Too overwhelmed to organize your craft room? Think again!

I think so many people feel overwhelmed, that they never start organizing. I moved, and used that time to completely organize my room.

Is this your room? Thankfully this was never my room. But after looking at people’s rooms in scrapbook groups, this seems to be a lot of peoples’ current situations.

Don’t think organization happens in one day. It typically does not. But it does have to begin somewhere. Get THREE big boxes. Wal-Mart has them cheap. Label one ‘sell/give’, ‘recycle/trash’ and the third ‘donate’. Pull everything out of your room one area at a time and look at them honestly: Have you used this in the past year? Past two years? No? Then it’s gone. Do you use it? Then place it aside.

Next, move your desk/table where you want it in your now-empty room. Sit and begin to craft. Grab the tools you need one at a time as you need them.  As you pull in your tools, you will realize what you want and need near you.  So organize those. Then, work on some more crafting/scrapbooking, and organize more stuff.  It was important for me to have my paper and my Stickles, washi tape, and ribbon near me. If it was too hard to get to what I wanted, I knew I wouldn’t use it.

A good policy for organizing a room from scratch is to avoid buying new organizational products. After you have purged and donated/trashed/given away the stuff you don’t use, you will realize  you probably have all the organizational items you need. NEVER BUY NEW STUFF UNDER THE GUISE OF GETTING ORGANIZED. Wait until you are completely done cleaning and reorganizing your space. Use it for a few weeks or months. Then realize what you honestly may need to make you more productive.

Now that you’re organized…what happens next? The key FOR ME was to institute a policy of ‘no leaving until I clean it up’. When I’m done for the day, I make myself put everything where it goes. If I’m in the middle of something, I put it in one Iris case (only one) and put it in a special spot for my project being worked on.

I also instituted a “no working on a new project until I’m done with the current one.” That way, I’m not spinning in circles with 20 uncompleted things all over my scrapbook room. Once you allow yourself to work on 5, 10, 15, or even 20 projects at once, you’ve let go of your craft room and turned it into a project-in-progress storage facility. THIS IS THE EASIEST WAY TO BECOME UNORGANIZED AND CREATE CHAOS IN YOUR CRAFT SPACE.

A lot of people have so much stuff and it’s so lacking in organization, that they frequently purchase duplicates. I refuse to use Evernote or any other software program to keep track of my inventory. I don’t need it! I’m organized, my things are visible, they are handy, and I know what I have.

When I do buy something, I have to incorporate it immediately into my organizational system. No tossing a shopping bag in and shutting the door. Nope. Never. That REALLY makes me reconsider whether I want to buy something or not. It stopped all impulse purchases. The day you start tossing bags in without organizing them is the day you become this:

A huge bonus being organized is that I know what I have instantly, I don’t need an electronic device to keep track of what I own, and I don’t own any accidental duplicates of anything. I know what I have, I use what I have, and it’s easy to STAY organized. It’s just like your health: It’s easier to stay healthy than get healthy.

Stay organized, be true to yourself, and you’ll find how much you truly enjoy crafting in your own room once again.

Totally Tiffany’s Get Organized Challenge STARTS THIS WEEK!

To say the Get Organized Challenge changed my crafting life sounds like an understatement. I am not getting paid, endorsed, or rewarded in any way to share this GOC with you. The GOC is a weekly live podcast that you can watch later as often as you want.

Tiffany of Totally-Tiffany.com breaks down scrapbook storage and organization by item — stamps, inks, paper, embellishments — you name it! Watch the live broadcast or the podcast of only the ones you need help with, or do like I did: Watch the entire thing several times.

I have completely and totally organized my crafting, and it is wonderful. Not only can I find things quickly, but being organized means YOU USE YOUR STUFF. If you can’t find it, you can’t use it.

Many of my items were purchased through T-t.com but they can also be found on Amazon.

Do yourself a favor and check out the Get Organized Challenge. It’s free, it’s weekly, and it starts the 16th.

Get Organized Challenge

FUN AND EASY FARMHOUSE MAKEOVER OF WREATH HANGER

Modern farmhouse looks in your home is all the rage, thanks in no small part to Fixer Upper on HGTV. The basis of modern farmhouse is wood, galvanized steel, burlap, and twine.

I set out looking for a really cute farmhouse-inspired wreath hanger for my magnolia wreath for my door. I found absolutely nothing. Well, okay, I found one cute hanger but it was $26! Just for the hanger! I refuse to spend that on the wreath, let alone the hanger.

I went home determined to use something I already had and just make it over. And make it over I did!

I started with a very old gold metallic wreath hanger. I grabbed twine that I already had leftover from another craft and began wrapping it in the middle of the hanger. I chose the middle because the ends of the hanger are kind of funky. I put one small dot of hot glue to hold the end in place.

Next, I continued wrapping all the way to one end. At the end, I cut the twine, leaving about 2 inches extra. I wound twine around the end, securing it in place with hot glue. Then I started back near the middle again, tucking the end of the twine underneath and finished at the top. I used hot glue to secure the twine at the other end as well.

Finally, I placed it on my door and added my wreath. I absolutely love the look. It cost me NOTHING. I used supplies I already had. I really think it gave an extra touch of modern farmhouse to my magnolia wreath. 

Want your own magnolia wreath? Here’s a very affordable one!

I’m the queen of all things thrifty, so I save money where I can. I hope this inspires you to repurpose things you already have. This not only saves you money but it also saves more things from ending up in landfills. Until next time, craft on!

Have a larger budget for a magnolia wreath? Here’s a beautiful, handmade wreath.

 

 

Repurposing post-holiday clearance items for new purposes!

