Monday 30 January 2012


Over at Davy's place last Friday we were all waxing lyrical, especially Swiss Adam and extolling the virtues of vinyl.

Now I love vinyl as much as the next man, that's probably not true, I probably love vinyl a lot more than the next man unless the next man is the kind of person who reads this rubbish then it will probably be a close run thing. But I do have a problem with the stuff or I should say L has a problem with the stuff and that is that it takes up so much space!

When we moved into the house we are in now we had to compromise. I wanted a record room, a haven where I could go shut myself off from the world, gaze lovingly at my collection and play my records.

L wanted a dining room!

Of course L won but conceded to giving me the far end of the room and the internal cupboard. So I then had to decide what records were to be stored in the 'dining room' and what would have to be squirrelled away in other places. Now here is what I don't understand about L's thinking and I suspect a lot of other people who don't have an affinity with records, it is alright to have five IKEA BENNO towers along the wall housing those little indestructible silver discs, that didn't offend her eye but the sight of  the spines of rows of vinyl is a different matter. ?

Anyway, I decided that the Dance 12" singles would be stacked in my office along with the 'various' Dance lps, the indie and mainstream 12" singles would be stored  with most of the 7" singles in the cupboard on the half landing and that only the albums and one box of singles would be on view in the 'dining room'.

Over the years the vinyl downstairs has increased and has virtually taken over the far end of the room, what with the introduction of flight case for the prized albums and 12" singles, a further box for 7" and also records stacked in rows along the bottom of the cd racks! Recently there have been mumblings and not so subtle hints that it is getting out of hand and a reclamation attempt on the whole room was imminent.

So,  yesterday spurned on by Mr H's posting I decided that I would need to do something. At the other side of the room is a cupboard that houses junk like, the wedding China, and the paraphernalia for table setting and the like. The cupboard also has a bit which would be perfect for storing vinyl but up until yesterday was full of boxes of the good crystal glasses and other non essential things. I then started thinking about how to pitch this to L because I had a feeling that I was on a hiding to nothing. However when I explained the idea to her, she said " as long as you find somewhere to put the other stuff, fine". I was rather surprised and decided to get to it forthwith before she changed her mind.

Most of the afternoon yesterday was spent, sorting out, filing and stacking vinyl with an air of contentment that I rarely achieve these days. By the time the boys and L were demanding dinner the room was transformed back to a dining room, no longer a mini maze constructed of piles of 12" vinyl. An afternoon well spent I'm sure you will agree. There is still a small stack of records, which I have not filed leaning against the cabinet that houses most of the albums but it will not offend L's eye for a while until it grows again

When I was sorting the vinyl out I found a northern soul single that I thought I had lost. It had somehow been filed in amongst the albums. It is a belter of a tune and it being missing had been bothering me on and off for sometime.

The Salvadores - Stick By Me Baby


Simon said...

heh, my music gear - guitars, synths etc, which used to have a room of it's own now has 3 (admittedly large) shelves and the floor space underneath in a curtained off alcove in my boy's bedroom. I did suggest that we convert the corner of our bedroom, but that didn't go down very well.

Still, the boy does suggest we go upstairs so that he can dance to my music. It's nice to have a fan!

George said...

A very interesting discourse on what we can do with our records. I certainly appreciate your dilemma. I found some excellent units from the now-defunct MFI that are absolutely ideal for vinyl, not that that is much use to you.By the way, ever been given the one-in one-out ultimatum?

Artog said...

When we moved into our current (very small) flat the first thing I did was put some shelves up either side of the living room chimney breast. And as it happens they're about 13 inches deep so my record collection lives there, taking up two and a half shelves (about eight feet). My wife, whose tiny record collection has been absorbed, thinks it looks great. Her mum's not so keen though and one of her friends, every time she comes round makes a comment about how terrible it looks, and how she'd have it all boxed in. Like, yeah, I'd love a nice blank wall to stare at. Both these women have painfully immaculate houses and, I think, borderline obsessive compulsive personality disorder.

Swiss Adam said...

Like Artog we have alcoves either side of the chimney breast in our front room (and did in our previous house too). Early on I colonised these for the records so when we moved here there was no question about where the vinyl was going. I built the shelves in the alcove (about 4 feet wide, 13" deep and floor to ceiling). All the records go in the right hand alcove, 7"s in boxes on the very top. The right hand alcove holds the stereo on its own purpose built shelf and all the cds above and below although these have spread somewhat and there's a pile next to the telly. In the vinyl alcove there's capacity for a few more in a space currently occupied by a photo of the kids (which at some point will have to find a new home. In our house I mean). Mrs Swiss loves the vinyl and the way it fills the alcove, and the fact its different from most other peoples houses which often just have a handful of cds, some shite comedy dvds and Ian Botham's autobiography. Although several of her friends are less convinced. Occasionally I yearn for a music room but that would mean moving house. The bigger problem is with other equipment- guitars in the bedroom are less welcome and there's all sorts of bits and bobs in the loft.

Anonymous said...

I love a heart-warming story with a happy ending.

The wife would agree with the complaints about space taken by records. Our spare room is only accessibly through a narrow sorridor around the bed, the rest of the space is taken by records stacked to waist height


davyh said...

A most equitable solution Drewster.

When Mrs H and I were first 'going out' I lived in a rented flat with no furniture apart from a single bed and one chair. In the living room all I had were my records and hi-fi. Not even a TV. It was absolutely fine.

Mind she did bring her cats round once and they did that 'scratch post' thing on the spines.

Anonymous said...

After many years of vinyl storage in boxes and the bottom of cupboards, 18 months ago our son moved out of home vacating our 3rd and 4th bedroom. Instantly, a record room was claimed and I now have a vinyl and CD filled haven with ample room for expansion......happy days.

Our son quite likes the room as well, always pokes his nose in for a peek when he visits and I think, secretly wants one of his own!!!!!

Cheers from Aus.

darcy said...

I believe the Ikea Expedit has become the de facto standard for 12" vinyl storage - at least so it seems from the numerous mentions this storage gets on forums such as VG+. I got all excited when our local Ikea had some in the sale area because it had a damaged side. The Expedit now is installed in the upstairs spare room alongside some roll front cabinets (also Swedish I beleive) that I picked up from my workplace for a song some years ago. All are nearly full. I worry about the weight.

I too have managed to sneak some vinyl into our dining room recently. But I am scratching my head wondering where the next storage location will be.

Lately I find I like reading about peoples' record storage solutions more than the records themselves.
Record storage pron! Oh God, there is no hope for me now!

drew said...

darvy I may have to plan a trip to the Swedish warehouse soon. Thanks