I need a lot of opinions and assistance.

1. Organization of Crafting Supplies: Since I just got a sewing machine a few weeks ago, I've been wanting to do a lot of things, but without an adequate working area, I really can't do much.

I've got other crafting supplies for beading, knitting, crocheting, painting, scrapbooking, photography, film-making, writing, etc., and no place to put it but in shopping bags and wilting shoe boxes.

I have more supplies coming in, too, so I'm really stuck.

And my 3 glorious finished products have a great spot in a dusty corner,

I want a nice look that's not expensive. I've checked in on shoe organizers (the solid kind) and they're either outrageously priced or they're only available online, which means shipping costs will equal the high prices in the stores. I've been buying jars from the Dollar Store and Amvets to put my small things in when the time comes(beads, buttons, wire, ribbons, safety pins, etc.) and even though they aren't uniform, I don't really mind. They're quite cute, actually.

I considered building something, but the price is just as evil as everything else. I'm planning to check out thrift stores (Amvets) and a Salvation Army or Good Will in the area to see if they have anything useful. I'd rather shell out on paint to touch up a bunch of shelving units than have to buy a brand new one.

2. Zen Bed: I'm not exactly sure what they're called, but I've always called them zen beds. It's a big piece of wood the exact size of your mattress, held up a few inches by 2 planks of wood. It looks like either of these,
though mainly the second one is what I'm looking at. I'll paint it black or white to match the other furniture in my room. My dad and I are planning to build it ourselves, but my mother insists we make a Captain’s bed, not a Zen bed. She says a captain’s bed has drawers on the sides and has a two inch frame that comes up to hold the mattress in place, and then I can flip it over and use the other side as a desk because it has extra pegs on the corners as well. Something like this,
The only good thing about that bed design is the drawer idea, but that would take a lot of time to do. When I try and put the two designs together, this is what I see,
I found an article saying just to buy a shelf, flip it sideways, and build a bed around it, but that's a waste of money to me. Any suggestions on how I can create this bed? It doesn't have to have drawers (it could have empty slots instead) but something cheap and durable is what I'm looking for.

3. Jewelry: I have a TON of it.

And that's not even all of it, only what I could reach in my drawer. I would invest in a jewelry box or make one of those mesh picture frame jewelry displays, but I don’t like it when my bracelets and necklaces and earrings touch. It bothers me, but I can’t really explain why since I’m such a messy person. I guess it just is different when it comes to my jewelry. My plan was to install thick metal wire (the steel kind, I think) into the walls, from one wall to the other. I think it’s called Drek or Dirk wire, but it’s used to hold up curtains and drapes. I can line 2 pieces on my side wall, 6 or so inches apart, and put my earrings on the top wire and my bracelets and necklaces on the bottom. This will prevent any touching of pieces. I told my dad about it and he's not interested. I really like this wire idea, so are there any ways I could still use it? Like wiring several frames and hanging them like paintings? Are there any suggestions for jewelry holding methods that hang from the ceiling? I’m on the lookout for a mannequin, too, so I can pop off a hand or two and stack my rings on (those I don’t mind touching). Does anyone know where I can buy some of this wire? Or how to make it? Or where to buy a mannequin?

4. Make-Up: Like my jewelry, I have a ton of it.

And yes, they are all organized for you: eye shadow, eyeliner, mascara, oil blotting papers, blush, foundation, lip gloss, nail polish, and application brushes.
I really should go through and just toss the stuff I don’t use anymore (like the vast majority), but I’m a pack rat. And I always think, “Hey, I’ll just save that and use it on one of my models.” But then I feel a little guilty because some people are 100 percent against sharing anything that touches skin… Anyways, aside from the obvious make-up bag (which I have and hate because there are no organizational qualities), are there ways to store my make-up? DIY or otherwise?

5. Paint:
I started taking pictures after I'd already cleaned up my room, rolled up the carpet, and shoved everything I could move into my closet. The futon mattress is lying on my bed, and my shelves are all cleared. When you first walk in, you'll see ahead of you,

to your right,

to your left,

and into the closet,

then out again and above you,
and finally the place you came in from.

