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Old 01-24-2016, 01:01 PM   #1  
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Default Storing stencils?

I now have about 15-18 stencils in various sizes, and I'm having such a hard time finding a way to store them so they lie perfectly flat but are within easy reach.

Some are 12 x 12, some are Tim Holtz #8 tag size, some are much smaller masks, maybe 3 x 4.

I've tried hanging them off my Raskog cart with a binder clip, but I'm finding that a little bit fiddly when I need to remove just one. My entire house is a game of Jenga!

How do you store your stencils?
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Old 01-24-2016, 01:11 PM   #2  
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I'm actually working on a blog post about this - so I'll be back with it when I'm done!
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Old 01-24-2016, 01:20 PM   #3  
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Currently I have all of mine--of various sizes--in a big plastic envelope/pocket thing that I was given. I do have to pull them all out but them I get to see--and remember--what I have.
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Old 01-24-2016, 02:31 PM   #4  
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I have this same question. Various sizes of stencils, don't want them stored so that they curl.

I await your post, Lydia!
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Old 01-24-2016, 02:34 PM   #5  
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Subbing-Can't wait for your post Lydia.
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Old 01-24-2016, 03:09 PM   #6  
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12x12" zippered storage binder with different style page protectors originally meant for stickers. The tool that creates any size pocket would allow you to use a regular 12x12" page protector and make the size pocket you need for each stencil. edit: You can put a stiffer paper, maybe the back of a paper pad, between some of the pages to avoid curling of the stencils.

Last edited by Kath; 01-24-2016 at 03:12 PM.. Reason: to add a note
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Old 01-24-2016, 03:24 PM   #7  
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I use a 12 x 12 plastic envelope for the large ones and an 8 x 8 plastic envelope for the smaller ones. I put a sheet of copy paper between them so that they don't snag, and so that can see the pattern/image of the stencil.
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Old 01-24-2016, 03:49 PM   #8  
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I'm having the same dilemma. Right now, my stencils are in a drawer along with my cardboard, Thickers and chipboard alphabets. I think I'll probably shop for a cheap 12x12 album for the large stencils and use either a notebook or 8x8 album for the smaller size.

As my collection grows, I think I'll get more use out them if I can just flip through the pages to look at the design instead of digging through a big pile.
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Old 01-24-2016, 07:08 PM   #9  
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Im lazy...they are all in an iris cart drawer.
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Old 01-24-2016, 07:37 PM   #10  
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I put mine in one of those paper sorter things for your desk and put a piece of 12 X 12 chipboard (from dsp packages) between them. They stand upright.
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Old 01-24-2016, 08:46 PM   #11  
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Evidently I don't have enough stencils... oh, dear... another shopping trip.


Seriously, I must be late to the game. I have 4 TH, 2 Heidi Swapp, 2 TCW and 2 Bobunny. And they're all in the same drawer with my texture pastes, spackling compound, molding paste and palette knives - and it's a small drawer! How many stencils are out there and what are you using them for? What patterns am I missing?
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Old 01-24-2016, 09:24 PM   #12  
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Quote:

Originally Posted by uncbballfanView Post
Evidently I don't have enough stencils... oh, dear... another shopping trip.

How many stencils are out there and what are you using them for? What patterns am I missing?
How many grains of sand in the ocean, how many stars in the sky haha I love TH and TCW stencils but also all of the stencils at Stencil Girl:

Shop for Unique Artist-Designed Stencils | StencilGirl Products

Personally, I use them in my art journal and small mixed-media pieces and especially with the Gelli plate. Also just used a couple on the cover of a junk journal I'm working on for a tone-on-tone textured look.
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Old 01-24-2016, 09:31 PM   #13  
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I have mine in one of those large square plastic storage bins you can find at Michael's, Joanns, or Costco. they lay nice and flat, and fit all my sizes. It works great!!!!

