Crafty Kickstart 2016 – Second round of Posts
Hello :) Here’s a warm welcome to the new subscribers on the blog and it has been wonderful interacting with you all so far into out Crafty month of January 2016. The second round of posts has begun and im back with my turn, if you are just joining in, do drop by on the team members blogs and check out the amazing posts by everyone.
Just a brief recap, the Artful Crafting Design Team is going all ‘crafty’ for the month of January and we are not having a challenge month like we have been having. Instead each day a post from either one of us goes live for the whole month, starting with me and followed by Amina, Jaihan, Saba and Shereen and then we start over with me and so on. At the end of the month we will be having 5 winners who will each receive a voucher to the wonderful Artful Crafting website. To be eligible to win you have to have subscribed to the 5 blogs of each of the team members and should comment and interact with us as well. What we have noticed is that people are subscribing but not ‘activating’ their subscription. The subscription gets activated when you click on a confirm link which you would have received in your email inbox, without confirming you wont be subscribed. To read the rules in detail do check out my first post of the month.
Coming back to my post, last time I shared some tips on how I organize my plain cardstock and a lot of people liked the post and I am very glad for that. I wanted to share how I organize my inks and stamps/dies/stencils with you all today and also decided to add in ribbon organization, a request I received from the very wonderful reader Ayesha :) I will try to make sure it doesnt get too long and really hope it helps all of you as well. Again, the organization tips I have mostly adapted from Jennifer Mcguire or have scoured Pinterest for them and have tried many in the past and have found these current ones im using to be the most effective and hence I am sharing them today.
Lets start with ribbons. I have stored ribbons in boxes, wrapped them on spools, securing the ends with paper pins or tapes but they still seem to get unraveled and end up in a big hot mess which would take an hour every time to sort through to separate and rewrap, until I did this… Wrapped them on clothes pegs :P sounds funny right? but it works! take normal wooden clothes pegs, easily available in supermarkets/plastic stores etc. All you do is open the peg, tuck one end of the ribbon right up against the hinge, close the peg and start wrapping the ribbon around the peg (peg closed), till you get to the end, then you will only be able to slightly open the peg and tuck the end towards the bottom of the peg. I hope that made some sense, the pictures should give a clearer idea as well. This not only prevents unraveling but you can store the ribbons color wise in glass/acrylic jars and they look all pretty and neat :)
Now on to Inks… I have some of my inks laid out, while others stacked in a drawer and mini ink cubes in another box; since they all are not in one place and it isnt easy to go through all of them for a project I decided to make an ink swatch book. This you can see more professionally done in Jennifer’s ink swatch book Organization videos, but I managed with what I had available. I got hold of coin pocket pages (4×5=20 pockets on each page) but they had tiny flaps on the back, which I carefully cut of using a cutter. The size of each of the pockets is smaller than 2″ x 2″ but I didnt mind that. Simple stories has some 2×2 pocket pages available at Artful Crafting which would be perfect! (linked to in the supplies section). Now the local white cardstock that I use is quite thick and isnt able to be fed into a printer and neither do I own a label maker so I had to write down the names of the inks myself, as I wanted to have the swatches on the same paper so I could know what the final results and colors look like. Otherwise you can even download the swatch book from Jennifer’s blog and print it out and cut into squares which would save you a lot of work.
Then I decided since the names would not appear neat handwritten so I wrote them on the back of each and so had plenty of room for the actual swatch on the front. I didnt have a rectangle solid stamp and so used the side of an eraser for making the rectangular swatches (another hack :P) that you see and then later used a heart stamp to make the swatches from the more recent inks I purchased. I like the hearts better, maybe someday I’ll be in a mood to update the previous ones but I really dont mind the different shapes as long as the purpose is being served. Basically I swatched all the inks I owned and then organized them according to color family and moving from light to dark added them to the pockets after writing the names on the back of course. These include Colorbox Chalk Inks, Colorbox Pigment Inks, Ranger Dye Inks (which are a recent purchase and absolutely amazing btw) and Hero Arts Neon Inks. I havnt included the distress inks in this, hoping to organize swatches for those too but differently with distressing on the side, stamping and how the ink appears watercolored as well and when I do i will share those as well with you. The pages are held together using 3 book rings and so are very easy to flip through and the by just looking at the swatches I know what I have and the difference between the shades which makes it really easy to pick and choose for projects and especially easy to just pull out the swtaches and make ink combos for layering stamps or such.
Finally onto stamps, dies, stencils and embossing folders… I tried storing everything in the original packaging but that didnt work, then I tried to re-purpose a lamp base and the frame of the shade to hold the stuff but that wasnt very practical either. Jennifer saved the day yet again! :P I have this really sturdy cardboard box (part of the packaging of some expensive crystal pieces from abroad) the base of which I have re-purposed to hold and store all the mentioned supplies. The press and seal bags im using here again, these are 5″x8″ in size, I have white cardstock cut to size to fit each of these and these are what I use to store everything in. When I get new supplies, I get them out of their packaging (and save the packaging separately incase I need it later) and store them in each of these bags. So far everything I own does fit, maybe if I get a few of the larger stamp sets I will have to figure out how to store those but for now this works like a charm. This way I am not distracted by different packaging heights/shapes/sizes/materials and can find everything easily. The box I have parted in half down the width using some double pasted sheets and then have everything divided according to brands. The dividers I have made of the same double pasted sheet too, and have the brand name pasted on a different color so I can spot them easily.
The stamps, thin dies and stencils all go into the bags. The embossing folders and the bigz dies I have in the box as is. On each of the bags I have a label pasted with the product name, brand name and product code, and for nested dies and smaller dies such as separate alphabets even the number of dies as well. For nested/smaller dies I have the dies stored on magnetic sheets and then slipped into the bags. This has been really helpful and has helped me focus more on the crafted piece then going through my supplies.
And we’re done! :) My apologies for the extremely long post, but wanted to wrap up the organization tips in this one so I can move on to sharing other things with you all through out the month. I really hope these tips have been helpful and will motivate you to organize your supplies without spending a lot either on fancy storage bins etc (my motto: use that money for getting more supplies instead). Do let me know what you all think and if you do organize any of your supplies using any of the tips I shared today or in the previous post, do post a picture on facebook/instagram with the hashtag #craftykickstart16 and tag me as well, would love to see! Looking forward to hearing from you all :)
Next post is from the wonderful Amina, do drop by on everyone’s blogs and join in with us!
Will join you all in 5 days again IA.