So as you can see, my room is a not-so-nice blend of obnoxious colors in even more obnoxious patterns, all courtesy of my impressionable just-turned-14 mind. Now that I’m a month away from 18 (and regrettably not living in a loving studio style dorm 9 hours away in Chicago) I’m sick of seeing all these colors and feeling like I walked into somebody’s acid trip. What I’ve decided is I’ll keep the dark pink trim around the room and the black around the window trim. All my furniture is black or white, and what isn't (computer desk and TV stand) matches the light wood flooring. What I have to decide on is a main color, but there is a large number of colors that could work. I'm going with Valspar paint, and these are the colors I've chosen (from 50) that I can't narrow down anymore:
Orchid Ash
Evening Eclipse
Crystal Aqua
Cosmic Blue
One of these would need to be the main color and it would go with white and black furniture, and a dark pink trim. The closest Valspar color I could find to match it (the pink was Behr) was Very Berry, but the actual pink is still darker. I used the online painter ( to see how the colors would look together, as well as comparing them to my actual room. I LOVE how Orchid Ash looks against the pink, black and white. Very low key, but beautiful and with lots of room to add colored accent pieces. But the Cosmic Blue makes the white and black pop like an art piece, which is really pretty to look at (though it does kind of make you dizzy, doesn't it?). The evening eclipse and Crystal Aqua are so in-between, but I can't scrap them because they do look great with the pink. Please let me know which you think would work best. My room looks very big regardless of what’s in it, so don’t worry about the color being too dark or anything. If you can match two colors, that would be okay (Crystal Aqua with Orchid Ash, Cosmic Blue with Evening Eclipse, etc, etc).

6. Furniture/Storage/Lamps: Basically I just want to know some layouts for the room. My furniture includes a bed (Twin)(3'2" W, 6'2 1/2" L, 10" H), TV stand (it has storage space but I’ll be getting rid of it soon because it’s really old)(1'4" L, 3' W, 3'2 1/4" H), futon (Full)(6'5" W, 2'7" D, 2'6 1/2" H), small bookcase (for books)(2'7" W, 2'8" H, 9 1/4" D), medium bookcase (for art supplies)(3'11 1/2" H, 2'1 1/4" W, 9 1/2" D), small table (think bedside)(2'9" L, 1'6 3/4" W), computer desk (3'11" W, 1'11 3/4" L, 2'5 1/2" H), small chair, padded hand chair (2'11" W, 2'3 1/2" H. 1'5" D), a big lamp, a coat hanger, a big dresser, my sewing machine (it’s a Singer from the 50’s so it’s attached to a table and unfolds), and a work desk. My room measures, front to back, 14'1/2", and side to side, 12'10". On the farthest wall (the wall you see when you first walk in), the window measures 10'3 1/4" W by 4'3 1/2" H. The radiator is 2'11 1/2" H and 3'7 1/2" W. This wall has a radiator just sitting there (in lime green) and it can't be moved, but it is exactly in the center of the wall, so both spaces to either side of it are equal (4'9").
I was thinking I could put my computer desk on one side of the radiator and my sewing machine on the other side, but I'm at a loss with everything else. I have 3 2-plug sockets; one by the entrance to the room and one on either side of the radiator.

I would appreciate whatever help I can get. =] Thanks for taking the time to read all of this!

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12 replies since 25th August 2009 • Last reply 25th August 2009

And I thought I had a lot of stuff, craft stuff that is. I have the same problem you do except my things are in sparatic parts of my house and I too am in a slight predicament to get it all organized in one space.
Anyhoo, if you could post a sketch or drawing of some type of the layout of your room, like the placement of the doors, windows and such with their sizes, I could possibly come up with layout for you, or give you some ideas. It doesn't have to be perfect, just something to give me an idea of where the structures in the room are, so I can draw up a layout for you.
As far the color, I see you like a LOT of it!! I won't try to give some advise or ideas on that right now because I really don't know what they look like (the colors you've picked). As far as storage, checking out thrift stores and maybe friends and family have pieces that they don't want any more that you could use. I do suggest that your storage units be the same color, either main or accent color. I'm really thinking along the lines of either black or natural wood to match your computer desk or your wood floors and doors.
The idea of using book shelves on theirs sides back to back doesn't sound too bad of an idea; to shelves of the same size and length together with a mattress on top, of course that depends on what size mattress you plan on using. And to cover it, use a bed skirt so it's concealed storage.
Another thing, it would be a good idea to keep all of the storage like the shelves to one wall and basically separate your craft area from your sleeping area, but I will put all that in the layout. So once you provide that, I will see what I can come up with.