I'll be interested to hear your solution Lydia!
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Old 01-25-2016, 03:56 AM   #14  
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Quote:

Originally Posted by uncbballfanView Post
Evidently I don't have enough stencils... oh, dear... another shopping trip.


Seriously, I must be late to the game. I have 4 TH, 2 Heidi Swapp, 2 TCW and 2 Bobunny. And they're all in the same drawer with my texture pastes, spackling compound, molding paste and palette knives - and it's a small drawer! How many stencils are out there and what are you using them for? What patterns am I missing?
Oh, there are so many! I use them for backgrounds, mostly on cards and in my art journals. I buy most of them, but I've also cut some of my own with my Cricut.
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Old 01-25-2016, 06:11 AM   #15  
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I have mine in a fabric covered box I got at Michaels. The stencils stand up so I can flip through them. I have dividers for categories. Each stencil is stored in a plastic envelope so they don't get tangled and I put a piece of colored cardstock behind the stencil so I can see what it is. My box sits on my counter so I can store the large stencils behind the box.

In addition to the many purchased stencils I have, I also make my own stencils by purchasing stencil blanks and cutting them with my heavy duty dies and my movers and shapers (not thin dies).
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Old 01-25-2016, 06:19 AM   #16  
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From my days of painting and stenciling, as well as embossing, I have mine on a binder ring or two. Most of my stencils have a hole at the top, so it works well. If there isn't a hole, I punch one. I can also put punched bristol board in the package to stabilize the larger ones. I have them grouped by image, then by size, so each binder ring has a themed collection. They lay flat in a large plastic box. Some have been stored this way since the 1990s when I stenciled on roof slates!
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Old 01-25-2016, 07:45 AM   #17  
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I dump mine into a hanging basket.. for lack of a better system ( a million years ago I had a 6' table with two scraprack bases on it) (but, I have since folded that table up and moved everything to smaller containers)
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Old 01-25-2016, 08:36 AM   #18  
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Quote:

Originally Posted by JBgreendawnView Post
I dump mine into a hanging basket.. for lack of a better system ( a million years ago I had a 6' table with two scraprack bases on it) (but, I have since folded that table up and moved everything to smaller containers)
That looks like such a simple solution do you find that they flop over/forward though? They don't seem to be doing that in this picture so I'm wondering what the magic touch is
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Old 01-25-2016, 09:48 AM   #19  
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I bought one of the document folders with plastic sleeves in, that have a paper divider in each, so each sleeve holds 2 stencils. It would not hold a 12 x 12, but I don't intend to buy any that big.
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Old 01-25-2016, 10:17 AM   #20  
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Quote:

Originally Posted by uncbballfanView Post
Evidently I don't have enough stencils... oh, dear... another shopping trip.

Seriously, I must be late to the game. I have 4 TH, 2 Heidi Swapp, 2 TCW and 2 Bobunny. And they're all in the same drawer with my texture pastes, spackling compound, molding paste and palette knives - and it's a small drawer! How many stencils are out there and what are you using them for? What patterns am I missing?
For once, I can say that my craft stash includes more of something than someone else has! LOL
I currently have about 20 stencils, though I plan to reduce them to about half. Some of them date back years and were not designed for the same things people use them for these days. For instance, I have ovals and circles. Scrapbookers used the template to draw on cardstock or photos and then cut with scissors -- so archaic!

