Monday, August 9, 2010

Organization Ideas

I was killing time today while waiting on supper to finish cooking, and I came across some great organizational ideas. Hope you enjoy them too!

  • JARS- If you use jars to keep ribbons, buttons, etc. Paint the top of the jar to match the color of ribbon in the jar or a neutral color to match your decor!
  • Cards- To keep cards that you have made ahead of time, place them in a storage box so they are standing upright or on their side. Laying or stacking your cards will smash the embellishments that you have on your card. There are large photo boxes for 5x7" photos that work really well for cards. Some standard photo boxes work too!
  • Clear Stamps and Unmounted Stamps- Storing these stamps in CD cases was a trend before CD cases became Jewel Slim Cases and no longer hold a foam mounted stamp. My new storage idea is using empty DVD cases. These are very easy to find. You can even as a local DVD rental place for used ones for next to nothing. Place a complete Stamp Set or several similar stamps in a DVD case, add a label, and stamp out an index sheet for which stamps belong in that case. It will help you put them all back in the correct cases after a marathon session.
  • Ribbon- I have shown you methods of storing ribbon before—click Organization under categories for these tips and more—and the particular storage method I currently use is the rain gutters. It cost me around $10 for a set of 5 three foot long trays that the rolls of ribbon sit in. Loose ribbons are stored in jars on a shelf. BUT I just found a less expensive way of storing ribbon on the roll! Use those white sliding curtain rods that are $1 at the dollar store. They come with the brackets they hook to the wall with, and they sit just far enough from the wall for those standard 3-4" spools of ribbon you get at Michaels. Plus, the added benefit is that you don't have to pull a dowel out to change out a roll of ribbon!
  • Punches- I use these same white cheap curtain rods described above to hang my punches from! For the very small punches that try to fall off the rod, I have them sitting just under the rod on a shelf. I have seen where people have nailed a thin piece of wood to a section of wall behind part of the rod and then the small punches wont fall off. I may try this one day. Priorities!
  • The Clip-It-Up!- I have seen the long bar version of this storage device, the two tiered desktop version, and the 3-4 tiered floor model. BUT have you seen the ones that people are making themselves? Go to Youtube and type in DIY Clip It Up or Handmade Clip It Up. You will be amazed at the ingenuity of people! Using threaded rods from the hardware store, old lamp shades, and some nuts and bolts, many people have created their own Clip It Up very easily and for WAY LESS MONEY! I have wanted the long bar version for a long time, but have never made one for myself yet.

Mistakes I've made: Please learn from me…

  1. Alphabet stickers- I saw a girl with a small drawer system that she used to hold her alpha stickers. she had them individually cut out and placed in each drawer. I loved that orderly storage! So, I cut each letter out of the sheet of alpha stickers. For EVERY sheet I had.  Now I didn't have a lot, but I had maybe 6-10 big sheets, and then I had gotten these 1/4-3/8" letter sticker sheets free with a kit once, so I had maybe 10-15 of them. Doesn't sound like a lot, but the small letter stickers had a lot of EACH letter. In the end, I had a large pile for each letter. The storage drawer system that my husband gave me—it used to hole screws and things and came from the hardware store—ended up being too small. It had 20 drawers. I thought I could squeeze in the Q, Z, etc. into drawers with other low-use letters. BUT I actually had way too many letters to combine the drawers. My letter stickers ended up divided into zip lock snack bags by letter and the bags are stuck in a rubbermaid box. NOT so cute or practical. I haven't used a letter sticker in so long, I can't even say. I cut them from the Cricut before I ever look for a sticker. I will not let myself buy the cute Thickers or jeweled letter stickers until I use the ones I have! So, what is the moral to this story? Before you commit to cutting up each letter individually, make sure the storage system you plan to use is something you can live with and will work for you!
  2. Ribbons- I tried the Ribbon Ring system. It was a homemade version using cereal boxes cut into squares to let the ribbon hang from then they were placed on a 3" book ring. The problem was that I had so many ribbons that were still on 5-15 yard rolls that had to be stored too. It wasn't really helping matters. Plus, when I had the ribbons on the fake ribbon rings, it looked VERY disorderly. Now I will admit, I didn't have the ribbons arranged by color, which would have helped. I also didn't have the ribbons ironed, which would have been a HUGE improvement. My ribbon is still stored in two places: the roll ribbon is in rain gutters on the wall and the loose ribbon is in jars on a shelf. It is STILL not the ideal situation I would like it to be! Moral of this story? When choosing a ribbon storage system, note if it will leave you with two storage spots in the end, and if choosing the Ribbon Ring, iron the ribbon!

Here is a challenge; see if you can help me: My husband has bought me two (different) sets of exacto knives for Christmas in the past. Yes, if it can be found at Lowe's and it can be used for crafts, my hubby gets it for me for Christmas! I love it though! Anyway, one set is in a tiny wooden box with the knife and several styles of blades. The second is in a larger zippered case with two handles, three styles of blade holders, and several styles of blades. What is the best way to store these? For now they sit on a shelf away from my desk. I don't have a place on my desk for them. So, because they are across the room, I rarely use them. Any tips?

I do hope you got some ideas today! I know that reading posts is not everyone's favorite, but sometimes the ideas are better explained than shown!

Have a great day! Thanks for stopping by!

Leslie Jones

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