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Hey hey! I just wanted to throw some ideas out can find these great little stackable shelves at the dollar tree (everything's $1! you can't go wrong) they come in primary colors but you could totally spray paint them..and they're GREAT for storing smaller items..also, I use those rolling plastic drawers (like you see at hair salons) that I got at walmart for pretty cheap and just 3 drawers holds a TON of stuff! You can also order shoe shipping boxes for free from the USPS and use some of the great tutorials on CO&K to really personalize them and make them your own..I know they have some great of them is for a pantie drawer..

And then "Zen" beds are platform beds and I got mine at Walmart for like $150 with free shipping site to store..and I loveee it..I've had it for like..umm..2 years? and it's been through like 6 moves and is still in perfect shape!

Anyways, good luck and I'm jealous! I'm moving out of my own place and back in with the parents for a bit so I'll have 0 crafting space..ughhh!

Keep us updated!

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Have you checked out the Unclutterer website - they have some very cool ways to store hobby stuff. Also flickr is good for ideas, you just have to be willing to trawl through a fair bit to find something good. I've got a similar problem in terms of organising craft stuff so I can see what I've got, we also have the same problem at the daycentre I work at so I'll be intrigued to see what you come up with.

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@Creativemind: It's a big problem for a LOT of people! I never knew what anyone meant until I got back into crafting. Here's the layout of my room, as you walk in,

That corner between the entrance and closet door is too small for anything important, so no worries about putting anything in there.
When I was younger, I wanted everything my house wasn't. Obnoxious, super colorful, and impossible to miss. The rest of my house is in faded shades of blue, green, and peach, which I didn't like at all. Now I want something different, but not as outrageous as the previous design.
Orchid Ash is a very light grey with an undertone of pink or purple. Evening Eclipse is a dark grey with a pink undertone. Crystal Aqua is a very bright, light blue, like a clear blue sky only with a touch of pale green. Cosmic Blue is a rich, bright blue, like a jewel tone blue but a few shades lighter.
I went to Amvets with my dad and we found some great shelves, but our car wasn't big enough so we couldn't buy anything. I did find some more jars, however, and (shoot me, I know) a BIG bag of buttons and 6 rolls of tulle in different colors. At 2.49 a roll of 3+ yards of fabric, I really couldn't pass...
I thought about splitting the room up, but I don't know how well that would work. Many thanks! =)

@Mandy: Thank you! I've seen those baskets/shelves and almost bought them, but I saw the color and style wouldn't really match. I'll check out a different store and see if there's something different. If not, spray paint it is!
Free shoe shipping boxes? I will definitely look into that! That sounds way too good to be true.
I talked to my dad about the Walmart bed and he said we could look at some other stores as well. He figures if we were going to build it from scratch, it may be easier to just buy the materials ready to go and save some time. 150$ is a much better deal than the other beds we've found (399$ being the cheapest, which is BOGUS for a bed made of 2 planks of wood and some screws).
Oh man, I feel for you. Maybe you'll find floor space? Or you could dominate the hallway. =)

@Arty KitKat: I haven't before, but I did take a look. I found some helpful ideas. It's nice to see the platform beds are more popular than I thought, though they're really expensive. On a day where I've got time to plant my butt down for a few hours, I'll check out Flickr. Thank you for your suggestions!

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I get like that too, buying craft stuff like you need it like you need another hole in your head. i do that too, with beads. But hey, there some colors that I ran out of or don't have.
Hopefully though, with my space issue, I will have my two older kids out of the house, well it may take a bit longer for my daughter who is expecting, so I'm not trying to put her out just yet. But when that day comes, I will have my own craft room maybe in a year or so. Ugh, that seems a bit far off, but what can I do. ^_^
Thanks for the info and the diagram, I will get started on that concept for a layout.
Oh, and where is that little nitch of closet space with built in drawers next to it on the pink wall with hearts.
Referring to pix # 30 and 31. Or is that another room?

