Readers Show Us Where They Create: At Home In Winter
See how readers are engaging in crafts and hobbies, whether it’s weaving, winter gardening or fairy-home building!
Who: Beth Cody
Where: Kalona, Iowa
Hobby: Winter gardeningLast summer Beth Cody had her front porch enclosed, turning it into a sunroom. This winter she’s using the space for her hobby of winter gardening; she trims back and tidies her plants here. Not every aspect of winter gardening happens in the sunroom — Cody fills her watering can and washes plants in the bathtub, and she pots her plants on a workbench in the basement. “But neither of these is nearly as charming or photogenic a spot as the sunroom itself,” Cody writes.
2. Winter Weaver
Who: Lynn Benefiel
Where: Northville, Michigan
Hobbies: Weaving, spinning, knitting
Lynn Benefiel and her husband downsized last year to a condo, making sure to choose a new home that had good studio space for Benefiel’s textile projects, two looms and three spinning wheels. “I’m a fiber artist involved in weaving, spinning and knitting,” Benefiel says. She makes table linens, upholstery, material for throw pillows, hand towels and wall hangings. “The bookshelves hold baskets of supplies and books. My father built my loom, and the tool bench under the window was his tool chest that he built as a teen.” Benefiel made the blue-and-brown linens pictured here; her studio is shown above.
3. Sewing Spot
Who: Angela D
Where: Utah County, Utah
Angela D carved out crafting space in a very small bedroom in the basement of her 1937 home. “I finally mounted a shelf to the wall so I’d have a clear desk surface for quilting,” she writes. She stores her colorful threads, ruler and tools vertically as well, leaving space for crafting. She makes quilts here, as well as home decor items and the occasional costume or garment, often with Netflix on in the background. The room doubles as a guest room.
Who: Mary Pat Dubois
Where: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Hobbies: Painting and weavingMary Pat Dubois lives in a three-story townhome with a storage room on the ground floor, and since she’s purged enough that she doesn’t need it for storage, she converted the room into her creative space. “I surround myself with things that inspire my creativity, and I put on my music and close the door,” she says. She keeps her loom in the room (a portion of it can be seen in the bottom left of the photo above), though on nice days she can fold it up and take it to the backyard deck so she can work out in the sun.Dubois paints in watercolors and acrylics, and has also done some collage work. But her primary focus is weaving. She recently retired early and has taken up weaving again; she plans to sell her woven work online. The wall hanging pictured here is her work.
5. Drawing Studio
“This was my studio before we sold the house,” Arlene Steinberg writes. “I also had an easel that sat to the left of my chair, but this was staged without the easel.” Steinberg is building a new house, which will include a studio with lots of shelving, French doors to a balcony and room to spread out. “I’m a full-time still life artist who works in colored pencils,” she says.
6. Encaustic Garage
“This is my studio, our garage, where I primarily work with encaustics (beeswax and resin with pigments) on birch panel,” Horn writes. “I’ll be replacing the garage door with French doors and solid walls in order to have more display space and make it warmer in the winter.”
7. Sewing Space
Who: Gabrielle Chilton
Where: Rancho Cucamonga, California
Hobby: Creating clothing and home decor
When one of Gabrielle Chilton’s sons moved out, she converted his upstairs bedroom into her sewing room. She sews clothing and home decor items, knits and crochets blankets, and reupholsters used furniture. She has also taught sewing classes in this room. She does use the older sewing machine, pictured at the bottom right of this photo, for some projects. “I find the old machines work better for sewing through [the] thickness of fabrics like denim or upholstery,” she says.
8. Office in Bed
Who: Sharon Harris
Where: Spartanburg, South Carolina
Hobbies: Genealogy, digital scrapbooking, blogging
“I’m disabled and spend a lot of time in bed,” Sharon Harris writes, noting that her bed is adjustable. Harris’ husband made her a rolling desk. “I work on the computer doing genealogy, digital scrapbooking, blogging. So this desk has been wonderful.”
Harris’ husband also included a slide-out mouse shelf with the desk. Harris can sit with her dogs and work for hours on her projects here.
9. Fairy House Creation
Who: Kim Wilcox
Where: Kennett Square, Pennsylvania
Hobby: Creating fairy houses
Kim Wilcox put together this craft space last year, and this is where she works on miniature fairy houses, her hobby. The homes are very heavy, made of solid wood and stone.
The photo below shows a scene from one of Wilcox’s woodland fairy houses.
10. Scrapbook Central
Who: Joanne Hawley
Joanne Hawley turned the basement of her century-old home into her scrapbooking studio. The desk seen here used to belong to her daughter, who is now 34. Hawley’s brother built the long table to the right of the desk. It stood in her kitchen until she remodeled that room three years ago.
11. Sea and Air
Who: Emily Hoschouer
Where: Medina, Ohio
Artwork: Painting on the walls
Sometimes the only canvas a creative person needs for fun hobbies are a home’s blank walls. “I did the basement toy room a couple of winters ago, and now that my daughter is old enough to pick her own room theme, I’m about to start galloping horses on her walls,” Emily Hoschouer writes.
12. Sewing Room
Where: The Villages, Florida
Hobbies: Quilting and sewing
Flourishingpalms outfitted a guest room in her home with everything she needs for quilting and sewing. “I have two sewing machines permanently set up — one for sewing and piecing, the other for quilting — with two flexible tables (varnished hollow-core doors) set upon four adjustable-height Ikea sawhorses,” she writes. She uses the door-tables for ironing, cutting fabric and basting quilts. She added UV film to the south-facing bay window to protect her projects from the Florida sun.
Flourishingpalms stores her fabric in a cabinet. “I spend lots of happy hours in this room!” she writes.
13. Craft Room
Where: Darien, Connecticut
Hobbies: All types of craft projects
Houzzer cdve converted a walk-in closet into her craft storage and sewing room. “I am a utilitarian sewer (that means mending or creating home accessories), I love to do all matter of craft projects …, photography and small home improvement projects like simple carpentry work,” she writes.
Cdve built the shelves pictured here herself. She has been running a craft group for adults out of her home.
14. Living Room Knitter
We don’t all have dedicated spaces we can carve out for winter hobbies, but a dual-purpose space can be just as satisfying. “I downsized last year and live in a 760-square-foot condo — still struggling with storage!” lookylou2 writes. “My hobby is knitting for myself and family, and my craft room is basically my living room…with hand-knit striped socks on the needles at the moment.”
15. Jewelry Studio
Who: Janet Kofoed
Craft: Making jewelry
“I’m a jeweler, and my studio is a tiny room on the second floor that was once, I think, a nursery. It’s about 90 square feet, and I have all my benches and equipment shoehorned into it. The saving grace of the space is a small adjoining deck, a good place for product photography or contemplation,” Janet Kofoed writes.
16. Quilting Bee
Who: Diane Shopteau
Where: Rochester, Minnesota
Diane Shopteau has a two-bedroom condo and uses the second bedroom as her sewing and craft room. She makes wall hangings, quilts, table runners, clothing and home decor. Shopteau also knits and crochets, and has used these skills to make sweaters, scarves and toys.