A couple of days ago I was working in my ARTHaven and trying to cut some sentiments using SCAL 2 (Sure Cuts A Lot) – the software for cutting with Jiminy Cricut, my cutting machine. I was having no end of trouble, and noticed that SCAL was crashing with depressing regularity too. A while back, Penny Duncan, on our Creative Inspirations and Friendships group, was raving about a new cutting program she’d got, called Make The Cut – I thought, “Oh no! I simply CAN’T change to a new program now – I’ve hardly learnt how to use this one!”
However, experiencing so many problems, and bearing in mind what Penny had said about MTC being so much more user-friendly, and having many more features too, I decided to take the plunge, and purchased and downloaded it then and there!
As soon as I started using it, I realised how good it was. I hardly had to look at any instructions at all – it more or less does itself, and is so intuitive that you just “do” things without really having to think about it! I cut some flower shapes for the stationery box I’m making for my mum’s Christmas present and it was all so easy…
Now some plans for my ARTHaven:
Since moving stuff around in my ARTHaven, I have now made available a nice blank wall space above my work table, which was part of the plan for the revamp.
I have been trying to decide how best to use this space. I want to have some shelves, but I also want to be able to keep things I use a lot within easy reach, and so I’ve decided to put up some pegboard panels. You can get lots of different hooks to fit into the holes, and as they are spaced an inch apart, it’s pretty well infinitely variable, and can be changed constantly to meet my needs, and to accommodate new tools etc. as I get them. This is going to be so much better than simply having fixed shelves. You can hang shelves on the board as long as you don’t put anything too heavy on them, and my small cardboard boxes will be great stored in this way.
I’ve spent quite a long time researching the different types of board, and found some quite fascinating blogs along the way – lovely enthusiastic chaps in their garages with their tool storage – and lots of videos they’ve done. I also went on a lot of shopfitting websites which was an education – I learnt for the first time what a slat wall was, and when we went shopping yesterday I saw one in Superdrug! It’s not quite as versatile as peg board with its regularly spaced holes, but has slats that you can hook things onto. It does look rather nice!
I’ve more or less narrowed it down to a choice of two types now: a standard metal board with holes at 1 inch:
or a composite board made of plastic, with a mixture of ordinary holes and keyhole slots, which is much cheaper than the metal one, but I’m not sure yet whether the accessories I want will fit on it.
These days I’m dreaming about hooks! There are so many different ones, mostly for kitting out shops – you can get them with those little price tags hanging on the front! I’ve also found some rather good accessories, including these jars which are very clever – the lid remains attached to the board, and you unscrew the jar from beneath – really useful for keeping paper flowers etc. in.
Then there are baskets
and this brilliant one, which you can either use to hold a roll of kitchen paper (I use this a LOT in my ARTHaven and it would be nice to have it easily accessible) or for rolls of tape, ribbons, etc. You could have several.
These are some of the hooks and tool holders that are available:
I’m going to cover an area as large as possible above the table, but want to leave some space clear to the right, where I can put up the Ikea rails I bought a while back – I have got some plastic tubs that hang on those, and also they are a marvellous way to store punches.
It will be really nice to have all my equipment in easy reach. Creating my ARTHaven has been a really fun project, and it’s a joy to work in – and any day now I am expecting the arrival of some PureLite bulbs (like Daylight bulbs but cheaper!) to improve the quality of the light so that I can see my colours more accurately. It’s all coming together!
As soon as I’ve got anything to show for it, I’ll post some photos.