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my craft room: a photo guide

We’ll hopefully be moving into our new house this week, and I’ll have the challenge of figuring out how to set up my new craft room/office/photo studio. To make that task a bit easier, I thought I’d put together a visual guide to my old craft room, and I thought you might enjoy seeing it too – maybe it’ll give you some ideas for your own craft space!

I sadly didn’t have time to take photos before dismantling everything and depersonalizing the room to stage the house for sale, so I’ve compiled this guide from photos I took for previous posts. There are some strange angles, gaps, and different lighting etc as a result of that, but that just makes it more interesting, right? 😉

In case you want to know more about the crafty projects you see in the photos, I’ll link back to my original posts where applicable.

Okay, now let’s take a tour anti-clockwise around the room, starting from the doorway…

craft room
To your right as you enter, my bookcase, made prettier with a little crafty decoration down the side.

craft room
To the left of the bookcase, amigurumi galore! My overcrowded toy shelves. (Beneath the shelves, I kept my business/shipping supplies and digital piano – I had to sell the piano before we moved, so at least I won’t need to fit that into the new room.)

At the left of the photo, you can see the edge of desk 1…

craft room
As you can see, it had good natural light from the window, so I used this desk mostly for polymer clay and papercrafting. I kept a row of cubbies and baskets along the back of the desk to store small supplies: paintbrushes, crochet hooks, glues and varnishes, etc.

Under the window, I had a low table with my toaster oven (for polymer clay, shrinkydinks, etc) and I kept storage boxes underneath the table. No photos of this, and of course I couldn’t bring the toaster oven to South Africa (it’s electric, so the voltage would be wrong).

craft room
I decorated the window with origami – this strand of lucky stars along the top, and 6 dangling vertical strands of silver thread, each strung with a few sparkly beads and origami lotus flowers, cranes, and diamond shapes, spaced across the window. (I did try to photograph the vertical strands but, with them being so small and backlit, I never managed a decent photo.)

craft room
My computer desk, with a magnetic dry-erase board mounted on the wall next to it, and my wall-climbing amigurumi gecko!

craft room
Above the desk, some shelves I made to keep various trinkets – mostly handmade ornaments and a few travel souvenirs.

craft room
I prettied up my stark black leather office chair with a custom-designed crocheted granny throw.

Now moving along to the other side wall…

craft room
Light tent for my pattern photography. I eventually replaced the tiny table you see here with a wider coffee table and then stored all my computer accessories, gadgets etc in decorative patterned cardboard boxes (from IKEA – sorry, I apparently never photographed them) underneath – you’d never guess their geeky contents from the outside!

craft room
Desk 2. I kept my sewing machine here, and borrowed the desk space when needed for the print-quality tutorial photography for my book (shown in-progress here – the letters refer to my blog post about this setup), and for filming tutorial videos.

craft room
I re-covered this boring grey office chair with pretty fabric. I shared the chair between desks 1 and 2, as I could only sit at one at a time anyway!

craft room
And finally, the built-in closet, aka craft supply heaven. The wire shelving on the right contained my fabric stash, and the plastic towers of drawers were filled with yarn, FIMO, and supplies for all my other crafts. For each plastic tower, I cannibalised 2 units and snapped them together so I could create these taller towers that fit my space better. The contents are organised and the drawers are all labelled so there’s a drawer for stamps and punches, one for papercrafts, one for embroidery supplies, one for art supplies, etc etc, and then yarn split by weight, type and brand.

Not the prettiest solution, but I could always close the closet doors to hide the mis-matched units if required. The only problem is that my yarn stash inevitably outgrew the closet, so I’ll need to rethink things a bit this time around.

On top of the units, I had a stock of clear plastic boxes with lids, in two sizes. Each in-progress project gets its own box, so I can easily see what I have on the go, and keep all the pieces of one project together. This idea works really well for keeping organised and keeping the clutter down on my desks.

So that’s what I left behind… My new room will be very different and quite a challenge – it’s currently an empty square apart from a very cool fireplace in one corner:

new craft room

The lighting is terrible (small window, bare bulb hanging from the ceiling near the door) and there’s only one power socket on one wall, but that’s what happens when you buy an old 1920s bungalow instead of a modern cookie-cutter characterless house. Our new place has a lot of personality!

What do you think of my craft storage solutions? Any suggestions for me to improve things this time around? If you have photos of your craft space, or links to photos of other people’s beautiful craft rooms that might inspire me when trying to set up my new room, please share them in the comments!


  1. trang said

    very nice! like ^^

  2. Maureen said

    Oh you are so neat with your stuff! I’m so envious. Right now it looks like something exploded in my room, and it’s too overwhelming to pick it up so I just work amidst the mess.
    Here is an old post of when I first moved into my craft room…*sigh* if only I had kept it this neat

  3. Johanna said

    What a lovely room – I can’t wait to see what you do with it. I love Alice’s logs and flames idea. Maybe you could roast some amigurumi mashmallows over it (hmm…I’m having a flashback to a Crochet Today magazine).

