Organization Tips

Last Updated 10/14/09

From davessweetpeach - Magazines: For project magazines, I take sheets of small stickers and number then sequentially. When I buy a new magazine, I stick the next sticker on the cover near the binding in the right hand corner if the magazine is sideways with the binding up. I file the magazines in a file cabinet with the bindings facing up. Any articles that are of interest get listed in a project notebook with the number of the magazine. If I think I need a visual reminder, I make a copy of the picture of the project and put it in the project notebook where I number the copies sequentially and write the picture page number on the project list. This way I can easily find anything that I'm looking for. I have another index for techniques and some articles may be listed on both indexes.

Some of you have talked about making shadows on pegboard using markers, etc. There is an easier way: wrap your objects in saran wrap, lay them on inexpensive roll paper, then spray them and the paper with spray paint. Cut out the shadows so that you have a narrow outline of the object, then cut out a larger piece from clear contact paper and stick it on the pegboard. If you paint the pegboard, you can remove and rearrange the shadows as needed.

I would like to have multiple stations in my work area, but I simply don't have room. So I keep my main tools within easy reach, then I have a storage closet that is 2' deep and 6' wide. I have shelves in the closet from 2 1/2 feet off the floor to the ceiling. Then I have several small wooden carts that my husband made that are on casters and fit into the bottom of the closet. They are basically 2' wide by 2 1/2' tall bookshelves with casters with a handle attached to one side of the bookshelves. The shelves fit into the closet with the SIDE facing out of the closet so that they completely fill the closet. The carts organize material by craft type so when I am going to work on that type of craft, I pull the cart over to my workspace and have all of those supplies close at hand. It has really helped to make a small space work.

From: Paula - This may seem pretty simple and it is and I'll just bet someone on this list has already thought of this.

If you're like me you have a pretty big table to work on and wind up working on about 6 inches of it. Between all the stamps and tools I'm working with there's the paper. After ruining several sheets of card stock I went and bought a small letter sorter. The office supply stores have these but I found a very nice metal mesh one at Target that felt sturdier than the plastic ones.

It has 3 slots and the dividing walls are graduated in height. In the first slot I put 1/4 sheets of card stock, in the second slot I put 1/2 sheets but not quite full size and long odd sizes, in the 3rd slot I put a few sheets of full size card stock, metallic papers and my 8 1/2 x11 inch cutting mat. I'm always losing that darned thing on the table cause it's almost clear. This way I always have it at hand. This has helped to keep me organized and for those little scraps of paper I keep a shoebox under my table. I throw any reasonable sized scraps of paper in there and then when it gets full (or I get in an organizing mood) I sort it out by color and dump it into the appropriate file folder.

Why keep those scraps? Well sometimes you just need a small size to check for size or color and they make excellent test pieces for how color will look on it. I keep a separate envelope for shrink plastic scraps as well.

Now my table is a little clearer (which I then promptly will up with more stamps and ink pads LOL) and I'm not accidentally ruining good card stock.

From: Gaylynn Stringham - I bought a plastic hanging file holder (legal size) from Staples I believe it was along with the folders that go inside. I have used a small square punch; you could use whatever shape or even just write on the tabs what color are in that file. Example if that file folder held black, silver, and gold scraps there is a small square punched and attached to the tab so I know what is in there. It is very easy when cleaning up your mess after stamping to slip you scrap into that box. When you need a small piece of something, it is very easy to open and pull all shades of green out of that folder. So far.... it is the only system that has worked for me, in the past I just had boxes full and never had the luxury of enough time to go thru them and look for the right piece to use so I would always take a new piece of cardstock.

From: Jo in Wichita, KS - My org. tips are much like Paula at Madstamps. I bought an organizational through an office supply store, which has 8 (4 side by side) slots to hold letter size paper that sits on the back corner of my desk. I keep my Prismacolors and watercolor pencils in one slot, my baby wipes, double-sided tape dispenser, acrylic blocks and a sample card or two from friends (for on-going inspiration) on top. I have postoid papers and template in another slot,

I also keep a shoebox on top of an Iris cabinet that sits behind me and into it I slip any scraps of card stock (other types of scraps go in yet another box). I have then sort of sorted by size, tallest at the back. This organization may change over time. My heat gun also sits on top of this Iris cabinet and my embossing powders are in zip-lock type containers with see-thru lids in the drawers.

Another Iris unit sits to the left of my desk at an angle and I have a wooden box on top of that contains things like, see-thru ruler, Xacto knife, bone folder, scissors for rubber stamps, etc. In that top drawer I keep my 3-hole punch (I keep a note book of ideas, etc.) my cutting mat, my Friskers cutter/scorer and a small mouse pad for using with unmounted. This puts the things I use most often right at my fingertips.

I have to admit, however, that I STILL often end up with just barely enough room for the card I am working on. I do try to clean up my table when I finish at the end of a session so that when I start the next time I am READY TO GO.

From: Mary from Northern Calif - I don't post much here but thought i would add my no cost way of holding scraps. Now don't laugh but it works.

I take 8-10 video sleeves (the box they come in.) and tape them to together. I have one inside on my computer desk for scraps and a larger one in the stamp room- each box holds a certain color-because they are easy to see I do use many of the scraps.

Now you can get fancy and spray paint them or decorate to what ever you want .I am a paper-holic.

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