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I've decided to go with Orchid Ash officially. It looks so pretty with the pink. Now I need help deciding on a bed set. Please take a look at these and let me know what you think:
Houndstooth--I really like the way this looks, but I'm not a fan of it being black and white. I need more color. Maybe colored sheets and pillows?

Pink Plaid--This would be a lot of color and would put the attention directly onto my bed. Maybe too much attention? White or black sheets and pillows to offset it?

Beautiful Love--I like how the colors are faded, but how it incorporates the black, white, and pink, while bringing the aqua I initially wanted into the room. What could I do with this to tie it together with the rest of my room?

Circles--I LOVE the boldness of this bedspread, but there are too many other colors that would pull attention away from the rest of the room. Any suggestions on how I could tie this together with the rest of the room?

Peacock--Hands down, this is my favorite bedspread. I love the white, black, and 2 shades of blue that conveniently match the first 2 colors I initially chose for the room. The thing I hate is that my walls will be grey, my ceiling white, and the trim pink, so a random blue bedspread doesn't work so well, does it? Please let me know if there is any way to make this bedspread work. Should I find pink sheets? Or pink and blue sheets? Pillows? Paint blue accents on my furniture? I'm at a loss, and I really adore this set!

Also, because I'm so freaking short, my brother's friend had to come in and paint my ceiling for me. To be honest, I was partly a little lazy, but I DID paint the ENTIRE room otherwise, TWICE, by myself. He only painted my ceiling once. And I can't find him to paint the second coat of Kilz before I buy the paint. Of course, I may have him paint another coat of Kilz on the ceiling rather than buy white paint. Kilz is white, so unless white paint is cheaper, I guess I can stick to Kilz. And then, of course, because things can never be simple, I painted half my pink trim in 1 coat of Kilz because I figured I'd just paint it blue or dark grey or something that works well more with the color I picked, but I changed my mind again and now I have to figure out the name of the pink paint, which was from Behr, and then paint over what I have.
After that, making or buying the bed (black/black with white drawers), another bookcase (white), and hopefully a new dresser (maybe white?) come next on the list.

@ Creativemind: It would be fine if I actually used it, ya'know? But obviously, our eyes and hands are more impulsive than our muses.
Well you could maybe start moving things around and setting up parts of the room. Like paint it if you want, get bins for general storage all set up. That sort of thing?
The closet is to the left of the entrance--on the map I made, there's the double rectangle that's the entrance, and the double rectangle to the left is the closet door. What I gave you is just the layout of the main room. Don't worry about designing the closet. I'll probably just stick my clothes in there and whatever doesn't fit/I don't want in my main room. If it helps, my four shelves are black, my medium bookcase is white, my bed will be black, and if I buy another bookcase, it will be white.

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I give you pictures of my room as it looks right now, with Kilz on the vast majority of the room, floor and desk included.

Yes, that's right; that's my computer desk. And what kind of painter would I be if I stayed clean?

What kind of painter would I be if I kept my mattress clean?

So, beginning at the right Wall,

what you see when you first walk in,

to your left,

and finally the entrance,

Shocking, isn't it? From such bold colors to...this...

It's so refreshing.

I had my brother's friend unscrew my fan blades so I could paint them with Kilz,

and I had him paint the ceiling's first layer,

which looks terrible, but he began painting the second coat and it's much better, so I'll post more pics when I finish painting on Kilz, which I need my super duper painting gear to achieve,

and yes, I walked in on my brother's friend wearing that while he painted my ceiling. He's bald, 6'6", a line backer for a football team, and just got out of Kuwait on a double tour. Poor little measly 5'2" me. It's too much to take in all at once.

