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Old 09-03-2012, 01:25 PM   #1
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Default When your craft storage is so tiny.


My craft stuff is limited to 4 shelves and some floor space in my bedroom closet.
I do have a small amount of wall space. I spend so much time digging thru everything trying to find what I need. Some of my stamp drawers are labeled with what is inside. I have colored pencils/glitter pens in old mason jars. I was sick for a few yrs and forgot what supplies I had. I have organized envelopes and blank note cards into a see thru baskets. I have been reading posts about organization. I am frugal too. I need help trying to fit and find all the items I have. If you also have a small space, help.
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Old 09-03-2012, 02:23 PM   #2
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First I would pull out everything, and if there is something you would never use again, sell,toss,or trade. Group everything, I like the see through tubs, I use those on my bookcaase, and label everything.I am finishing up projects, cause I am tired of storing all the supplies.


Good luck.
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Old 09-03-2012, 03:00 PM   #3
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Having an index of your main supplies, easy to start now while your collection is small is also good. I have two notebooks--one for circuit cartridges, the other one for stamps. All of my stamps are unmounted...the index is by subject (and that's how the stamps are filed, and by company. I have copic and spellbinder lists / embossing folders examples / punch examples in the stamp binder and on my phone for reference when shopping. I not only can see exactly what I own before I purchase more, but I use more of my stamps and supplies because I am reminded of them.

Rather than envelopes for projects, consider see thru 2 gallon zip lock bags...I put paper, pictures, embellishments for a project together, and then just pull out the number of bags I have time for with a few basic supplies.

Just my thoughts......
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Old 09-04-2012, 02:59 AM   #4
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I bought a peg board for my wall to hold my scissors, tape gun and other tools.... Best thing I ever did because I can find what I need now and it clears my desktop. The board is only 2ft x 4ft. Total cost for the board, hardware and hooks was @ $15! For other stuff I use file boxes from Staples... $9 for 10 and they fit perfect on a shelf unit I bought at IKEA, mine is 8 shelves but it comes in different configurations. The boxes and pegboard were all painted to match and the boxes are labeled. Inside some boxes, I use the photo storage boxes from Michaels to store the smaller stuff.

HTH and I can't wait to hear others' ideas.
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Old 09-04-2012, 07:17 AM   #5
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I'm a firm believer in SMALL drawers, so all of the contents are visible immediately. THESE units fit on regular bookcase shelves and hold a surprising amount of stuff (first pic below). They stack, so you can put two in the space of one on the shelf. I have all of my embellishments in mine (second, third and fourth pics below).

You can also get slightly larger versions (last pic below) that stick out a bit from the shelf, but still fit on them enough to be stable, and things like tape guns and such fit in them (the description says they'll even store 8 1/2" x 11" paper).

I agree with the others that an index can be invaluable. Since you have limited space, you might also want to consider unmounted or cling-mount stamps. There are several threads on various ways to store these in the Mission Organization forum... Good luck!
Attached Thumbnails
small-drawers.jpg   ribbon-drawer.jpg   embellishment-drawer.jpg   button-drawer.jpg   medium-drawers.jpg  

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Old 09-04-2012, 07:54 AM   #6
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If you have any type of budget available for new storage, you could try and organize your stuff into one of these FatMax units. I saw one in action for the first time at a crop on the weekend. The lady who owned it told us of a friend who has no crafting space and everything she owns is stored in two of these units. She just wheels them to her kitchen table, opens them up, crafts on the table, and when done she closes them up, and wheels them to the closet she stores the two units in. I couldn't believe how much stuff one of these units hold.

Stanley 020800R FatMax 4-in1 Mobile Work Station for Tools and Parts - Amazon.com
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Old 09-04-2012, 11:57 AM   #7
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The absolute biggest difference in my stamping life was when I unmounted my massive collection of wood-mounted stamps. Because I had soooo many, the difference was remarkable. I could fit five stamp sets where only one would fit before. I could fit a large drawer full of large background stamps into a pile that would fit onto my hand!! Buoyed by this success, I rampaged through all the rest of my stamping supplies and got rid of stuff I had fallen out of love with - oval punches, because now I had oval dies, etc. As I got rid of stuff, more storage units became available, so I did not have to buy any new storage stuff. This made re-organizing sooo much easier. I actually had unused storage drawers like the ones mentioned by Gregzgurl, and I put those to good use in other (non-stamping) areas of my home to further organize.

As I went through the unmounting process, I also used that time to sort through my stamps and group them together into categories that made sense for me. This also helped me locate wanted stamps in a matter of seconds, even in a tight crammed spot, where before, I would search for minutes on end before giving up and "settling" for a less-desired substitute stamp.
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Old 09-11-2012, 05:30 AM   #8
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I love binders. I keep my unmounted stamps in binders, labeled on the spine. I keep my dies in binders on the magnetic sheets (labeled on spine), embossing folders in binders (smaller size binders), and the little embossing folders are in baseball card sheets in their own binder. It makes looking for this stuff easier and on a bookshelf.
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Old 09-11-2012, 06:03 AM   #9
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Very cool.
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Old 09-11-2012, 09:52 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 9or18holes View Post
Very cool.
Here's link to a scrapper that blinged hers up with some pink, goes well with the black LOL!