    • June said

      I think that sitting, freezing, in front of amigurumi flames would be a cruel irony! I do already have a couple of decorating ideas that are more my style though – I’m not really into quirky cartoon decor, although it would be funny 🙂 Now all I need is for my furniture and all my amigurumi to arrive, and enough time to get everything set up. This is going to be a big job…

  4. futuregirl said

    I think you totally need amigurumi logs and flames in that fireplace. 🙂

    • June said

      Hahaha! That would be funny! Actually, I’ve had a more practical idea: I’m going to put a little electric halogen heater inside the fireplace – that way I hopefully won’t freeze (no heating, remember?) and the halogen will even give a nice warm glow. It’s not quite as romantic as a real fire, but it’ll be a lot easier than buying wood, and safer than having to contend with the open flames and smoke 🙂

  5. Noelle said

    Where did you get the white storage tower? I love it! I want to find that, or something close to it. Where can I get one?

    I wanna build my own craft room!

    • June said

      Noelle, I believe I bought it from Walmart a few years ago. It’s actually 2 small three-drawer units stacked on top of each other – this one is designed so they will stack securely.

  6. Jodi said

    Wow, so organised! Whereas I seem to be permanently living among what appears to be some kind of yarn and paper explosion 😛

    I love the bird hanging underneath one of your shelves!

    • June said

      I live in an explosion too – you should see my work areas! But it does make it much easier to start new projects if you know where to lay hands on all your supplies 🙂

      (The lovely wooden chickadee was handmade by artist Sandra Healy.)

  7. Hey June,
    Definitely got some awesome ideas for my craft room, thanks so much for sharing!!
    I have asked my cousin in Cape Town where she goes but while I wait for a response check Mr. Price if you have one there.

    • June said

      Ooh, Jessi, insider knowledge is exactly what I need – thank you so much! I think I’ve seen a Mr Price in the big megamall at Century City, so I’ll have to check it out 🙂

  8. Your craft room looked so much more organised than anything we have here and I’m sure your new craft room will be as well. My main crafting area is the lounge seat in front of the TV, project storage is beside the chair and beside the bed and while the yarn cupboard is organised according the ply the is no separation between brands or colour of yarn.

    • June said

      I started out that way too, but once my crafting turned into my livelihood, I found that I needed dedicated spaces for photography studio, home office, etc. I still crochet on the sofa in front of the TV though!

      And as for the yarn, I used to have one drawer for “worsted weight” for my amigurumi, but I’ve found that there’s such a thickness difference between my top 3 (Bernat Satin, Red Heart Soft and Lion Brand Vannas Choice) that I can’t mix them in one design, so a drawer for each made sense…

  9. Gillian McMullen said

    A question for you, June: how did you prevent your amigurumi on open shelves from gathering dust? I find this is a problem!

    • Judy Carlson said

      Hugging your amigurumi often keeps the dust from building up! 🙂

    • June said

      Hmmm, good question. I guess I’ve been lucky because I’ve never seen any dust accumulate on my amis! I suspect that they must all get up and dance to shake off the dust when I’m not looking…

      But seriously, if the dust is building up I’d suggest taking each one down every now and then for a gentle shake and/or tap to dislodge any dust (preferably just before vacuuming the room). Judy’s cuddling suggestion is also a good solution! 🙂

  10. curegirl0421 said

    June, your new room is awesome! The fireplace should be decorative, definitely, but you could still have that nice cozy glow… line it in some way with lights! Maybe a string of rope lights coiled along the bottom, with a pretty fire screen in front? And then, of course, the shelves above should be for displaying your very favorite critters and travel goodies… and the lizard should definitely be climbing the bricks of the fireplace. 🙂 Geckos love fire, ya know! Have fun decorating your new space!

    • June said

      Ooh, cool idea for the glowing fireplace! I’ll definitely think about doing something like that, and/or maybe put a little electric heater inside the fireplace too. Did I mention that houses here have no heating and we’re heading into winter now?!

  11. Sherry said

    Wow, you only have one craft room? My husband says “I’ve taken over the whole house! ha ha….But seriously would love to have you come make some since out of my craft room, yours is so tidy….(jealous) mine is way more unorganized!!
    But I know what you mean about running out of room for the yarn stash, funny thing is, when a new color comes out, I just have to have it!! Good luck on your new craft room, I have no doubt you will settle in just fine.

    Sincerely Inspired

    • June said

      Haha, well I do work on crafty projects all over the house, but, storage-wise, it’s all contained in the one room 🙂

      I must admit I’m not at all tidy by nature, and this is an ongoing struggle for me, but I’ll keep trying – I feel claustrophobic when my room is crammed full of clutter and there are no clear surfaces.

  12. Miriam said

    You are very organized! I’ve always liked your long shelves of critters, but I also like the towers in the closet (ugly or not) and the plastic boxes to keep current projects in. Those appeal greatly to my need for organization in my constant battle against crafting chaos.

    • June said

      The in-progress boxes are magic! As they are clear you can see what’s inside without opening them, and the lids mean you can stack them up neatly. I even keep my crochet hook and a notebook or any scraps of paper with notes about the project inside each box, so I have everything relating to the project in one place. I totally recommend them!

