Always plan carefully, or perhaps not.

Well my long awaited plan chest has arrived. I’m not sure why it took so long, since it only had to travel from Nottingham. In fact it took so long that Amazon were on the verge of cancelling the order, as is their wont, so that was a bit tense. Anyway, it is here, more by good fortune than careful judgement. Now you may be the sort who measures things first, or you may be like me. Suffice to say, that too careful planning in this case would have resulted in no wonderful plan chest…

Plan chests are quite big, for those of you who are considering buying one. When the delivery chap saw our front door he immediately knew that it was far too small. He said he dreaded domestic deliveries of these things as they never fit through the available space; perhaps that’s why they don’t rush with delivery, they’re building up courage or perhaps hoping we’d forgotten we wanted it.

I am not that clever at any one thing but I posses much determination. That plan chest was no way going back to Nottingham. I examined our back door, only reachable via a muddy back drive, and a winding garden path and rather over planted garden. The back door opening was a magical 2cm wider than the front, give or take a little dismantling. The rather large almost cube of furniture was left outside the front door, and I removed each of the 6 drawers. These are very heavy, and by the sixth I felt I was well into training for some sort of weight lifting competition.

When the family arrived home a little later, the 3 of us hefted the carcass into the car, drove it around the back, wrestled down the garden path, took the back door off, and got the bloody thing inside. It was meant to go upstairs, excuse me while I go for a little lie down in contemplation of that expectation, but as you will see from the images it has actually stayed very close to the doorway, strangely. A re-arrangement of my workspace ensued, obviously. My expectations and the house I have have never really matched, to be truthful, but it’s never stopped me yet.

Here it is. It has a large and useful top, and absolutely swallows work, paper, supplies etc, and the drawers pull out a good helpful distance, and I do rather like it a lot. George is fairly non committal, however. The bad news for my husband is that I have decided to move it, just a little shuffle round really, to have it at an angle to the table to get more work space.

I have managed to finish a piece of work this week to go into the RBSA Members and Associates exhibition here in Birmingham, and here it is. My earlier wonderful plan of doing one thing at a time is working. It’s just that I have to keep fitting in emergency projects, but at least they are finished, and I only do that one thing at a time, so I think that counts.

I have two more such smaller emergency projects to work on, in between dealing with emergency family stuff; such is the life of us all. I have the unlikely vision of no more emergency projects, just a wonderful Zen like seamless, organised span of time to plan [that word keeps cropping up] work, and complete it with the benefit of countless good nights of perfect sleep. Now I’d join that society if anyone started it.

Winter; pool, moon, tree. 90 cm x 35 cm.

11 thoughts on “Always plan carefully, or perhaps not.

  1. Well done you, old bean – I truly believe that there is not much that sheer determination won’t sort out. I had a similar experience with a gorgeous american style fridge freezer, which required the removal of no less than three doors and then had to stop in my studio, as the space I had planned for it in utility was shamefully optimistic when we came down to it. What was even more of a bugger, was that after having basically unbuilt rather a lot of our entrances, I then read the instruction manual, which informed one that the big doors just lift off really esaily to aid installation, knocking a good 6″ off the beast. Did not tell Stephen … seemed both unkind and dangerous – H xx

    1. Ah yes, you mentioned the fridge was in your studio, I didn’t get round to wondering why. Three doors is impressive though. I’m not buying anything else now, we all need a rest. I need to shed some stuff really; anyone want a giant christmas cactus? Sxx

  2. Hiya,
    Plan chest ahhhhhhh. I fell off one once (dont ask) onto a metal chair, two ambulances arrived, I am a heafty girl, & in a back & neck brace ferried off to hospital. I am very lucky to be alive and to walk. I was offered the chest when made redundant, safe to say I declined. Well done all of you for getting it in, never to be out again!!
    Love the winter piece, not keen on making birds though!

    1. Blimey, I’m not climbing on mine then. It was a possibility, to brush the cobwebs off the ceiling of the conservatory, but I bet the top is a slippery beast. Very pleased you are alive though!
      Sorry the birds are a pain, still, at least you know what you don’t want to do, which is easily as important as knowing what you do want to do. Sxx

  3. After you mentioned it before I did a quick online recce to find a plan chest and found a new one from a school supplier that looked quite feasible. Luckily my shed has double doors but I’d need a hefty chap to manhandle it up the garden by the sounds of it. I love the fact that you were going to get it inside your house no matter what Steph. It sounds like a military manoevre with you firmly in charge but it looks pretty good I have to say so I might go back to that schools supplier…. but with a tape measure at the ready just in case. After all, fail to plan, plan to fail.

    1. Lesley, if you have a good access via your garden to the shed, ie no steps, the delivery chap can use his sack truck. They are heavy, and truthfully they should send two bods to manouvre the beast, but the double doors would be excellent, obviously. It also smells great, being all new, it’s filled the room with a lovely fresh smell. My plan making is erratic, sometimes I’m brilliant, sometimes I’m unbelievably rubbish, but there’s usually a result that’s ok, well, so far.

  4. Golly – who would have guessed that the tale of the plan chest would generate such comments!

    I do not have one & have no intention of getting one but friends do! And for part of it’s life theirs doubled as a coffee table (it could accommodate a lot of coffee!)


  5. Loved hearing this story and finally I have found someone who will fully appreciate that not only did I get an A0 plan chest in my Honda Jazz but I also got the removals men to carry it three flights up stairs when we moved here. Here’s to sharing the determination gene!

    1. Never give in, ‘eh Claire? It must be something to do with that plan chest/particular type of personality interface that produces the necessary energy to actually get the things moved anywhere. They are certainly no lightweights, are they?

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