My first thought was to just get a bunch of cement blocks and build some block-and-board shelves myself. That was before I went to Home Depot and tried to lift just ONE of those blocks.
My second thought was to look for a source of large used cans (like maybe the diner goes through a lot of big cans of tomatoes or something?) and fill them with sand or cement. But then I'd still have the problem of dragging heavy bags of sand or cement mix in and out of the car and down to the basement.
So then I thought of IKEA. Might as well check out the ready-mades. There were a few good options there. Once again, though, a lifting problem.
And, invariably, the trouble with IKEA is all the OTHER weird stuff you find yourself dragging home. Like this lamp, for instance:
Well, I was thinking it might be good in the art studio. The top part would add much needed overall light, and the little flexible bottom part could be directed wherever needed. Hey - it was only 9.95!
The other thing that caught my eye was an acacia workbench. I've been wanting something like this for the deck to double as a potting work surface and a serving table. Aside from the usual can't-lift-it problem, I could see that what I would actually be getting would be a pile of sticks and screws. And a cryptic little instruction booklet - in Swedish. Am I going to have the patience to tackle a project like that?
Somehow this adventure occupied almost the whole day. And the shelf problem is unresolved.