Assessing The Current Studio Situation (One Wall Finished, The Rest A Complete Disaster)

I’ve felt really good these last two days, with yesterday being almost pain-free the whole day. After about ten days in bed (or on the floor) experiencing the most pain I’ve ever had in my life with sciatica, I was so elated to get up yesterday with no pain, go to lunch with my family and sit for four hours with no pain, come home and host my Wednesday evening group with no pain, then putter around in the studio for a while with no pain before going to bed with no pain. And this morning is another great start to what I hope will be another great pain-free day.

Today will be my first full work day in exactly two weeks, so while I’m not quite ready to do anything really strenuous, or climb on tall ladders, or anything like that, I am looking forward to getting things done in the studio.

So this morning, I headed in there just to assess the situation, and plan my strategy for moving forward and getting this room finished. And let’s just say that while I’m so glad I have one wall completely finished…

It really hit me just how big this room is (plus the storage closet, plus the half bathroom, plus the back entryway), and just how much there is left to do. It can be a bit overwhelming. This room isn’t anywhere even close to being finished yet.

I have two doors that need to be trimmed out. First, there’s the side exterior door, which is currently covered up with an extra French door (which will eventually go between our master bathroom and our future master bedroom, and I have nowhere to store it in the interim), ladders, etc….

That’s the door that leads out to the cute little portico that I built. You can read more about that project here.

Portico with decorative corbels over a coral painted door
Outdoor Projects

I still have yet to build steps leading to that door, so for now, I just have concrete cinder blocks as steps.

And the other door that needs to be trimmed is the one between the studio and the breakfast room.

Both of those doors will be painted black, and trimmed out just like I trim out all of the other doors and windows in the house.

This office area of the studio is the area that I had hoped to work on next, but in order to work on these, I need access to the carport so that I can sand and paint. But right now, the guys are here working to finish the carport, so I don’t want to get in their way. I’ll have to figure out something else to work on while they finish up their work.

What I need to do is work on organizing. I have so much stuff that can go into the cabinets on the mural wall. My sciatica brought me to a screeching halt almost as soon as I had that wall finished, so I was never able to get around to organizing things in the cabinets and drawers. Now is probably a good time to start on that so that I can clear out lots of this stuff and make room for the rest of the projects I need to do.

I still have so much painting that needs to be done! I only painted the parts of the ceiling and walls that needed to be painted in order to install the cabinets. So the ceiling and walls in the entire rest of the room still need fresh coats of paint.

And this room is big, so there’s quite a bit of wall and ceiling left to cover. I had to do it in sections like this because I have so much stuff that I have to work around. With this being the last room in the house to finish, there’s not another unused, still-to-be-finished room where I can move things (except for the sunroom, which is already at capacity). We use all of the other rooms, so it’s not like I could box everything up, move everything out, and paint the whole room at once. That would have been really nice if I could have done that, but it wasn’t an option. So my only option was to paint in sections.

The biggest disaster in the room is on my two work tables, which are piled high with stuff. So much of this is tools and supplies like caulk, but then there’s a fair share of art supplied mixed in there that need to stay in the room. A lot of it can go in the cabinets and drawers on the mural wall. It would sure be nice to have these tables back in usable condition, and painting them a new color would be a fun and easy project I could tackle very soon.

And then there’s this section of cabinets just inside the room from the breakfast room door. I was surprised at the feedback I got from y’all about these cabinets and my idea for the “paint swatch” look on the doors. I expected quite a bit more pushback on that, but most everyone who commented loved the idea! So I’m going to go for it. It’s just paint. 🙂 If I don’t like it, or it looks too busy, I’ll just sand it off, re-prime, and start over again. Y’all know I don’t hesitate to change things if I’m not pleased with the outcome. 😀

Next up is the back entry. I can’t wait to get this back entry painted! I’ve selected a color (although I can’t remember what it is right now). The new color will still be green, but it won’t be quite this in-your-face green.

The new color is the softer green that I pulled out of the mural and included in the wallpaper that I designed for the bathroom walls.

And I’ve decided that I am going to gold leaf the black parts of the ceiling light fixture. I’m pretty excited about that project, although I might be cursing myself for that decision by the time I get halfway finished. 😀

The storage closet is currently an absolute disaster. There are boxes in here that have been in here for probably five years, and I have no idea what’s in them. And I’ve rummaged through here several times in an attempt to find things, which just leaves things in even more of a disastrous state. So while I dread clearing out and organizing this space, I know it’s going to feel so good to finally get it done.

This is the closet that houses the HVAC for the studio, and as long as the closet is piled full of stuff like it is now, and there’s no room for air flow around the unit, I can’t turn it on. And it’s looked like this ever since I moved things around to start sanding and painting the floor. So I’ve been without air conditioning in the studio all summer, and if I don’t get things in order very soon, I’ll also be without heat in the studio.

And that leaves the bathroom. I got about halfway through adding the new dowel rod accent row, but that’s where I stopped. That will be the most tedious and time-consuming part of finishing the room. The rest, like installing the wallpaper, won’t be bad at all, especially since it’s such a small room.