      PS – Staying organised is an ongoing battle for me, even with all these storage solutions. The reason there are no pics of the nice clean crafting surfaces in the above post is that they were very rarely clear and empty, despite my intentions 😉

  13. Jen Green said

    So exciting! Love the fireplace, and lighting is an easy fix. Good luck!

    • June said

      Is lighting an easy fix? It’s not obvious to me what I can do – the whole house suffers from these small windows and not much light, with very few power outlets. I hope I’m just being clueless and there are some easy solutions!

      If anyone has ideas to lighten the place up (preferably inexpensive ones!) I’d be more than happy to hear them…

      • Di said

        Hi June, nice to see you settling in. Regarding the power outlet situation, it may be different in South Africa (and older houses), but we’ve recently gotten an electrician in and he easily turned ‘one socket’ outlets into ‘two socket’ outlets (or ‘power points’ as we call them). Two is now the standard, it’s very rare electricians carry one socket outlets here in Aus anymore apparently. You may be able to get ones with three or four. This of course means they are all in the same area, but to get around this, depending on the roof/wall cavities etc, they may also be able to insert sockets in other parts of the room coming off sockets in adjoining rooms. It’s a bit hard to explain, but we had a power socket in our hallway and the electrician was able to cut a hole in the bedroom (on the other side of the hallway wall) and insert a power socket there, which ran off the wires leading to the one in the hall.

        • June said

          Thanks for this, Di! I hadn’t thought of getting an electrician in. I think we’ll see how we do when our furniture eventually arrives and try to figure out if and where we really need more outlets, or if we can manage with multiple adapters and extension cords.

          Having to replace all our electricals (originally bought over time, on sale, at bargain prices) at once, in a place where things cost far more to begin with and bargains are scarce, is all very expensive, so we’re trying to just get the essentials for now and hopefully get around to home improvement projects when things are a bit less crazy!

  14. Love all your photo’s! All those crochet animals!! LOVELY!!
    Enjoy your new home and keep designing those beautiful amigurumi patterns.
    Best wishes,

    • June said

      Thank you, Erika! I have plenty of ideas waiting to be turned into patterns once we get settled in and have some time to crochet again 🙂

  15. I love what you did with your craft room! You definitely gave me ideas how to better organize myself and set up my next craft room when find a new place. Thanks for posting this! :o)

  16. Jenn said

    Those craft supply storage units are great! I have similar yarn storage like it except mine do not snap together. Which is fine because I seemigly only store yarn. heehee

    Love your new space! My suggestion would be to line the walls up with either your current shelving units or new units. I’ve seen designers do this in small spaces & it allows one to easily slide from one side of the workstation to the other. 🙂 I’ve got these great cube shelving units that I purchased over last year’s black Friday for 60% off. They are perfect to use for books, supplies & bins. Check out my blog to see some photos. (email me if you want the link-don’t want to Ad here without permission).

    Happy decorating!!

    • June said

      Thanks for the suggestions! I’d love to buy some new shelving units, but…
      – There’s no Michaels/JoAnn/etc here, or an equivalent
      – There’s no IKEA here, or an equivalent
      – There’s no WalMart here, or an equivalent

      If there are places to buy inexpensive storage furniture, I’ve yet to discover them: I found one place selling a plastic tower like mine, but the drawers are grey (yuck!) and it costs the equivalent of $70 – if I’m spending that kind of money I’d want something better than ugly plastic!

      Finding stuff for our house is definitely going to be a challenge. What I wouldn’t give to be able to go to IKEA…

  17. Sharon said

    thanks for sharing; I love the “old” room and this new one looks like it will be much fun to design; I may have to borrow some of the thoughts from the old room as we love the beach feel so much; grandson’s room is totally beach with his boogie board and skim board as primary theme; even put the really expensive gold sparkles in the paint so it felt like the way sand sparkles in the sun; enjoy the new house; can’t wait to see what you do with it

    • June said

      Thanks! I hope you do use some of my ideas – it’s always nice to inspire people!

  18. Crystal said

    My favorite part was the shelves covered in amigurumi!…oh, and your huge stash of yarn 😛

    • June said

      Heehee, you haven’t even seen half the yarn stash! There’s maybe a quarter in those drawers… Living an easy drive from the Bernat/Patons yarn factory outlet store made it very easy to justify building a huge stash 😉

  19. Else said

    Your craft room was wonderful, June! Can’t wait to see what you do in the new one. And I want a fireplace, too. 🙂

    • June said

      I really miss my craft room… It was so bright and sunny! But I’m determined to make the new room good too 🙂

  20. June I love what you did with the old room, but this one.. OMG it is FANTASTIC! I love the fireplace!

    • June said

      I had to fight to claim the fireplace room as mine! I had visions of curling up in a cosy armchair to crochet by the fire…

      But actually, I think I’ll keep it as a decorative fireplace – I’m not so keen on the idea of naked flame (and the smoky smell) so close to my precious, and very flammable, yarn and creations!

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