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Unread 12-15-2016, 09:32 AM   #1
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Default Supply inventories - do you really use them?

OK - here's another fun issue to discuss. It seems that most of us create or use some sort of method to track our crafting supplies and I wondered just how many of us really use them.

My story - when I started stamping I was meticulous about keeping indices of my stamps, glitter, ribbon, etc. Over time I found I never used them and I was behind on keeping them current for new and sold items. Two years ago I tossed them because they were so behind and I never-ever used them. I found that the way stored items didn't require me to have an inventory.

I do have a small inventory book where I tracked ink colors for when I travel but now that I've stopped buying any inks (have enough) I use it for conventions/travel to buy refill inks. I also have index binders for dies and stamps because I'm afraid that as I age my memory will not be so good but to be honest, I never use them to find an item. It's just future planning. Oh and I'm much of a fan for online (Evernote, etc.) because it would be a lot of work to set-up for something I rarely use.

So....how many of you spend a lot of tracking your supplies and do you really use your method (be honest )? What is your favorite method?
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Unread 12-15-2016, 02:27 PM   #2
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I used to have an OCD binder too where I had different sections for different types of supplies, including stamping each of my sets, etc. it was a massive project. I even created templates using word and excel for each type of supply. But I ran into the same thing - I never kept it updated, and I never actually used it to see what I have. So I gave it up. But I still use inventories. I have each of my embossing folders embossed on a quarter sheet of retired cs. These are on two binder rings so I can flip through them and see what pattern I want. I've written the name of each folder on the sample, and the folders are stored alphabetically in a box. I have a similar ring with samples of each punch. These are punched out of squares about three inches big, and also stored on a separate ring. This also works as a template to see if an image will fit on a punch, etc.
back when I was stamping tons, I had a paper inventory that I was good at keeping up with. It was an excel spreadsheet. I had a chart with the name of the colours (su paper only - hobby demo here) across the top. Every two weeks I would count ALL of my paper. Then I would colour each of the cells with the numbers in them. Blue if I had way too much, green if I had enough, yellow if I was getting low and red if it was critical. Then I could simply go through the spread sheet and order the colours that had red inventory numbers. If I needed to bump up my order, I would add some from the 'yellow' category. I had different definitions of the level numbers for coloured cs vs. neutral, because I go through way more neutral cardstock. I had the same system for 12x12 and envelopes too. Clear as mud?
(Did I mention I used to stamp a TON?! I would churn out upwards of 100 cards a week when time permitted. I did batches of each card design, and used to sell at markets, stores, etc.)

I think that's all I do now for inventories. I'm not a huge user of embellishments and stuff, so this works for me.
Love to hear all the other systems or non-systems out there!

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Unread 12-15-2016, 03:25 PM   #3
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I don't have any kind of inventory. Maybe I should - but I am afraid that I wouldn't keep it up and it would be worthless.
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Unread 12-15-2016, 03:49 PM   #4
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I have the majority in One Note, but I also carry a little notebook in my purse. I like the notebook because I can write something in the minute I buy it. I don't update one note often enough.
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Unread 12-15-2016, 04:01 PM   #5
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I am keeping a list of my stamp sets in my shopping binder. I don't want to get duplicates. I've done more in the past but find I don't really need it.

I also keep track of my colored paper. But that's been simplified too, since I don't use much colored CS and very little PP.

I need to keep track of my refill inventory. That's where I constantly have to check my supply.

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Unread 12-15-2016, 05:15 PM   #6
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My inventory method is to track my supplies in my head, so....yeah, I use them

With that being said, I know I would never use an official tracking system, which is why I never spent the time to start one.
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Unread 12-15-2016, 07:46 PM   #7
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I am very visual, so I have reference binders for inks, markers, and dp so I can find what I want without digging through piles or scribbling until I find the one I want, etc. I have all of my stamps organized by theme, so I have a binder of trading card pages with each image stamped and marked with set name/manufacturer. I use all of these items all the time.

I have a "master binder" with pictures of complete sets, but I almost never use it - I doubt that most of my sets are complete any more, anyway! I don't have any kind of index for dies or embossing folders or stencils or ribbons or embellishments - I prefer to flip through and don't ever buy duplicates, so I don't see the point.

I do have an Excel spreadsheet with lists of stamps/sets organized by manufacturer, but it's more to make me feel secure than any other reason, lol. I tried Evernote, but it was way too time-consuming to set it up the way I would have wanted to, so I was over it in about two or three sessions...

