09 March 2011

Where the Magic Happens

Thought you all might be interested in seeing where I work:
The Magic Factory
So, this is it. My desk is in a corner of the living/dining area right by the kitchen. It's in the middle of everything but out of the way, if that makes sense.

The desk itself is one of those build-your-own from IKEA (I know, they're all "build it yourself", but I chose the top and legs, which are little bookshelves). As you can see the desk has a glass top, so I can tuck things underneath for display - nothing very pretty right now (knitting mags, notebooks, a cutting mat, clippings from magazines, my scales). There's also the laptop (an antique PowerBook G4 - I keep changing my mind on what I want, then having to save more money, then spending some of it on something else, then having to save more, then having to decide all over again because all the new models are coming out soon); it works-ish, and that's what counts right now.

Since the kids are on Spring Break for the next two weeks, I'm trying to come up with some things we can do so I won't ... you know ... go crazy. Ahem. So, on the desk there's a copy of The Best Things to Do in New York City: 1001 Ideas, which is a really entertaining and informative book. I came up with a bunch of things I'd like to do with the kids, some of which I hadn't known about before. Did you know that there is a botanical garden on Staten Island, and it has a garden designed like The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett (one of my all-time favorite books)? And the Queens County Farm Museum raises heritage breed sheep! I may actually be excited about Spring Break.

You may also notice Little Red Riding Penelope's picnic basket, the hand-crafted tinker toy-esque and index card versions of 3-D Rectangular Prisms Isobel made in school, my swift, my Palm Pre on its Touchstone (best charger ever, and a great little phone - I really like the keyboard), and a bag from Knitty City.

What else? My file thingy with folders for the kids, client stuff, clippings of decorating ideas and three sets of Farrow and Ball paint chips collected over the years - their paint names are as delightful as their hues. My pencil cup is a lovely bit of Burleigh Ironstone I bought when the Stonewall Kitchen at the Atrium Mall closed, and is filled with colored pencils, Sharpie Fine markers (note to self: I need more of those), a nail file, and various scissors, which no one else is allowed to touch. Peeking out behind the laptop is a giant, pale blue, plastic clothespin holding tax info and a picture of Isobel from last summer. I should add pictures of Penelope, Stephen, and Nick, shouldn't I?

On the walls are my "Comfort on the North Shore Line" poster from the Chicago Historical Society (hey, I bought it when it was still a Society - I know it's a full-blown Museum now, though I haven't visited, but I should next time I'm in town) and an IKEA bulletin board covered with project sheets to keep me focussed on in-process work (otherwise I would fly off in a million directions and never get anything done), sizing chart information, and Isobel's school schedule, since they have a two-week schedule, and I could never keep it all in my head. I'm happy I remember to pick her up on the days I'm supposed to pick her up. There used to be more (and more interesting) things on the board, but the cats  took it into their heads that the ephemera must be attacked and taken down. It was not pretty, nor was what I said to the cats. Even still, one of the project sheets has been gnawed on and the schedule comes down once a week or so.

There's a red, rolling set of drawers from IKEA that fits underneath the desk and holds computer cords, notecards, old notebooks, and other paraphenalia (sewing kit, *my* tape, *my* glue stick - shhh, don't tell the kids about that) that would fly all over if not contained. I've started to put some of my knitting books on the shelves, which have mostly held the "tall" kids books until now (if you have kids, you know that invariably there are those books that will not fit on your regular shelves). And what desk in a kid-home would be complete without little tea and coffee cups from IKEA to corral pins and a seam ripper and bits of ribbon? Mine, of course, are pale blue, which the girls don't seem to miss at all.

The lamp is Nick's and used to sit on the piano until I inherited my grandmother's brass lamp. I'll have to give you more of an apartment tour in future posts, I guess.

So, this is where pattern writing, blog posting, and all that email sending take place. Magic ;)


  1. The Secret Garden sounds way cool -- and funny enough, I almost bought same desk from IKEA :-)

  2. i love your name for your space - the Magic Factory. always nice to see where people create.

  3. What a lovely workspace! I think, if I can get mine cleaned up and presentable, I might share as well :)


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