Thursday, August 6, 2015

Craft Room Reorganisation 3: Embrace the Rainbow (Flat Embellishments)

Welcome back to the third instalment of my Craft Room reorganisation series, largely inspired by Tiffany Spaulding.
Embellishment storage is an absolute mine-field of containers for us scrapbookers, isn't it?  We have jars full of buttons and tackle-boxes full of ribbons and wood veneers and brads, and eyelets that come in their own cute little containers again.  We have sheets of stickers shoved into boxes in one spot and washi tape in baskets and more embellishments still in their packaging somewhere else again.
Small wonder we never remember to use half of what we own!  Tiffany's suggestion is, rather than divide our stash up by type (buttons here, chipboard there, ribbon somewhere else) we combine and conquer!
As I mentioned in my last post, Tiffany actually has a 4-part system, which includes alpha-numeric, themes, calendar year and rainbow.  If you buy a lot of supplies by theme and calendar year (and I know a lot of you do!), you might want to visit Tiffany (here  or on Youtube here) for more information about that.  But I don't, so I skipped those sections and went straight to the rainbow!
I'm only dealing with my flat embellishments to begin with.  Most of my bulkier embellishments (ribbon, washi, buttons, brads etc) are already stored by rainbow within their own sections, but I'm yet to come up with a storage system that will unite them together.

Sometime last year I made a start on trying to organise my Silhouette die-cuts better.  I had come across a video on Youtube from LisaEDesign (watch it here) where she had made her own divided pages  by cutting and sewing ordinary office-supply A4 plastic sleeves.
I liked that idea but my first thought was to skip the sewing and use my existing 12" pocketed page protectors but I had two problems.
  1. I didn't have a spare album to put them in, and
  2. all the page protectors I owned at the time were side-opening, and the die-cuts kept falling out of them.
So I followed Lisa's idea and made my own A4 divided protectors, put them in a lever-arch folder, and that worked OK for a while, with me remembering to look through it occasionally.

This time round, I wanted to store not just my home-made die-cuts, but the bought ones as well, and also my stickers, rub-ons, cut-aparts, chipboard, pretty much anything that can be stored flat(ish).

Happily, I had recently bought a couple of Project-Life-branded albums on super-special, so now I DID have not only a spare 12" album, but some top-loading divided pages as well!

My album starts with words . . .

Then pretty much everything else, sorted by rainbow order . . .

Finishing with a small  multicoloured/themed section.

Finally, I've got my thin strips of patterned paper (manufacturing strips etc) because I liked these dividers I made too much to split them up and put them with my patterned papers. At a later date, I might make a couple more dividers and then store them in the appropriate colour section, along with my border stickers, but they're fine for now.

I LOVE my new system, and I find I am reaching for this folder Every. Single. Project. This page is a great example of how I pulled a bunch of embellishments together that I never would have thought of if they hadn't been together, sorted by colour.

Some tips (from me):
  • the "flat embellishments" versus bulky embellishments is my distinction, not Tiffany's. It all comes down to what storage system you use, but the less places you need to look to find your stuff, the better!
  • After cutting my sticker sheets apart to separate out my alphabets, I ended up cutting pretty much every sticker apart, in order to sort them by colour.  Same for my die-cut packs. Trust me, I am using my stickers and die-cuts so much more now!  I personally found it to be totally worth it!
  • If you can't bear the thought of breaking up your beautiful new sticker sheets and embellishment packs, try what Adele from Inkie Quill does and break them up after you've used them a few times.  (See her video here)That way you get the fun of your embellishments as a collection, if that's your thing, but won't be forever wasting time flicking through half-empty packages looking for that one perfect finishing touch.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Julie
    I'm visiting through your visit to me on SBB - and I must say I like your thinking! The storage you have devised for your flat embellishments I can see really working for me - I can see it works for you of course! Simple, inexpensive and means 'stuff' gets used - can't argue with that! Well done and thanks so much for sharing:)