Studio conversion blog part 2

So people have actually been emailing me about updates on the studio conversion I am doing.

Truth be owned I have not had much chance to work on it of late.
So I took the decision to take the whole of July off work to hit it hard and push it on a lot.
I have a few solo shows coming up and i really need the extra dedicated room to have several pieces on the go at one time, so I need to get this studio sorted out.

So after I got all the old ceiling down I was left with 76 sacks of rubble and wood to get rid of. Several days of carrying all that down two flights of stairs and out into a skip and it was cleared.

Then came about three weeks of finishing stripping the beams. There are some people who should be shot for their crimes against interior decorating. I took upto nine coates of paint off of those beatuiful wooden beams. In one place some idiot had actually put woodchip wallpaper painted light blue OVER the wooden beam…. !?!…
Anyway with a combination of stripping chemicals (Eco friendly water based ones I should point out), many dedicated hours with a handheld steel scraping blade and a few power tool I finally got pretty much all the paint off. I sanded and oiled the wood to stop any more dirt getting into the beams. I will re-oil and wax them again later on when the proper final decorating is done.

Next up was putting in all the insulation so I dont freeze during the winter.

We chose Thermafleece insulation as it is super eco friendly. Its basically massive slabs of felted wood direct from the hill farms. The off-cuts of sheeps wool that are not suitable for clothing are used to make this. So its like giving your roof a wooly jumper. Its great to work with. Cuts with scissors and no mask or gloves needed unlike the nastly fiber-glass stuff.
I cut the pieces to size and stapled them up to stop them falling out before I could get the boards up.
Leaving an air gap for ventilation. Though the nature of the wool should cut down the condensation problem this room has had in the past.
I managed to get all the insulation up in just over a day.. Nice.
I have been amasing scrummy furniture and stuff for the final studio whilst doing this work. I cant wait to get it all together. But a long way to go yet…

9 Responses to “Studio conversion blog part 2”

  • 0acideyes0 Says:

    you should definately carry on posting updates about this.
    i’ll be doing the same if the council gets back to me 🙂

  • santtu Says:

    Looks pretty cool. I really like that Thermafleece-insulation. What is the issue with the condensation?

    • doktor_a Says:

      Well before the ceiling was so cold and heat from the house would form condensation on the surface and then run down to the outside walls and cause black mold to grow. This ws not helped by previous owners putting up polystyrene wallpaper to ty and insulate a bit. This was like a waterproof seal which made it worse. Hopefully just putting the fleece in will mean the ceiling does not get so cold and so most of the problem is corrected. But wool can absorb air bound moisture anyway and then slowly release it over time. In fact when it gets slightly damp wool actually creates heat which dries it out..
      Sheep…..Amazing things..
      The Therma Fleece site is Here : if you want to read more about it..

      • santtu Says:

        I think the insulation will help. And having a “barrier” of wool against moisture sounds a bit like the effect the old finnish log-houses (is that a real word? I doubt) have.

        But if you put in extra insulation, you also need extra ventilation. Otherwise you could end up with similar problems as with previous solution with polystyrene.

        I have to check that Therma-Fleece, in case we finally decide to buy a house.


  • 0equals1 Says:

    Sounds like you’ve had yourself a busy month indeed! Is the studio going to have the same feel as Arkam had?

    • doktor_a Says:

      There will be similarities yes. Though it will be more styalich and not so theatrical. There will be more of an Arts & Crafts movement ethic going on with Steam-punk embelishments..

  • desecration Says:

    Wooly jumper, haha 🙂

    I really enjoyed this post and hope that you do more.

    Will you be completely exposing the brick wall by the staircase?

    • doktor_a Says:

      The wall was initially going to be stripped to the brick but they are actually in such a bad state (hard to see in the photo) that they are going to be replastered now. I took the plaster off in those areas because it was rotten and powdery and falling away.. The brickwork is not pretty at all. Lots of botches and different levels and bits of stone.. Not the calm aesthetic it would need to have to expose it..