But getting that yellow tile off the wall has proven to be quite a challenge. It hasn’t been fun, but I only have about half left to remove. (And it literally just dawned on me that it would come off easier if I used a hair dryer or heat gun since it’s stuck on there with the double sided sticky stuff for tile installation. Ugh! Why didn’t I think of that before?!)

So that’s the status of all of the other areas of the studio, and what I’m working with right now. It’s a mess, and it’s a bit overwhelming, but I just need to pick an area (probably my work tables for now), and just focus on it and get it done. But I’m just so thankful and relieved that I can actually get in there and do the work today! I’m hoping it’ll be a very productive day.

Unrelated side note: Several people asked me for pictures of the shades (both the unlined and lined) from the outside of the house yesterday. I was able to take pictures last night and this morning, and I’ll be adding those to yesterday’s post later today. So if you wanted to see what the shades look like from that view, be sure to check back on yesterday’s post (you can find that here) this afternoon.



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  1. Please don’t paint that studio ceiling etc yourself. Hire the person to paint it that paints the carport. Otherwise you could really hurt yourself.

    1. I totally agree. Extending arms above one’s head is very hard on the back muscles. . . which are connected to the butt muscles. . .which, when inflamed, put pressure on the sciatic and piriformis nerves.

    2. This was about my first thought, too! Working with your arms raised (or you being bent over when you are sorting through and moving boxes…) puts a lot of pressure on your back. If you back isn’t completely healed (and I cannot believe that it is after 2 weeks), then I would strongly advise you to tackle jobs that are back friendly and see how those go. Even if you are impatient with yourself and want to get back into the flow right now, please take a little longer for recuperation or going easy on your body in order for it to be “at your service” again soon rather than struggling through bouts of pain and interspersed periods of it being “just ok”.

      1. I was going to say the same thing. They will do it quickly and efficiently and you can move on to trimming doors and setting up cabinetry without worrying about the painting. Take things off your plate where you can so you don’t get frustrated.

  2. I’m so glad to hear you’re feeling so much better and ready to get back in action. But please, please be cautious about doing too much too soon. I’ve been dealing with severe neuro-muscular issues for decades and, in my experience, it’s just when I’m feeling better and rearing to get active again that I can overdo it and be right back to where I started–or worse!–which is so devastating. So, take a tip from me and proceed for now at a slower, more careful pace than you think you need to.

  3. I cannot believe that 2 posts ago you admitted smoking marijuana (you called it Mary Jane) As you know marijuana is illegal in Texas. You can get arrested just by posting you are a user. Which means you purchase it illegally. We now know your Wednesday parties are pot parties. It won’t be long until you start buying meth. Once a drug user, always a drug user. Shame on you !!! I hope you lose all your followers, because your a drug addict!!!

    1. Oh my gosh, you’re insane! My question is…what the heck are YOU smoking?! You sound like an insane lunatic! 😂😂😂 Or maybe you NEED to take something to calm the heck down. My goodness. The idea that using cannabis one time for extreme pain will turn a person into an addict is the most absurd thing I’ve ever heard. 🤣🤣🤣 But go on with your uneducated self. Tell me more about how cannibis use for extreme pain turns a person into a meth head. 🤪 Such utter and complete stupidity.

      1. OMG. Wednesday nights are a pot party? I thought it was a Church group! I think Rosey might be going off the rails, and I hope whatever you did helped you with the pain. I have fibromyalgia which is getting more painful as I get older. My plan is soon to go to the doctor and get started on Medical Marijuana that will help my days. I know that isn’t going to lead to any addictions…I don’t drink, and I don’t take any pain killers as I have stomach issues, so looking for help where I can. Funny, when I saw that word Mary Jane I totally forgot that old tag! 🤣 Feel better Kristi, and start slow with the work ahead.

    2. Rosey, you can keep your opinion to yourself and just “troll” on by. There are very likely other MEDICAL marijuana users among Kristi’s followers who are here for her invaluable DIY skills and don’t give two *#$%@’s for your opinion. Your holy-er than thou attitude can go elsewhere.

    3. Rosey, Rosey,Rosey….my goodness, put your crack pipe down for a second and take in some oxygen. Your brain is starving !!🤯🤯🤯😳😳😳😵‍💫😵‍💫😵‍💫

    4. Rosey honey, you either got in too much of a hurry and forgot to add the snark tag [/s or /S] or you need an intervention by loving family members. And no, THIS is not snark.

  4. Yup, agree with others…. proceed with care so no more pain. Gosh it’s such a bummer when our body & our work ethic are arguing!

    Have you considered hiring a neighbor, friend’s or church kid to help you with some of the clean out? They are generally eager to earn a bit of cash, learn some skills, can be quite industrious. I had them help me carry to garbage, compress recycling, carry charity to the car, move things to other spaces, pack up, etc. That way I can focus on decisions, proper storage or other tasks.

