A Peek into our Maker Space

A peek at the Tinkerlab Studio

Where the Making Happens

Since moving into our house about three years ago, our art studio has set its stake in almost every non-sleeping/bathing area of our home. The house is small, and we have to get creative. Are you in the same camp?

Most recently, our studio was in the official dining room, which worked out well since it’s right next to the kitchen (water source!) and I could make meals while the kids created.

But, kids grow and the way we were using the house changed. Mainly, I was ready for my OWN maker space which couldn’t also fit in the small dining room, so we shifted things around and turned part of our living room into what you see here. How about you? Do you have a space for your creative outlet?

For a very different look, you can check out how the art studio fit into this corner just two years ago, and then again one year ago. kannuaire.com. I think we’re getting better at this! The current space is far from perfect, but it’s become a productive room and serving its purpose well.

I should add that as I look at my desk right now, it’s covered in all sorts of projects (eeek) and doesn’t look nearly as inviting as it does in this photo, but I remind myself that it’s a working space and that’s the point of it! It’s there to get messy.

My favorite things about the space are:

  1. The art cart (IKEA)
  2. Having a big table to work on (that’s not also where we eat meals)
  3. The ability to work alongside my kiddos.

Your thoughts

I’m keeping it short today, but before I sign off I would love to hear from you:

  1. Do you have a designated space for making?
  2. If yes, please tell me about it and submit your studio and it may be featured on Tinkerlab.
  3. If no, what’s holding you back?



  1. We just moved into a small (530 sq ft) house about 3 weeks ago. We have a tentative creative space set up, but we still have a lot of boxes to unpack, so we’ll see what the “final” results end up being.

    I LOVE that Ikea cart! What all is in it and how do you have it arranged?

    Right now the kiddo is coloring on a book on the floor in the living room.

    • Tina, I love the challenge of living in a small space. There are days that I’m beyond frustrated by it, but I think it’s made me more creative and has helped us live with just the essentials. Although I still struggle with keeping the stuff to a minimum, I’ve come to learn that I don’t need half the things I once thought were essential.

      The cart is fantastic, and I like that it keeps our basic materials in one easy-to-find (and clean) spot. The top shelf is all mark-making tools (pens, crayons, paintbrushes, etc.), the next shelf has glue, tape, and a box of stencils (my 5-year old is obsessed with stencils right now), and the bottom shelf holds a box of stickers, sketchbooks, and containers full of treasures (feathers, sequins, buttons, etc.). I’ll share a post on just the cart soon.

      Good luck settling into your new home! x

  2. Oh I love this space!!! And that trolley full of goodies is perfect!!!

    • Thank you so much! The trolley is a new find, and I’m glad to have it. I almost picked up a grey one and my daughter convinced me that teal was a better color for our space. I have to agree 🙂

  3. That’s a beautiful space. Not to much distraction but lots of creative material. I love the kids’ table. Our children table is so small, the kids are fighting about the space. I need to get a bigger one. Can’t limit their imagination with the size of the table, can I?

    • Thank you so much! We started off with a much smaller table too, and then one day I realized that we outgrew it. The chairs that came with ours are really sturdy, so my husband and I can sit on them in relative comfort.

  4. I love this space and that cart. I just ordered it online – thanks for the great idea!!

    • You’re welcome, Jen! Let me know what you think.

  5. I love this space and up until last month I was also making my own art on the dining table alongside my 2 and 4 year old kiddos. We just moved into a larger space with a neat 150 sqft metal structure outdoors that I will be slowly (since it presently doesn’t have windows) into a playhouse with an art studio. I am so excited to let my loves have a space of their own but I still want to still encourage art making indoors. Your space is such a great example of how this can work beautifully. Bonding through creativity and discovery is so important to me as a mother. I very much appreciate how your studio helps you accomplish that so naturally.

  6. I have just found your site, i love it, i love what you have done with your space, my daughter loves her art also, and i love what you have done with the organisation i am off to buy one of these trolleys as we speak, great idea..where are the table and chairs from? the table is a great size….

    • The little table is from Pottery Barn…it’s been a great investment for us. Good luck with your organizing, and please send me photos of your new space!

  7. I bought an art cart after seeing this a while back. I love it, but wish i had bought the ikea one instead. I am still struggling with the art space. We have a wonderful room but it is everyone’s favorite room and has to serve multiple needs. I think it might be time to take the play kitchen out and put art studio in. The mess is a deterrent too. Plus i need a bigger table. Play kitchen does get a lot of use though. Hmmm i am having a hard time deciding how to set it up. Silly to be so undecided

    • I totally get the indecision, Brandy. Since posting this image about 6 months ago, we’ve actually moved the art table to a different part of the house. As my kids grow, the way we use the space changes, so being flexible works for us. If the play kitchen is being used a lot, then it’s probably good to keep it there. My suggestion is to do a short-term test. Take the play kitchen out and set up an art space without too much fuss. See how it goes and note if it changes the way the space is used in a positive way. And please report back 🙂

  8. Hi! I have been getting my daughter into art since she loves it and I found the artful parent site…which led me to yours! 🙂 My question: How do you manage paint and mess inside a nice house? My daughter is 3, and even if she tries, she will get paint EVERYWHERE, the floor, walls, etc. So, we are in the garage, but it limits us, since I have to be there with her…any tips?

    I also love that cart! thanks!

  9. Him can you tell me where you got your kids table/chairs as well as the adult one? They both look simple, yet spacious & I am looking for closer up pictures to possibly build something to fit our own needs/space. Do you have a link that shows where these can be bought? Thanks! Beautiful space!

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