Saturday, February 2, 2013

Confessions of a Messy Crafter...

Alright... so I promised you I'd show you my craft space when we finished our re-do... almost a year ago! See, I've been waiting until I have it organized just as I want, or when it's clean and tidy, or........

And then it dawned on me. That wouldn't be very honest of me, would it? I am what I like to call "an organized mess". It might look like a junk heap, but I know where every ribbon scrap, extra die cut and stick pin can be found!

So here you go... an honest tour of where I love to spend as much time as possible!

This is a view of my side of the room... it's a mess, I know! I took these pictures today, and truly, I haven't had a good clean up in MONTHS. It's time.

Here is Shirley's desk... you can see a second chair tucked in on the front side - this is where the kids (namely Emma) do their work when they want to play along. Oh, and those little rolled up thingys on her desk are one of my projects (you'll see it later this week) - I do tend to take over her desk if she isn't in there with me... *wink*

Behind our desks is all the good stuff. Stamps, inks, dies and the Big Shot. The papers on the right side are ones we inherited from one of my neighbours who passed away a couple of years ago - those are sort of 'public'. We each also have our own stash - but I'll get to that.

You can see we've organized our paper using the ROYGBIV system. I told you - it's an organized mess!

Here you can see our PTI sets that are in CD boxes (we're still figuring out what we'll do with the newer sets). In front of those are my Pink Persimmon sets in a vintage bread pan.

Here are some of our smaller sets. On the right you can see the $5 sets from PTI - within that tin, they are very well organized according to genre and series. Oh, and those are the extra sets we haven't really found a true home for yet. On the left are my Flourishes stamps.

Here is how well these stamps fit into the bread tins. I love these, and we use them for a lot of our goodies.  They're always cheap at the thrift store, which is a major bonus! Don't mind the fact that there are stamps still in their package, uninked there... soon enough, my friends, soon enough!

Next to Flourishes and PTI are our WMS, and Misc. stamps... lots of WPlus9, and then various companies from when I won my Stamping Royalty title last year.

This is mostly WMS sets... there are a few others as well, and soon we'll have to find another tin - or stop buying stamps... no wait, that's crazy talk! Another thrift store find, that little bucket.

And here are our Christmas sets from PTI... again, the ones on top just don't fit. We have a lot of stamps (maybe you noticed?), so it makes a lot of sense to just keep these separate. Oh, don't mind the little stair organizers hanging out up top there - I had to put them up high, so Josie would stop climbing them before I put them to use.

On the subject of storage, here's how we're doing our dies, these days... I found these at the dollar store! I told you there's good stuff there... I heard the company that made them stopped producing them on the very day I happened upon them. So I bought 2. This one is already nearly full... Anyway, it's all organized alphabetically, so again, there *is* order to the space in some ways!

These are our SU! inks, some VersaFines, Rangers, and a couple of old PTI formulas (that we don't even use, but I just can't quite get rid of them. Because that makes sense...). My hubby built this for us out of scraps we had in the basement.

And these are the inks that don't fit in the holder. Although, looking at the photos, I guess that Palette ink would, so maybe I'll move that one... 

Here are the ribbon holders my hubby built, after I showed him a few Pins that I liked. Again, you can see that we really are organized, within the mess!

These are all of our buttons - I feel like we need more. But then, I have an addiction, so... We got these spice organizers from HomeSense, which is like HomeGoods to my US readers. They were inexpensive, and I can't even *tell* you the difference they made!

These are over by Shirley's desk, and they hold our glitters, embossing powders, small alpha stamps, and other misc. little things that need to be contained.

Another bread pan, full of bling. It's mainly organized by the same colour system, though there are a few rogue ones in there, as Emma hasn't quite learned the order yet... *wink*

This is how we store our cardstock paper scraps, and some tools that we only have one of, but both might use. The two upper drawers are the tools (and it looks like some SU! sets - I don't use those at all, so I am guessing Shirley put them there!), and the two larger drawers hold scraps. In the bookcase to the left is a bin with some patterned paper scraps that are 'public'... 