For my art journal and cards, I've found the 12x12 size unwieldy. Stencils currently on my Wish List include some of those from My Favorite Things:Stencils
and Crafters Workshop: Crafters Workshop
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Old 01-25-2016, 10:33 AM   #21  
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Quote:

Originally Posted by poppydarlingView Post
That looks like such a simple solution do you find that they flop over/forward though? They don't seem to be doing that in this picture so I'm wondering what the magic touch is
that mug shot is a few years old... I own more now
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Old 01-25-2016, 11:04 AM   #22  
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that mug shot is a few years old... I own more now
Ah: own more to store better. I'm on it
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Old 01-25-2016, 11:20 AM   #23  
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I have the michaels recollection cubes, and they also sold baskets that fit in the four shelf cubes. I use one of these to store my stencils. The 12x12's are able to lie flat in it. I don't believe they sell these baskets anymore, but if I didn't have it I think I would just use the bottom of one of the 12x12 storage boxes like these:
https://www.google.com/search?q=mich...KmVh50W-CdM%3A
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Old 01-25-2016, 10:27 PM   #24  
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Originally Posted by KathView Post
12x12" zippered storage binder with different style page protectors originally meant for stickers. The tool that creates any size pocket would allow you to use a regular 12x12" page protector and make the size pocket you need for each stencil. edit: You can put a stiffer paper, maybe the back of a paper pad, between some of the pages to avoid curling of the stencils.
That's how I store mine too since I had to repurpose this storage that no longer holds stickers, etc.
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Old 01-26-2016, 05:23 AM   #25  
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Mine are in hanging file folders, separated by category... that seems to be working so far, except for anything larger than 9x12... those I have hanging on the wall.
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Old 01-26-2016, 05:28 AM   #26  
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I only get stencils that are 6 x6 or smaller since I dont do the craft projects. So they are standing upright in a shoebox with subject dividers. I put something in the front to keep them upright. Right now it's the box that holds my washi tape.

I keep them in the package they came in though I trim off the piece for hanging on a store peg-I might pop some cheap black paper in the back so the design really shows.

Melissa you might reconsider getting rid of those stencils. It's a nice look to just sponge a solid shape and stamp it with a solid stamp with a simple sentiment imho-if I understand you correctly about the images. You could always make one for the day with a die but just saying.
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Old 01-26-2016, 05:04 PM   #27  
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I haven't got that many stencils but mine are stored standing upright behind other similar sized plastic things. I never gave it a thought, that's just where the first one landed when I bought it at the thrift store and others since then went in the same place so I could find them!

I actually used 3 of them today. Used the medium sized oval (fiskars) shape thingie and cut out a stamped image, used the large square one to sponge and then stamped inside, and finally cut out a rectangle with a point in the middle of each side.

I still don't need a die cut or embossing machine. Instead I ordered a scor-pal board yesterday to make more woodgrain/w glue lines background paper. I love that!
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Old 01-27-2016, 02:34 AM   #28  
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I have mine hanging off an IKEA rod, I just stick them in a clear envelope (the same ones I use for stamps) and clip them up using a small clip. I also hang up my rub-owns, any puffy stickers, Alphabet stickers, etc. if I have several of the same shape, but different sizes, I put them in the same envelope. They hang straight and I can easily flip through them to see what I have!
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Old 01-27-2016, 02:45 AM   #29  
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I throw mine in a drawer and then forget about them! You can cross this option off your list!
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Old 01-27-2016, 05:35 AM   #30  
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Definitely want to follow this thread. I have yet to find a system I'm really happy with. I tried used three ring binders or a 12x12 plastic box. Part of my problem, I'm sure, is the quantity. And there are sooooooo many lovely ones out there that I would love to have. I do have a nice oak file cabinet I got at a garage sale this fall. (Gotta love garage sales). I think I'll try using that for the smaller stencils and maybe use the plastic boxes for the 12 x 12 stencils.
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Old 01-27-2016, 05:54 AM   #31  
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I store my smaller stencils in 8 x 8 photo album; you can slip them into the pages easily and I keep the paper dividers in the album sleeves. 12 x 12 are stored flat in a 3- drawer
plastic storage unit. I also photo copy each stencil when purchased and keep a small 3-ring binder with them sorted by design. It is good reference when I start planning a project . Of course, I am OCD and clean all my stencils ..soak them in water with couple drops of Murphy soap. If you don't clean your stencils then the album would not work well.
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Old 01-27-2016, 07:22 AM   #32  
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My collection is pretty small, compared to those who regularly create in mixed media. So for now, mine are in a couple of the "craft keepers" large envelops, available from SU, or at M's. or JoAnn, etc. But as I add on a few more, I've considered fine-tuning the organization with quart or gallon-sized zippy bags.

