Us Northerners... what do you do?

Imsunflwr1July 24, 2011

I live in northern IL and although there's still plenty of warm weather ahead I'm thinking of this winter when it's too cold to even work in the garage. I've been cleaning out my basement so I can get a studio set-up there. I'm also wanting to get a kiln. The Mapei UltraFlex II that I've been using isn't very dusty so I think it would be safe to use indoors. Might be a problem if I make something really heavy, but... What do you do? Do you have a studio in your home? Can you tell me about it? Pictures? Thanks! :)

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If you're worried about working w/the mortar inside, wear a mask. We should anyway, but I only wear a mask when I mix up mortar - even outside. That stuff has tons of dust. I have a worktable in my garage, and a room between the garage (former carport) and my den which is my main workshop. Too tired to get up and take pictures today. B/f I had central heat/air installed in the garage and workshop, in winter I set up two electric heaters in the garage and although I was still chilly, they allowed me to work all winter. You can believe I fixed that, and had the central heat installed that year.

    Bookmark   July 24, 2011 at 5:40PM
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This past winter I did indoor mosaic projects with Weldbond. Then we grouted in a friend's basement. I think I will probably do indoor stuff again. I'm trying to come up with some Christmas present ideas to start in October (indoor stuff using weldbond.)
My dh covered the rock in our cellar with concrete last winter, and he mixed it down there! I now have a work area down there and there is a wood stove if I need it. My part of New Hampshire gets to 20 below zero F. That extreme low isn't for too many days but it is below freezing and below zero for many days.
And I dream of summer, of course.

    Bookmark   July 24, 2011 at 7:57PM
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Well, I have the opposite problem! It's been over 100 degrees F. every day for weeks and weeks here. It's too hot for me for work outside in the summer. I have a huge roll of brown paper and I lay pieces out on the dining room table and grout there. I am extremely careful with the grout trying to control the dust and trying to not let bits escape onto the hardwood floor. I put out two layers of paper, one on top of the other. I grout and then when the mess gets to be too much, I fold up the paper capturing the mess inside, and take it to the trash and continue working on the fresh layer of paper. When I am all through with the grouting, I vacuum.

I prefer to grout outside on the front or back porch, weather permitting. I also prefer to nip glass outside because a tiny little corner of glass can pop ten feet or more and people have stepped on them before with bare feet. If the weather is horrible, I line the deep sink in the laundry room with a big towel and I nip glass there, taking care not to let it pop out of the sink.

What I would LIKE is a large room (heated and air conditioned) set up like a studio with shelving all around and long tables and just let the grout and broken glass fall everywhere without worrying about it!

    Bookmark   July 24, 2011 at 9:13PM
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Yes Silvamae, I'm with you! I want a room like Calamity's or some other folks here. I'm grateful for what I have tho and actually anywhere I work I have to be careful because the little dog might walk down there in his bare feet!
100 degrees is too hot for me. You have my sympathy! I don't even like the 90s. Its been so hot here that my hollyhocks on the south side of the house got ruined. :(

    Bookmark   July 25, 2011 at 7:33AM
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I don't do well in heat either. I don't like it much over 70, but you must persevere... it's summer!

I'll have to be a bit careful with nipping b/c I have 2 kitties who like to be by mom and know what she's up to, although I've seen some pictures on Flickr of cats actually laying across the mosaic in progress with shards all over!

    Bookmark   July 25, 2011 at 10:29AM
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Yes my two kitties used to get right in there too. Now they prefer not to be quite so close to the dog!

    Bookmark   July 26, 2011 at 1:22PM
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I live in Montana where the winters are long but this doesn't change where I work on my projects. I always work inside my house either on a table in my office or even from my kitchen table. Sometimes I will mix mortar or grout in the garage but once it is mixed then I do not have a problem using it indoors. Most of the time I use weldbond for an adhesive anyway.

Here is a link that might be useful: Opus Mosaics-Mosaic Tile Supplies for Any Project

    Bookmark   July 26, 2011 at 6:30PM
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106 here today .I have a studio that was a garage that was to little for my car so I turned it in to nana play room.I have sink out side my door that run on to bushes .I clean there .
On braking your glass get you a big bag that bed spreads or blankets come in and break in side of it .Works great.

    Bookmark   July 26, 2011 at 10:00PM
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Well, I'm very encouraged with all of your responses and once I get it cleaned out and organized I'll have a very nice set-up.

Thanks for the link Opus... I bookmarked your site.

nanatricia! 106!!! Oh you poor thing I'd melt! Where are you that it's that hot? Southwest?

    Bookmark   July 26, 2011 at 10:13PM
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