I guess all of this wordiness was a roundabout way to answer, "Well, yes...and no..."
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Unread 12-16-2016, 06:15 AM   #8
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I have most of my dies listed in Evernote and some of my stamps. But like Sue, I find it time consuming to enter the info. Plus I don't recall using it while at a store to check if I already have a particular die or stamp.

That said, I don't use it but I'm not ready to delete my account & all the work I have done!
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Unread 12-16-2016, 07:52 AM   #9
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I write down my purchases in a mini notebook (well, up to my second mini notebook now), but I don't use them in the traditional inventory sense. Instead, I've turned it into a record of things I've used/used up. Like Sue, I'm very visual, and I've found that I remember what I have the best when I've used it. So, that supply inventory is basically one big to-do/use list for me.
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Unread 12-16-2016, 09:10 AM   #10
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I started to keep a binder of my stamp sets and individual stamps. Didn't keep up with it. Then pulled a bunch of sheets out when I gave away a lot of stamp sets. I have only bought one or two duplicates so that's not bad. I don't have that many pads so they still all fit on my 48 space rotating storage unit. I have some paper but I'm finding I don't use it all that much. Some dies but not too many. It's more a case of I know pretty much what I have, I just need a reason to pull it out and use it.
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Unread 12-16-2016, 06:32 PM   #11
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I have all my stamps and dies cataloged on Evernote and I use that ALL the time... with the system I'm using I wouldn't be able to find them otherwise, and I love being able to sort by tags. LOVE.


Inks are indexed on 2x2" cards, and I refer to those mostly when I do layered stamping.


Copics, Zigs, Distress markers, and all the pencils are charted... of those, I really only refer to the Copic charts because of the way they are organized - the Copic app is really helpful for inventory too.
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Unread 12-16-2016, 07:22 PM   #12
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Stamps: I have 2 binders for my stamps: 1 for all holiday stamps and another larger one for everything else. I started doing this 25+ years ago and stamps don't get put away until they get stamped in their category in the binders.

Dies: Have a binders for dies and samples of all the dies.

Printed Paper: Small binder in alpha order of companies and small samples of each [Thank you gregzgurl; but my husband wishes you wouldn't come up with so many great organizational ideas].

Inks: Samples of each by color.

Embossing Folders: samples of each

Lots of others samples: Stickles, Liquid Pearls, Nuvo drops

I have computer data bases for almost everything since 99% of my shopping is done online so I can click on a database to make sure I need an item. Some of my databases are: ink, sequins, embossing powder, Stickels, etc., dies, embossing folders, and punches.

I still have to make sample sheets for my Zig True Color markers and Spectrum Noir pens.

I've always been organized with my household paperwork. Partly being a secretary, office manager and partly being a military wife with a disorganized doctor husband!
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Unread 12-16-2016, 09:50 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DianeinSparks View Post
Printed Paper: Small binder in alpha order of companies and small samples of each [Thank you gregzgurl; but my husband wishes you wouldn't come up with so many great organizational ideas].
HA! Thanks, Diane - that made me laugh out loud...
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Unread 12-17-2016, 02:35 AM   #14
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Years ago....(like about 9) I started a binder of stamped sets. I maybe added about 50 sets. I have closer to 150 sets now. I have also sold some of those sets from the binder.

I never really used it. I have plenty of supplies but not enough to bother with an inventory list. I'm mainly SU. The only thing I need a list for is my SU re-inkers!
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Unread 12-17-2016, 07:43 AM   #15
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I absolutely have to keep an inventory of all of my stamps and supplies. If I don't, I end up running out of something I need or buying duplicates of something.
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Unread 12-17-2016, 09:32 AM   #16
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I use Pinterest. Since I mostly only track my stamp sets and some dies, that works for me. I can see what I have and get ideas on how to use it too.

I really don't track anything else.
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Unread 12-17-2016, 09:40 AM   #17
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I don't understand. How do you use Pinterest to track supplies?
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Unread 12-17-2016, 10:27 AM   #18
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I think I pretty much have a handle on my indexing now. First, ,images of stuff/lists are stored in folders on my pc. I also use One Note- the main idea being to stop me buying duplicates. Third, I have a 'hard copy' where I have printed out pages filled with my stamp images- I find a pic on the net, use the Clipping Tool to copy it, then make up pagefuls of images by company. I also have another folder that has samples of all my embossing folders.
As most of my stamps are stored in ring binders, I also have a video of me flicking through the pages- not every page, but a few from each folder. Also opening drawers that have stuff stored in them.Main reason I have so much redundancy of indices? Insurance! Can you imagine trying to claim for all your craft stuff should anything terrible happen? Not only trying to remember what you had, but can you imagine trying to convince an insurance clerk that you really did have thousands of pounds/dollars worth of crafting stuff?
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Unread 12-17-2016, 11:27 AM   #19
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The inventories that I think are invaluable are ink swatches and color swatches for markers, etc. It helps not to rebuy that same color, but is just so helpful when choosing colors and coloring.