Now let's focus a bit more on my own corner:

Beautiful, yes? HA! It works for me. And I know what all of those tiny bits and bobs are... mostly. Oh, and you'll never find me far from this:

It's my vice. I don't do coffee, but I do do Root Beer. Diet, though - I don't like regular pop. If I am crafting, I am enjoying a nice cold one of these (and many other times of day as well!). Josie loves to be helpful and get them for me - even if I didn't ask for one. Oh, and if you were wondering - it's in French because everything in Canada has to be - we are bilingual you know!

My modest collection of Copics. I just use Copic holders that my local art supply store sells - they weren't expensive, and they have a small footprint, so they work for me.

My glorious paper... these are my 6x6 pads - and yes, most of them are from Crate Paper. Behind those are all my sticker sheets (that aren't 12x12). I found this dish rack at a thrift shop and just gave it a coat of spray paint to freshen it up. These work like a *charm* for paper, even your 12x12's!

Speaking of larger papers, here's how I store them. This is a magazine rack I got on a thrift mission, given the same coat of spray paint. The back side is all of my chipboard stickers, and the front part is my patterned 12x12's. Hoarder, you say?

Here are my plain 12x12s. And that is an old salad container that will collect my cards as I create them. Yes, things just sort of get piled where they work for me (and no, that isn't *all* of my cards... it's just what I've created the last few weeks, and haven't given out yet).

Now this was a *score*. I am not going to tell you how I did it (connections, people), but I got this for free... all I had to do was add some epoxy to make it sturdy, and fill it up. It cleared off a TON of space on my desk for all the things I like close at hand. Let's have a closer look?

My beautiful mists... I use them a lot, and now they're all tidy and in one place.

Oh, look at all those. And no, that isn't all the lace - that's just the lace I have purchased for myself. We also have 'public' bins full of lace scraps too. You know me and lace, so I know you're not surprised!

Twines and lace overflow. This part needs a good overhaul. 

Umm... well I don't know what to say about this, except that when I am in the mood to create, I am not in the mood to put away. Those are cards that didn't get picked up for publication, so they're waiting to be re-photographed for the blog. Under those are the giveaways for the Festive Friday blog. Then my Christmas Eve Mini that's waiting for me to edit, print and organize photos to add to it. Oh, and some Crate Paper miscellany that's waiting to be put away after a couple of projects last week.

Uhh.. I don't know. Truly, I don't know. That is my beautiful journal from my dear friend Geri, and the rest of it - well... maybe it just sort of landed there with the intention I would get to it all later. I guess later hasn't come yet.

Albums in progress. And some pages hanging out in front that haven't been added to their respective books yet.

This beauty sits right behind me. If I had to give up everything else in the room, this is the one thing I'd take with me to a desert island (I could die cut leaves, people!). The weird pile of paper to the left of the machine actually has a purpose - I always keep worthy scraps of my neutrals nearby, since I cut them more than anything else. I guess I could get a basket or something...

Back to my desk... Vintage milk glass ashtrays hold some random trims and embellishments. This is what I do when I don't use the piece of ribbon I cut, or if there's a piece left over from trimming that could still be used. Also, the second one holds my little flowers, trinkets, random ephemera.

Here are my beloved stick pins. At least... a small fraction of them. These are the plain old dollar store ones. My Maya Road ones are in their own boxes in our embellishment shelves.

Speaking of  those - here they are. Those steps I said I was hiding from Josie? this is their mission... to clean up this mess. Each cubby has it's job - though I couldn't exactly describe them to you. They make sense to me, but that's not to say they make sense...

This shelf makes me laugh. It's such a mish mash of mess. A lot of it is actually finished projects that I either plan to put to use, or that don't have a home yet. There are also lots of things in here that I have bought with the idea that I can alter them as gifts of some kind some day. I actually have a bin designated for those things, so don't ask me how they landed here. But seriously... do you think I have a toilet roll problem? *wink* These will be covered and beautified for our craft sale in December, so there IS a reason...

Okay, I DO have a problem when it comes to alphas. Shirley laughs at me every.single.time I buy one. I can't help myself! Especially when I find a good deal! This is a bin from IKEA, and it has a handle down the middle of it, so it divides my alphas (that stand up so nicely) and the other stickers that I use for scrapping.