Crafting Queen: Fat Max
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Old 09-11-2012, 09:54 AM   #11
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And here's someone in North Carolina who has found the FatMax love LOL:

NC Scrapbook Crops & Retreats: FatMax is ready to go scrappin'
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Old 09-14-2012, 09:15 AM   #12
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I have a 5-shelf bookcase that I picked up for under $100. ALL of my paper crafting supplies fit in this bookshelf (with the exception of my ribbon ring which is wall mounted).

You can see a peek here:
Holiday Peeks - WhoIsTracy? Blog

I need to take current head-on photos soon.

Anyways, the best thing I can tell you is to go through your supplies and get rid of anything that doesn't thrill you. Tastes change, and you may find that some stamps/papers you had purchased a while ago you aren't "into" any more. Find a local charity to donate to, donate to your school, sell on Craigslist- whatever! You will feel better when you pair down your supplies.

I like to store my supplies in photo boxes. Ink pads, stickers, chipboard, etc- all these are in photo boxes. I write what's in each box on the front. Then pull the box out, grab what I need, and put the box back. Easy & quick. And best of all, you can get these for under $3. [Shoe boxes will work, though not as sturdy nor uniform in size/color.]

Stamps I store in small open bins from Target- they're fabric and fit a dvd or cd case perfectly. That way I can organize by category, then flip through my sets to find what I'm looking for. Works great.

Cardstock & paper I just stand up and stack on shelves. Easy to reach and see what I have.

And the best advice- RESIST the temptation to buy everything in sight. It's hard, I know, because there are so many wonderful companies out there. But I make a budget and stick to it.
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Old 09-20-2012, 05:26 PM   #13
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I think organizing is the key to being about to use what you have, keep from buying multiples of the same thing, (how many of us have done that??!!!) and being about to find what you have. Finding a system that works for you is the hard part. I just did a series on my blog of videos and pictures of organizing various things. Feel free to check it out if you are interested.
Sometimes keeping it simple works best!!
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Old 09-22-2012, 03:02 PM   #14
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I realized a while ago that I need to adjust the amount of my supplies to fit the space allowed. If I have a small space, and it is crammed full - I won't enjoy my craft. If I have a small space that is comfortable and not crammed, I will enjoy the process a lot more. Sometimes less is more, I have discovered. Good luck!
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Old 09-22-2012, 03:19 PM   #15
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Yes, this also helps me to save money. I worked SO HARD to get my craft space organized and purged soooo carefully, I don't want to clutter it up with things that I merely LIKE; only with things I LOVE. Soooo many times I have lingered by stamp sets or patterned paper packs at Michael's, but then I think, well, I already have tons of stamps that I LOVE and I STILL have patterned paper that I don't know how to use.
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Old 09-22-2012, 05:40 PM   #16
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This is an ongoing problem we all have it seems and as long as we have this wonderful
hobby in our life we will always be searching for something better.I have still got my stamps on their wooden bases because it helps me color the image.good luck.
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Old 09-29-2012, 06:34 PM   #17
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My crafting area is basically a closet.. where I have my work table and three shelves.. Then I found three rolling plastic under the bed containers.. and love them... I also work on a EXTRA large pastry baking sheet.. so that if I'm in the middle of a project, I can just set it on my plastic container under the bed and no mess, everything there waiting for me..
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Old 09-30-2012, 04:54 AM   #18
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Tracy...I am totally impressed with your bookcase! And I'm looking forward to seeing your pics of your working situation soon!

I have a cabinet (like an armoire) that houses everything I have. Well, I have to admit that ribbon is in the closet, but everything else. It's only 44 inches wide and almost to the ceiling. Like Sue in post 5, I have everything except my paper backstock and big tools in the Sterilite drawers. They are WONDERFUL for getting things organized! And they're not expensive. One thing I did find is that a hodge-podge of organizational containers of different sizes and shapes only makes for clutter. If it all is the same, it fits well in small spaces and looks neat and tidy. Then label so that you can find things.

If I was to start organizing anyone's supplies, little or lots, I would start by sorting. Paper together, stamps together, inks together, etc. For your working area I would put everything you use every time right at hand together. Keep card bases, some of all your cardstocks, including scraps, tools, adhesives, etc right there. Then store your extras in MATCHING containers on your shelves. Use drawers like Sue or photo boxes like Tracy...both are wonderful. And they LOOK wonderful and uncluttered.

Small spaces can work very well. One doesn't need a-store-in-a-room to be creative!
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Old 09-30-2012, 04:55 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Serenity_Stamper View Post
I realized a while ago that I need to adjust the amount of my supplies to fit the space allowed. If I have a small space, and it is crammed full - I won't enjoy my craft. If I have a small space that is comfortable and not crammed, I will enjoy the process a lot more. Sometimes less is more, I have discovered. Good luck!
Great advice!
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Old 10-23-2012, 07:21 PM   #20
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I agree with everyone else about going through your stuff. Get three boxes or laundry baskets and start sorting! One is to keep, one is to toss, one is to sell/give away.

Then start organizing what you have to keep. I am a huge fan of Art Bin cases- especially if you work on stuff away from home. I buy them using coupons. They are stackable, and I write right on the front of them (where the handle is) with Sharpie marker....if I change what's in them, the Sharpie will come off with rubbing alcohol You can pack a lot of stuff into a small space this way, and it looks neat and tidy.
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