I have not used the other inventories here, although I did start a list of stamps I own versus the ones I want (complete with prices) for certain stamp companies. It helps me choose what to buy.
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Unread 12-17-2016, 11:36 AM   #20
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No I don't but I want to. Does this count?
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Unread 12-17-2016, 12:24 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shazsilverwolf View Post
Main reason I have so much redundancy of indices? Insurance! Can you imagine trying to claim for all your craft stuff should anything terrible happen? Not only trying to remember what you had, but can you imagine trying to convince an insurance clerk that you really did have thousands of pounds/dollars worth of crafting stuff?
This is the absolute best reason to have some kind of index. But it should be done with everything in your house and stored someplace other than the house.

Most of us probably have not only thousands of dollars...but tens of thousands of dollars of stuff! Unless you already have a rider on insurance for a certain amount for all of it...then you'll have a hard time convincing the insurance company of what you had.
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Unread 12-17-2016, 02:00 PM   #22
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Excellent point, and I've been negligent in that area. Photos, receipts and documentation are useful too, like for art, unusual or bigger ticket items.

There's a difference between replacement value and actual cash value. Replacement is what you'd pay to replace an item. Actual cash takes into depreciation into account and is less, sometimes by a lot, since that 20-year-old perfectly good couch isn't worth a lot today.

Years ago when I rented, renter's insurance was inexpensive, since only the contents are insured, not the building. Back when I volunteered for a Red Cross Disaster Action Team, apartment fires were the most common reason we were called out. So frightening.
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Unread 12-18-2016, 10:04 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by howdyheidi View Post
The inventories that I think are invaluable are ink swatches and color swatches for markers, etc. It helps not to rebuy that same color, but is just so helpful when choosing colors and coloring.
Agreed. I'm really diligent about keeping my marker and color mediums charts up to date, especially my Copic book as that is the only marker I'm buying. But I don't use them during creating. So many of the products are really close in color so I like to check to make sure I'm not "almost" duplicating a color.
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Unread 12-18-2016, 03:41 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lynnewithane View Post
I don't understand. How do you use Pinterest to track supplies?
I don't really track supplies, just stamp sets and some dies. So Pinterest works for me and how I think.
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Unread 12-21-2016, 04:44 AM   #25
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Over the last 20+ years I've transitioned from a binder, to a simple program specifically for tracking craft stuff, to Evernote. I started with entering every complete stamp set I have. Over the years, tho', I've collected a LOT of individual cling and wood mounted stamps. I'm in the process of sorting those by category, taking a picture of the category and entering that in Evernote. I also keep track of my dies and punches, but haven't found a good option for indexing my ink pads. Like Dini, I search my supplies all the time by tag - saves a lot of frustration and time. It's saved me from buying duplicates, too, because I can access Evernote on my phone while shopping.
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Unread 12-21-2016, 05:39 AM   #26
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Good question. Esp in winter when many of us may choose to re-do how we do this.

I am compulsive about this. I know I wont remember stuff that I may have played with as little as a month ago.

Everything gets inventoried before it is put away with the exceptions of solid colored CS (It's out in the open and I can see the levels) embellies, ribbon. Possible something else I am forgetting. See? lol

Since it got obscenely long to describe what I do, I erased it....I'll move to my favorite method and do I use it. Still long.

I don't have a favorite. Each one is constantly evolving to how it would be most effective. My big mistake was not to excel the stamps-they are in binder indexes but I wish to heck I also did a sheet on them. Too late now...I dont have the names of a lot of them and to have to google picture search them, I would have to take pictures to search off of. Too much.

I am now debating how I want to store colored pencils and definitely will be re-doing my glitter samples over the winter.

I ABSOLUTELY use them though. I sometimes resent it b/c I dont have time to craft but it is way too expensive to dupe stuff and it does help me to use it.

At this point, insurance has become an issue. I need to a rider. But I have no idea what my total is. What excels I did do, I didnt do price. Not smart.
I have most of the receipts in hard copy in file boxes I have managed to keep out of DH's line of sight but with him retiring...that is likely to change. Pray for me. lol
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Unread 12-21-2016, 05:55 AM   #27
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I use Evernote to track my supplies and I enter the info as soon as I get the supplies. Most of my supplies are Stampin' Up! because I am a demonstrator. I'm lucky because there is a demonstrator that shares the entire catalog set up as entries so when I get those supplies, I just copy them into my own notebook sections and add or subtract any necessary tags.

