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Let’s Get Organized – part 3 — Marjorie Towers

Let’s Get Organized – part 3

January 24, 2011

in home decor, Organization, Sale

This week I want to address the subject of embellishments.  This category is huge for some of us.  I already discussed ribbon and fiber in my first post on this subject.  But what about all those brads (not to mention scads of other metal and plastic things – all that Tim Holtz stuff we love!) and alphabet stickers and flowers and chipboard and die cuts and…..problem is, lots of packaging that’s takes up lots of room.

Let me begin by saying the first step is to sort and purge.  How do you sort?  Group like items together.  Put all the brad packages in one pile, all the flower packages in another, etc.  This will not only establish a little order to the chaos, but will also bring to the forefront a lot of stuff you probably forgot you had.  It will also reveal many half used packages.  Now, the purging.  As you put these items into some kind of storage container, try, try, try to get rid of what you know you won’t use.  Be realistic.  Will you ever use those foam alphabets with no vowels left? Consider the amount of storage space those items take up versus the likelihood of them being used.  One thing you can do is find a (large) cardboard box.  As you sort, put these half-used products in the box.  Then put the box out in the garage, or up in the attic or wherever you store rarely used things.  If you haven’t gone to that box after 6 months, give it to charity.  Or take it to the dump.  Really.

All that packaging takes up a lot of space.  It is GOOD if you can get rid of it.  I know, you think you are going to enter your pages or cards in a contest or magazine to become famous (or at least get some recognition) and then you will need to know who the manufacturer was. Again, really? Perhaps you need to ask yourself, “Why do I scrapbook or make cards?” And, “Can I even make them in this cluttered space?”  Here is one way to store a lot of stuff that I recently used at the store to unclutter:


This is called a scraponizer.  It comes in 2 sizes, 8 1/2 x 11 or 12×12.  I used the 8 1/2 x 11.  You get four clear plastic “trays.” Each one has a different configuration of compartments.  The four compartment tray I used to put flowers in: pink and purple in one, orange and brown in a second, green and blue in a third and white and red in the fourth compartment.  The try lifts out and you can put larger items underneath.  I put the self-adhesive sheets of flowers in there.  My huge plastic storage bag of flowers is now one tidy little plastic box.  It turned out to be super for brads.  I used the eight compartment tray.  Now my huge plastic storage bag of brads is now one tidy little plastic box. Here’s a photo:

brads in scraponizer

In the other two trays, I put alphabet stickers in the two compartment tray and chipboard shapes in the 3 compartment tray.  Here’s a photo of the alpha stickers in their new home:

alpha in scraponizer

Gotta tell ya I’m lovin’ it.  Of course, this is only a start with those alphabets!  They come in an astonishing array of sizes and I think I will need to break open one of the 12×12 Scraponizers to store those larger sheets.  For now, they are all in one of those 12×12 plastic bags from the store.  But i really like the way these trays sit on a shelf in their holder taking up very little room.  You can label the edge and decorate the holder with scrapbook paper to make it cute and decorative if you like.

Now for all those Tim Holtz and 7 Gypsies metals, etc.  I use the Kaiser Craft 9-drawer pressed board organizer.  Once it’s painted and covered with paper, it really looks cute.  But you may be able to find other cute storage units at garage sales and antique shops, not to mention The Container Store (I sure wish I lived closer to one of these!).  I have an adorable floor unit with 12 drawers made out of wood that my daughter picked up for me on close out at Target.  I love it but it stands about 4 feet tall and 3 feet wide.  Fortunately, I have an entire room for my studio at home. Here’s a photo of my cute Kaiser Craft unit:

Kaiser Craft drawers

This is only a few ideas for embellishments.  At home, I do have a Craft Mates container for my brads.  It works good for your brads if all you have is the small ones.  And it is really easy to grab and go for a crop.  I’ve also found great storage containers in the sporting goods department.  A lot of the containers they sell for fishing tackle work great for craft supplies.  And I have a tackle box itself for all my weird altered book stuff.  And the wooden cabinets with the pull out plastic drawers with handles that we discussed last week with paper also come in a variety of configurations for storing smaller items.

It is a never-ending challenge to be sure.  But remember this: sort, purge and store.  And how much room you have to store determines how much stuff you have to purge. Next post, my last one for January and for this subject, is storing stamps.  Oh yes, another huge challenge for a stamp-a-holic like me.  Just wait til you see my “Wall O Stamps!”  I will also discuss storing layouts and some great ideas for decorating with your layouts. And don’t forget that all organizational supplies are on sale for 30% off the entire month at Creating Lasting Memories.

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