I really do get tempted by the amazing variety of stencils out there, and can feel that happening more & more with the stamp/scrap shows now back in action, bringing more see-it-today-in-person temptations with them!
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Old 01-27-2016, 07:52 AM   #33  
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I keep my stencils in clear page protectors in a 3-ring binder. Behind each stencil is either a white or black sheet of inexpensive paper that makes it possible to see the stencil clearly. I can easily find the one I want pretty quickly.
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Old 01-27-2016, 07:55 AM   #34  
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I use the Sizzix plastic envelopes for the nesting shapes and mount magnet sheets to card stock on both sides. The dies cling to mag. I use my Zutter case that I have about nine magnet boards with the clear dividers that I put my words, small shapes and individual letters, (using my Quickcut individual letters from very small to 4" letters and numbers). These boards are stiff so the dies don't fall off when flipping the boards up. A great investment for me and easy to shuffle to the boards I am using to the top. They do make an easel to prop them up if you like. They make boards for clinging clear Stamps also. I put my sets of clear stamps with matching dies in the same envelopes back to back. I just got them organized a month or two ago and I am happy. I put my envelopes vertically and labeled with dry marker or you could use labels in plastic containers two sizes without lids. I have a lot of Stephanie Bond dies and a few stamps. My Flipits and StepUps and others I only put the large frame dies in the envelopes and put words and small shapes on the boards so I can interchange shapes and words without looking through each envelope as the picture is hard to see of what is the included in each set.
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Old 01-27-2016, 09:28 AM   #35  
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I have a big selection of stencils since I am a tole painter as well as a card maker. The stencils are all kept in page protectors with a colored printer paper behind the stencil so you can see each stencil very clearly. The stencils I use most - snowflakes, circles, etc. are kept in the Sterlight 3-drawer units. All other stencils in the page protectors are kept in a 4" binder with subject dividers in between each category. The page protectors keep the stencils from hanging up on each other, and the colored printer paper is so handy to see each stencil, especially the clear or white stencils.
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Old 01-27-2016, 12:26 PM   #36  
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I use a three ring binder with page protectors in it. I don't have any 12x12 stencils, mainly TH and 6x6. I keep 2 in a protector with a piece of coloured copy paper between them. Works for me. I probably have 30 or 40 in my binder.(for now anyways!! LOL)
Ejluyk- welcome to Splitcoast Stampers!! very interesting that you use Murphy's Oil Soap to clean your stencils... will have to try it!!
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Old 01-27-2016, 01:40 PM   #37  
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I have more stencils than I thought, but most are quite old and are basic shapes that I use for sponging through or drawing around. I have a few TH and some Fiscars, but they are all small enough to fit into the SU plastic stamp cases by category and then in a basket I got at Joanne's that is the same as the baskets I keep my dies and embossing folders in. So I have all three on a shelf together and it all looks neat and tidy.
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Old 01-27-2016, 04:09 PM   #38  
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I also store mine in a 3 ring binder with 81/2 x 11 page protectors and colored copy paper separating the stencils so I can get 2 to a protector. I also use photo album pages for 5 x 7 photos for my smaller stencils. This system works well for me.
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Old 01-27-2016, 05:54 PM   #39  
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Old 01-27-2016, 07:20 PM   #40  
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Quote:

Originally Posted by trew13View Post
I also store mine in a 3 ring binder with 81/2 x 11 page protectors and colored copy paper separating the stencils so I can get 2 to a protector. I also use photo album pages for 5 x 7 photos for my smaller stencils. This system works well for me.


That is exactly what I do. I started writing my description when I saw your post.
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