Friday, February 6, 2015

How I create amidst the mess...

Hey guys! I'm rounding out our week of organization and I will be the first to admit that the best has definitely not been saved for last! haha If you came here hoping to see some dream studio you sadly won't find it. But what you will find is some tricks and tips that maybe you haven't thought of and I will share how I scrapbook & craft amidst the mess that is my scrap room/craft room. 

Let me explain...about 3 1/2 yrs ago we moved cross country from Georgia to Washington (and if you follow my blog you know most of this so feel free to skip this paragraph, I won't mind ;) Anyway, we drove 2400+ miles with 2 kids, 2 dogs, a guinea pig, and everything we owned to, once again, move to a state where we new no one and nothing. Did I mention I was 8 months pregnant with our 3rd child at the time?? Fun times!! haha Actually, they were :) So, the last 3 yrs has been spent getting used to new schools, new sports, new friends, new everything, all while navigating with a new baby (who is now 3 1/2). So, needless to say, my scrap room  has been so far down on the priority list that I can barely even see it on the list! My 'space' is in our unfinished basement that has cement floors with an area rug thrown down and cement walls covered with insulation. Not pretty. And, quite frankly, there's a lot of disorganization going on down there! However, I'm happy to say that this spring the hubby is going to work on getting some walls up and carpeting down. Yay!!! So - fingers crossed - I will have a new post on organization in a few months!

All that being said, I made the situation worse by getting rid of the table I used for crafting on. It was too big and I'm going to have my hubby build me a table that works better in the space. So for now I've been doing all of my crafting on either the kitchen table or the desk that's in my living room. This means that whatever I work on has to be moved once I'm done (although, occasionally, I've been guilty of having my kids eat dinner in the living room because I had a project all spread out on my kitchen table!)

And that brings me to my first item of organization that I've been using the last few months...
I found this white tray at Target a few years back. Over the years I've used it for works in progress when I wanted to keep the pieces of a project together (like a mini album or December Daily). But now I use it to hold all of the contents of my current kit so that I can see everything when I'm working on a project. And when I need to I can just take the tray and move it to another room. 
All of the papers fit nicely in the tray and I use vintage tins to hold all of the smaller embellishments and another container to hold the bigger embellishments from the kit. Once I've used up most of the kit I will add the leftover items to the rest of my stash (or put it in a bin for my kids to use).

After seeing Brittny's post this week I had to take a trip to Michaels and get some of those metal containers with the chalkboard on the front. Love chalkboards!
This year I'm using an Erin Condren planner and so this one holds all of my planner stamps, stickers, pens, etc so that I can easily grab what I need to plan out my week.

And yes, I still have my Christmas cover on my planner because I just love the colors :) 
Here's a couple more items that I've had for years. The blue container is from Target. I couldn't get the stupid tag to come off the front (why do companies do that??!!) so I covered it with washi :) The 2 tier wire basket is from a thrift shop. I'm planning on spray painting it when the weather gets warmer (don't use spray paint when it's me).
Another one of my favorite items is this divided plastic container. I got this at Hobby Lobby but I know a lot of stores like Joanns, Michaels, etc have them as well. I kind of have a thing for wooden embellishments lately so this is really good for holding those & keeping them all organized.
These boxes are one of my favorite things in my room because they hold all the stuff that needs to be put away or scanned...finished layouts, school projects, school stuff, drawings, etc. I've had these for quite a while and I can't even remember what brand they are but I know you could find something similar at the craft stores.

Here's a few more of my tips for organizing your craft space:

Before you buy anything, take a look at what you have and figure out what you need. What kind of containers do you need? Do you need containers to hold big items or containers with small compartments?? Make a list of your needs! And be prepared that it might take you a while to find everything you need.

Shop thrift stores, garage sales, dollar bins & clearance sections. I have found so many of my items second hand and in dollar bins at Target. It also saves you lots of money. Don't overlook something that's not the right color. There are so many paint options these days that you can paint just about anything (even laminate!).

Shop your house. Go through your house and figure out what's not being used effectively. Would it work better in your craft space than where it's currently at? I'm notorious for moving things around in my house. After 3 1/2 yrs I'm still moving things around because over time our needs change. One of my shelves in my room is the changing table from my daughter (you can kind of tell in the last photo). It works perfectly. No reason to go out and buy new furniture when I had a perfectly good item right in my own house! Once she was done with it it went right downstairs! The best part? I paid just 15 bucks for it at a thrift store about 4 yrs ago.

Reuse & recycle. Sometimes you only have to look at the containers that hold items that you've bought recently. This container had cookies in it that I bought back in December. Why throw it away? I quickly realized it was a pretty great container so I'm saving it to put to good use very soon. I might use it to hold all of my tiny stamps. And I may paint it or just decorate with washi, we'll see.

Hopefully you've found some inspiration this week. I know I have! The key is finding what works for you!

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