I use Evernote all the time! I search by tag for various style stamps I want to use on a card or sentiments for particular occasions. I also often cross reference ideas for specific supplies with tutorials I have saved to Evernote. This is done easily by copying and pasting the note link into the appropriate note.
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Unread 12-21-2016, 07:06 AM   #28
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I stamp my new stamps onto copy paper, jot down name of stamp and manufacturer and if it had a matching die. I have a 3inch binder with subject tabs that I put the pages into. I do stamp it into all the various categories that it might fall under. I would never recall what stamps I have if I didn't do this. So when I'm planning a cad, and I know I want it to have florals, I open binder to floral tab and flip through pages to see what will work. I can see if the image would be good size, etc. also, before I order a stamp line, I open book to double check if I already have something similar. I use cheapy page protectors and put stamped sheets back to back.

When I get a new die set, I google to find image of the set online. I save that image and paste it into a doc template I created. My template is a grid that sizes each box to a baseball card size, I paste in the pic and type out die name and which brand. When I fill most of my template page, I print it out, cut out each "baseball card" and slip into baseball card sheet protector. I store sheets in a binder using subject tabs. Again, I use to double check before I purchase anything new and I flip through when planning card.

I have an app on my phone called Kraft Inventory. (Think it was $4.99 on iTunes). I like it a lot. I'm not great about keeping with entering in the stamps I have, but great for keeping lists of inks, stickles colors I have, which coped refills I have, etc.
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Unread 12-21-2016, 07:29 AM   #29
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I have a spreadsheet in Google Docs where I track my stamps and dies, and just recently stencils. I use it religiously when I shop online which is always since I have no LSS any more. It has helped me avoid duplicates. I add the new stamp or die as soon as I order it before it even gets here and fill in the line with blue, which gets turned back to clear when my new goodies arrive. Since I assign each a category, I can also avoid buying yet another butterfly stamp unless there is something really unusual. I also can keep an eye on the horrifying number of stamps and dies I have and know when it's time to purge. Since it is in Google docs, I can access it anywhere.
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Unread 12-21-2016, 11:00 AM   #30
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I've been slowly updating my Evernote program with the stamps, dies, & embossing folders I own. I don't inventory any other supplies such as pens, markers, sprays, adhesives, pencils, paints, and 3D inventory, not to mention Vinyl, and books.

I decided to just stick with stamps, dies and embossing folders because I could very well repeat buy what I thought I didn't have, but really did. This is true for embossing folders. While at JoAnn's the other day I was looking at the variety of Darice folders that were on sale and liked a particular one. OOH, I already bought it, so I was able to put that back on the shelf and choose a different one.

I am also using the TAGS system with regards to the stamps. If there is any type of saying on there, I will tag it like this: "Saying: Have yourself a Very Merry Christmas." Yes, I type out all the words for the saying because I can do a search for just "Merry" or "Have" in other words, just individual words. I have also organized my stamp sets (CTMH) into the large containers and numbered each container. When I put a stamp set in a specific box, let's say #3, I will write the box number and the section it's under (#3 Holiday greetings or #3 Santa & Advent for examples) This is so I can quickly locate the stamp set I need.
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Unread 12-21-2016, 01:12 PM   #31
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I made my catalog using an app on my iPhone, My Stuff Pro. I haven't catalogued everything yet but I use it every single time I craft! Seriously! When I move something, I update it. Get new stuff, I update it right when I open the package! I used it 4 times just yesterday. I have a LOT of stuff and it's all very organized but I have a bad memory. So is that stamp set in box A or C? I'd have no idea if I didn't have my app. I use it to keep track of paper pads, stamps, mediums (like paint, mists and pastes), stencils and masks, dies, embossing folders, card kits and I think there is one more category. Because I want accurate swatching, I have a coin book for my inks and a separate app for my Copic collection. I can imagine though that if it was on paper is have a very hard time keeping it up. I have to say, I've tried Evernote and My Stuff is soooo much better. Way more flexible and it can be set to remember categories and tags so you don't have to type them each time. I LOVE it!

Last edited by Rebecca Ednie; 12-21-2016 at 01:21 PM..
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Unread 12-21-2016, 01:16 PM   #32
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Screen shots of the program.