Now once I finish painting the Kilz on the ceiling and window trim, I can paint the rest of the trim pink. I, luckily, found half a gallon of the pink paint I used when I first painted my room. It was hidden in my dad's workshop. And while I wait for that to dry, I'll have to paint the fan blades again with Kilz. And while that dries, I have to make sure the spackle my dad just put in my room is dry before I can begin painting the walls Orchid Ash! I bought this pretty off-white color for the ceiling that has a nice blue-pink undertone. And apparently, Orchid Ash is a shade of purple, but when I had it in my room against the pink, it turned grey. I'm hoping that's how it will look when it's done...

I decided to throw caution and confusion to the wind and I purchased the Peacock bed set online.

It will take 2 to 4 weeks for the new order to come in because they sold out, but it's worth the wait. I didn't wait for any replies or opinions on the other sets because I really liked it THAT much, so please tell me what you think I can do to make the Peacock bed set work with the rest of my room. Target is also selling Light Pink and Aqua Blue Paisley sheets, but I think that might clash severely with this comforter print. I may have seen some solid pink sheets, though, but I'm not sure. Maybe I could paint some picture frames aqua to store my jewelry? Check out Michael's and see what kind of paint they have for wood? Does anyone have any other suggestions?

And because I'm starting freshman year at college on Monday, my dad said, "You had better get this done by Monday or else you're going to wait until December to pick back up where you left off." I painted my last mess of a room in 3 days. It should be possible for me to start the real painting Friday night (college orientation today through Friday, 7am to 6PM--bummer). My dad is aiming towards buying a bed frame because he thinks I won't make my deadline if we try to build it. Little steps at a time, dad. =)

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It is very late Saturday night, and I have just finished painting the first layer of Orchid Ash and pink trim. Although the second layer of Kilz is on my ceiling and dry, I've yet to start applying the paint. I think everything is intentionally going wrong. Take a look at the pictures of my walls; right, farthest, left, entrance, and ceiling,

The Orchid Ash came out purple. Like, there's-no-way-to-deny-it purple. The pictures don't depict the color well at all and it looks like I didn't even paint anything, but I'm hoping that it's only that color because it's wet, and that once it dries, it will turn grey again. I have my doubts. Rightfully so. The only color that came out remotely close was the pink on my fan blades,

but I'm going to have to paint my ceiling myself (not like I didn't do it before) and for the life of me I can't freaking figure out how the heck I did it before, and I used 2 colors then! My bed hasn't been started yet and I don't have any picture frames or wire to start my jewelry-hanging project. My mother expects me to clean out the dinette with her (the room I'm currently using for the storage of my crafting supplies and materials) and I only have one day left to finish everything.

Oh. My. God. Karma loves to give me obstacles.


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Still not able to help with the paint color, but usually the wet paint looks lighter than it actually will be once it dries. I'm still working on your layout, will have something for ya soon

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@Creativemind: I found a way to counter it by adding more grey, black, and white to the room. I put a mix of blue, grey, and white on the wall in a thin stripe, and there's a second stripe I've done in the same colors but a different pattern. It's helped some. I found black picture frames with a clear pane of plastic and a smaller silver insert to frame the picture, and I painted the inside piece grey with very thin white and black streaks (from intentionally not mixing the colors all the way through). I put a patterned tissue paper inside all of them with washed out colors of my room. My furniture scheme is black, white, or decoupage. Do you think I should paint the bed frame grey or black?

Thank you! I'm having a very hard time figuring things out. My dad and I are going to start building the bed this week, and it's going to be bigger than we first thought. It will measure about 49 1/2" by 85 1/2" with the frame included.

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I just found your site and was so looking forward to seeing how you created your sewing space and bedroom in one....only to find your photos have been removed. Do you have them somewhere else?
I'm in the same situation as far as space goes. Living in a one bedroom apartment with a nice size laundry/storage room. It would make a nice sewing room but there are no windows and I have wall to wall shelving that does store all my crafts and sewing supplies. But no room for a sewing space.

I've decided to make part of my bedroom into a sewing area - a long wall to wall counter - one side for my computer, the other for sewing. Planning to have center shelf units, above and below the the counter space. The lower shelves,storage for items not often used, would have a 36" lift door/table for extra work space. Don't have the funds yet....but thats my dream.

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