Storage Units as Artist Studios?

Storage units as artist studios

Photo courtesy of about-space.net.

There has been a surge of popularity in creative uses of a self storage unit in the past few years. Using a self storage unit only for extra belongings such as furniture, clothing or collectives has begun to change. As retail rental prices have climbed, the new small business owner is looking for other solutions to house their businesses and inventory. In the expanding self storage market in China, entrepreneurs are setting up their businesses out of storage units. It is low-cost, low overhead and a perfect place to store inventory. The business owner just needs to let people know where his storage unit is located in order to make a purchase or the business owner can package and ship goods out of their storage unit. There was a recent article that even talks about dance studios and bicycle shops being created out of a self storage unit!

There are so many alternative uses for self storage units that are becoming more and more popular. Bands are using self storage for practice studios at some facilities.  There are also other storage facilities that are catering to artists. Some self storage owners are converting and upgrading some of their storage units to accommodate musicians and other artists. This would include installing electricity, insulation, sky lights and glass doors, and in some cases plumbing and running water. Bridge Storage and Art Space in Richmond, California have created an artist community at their storage facility. They have monthly artist shows in a specially created gallery space as well as community meetings with their tenants. It does take some planning, remodeling and investigating of local regulations and utility codes if you are interested in converting the storage units into artist spaces. It is also important to be in a thriving artist area.

Why would converting a storage unit into an art studio be a good solution for an artist? A storage unit can be a quiet and solitary place to work. The units that are being rented around you might be long-term rentals. This means that as an artist, you might not be disturbed for long stretches of time. On the other hand, you could acquire a lot of inspiration from the other renters of a busy storage facility.  Renting a storage unit is affordable and there usually are not long-term commitment contracts. The storage unit is also a very secure and safe spot to store your artwork. In warmer climates this is a great spot to work year round.  Based on the type of artwork that is created, it might be a better idea to look for climate controlled units to store your artwork.

With nearly 45,000 storage facilities in the United States and the higher cost of renting retail space, the traditional model of a self storage unit is beginning to change. The facilities are adapting and changing to fill a need in their community and that need has changed from storing extra goods to focusing on business storage or alternative uses for the storage unit.

Clutter. Don’t let it become a nasty word!

Stop N Stor

Take away some of your clutter, by storing in self storage

The season is beginning to change, the days are getting shorter and soon the leaves will change color and fall from the trees. It’s been a whirlwind of activity getting the family back-to-school year routines and items (projects, paper, sporting equipment, etc.)  are already beginning to stack up in your home. It is now time to focus on re-organizing and de-cluttering your home. Clutter can turn into a negative when it starts to take over your home. Too much clutter can make a home (and even a business) seem messier and non-inviting. We can’t get away from clutter in our lives. It will always be there and accumulate even after you re-organize. It is just part of our world. You can try to hide the clutter in closets, basements and attics, but what will happen when these storage areas have all become full?

There are many ways to help clean up and reorganize your stuff. A great option is moving some of the excess clutter into a self storage unit. Stop N Stor  has storage units of all sizes to help in your re-organization process! But, don’t just move the clutter from the home to your storage unit. Actually go through the items and decide what you still need and what you don’t need to keep anymore. As has been mentioned in previous blog posts, re-organizing and staging is a perfect solution when you are moving. Staging a home for sale will increase the value of the home and help to speed up the sale of the home. Also, if you have recently renovated or redesigned a room, you will need a place to store excess furniture, artwork and items that don’t fit into the new look of the room. Just like with spring cleaning, it is important to create a sorting system to go through your items. Have a box to keep, to sell, to donate and to throw items out. A good rule of thumb is that if you haven’t used the item in at least a few years, then get rid of it. Some people even amend that rule to throw things out after a year, if you haven’t used it. If you have any items that are still in the original packaging un-opened after a year, then you didn’t need it in the first place and it’s time to donate or throw it away.

Reorganization also should pertain to your storage unit. If you are storing long-term, clean through the storage unit at least twice a year. Spring and Fall would be the perfect time to do this. Go through the items in your storage unit just like you did with the clutter in your home. Don’t be afraid to throw out items that you will not use again.

Don’t let clutter take over your life! If is a very daunting task, but reorganizing and de-cluttering is a very worthwhile task. It just takes some time and determination. Create a daily or weekly “de-cluttering to-do list”. Once you cross off an item on the list, it will give you a sense of accomplishment. Your home will be more organized and you will be able to find that item that you really do use on a daily basis!

2012 Fashion’s Night Out in Savannah

Fashion's Night Out Savannah

Photo courtesy of facebook.com

It is time to get your fashion on again in Savannah! Tomorrow is Fashion’s Night Out in Savannah. Fashion’s Night Out, which is in its second year in Savannah, is a worldwide event. Retailers, designers and fashion houses showcase their latest designs in such countries as the US, Italy, India, Japan, Australia, Germany and the UK and many more. There were over 4,500 participating events in cities across the United States along for last year’s festivities! Fashion’s Night Out, founded 4 years ago in NYC, celebrates music, art and high-end fashion. There are limited edition products and special sales created specifically for this one day event and you can even get a chance to speak to the fashion designers.

Savannah is once again participating in the Fashion’s Night Out event. Over 4,000 people visited the event for 2011. Broughton Street in downtown Savannah will be shut down between Montgomery and Drayton Streets for the event. This creates a pedestrian walk-way for shoppers and participating retailers. The event starts at 6pm and lasts until 11pm. There will be 2 fashion runway shows at each end of Broughton Street to encourage the participants to walk the entire street and see all of the participating retailers. There are 26 retailers for young and old participating in the event this year.  The majority of them are locally based retailer on or near Broughton Street. Retailers include: Arc, Bluebell Boutique, Copper Penny, Colorbox Salon, Fab’rik, Haberdashery, J Paige, Satchel, Sara Jane Children’s and Terra Cotta Boutique just to name a few.  National chains such as Coldwater Creek, Claire’s and The Gap are also participating in the event.

The event has both national and local sponsors. National sponsors include QVC, VW and Maybelline. Local sponsors include South Magazine , Connect Savannah , Rise Model Management  and City of Savannah. Fashion’s Night Out Savannah has a Facebook page  and Twitter Page. Check out these pages for the latest up-to-date information on the event.

Head down to Broughton Street Thursday night and see what fashion has to offer Savannah! Step out and support your local retail shops and businesses!