I purchased a Dead of the Dead wreath from Wal-Mart for $.25 after Halloween. I’m guessing the bright, spring colors weren’t what most people thought of when buying decor for Halloween.

I saw this wreath for a quarter, and knew I couldn’t pass it up. And knew INSTANTLY what I was going to do with it: Create a beautiful spring/Easter wreath!

 

I went to Dollar Tree and bought two bags of sytrofoam Easter eggs and one roll of wired ribbon ($3.24 total).

 

First, I carefully removed the sugar skulls from the DOTD wreath.

Next, I cut the sticks either very short, so I could stick them in the styrofoam, or completely off of the Easter eggs, so they nested in groups of three, and hot glued them to the wreath, making sure to cover the holes left by the skulls.

 

 

Last, I fashioned a cute bow and hot glued that to the wreath as well. The project cost me a total of $3.49, and I spent less than 30 minutes creating it.

It’s a great idea to shop the ‘after holiday’ clearances at Wal-Mart, Hobby Lobby, and Michaels. I frequently run into $10 items for under $1, and I can get creative much easier than I can justify spending $20-30 for a wreath.

Until next time, craft on! 

Getting Organized in the New Year!

If you’re like every crafter I know, one of our new year’s resolutions is to get organized and stay organized in the new year. Every year. I entered 2017 with a happy smile on my face and no real organization to do! How you ask? Because I finally REALLY organized my craft room. How’d I do it? Well here’s how!

First, I took a bunch of boxes (or plastic bins, whatever you have) and began sorting things. Include an extra box for donations and an extra bag for trash. As I removed things, I placed embellishments in one box, ribbon in another, paper in another, adhesives and glues in another, tools in another.

I took my donations to my local thrift store, recycled the paper, and threw out the rest. Ahh! What a feeling to be rid of so much junk I didn’t want or need!

Then I took all of the boxes out of my room. I cleaned my room, vacuumed the carpet, cleaned the floor, cleaned my work space. I then sat at my scrapbook desk or work space, whichever you have, and began to attempt to craft or scrapbook.

When it was time to use something in one of the boxes, I’d sit at my desk and figure where I wanted it and how I wanted it set up. For me, the first thing was paper. I needed my solid color cardstock near me but off my work surface, but I also needed it to be portable for scrapbook retreats or daytime crops. So I used my Crop In Style P3. It telescopes up to allow easy access to paper but folds down to a normal rolling tote when not in use.

I’d organize that one thing. I’d find something I already had (bought NOTHING for my reorganization project) and organize things in that. Then I’d get back to scrapbooking. I would need something else, and I’d get out that box and figure out where I wanted these things and how I wanted to organize them. This way, I wasn’t overwhelmed.

For me, the next thing was embellishments. I LOVE Totally Tiffany Stash & Store boxes, and I slowly got them over the course of a year on sale. I never paid more than $18 a piece for them, and they are great for me. I reduced what was 20+ plastic boxes to this small area in an Ikea Kallax unit. Best part? PORTABLE! I can grab them and put them in a rolling tote for a crop. Ribbon, washi tape, Stickles, paints — all in this little space!

I could go at my pace — no need to do it all in one day unless you’re on a mission! But I got quite a bit accomplished in the course of a year. The key to me was buying NOTHING (nothing extra to bring into my space), using what I had, purging and donating, and continually realizing that I needed my stuff organized and near me in order to craft effectively.

Next up to organize was my patterned paper (not my themed paper — just random patterns). I had Totally Tiffany paper boxes sitting unused, so I grabbed them. I wrapped the edges with washi tape and labeled them to let me know quickly what color paper was in there. I sorted all of my paper by color and theme, and wow, has it made my life easy. Sorting paper took me almost an entire day. Be easy on yourself. It takes a while to organize. You didn’t get everything in a day. You’re not going to organize everything in a day.

Three boxes also fit in an Ikea Kallax cube, with a little bit of room to spare, so I store one box of rubber stamps next to them. This way, all of my stamps are also right next to me, and are stored in leftover space! I reduced 12 more plastic boxes to these tiny little Stamp Suitcases from Totally Tiffany and other plastic boxes I already had (note: It’s a great feeling to use stuff you have and not spend money on organizational items). You’ll see the different sized plastic boxes next to three paper boxes. Don’t have to match. Just have to work! Again, these are great for home and great for crops.

Finally, I organized my themed paper & themed embellishments. I had Cropper Hopper Page Arrangers ready to go, so I put all of my beach, sports, birthday, Christmas, Halloween, Camping, Cooking, etc. paper and stickers all together. One side fits 12.5 x 12.5 paper. The other has three pockets for embellishments and stickers.

Then I put my Page Arrangers in milk crates on top of my Ikea Kallax unit. Ideal for travel — hard plastic to avoid damaging your paper — and great for home — grab what you want to work on and go.

Now what was 40+ plastic bins, cardboard bins, and multiple shelving units is now reduced to a single Ikea Kallax 2 x 4 unit and one rolling tote. For me, it’s about organization and simplicity as well as the ease of finding something. I was driven nuts going through bin after bin after bin trying to find my stuff. Now it’s at my fingertips, organized labeled, and easy to grab. It all works great for home and ideal for travel. I have become so much more creative in my room now that I’m not wasting time trying to find things.

I’m going to post later today about how I organize the Cropper Hopper Page Arrangers so that you can get your themed paper & embellishments easily organized.

Until then, craft on! Links to my favorite products mentioned in this post are below.

Totally Tiffany Stamp Suitcases

 

Totally Tiffany Paper Boxes

Advantus Cropper Hopper Page Arrangers

Totally Tiffany Stash and Store Boxes