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Unread 12-21-2016, 01:29 PM   #33
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I index my inks like this. (See photo) It's really easy and cheap too. The coin books were about $5, I have two. I cut up white Cardstock I already had. Easy peasy!
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Unread 12-21-2016, 02:23 PM   #34
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dini View Post
I have all my stamps and dies cataloged on Evernote and I use that ALL the time... with the system I'm using I wouldn't be able to find them otherwise, and I love being able to sort by tags. LOVE.


Inks are indexed on 2x2" cards, and I refer to those mostly when I do layered stamping.


Copics, Zigs, Distress markers, and all the pencils are charted... of those, I really only refer to the Copic charts because of the way they are organized - the Copic app is really helpful for inventory too.
Oh, my goodness! There is an app for that!? A Copic ap?
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Unread 12-21-2016, 02:30 PM   #35
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I use Evernote, but am very behind on entering everything! And I use it looking to look up example, "birds" or whatever I am looking for. I also have used it to make sure I don't buy something again. One time at a SU! Workshop I was ordering a stamp set and decided to double check. I looked it up on my iPad mini, and sure enough, I already had it. So it is useful! I like Jannarama's idea of making loner tags! Great idea! For some reason, I thought it had to be one word names on the tags.
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Unread 12-22-2016, 02:02 AM   #36
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Rebecca, that is next on my 'to-do' list! I've already bought some of the coin holders to go in an A4 binder. Like you, I'll be cutting up card I already have for it. What I liked about this method is that you can use the cardstock you would normally stamp/colour on, so you will get a true representation of what the inks will look like in use.
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Unread 12-22-2016, 02:59 AM   #37
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I like the coin holder system too and it's on my to-do list. Jennifer McGuire has a video showing it, link below.

I was deciding whether to put pigment and dye inks together, and I think I will, since I do use them together if necessary. A red P or black D in the corner of each will i.d. Shaz and Rebecca - or anyone - do you/will you mix them or keep them separate?

Distress inks are catalogued on the downloadable Tim Holtz chart. Using a round finger dauber, in each square I stamp once lightly and then once heavier by pressing twice with more pressure, so each square has two little circles. The chart is in a job ticket holder.

I'm deciding whether to include Distress inks in coin holders. I don't stamp with Distress inks all that much, but in a pinch they've come in very handy, so probably will, but separate from the others.

Here's an ink swatch book video: Complete Ink Swatch Book Downloads - Jennifer McGuire Ink
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Unread 12-22-2016, 04:49 AM   #38
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Bjeans, I will have them all together. I can put the pigment ones at the bottom of the page. Like you, I will just put a 'P' in the corners, I think. Then I'll know all the others are dye.
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Unread 12-22-2016, 05:22 AM   #39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dini View Post
I have all my stamps and dies cataloged on Evernote and I use that ALL the time... with the system I'm using I wouldn't be able to find them otherwise, and I love being able to sort by tags. LOVE.


Inks are indexed on 2x2" cards, and I refer to those mostly when I do layered stamping.


Copics, Zigs, Distress markers, and all the pencils are charted... of those, I really only refer to the Copic charts because of the way they are organized - the Copic app is really helpful for inventory too.
I'm with you Dina! I keep reading about programs that are better than Evernote, and I so disagree after trying some of them. Evernote's system is super easy, and wonderful for crafts and more! I, too, keep my dies, stamps, embossing folders, tutorials, and more in Evernote! I can't say enough about it, love it!!!

The only swatches I keep in coin holders are my Peerless colors. I have way too many pencils, paints, markers, and such. I use a notebook where I can easily insert more pages for all of my swatches. It's basically a multi media notebook and I use my SU notebook edge punch to add different types of paper. I punch out the edge of my paper and cut straight from the paper edge to the center of each hole, and slip the page right into the notebook (my binders are bound with O-rings, like the Cinch or Bind It All wires). Works really well for me.
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Unread 12-22-2016, 06:16 AM   #40
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bjeans View Post
I like the coin holder system too and it's on my to-do list. Jennifer McGuire has a video showing it, link below.

I was deciding whether to put pigment and dye inks together, and I think I will, since I do use them together if necessary. A red P or black D in the corner of each will i.d. Shaz and Rebecca - or anyone - do you/will you mix them or keep them separate?
I have all of my inks together, as well. I have them grouped by color (all the greens together, all the reds, etc.) so that I can see at a glance which is closest to what I'm wanting at that moment. I use trading card pages for stamps and papers, but for inks I have a 10-page, pre-bound booklet of 5.5" x 8.5" page protectors that I made inserts for:



I did that for my Spectrums:



and other markers, as well:

This is the index that I use pretty much every time I'm making anything...
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