    1. I agree with you 100%, Julie. As much as you enjoy the decorating and creating, I would get help with the decluttering. Julie’s idea of friends, neighbors or church kids is an excellent idea. Gosh,I’m able to mow and edge my own grass but young grandsons are happy to do that chore for spending money. It helps me and gives them some money of their own. The freedom of less clutter will make you feel rejuvenated. Trust me, I’ve been there too!

  5. I still think you need a small scaffold. We have 9 foot ceilings and I used ours to scrape and paint all my ceilings on the main floor. I installed crown with it, and my husband installed our lighting. Once finished, my husband dismantled it, folded the sides and hung it all on the wall of the garage until we need it again. Rent one to start and see if it works for you. It is by far easier than the ladder, fewer trips up and down because your supplies are up there with you. Way easier than the ladder.

  6. Let’s hold off on the entryway light fixture until 11/1/23. It’s perfectly decorated for Halloween! In my house, I tell folks that I save my Halloween decor and keep it up all year in honor of my great-grandson who was born 10/31! LOL Saves time chasing all those spider webs!
    I have your same predicament in my large sewing studio. Mine is the floor. I moved everything to the one side and stacked as much as I could, primed the visible floor in prep for the tile. When I get that 3/4 of the room done, I’ll move everything to the tiled portion and finish the last 1/4 of the room. BTW, I have wheels under everything and have about 8 of the furnitures dollies from Harbor Freight for stuff like 5 gal buckets of paint or floor primer. I have minimized lifting and moving stuff. At 75 I can either lift or I can walk. I can’t do both with something as heavy as 5 gal buckets or boxes of floor tile!

    1. I use those square dollies and furniture sliders (fuzzy ones for flat surfaces) with increasing frequency. They are life saving gems. I even put carpet scraps or samples upside down under heavy objects, furniture to slide around. Letting some basic tools of physics/lift is working smarter, not harder.

    2. That’s it! That’s what Kristi needs. She can also use them when moving materials out to the carport to saw/sand and then back into the studio. Brilliant idea Crystal.

  7. You need a plan and work your plan. Just get started. One reader suggested you have the carport contractors paint the rest of the studio. That is a great idea so you won’t overdo and have to spend another 10 days in bed.

    Have a productive day.

  8. If you do gold leaf the fixture please talk to a PT person first. Taking time to strengthening your core and wear a lift belt may help. Being on a ladder for long times doing a tedious task, wears/inflames muscles that don’t get used often. I have arthritis and my body can only take so much before it just does to inflammation pain.

    It’s nice to find and organize things, enjoy the next few days as you can.

  9. If it were me, I would finish those cabinets. Then I would tackle the storage closet. Now all storage is finished. Then as you tackle your tables you have the correct places to put things away. I would save all the pretty until all storage was finished and organized.

  10. Wow Kristi your studio is big and you do have a ways to go. I think when you look at what yet needs to be done, just take a good look at what you have already beautifully created….just sigh, take a deep breath, and carry on. Boom! Overwhelm is gone. I love the way you can be working on one part of a project and suddenly see something else in another project, and automatically go work on it…then later go back to the first project. I think that is how your genius works and I think soon you will be able to look at your studio in it’s entirety and feel so darn good.

  11. If it were me, I couldn’t wait to start organizing and putting things away in the cabinetry that is finished. And before I started any other paint projects including your work tables, I would clean out that utility closet so you can have a/c if you need it and heat this winter. In addition, you could put that door leaning against the other door in the studio in that closet if it were cleaned out and more organized. This studio, hallway and bathroom are your last projects in your house. Get organized, cleaned up and then you will be ready to tackle the remaining wall painting and cabinetry. Wishing you much success and NO PAIN on your tasks ahead.

  12. I think now is the time to hire some of this out. Consider having an organizer come in and help you get all that stuff cleared off the work tables and put into all the cabinets for now. They might not be the final place for some things, but if they are grouped and put away in cabinets (or even on top of the long countertop, but organized), then you can more easily deal with them once you finish the other cabinets. Also, maybe rent a pod for a week and move a lot of stuff out of the space (purging what needs to be purged along the way). I wonder if your church group would like to do some service one of those Wednesday nights and help you clear out everything. Order up some pizzas, put on some music and direct traffic while everyone pitches in. I’d ask those guys working out on the carport if they could spend another day and do the painting. It couldn’t cost that much and it will save your back.

  13. So thankful you are feeling better! Yay! The guys working and finishing the carport! So happy for you! We have been praying for you!

  14. Consider spray painting the light fixture gold instead of gold leafing it. It will give the vibe without you needing to raise your arms above your head on a ladder for so long. Like other commenters said, that kind of movement could cause your pain to come back and we don’t want that! I know you prefer the gold leaf look, but this light fixture won’t have the same kind of focal point impact as the gold leaf across the room so it doesn’t need exactly the same treatment.

  15. I have a question thats been on my mind for some time, and you addressed it in this post – kind of. Every room you do, you move other stuff to another unfinished part of the house. What happens to the “STUFF” when all the rooms are finished? Do you have storage planned for the finished house?