Thinking Through Storage Options

Organizing our supplies is one of those never ending, ongoing challenges. It’s a personal thing and what works for one crafter may not work for another. I love to hear the different ways people organize their supplies, but ultimately, the way I store things will be unique to my space and the way that I scrapbook.

There are so many different ways to organize your stash. By theme if you are a seasonal scrapbooker. By manufacturer if you tend to think of your supplies by the company that makes them. By color if you that’s the way you work.  By type keeping all the flowers together, keeping all the brads together, keeping all the chipboard together, etc…

And essentially any combination of the above. More and more, I have been finding that organizing one way for one thing works well, but doing it that same way may not work for another category.

For example, I organize my pattern paper by manufacturer. That’s how I think about paper, that’s what works for me when I am planning my pages. I tried years ago to organize my pattern paper by color because it was the cool thing to do and it drove me insane. I could never find what I was looking for. I never started a page thinking I need a purple background so let me see my purple paper. I immediately changed it back to keeping all of one manufacturer together and it’s worked well for me ever since.

In other categories, I like to keep all of  that one thing together. Like all of my 6×6 paper pads are in one place, all of my washi tape is in one bucket, all of my 3×4 and 4×6 card pads are in one container. Having all of these items in one place allows me to see what I have all at once and quickly find something that will work.

But when it comes to my flowers, I want to see all of my yellow flowers at once, not just the Prima flowers and not every single flower in my stash. Having all the yellow flowers together allows me to find the right shade for the page I am working on.

There really is no rhyme or reason why something works one way and not another. Over the years, I have just learned that it comes down to trial and error. Try small changes and if it doesn’t work, change it again.

When I first moved into this little condo, I reorganized some of my embellishments so that all of my loose chipboard pieces were together. I had another bin that had all of my butterflies, another bin with just hearts and another bin with all my star shapes.

I use hearts and stars all the time so I’m constantly reaching for these bins. I don’t care what colors are there, I just want to see all of my stars or hearts. But I never reached for the chipboard bin, nor the butterfly bin. These bins have been sitting in the closet for two years virtually untouched.

When things are neglected, its time to think through what kind of change might work. It just so happens that I have started to notice a change in the way I embellish my pages. I am now thinking more in terms of color. Not in putting the whole page together, but just about embellishing with an accent color. If it’s red, I gather up a bunch of red items. If it’s green I gather up some green items.

For these categories of embellishments I haven’t been using, I gathered everything up and started diving them up by color.

Why go through all this detail? Because it really is important to think through how you scrapbook and how that translates into how to organize these things. Just a few years ago I wouldn’t have thought to dismantle my embellishments and put them into colors. Now? It works. And if in another year I’m scrapbooking differently, I’ll change it up. Again.

I’ve had these color drawers for years. I do keep things like brads and small embellishments, threads, and ribbons by color.

My latest container of chipboard, butterflies and other random embellishments fit in the drawers perfectly. Now, when I need a blue accent, I can pull out the drawer and have everything I need right there.

It’s too soon to tell if this will work, but I’ll let you know how it goes.

Thanks for stopping by today!

9 Comments

  1. Great organization ideas. Seems like we are always in the constant state of reorganizing, at least until we get somethign that works so well there is no more room for improvement.

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  2. The color drawers are such a great idea!

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  3. I have all my handmade and pre-fussy cut embellishments together in little containers. I have a pretty good memory so it works ok for now. Besides if I’m working on a layout and fussy cut thru a paper I may continue on with that, make a few more. And I don’t have a lot of space or even a dedicated craft space Sonics all pretty much there anyway. It’s interesting as things change how switching it up moves things along. Inspiring post. Michelle t

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  4. Whoops! Don’t know what happened. Think that’s supposed to be “so” instead of sonic. Stupid auto type. Second time today. Sorry about that! Michelle t

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  5. Oh do let us know how it goes. I tend to keep embellishments in their packages first by type and then by manufacturer until I’m down to very, very few and then they are sorted by color. It is always fun to assess how you can better use what supplies you have that are being ignored.

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  6. I agree with everything you shared, so I’m interested to see how it works to have the embellishments sorted by color after some time. Hope you’ll do a follow up later on down the road! 🙂

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  7. I love sorting by theme for my paper.
    I just need to find time to sort the other items by color but just have not gotten there yet.

    Reply
  8. Great organizing tips. I’m still thinking through my system as I re-organize my room. I’ve learned that the key to putting things away is to be able to locate them again when you need them.

    Thanks for sharing your process.

    Reply
  9. You are so right, organizing is constantly ongoing, isn’t it? I hope your newest change works for you!!

    Reply

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