Creating a Space that is Healthy and Safe to Work in
I’ve mentioned the Quilting Studio aka (The Cave) and that I’ve been uprooted from it since last November. This is the story and the steps we took to create a space that is healthy and safe!
The back story
It started four years ago with sneezing attacks.
These symptoms were like a cold but quickly passed and usually happened during the late fall and into midwinter.
Food or Airborne allergies were the first things we pointed our fingers at.
But I wasn’t believing it for a second. I’ve never had allergies!
People would point out that you can “get” allergies as you grow older.
Didn’t care for that explanation either.
What bugs me most, is we (my husband and I) strive to eat healthy and eat organic foods.
We use organic and natural cleaners. Our life is about organic living.
But here I was, with this….Thing!
As the years progressed, it progressively got worse.
We blamed it on just about everything, from food to the environment to stress and anxiety.
But, it happened so randomly we couldn’t point a finger at anything in particular.
Back to the Cave.
The quilting “cave” is in a finished basement. The doors are kept closed to keep the cat out.
Have you ever gone into a room FULL of fabric that’s been closed up?
Fabric, even washed fabric, gives off gases and has a . . .
how do I put this?
a distinctive smell.
It just does.
It’s the same as walking into a house that’s been closed up for a season, the minute you walk in, you know you have to open some windows and air the place out.
Problem: I couldn’t open the windows in my Quilting Cave.
As my sneezing grew worse – our finger started pointing to the time I was spending in the Cave with all my glorious fabrics.
On November 25, 2016, I vacated my beautiful spacious cave
For the following 9 months, I worked primarily in a small spare room.
During that time we had the air tested in our home for bad molds.
That test, fortunately, came back clean. Every home has mold spores, but these were not the kind that you had to worry about. That was a relief.
The next test was a more in-depth air quality test of the cave. That didn’t come back so hot. Lots of toxins were floating around in our basement.
What we have done
- We added a heat recovery ventilator to the room.
This brings clean air from outside, heats it and blows it into my quilting studio, while pulling the stale air out.
- The windows are fixed so they can open! Hooray!
- A dehumidifier runs in the summer month
- And just to make the room look beautiful – The ceiling and all the woodwork trim : Finished! and the walls repainted.
Still on the to do list
- An air purifier
- Built in cabinets will replace all the mismatched furniture. Having a mismatched mess of furniture, containers, and things to “organize” my work caused a situation that made it impossible to properly keep my work space clean
- A tiled floor, one that is easier to wash. (I painted the floor you see in the photos.)
- The fitness room is also going to get an overhaul to create a space that is healthy, safe, and easy to keep up
This all ended up being a blessing in disguise
- We discovered a gas leak in our home,
- our old fridge is the culprit of a Freon leak
- Things stored, like butane lighters also give off unhealthy gases
The one take away I hope you get from this, is to keep your hobby/craft/work space safe.
- Make it easy to keep up and keep clean
- Don’t keep everything!
- If you’re not using something, give it away.
- If it’s broke throw it away.
- Most of all – Make sure the air you breathe is clean!
Books about Air Pollution in your Home
We still don’t know what the cause of my symptoms are.
Menopause is one of the possibilities along with stress and anxiety.
Adele, Blogging the Creative Life
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