My Craft Room Reconfigured

Finally, my small space works!

IMG_5402I’ve been crafting for years and, until a couple of months ago, I just couldn’t seem to find a way to configure my small studio to accommodate my mountains of craft stuff and still leave room for a work table and a small desk space for office work.

Finally, sitting in my studio one afternoon in January, just looking around and thinking, I could visualize exactly how to place every piece of furniture to create the perfect work space. My completely awesome husband, Peter, did all the muscle work and offered some great suggestions to get every piece of furniture to fit, perfectly. He’s so patient and loving and always willing to help me out with my ideas. I’m so blessed! So here’s a tour of my reconfigured, reorganized studio. As with most craft studios these days, it’s pretty much an ad for IKEA…they sure do have great storage ideas!

Here is my work table. It’s counter height so that I can sit on a high stool and stretch my legs out instead of having them bent at a 90 degree angle (not so good for arthritic joints. The table is located right under the window, so I get pure sweet daylight right where I need it.

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Moving counter-clockwise around the room you can see my IKEA shelves that house IKEA storage boxes. I made labels for each box so I know at a glance what’s in each one. On the wall above the shelves, are some of my favourite pictures, plaques and framed memorabilia–I think of them as inspiration pieces. On the end of my desk is a tall plant that I am growing from an avocado pit–it’s so neat to watch them germinate and grow straight up toward the sky.

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Moving further down this side wall we now get to my IKEA shelves. These are so useful because they hold all my little bottles of buttons, jewels, sparkle glue, and so on. It’s so easy to quickly scan the shelves and find just what I need to embellish a project. By the way, the bottles with the white lids are salt shakers that I bought at Dollarama at three for one dollar. You’ve just got to love the dollar stores for all those bits and pieces. The comfy reclining chair is my favourite place to curl up with Cookie, my Bichon Frise, for a quick nap or to spend some time reading.

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Here’s the end wall which features more photos, favourite plate and stars, stars, stars. The storage cabinet, also from IKEA, features shallow drawers that are perfect for organizing stamps and some of my crafting tools. No digging for things in deep drawers! (The black cord is the USB charger for my tablet…doesn’t look good in the photo, though).

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Moving around the corner to the doorway, you can see that I don’t leave much empty wall space. I like displaying things that I love. This wall features my beautiful vintage rose platter, my needlepoint roses and my crewel work tulips (which is waiting for me to hang it on the wall). Way up top is a framed copy of the verse from my favourite hymn, “On Eagle’s Wings.”  And, last but not least, a couple more my favourite plates and a photo of my lovely granddaughter, Ashleigh.

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As we continue around the room, we come to my closet-turned-office work space. It accommodates everything I need: desk space, storage, printer, electronic calculator, label-printer, great lighting and a small dish of my favourite candy to sustain me during those hard days at the  “office.” (Notice the Rexall bag–nice touch, huh? It has since been replace with a proper trash can).

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And, now, we round the corner back to my work table. On the way by, is my IKEA shelf that holds some of my designer paper (there is tons more in every imaginable size) and computer paper.

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So, as my late mother-in-law used to say, “that’s it, that’s all.” There are lots more little organizational details that I will be showing you, such as how I keep my embossing folders and dies organized…but, I’ll save those for next time.

Thanks, so much, for stopping by. I hope you will come back soon.

Happy crafting, happy organizing, happy everything!

Gloria

Embossing folders: let’s get organized!

My mission, this week, was to organize my out-of-control collection of embossing folders. Mission accomplished! See how happy I am?Yay!

Rooting through 99 embossing folders to find the one I needed was so darn frustrating. (Yep, I have 99 and two more on order…but, I don’t smoke, drink or spend money on shoes, and a girl has to have some fun!)

Anyway, after months of searching Pinterest and craft blogs, I finally picked a bit of this and a bit of that and came up with my own hybrid system. Here’s how it works:

I began by making a little orange name tag for each embossing folder. I created a table in MS Word and typed in the names of the folders, but you could just as easily write them by hand. I then affixed the labels to the folders using Scotch tape.

 

 

 

 

With the folders all labelled, then came the best part: I tossed out the bulky packaging! (Well, I really just packed them up and put them into storage). Just getting that packaging out of my tiny 8′ x 8′ studio was a big accomplishment. Wow, was it ever taking up a lot of valuable storage space. I felt better, already!

Next, I made index cards from some heavy cardstock and added tabs that I cut out on my Silhouette Cameo. I found these cute peel-and-stick alphabet letters in a book of scrapbooking stickers–how’s that for quick-and-dirty?

My “filing cabinet” is just a simple photo box (a shoe box would do just as well, and you could have fun altering it with designer paper).

And finally, in keeping with my quick-and-dirty plan, I created a catalogue for quick and easy reference.

 

A quick search of my studio and I found a nice hard cover notebook that been sitting on a shelf for years. Perfect! And, one less thing to buy. Also, I just didn’t see the point to a big heavy binder. I really wanted something easy to store and easy to carry with me on shopping trips.

Next, I pulled out a bunch of left-over cardstock from my scrap box and created sample cards measuring 2.5″ x 2.5″. I ran each card through my Cuttlebug, using a different embossing folder for each. I then glued them into my notebook, wrote the folder’s name underneath and, presto, Bob’s your uncle. Well, as I always say, Bob’s my brother, but that’s a whole other story.

It is so quick to just flip through the pages now to see what I have–and it’s much better than just looking at the embossing folders. (For example, if I want to use the folder called, “Leafy Branches,” I just look under the letter L in my file box.

The last thing I should mention is how I catalogue and store those skinny border folders. I labelled them and created a sample card for each one in my catalogue, just as I did for the regular size folders. But, rather than storing them loose in my file box, I bundled them in sets and wrapped each set with a rubber band. This way, the sets will stay together and it’s way easier to locate a bundle rather than one little folder.

My next mission is to catalogue all my stamps. I will also insert my Copic Marker colour sheet into my master catalogue, so when I go shopping, there will be no more guessing about which stamp sets I have or which markers I need.

So, that’s pretty much it. I hope this helps you get the organizing bug, too. I will be back with more photos as soon as I finish cataloging my stamps. Don’t hold you’re breath on this one, though…I think this is going to take a while…a long while! 😉