Alright, this is my most favourite part... well... one of them. Under my desk, I keep this bin right beside my right leg. So when I trim patterned paper for a card, the other part gets tossed right in here. When I need a small scrap for something, I just pull this out and dig - and I don't have to go anywhere. It's so handy, and despite appearances, it seriously cuts down on the mess on my desk.

These are my October Afternoon packages - the Santa Sacks I ordered, and the Merry Mini kit that I bought. I have plans for all of it, and I want to keep it all together, because it's pretty that way. So this is hiding under my desk, because I am a weirdo like that.

Just about forgot this last one... here are the embellishments I have bought specificially for scrapping. this sits above my head, so I also keep my adhesives in this cubby... Oh, and my growing collection of Washi. That's a bread tin there, holding all kinds of title cards, tags, ephemera packs... 

Whew, did you make it?! I know it was long, but remember, there's 2 of us sharing the room, which sort of spreads us out a bit. And believe it or not, I skipped a few areas! We're just very lucky to have a whole room devoted to this craft we love, and we inherited quite a collection from that neighbour I mentioned. Okay, and I spend almost all of my birthday and Christmas money on crafty stuff...... I don't need clothes.

Alright, so now you've seen how I work... I promise my own house doesn't (always) look quite so messy, and that really - even this room isn't so bad all of the time. Plus, the rest of Shirley's house is immaculate, so I had to mess it up just a *little*, right? 

We just didn't properly clean it up after the mad dash before the craft fair, and it's overdue. Doing this post makes me want to get in there though!

So... are we still friends, even though you've seen how I *really* work?

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Sonya said...

Definitely still friends...maybe I like you a little bit more. Thanks for keeping it real. Love all the pretty touches and bread tins. Feel better about my own mess but I'm the only one in there. Yipes!

Sylvia/LittleTreasures said...

Thanks for being honest! or Welcome to my World..when I saw the TP rolls I laughed, same storage, great ideas that just don't happen. But I need things to be OUT. My advice don't move anything. I had my clay in a little blue childs cupboard forever, moved it a month ago and now it must be gone forever.
Just curious, what size is your room?Wouldn't it be nice to have a table for each holiday with the stash under and beside it? And a memory that remembered every stamp and its location...
Thanks for sharing your fun space, and always Happy Crafting.

Wida said...

that was so much fun, I cant even tell you! I love the photos and your organization. Your storage solutions are gorgeous!!

Anonymous said...

Love your craft room tour Meredith ;)
I am totally in awe of all that space you have and all the cubbies! It is my dream to have a bigger space where I don't need to store half my stuff on my actual workspace or under the table where I don't even have room to put my legs anymore!! Rx

Elena said...

Mess or not, I would LOVE to craft in your space! It's gorgeous, and I adore the little thrifty containers you store your stamps in! (Ps, I didn't realize you'd have french, all the way in your corner of Canada!)

Angela Fehr said...

Looks great Meredith! I have been working on my organization but I struggle with finding places for the little things, so your photos might help! I use vintage bread tins too!

Kristi said...

Love your room! I like the honest pics you posted:it's very refreshing to see the good,the bad,and the messy!Lol I'm really loving the bread tins for storing items too!

Maureen said...

oh, still friends and I want to come and play at your (Shirley's) house! Wow! I thought I was bad, but now we're in good company! Thanks for sharing! I LOVE the 3 tier holder! That was a score!

Geri said...

Oooo, I love bein' nosey! And lookin' at other peoples' goodies! My fave is the little die folder thingies...wish I had those. And I sure would like some real ribbon storage like that! Looks great! When do I get to come over???

Nina Yang said...

That diecutting table made me giggle! I love you more too, Meredith! There is beauty in every little detail! <3

Kim Heggins said...

Thanks for the amazing tour of your craft room. I love seeing how others organize or not. So fun...

Jill Norwood said...

Meredith I love your post and all the pictures. I am for the first time ever putting a little bit more effort in to organizing my room. I hope to post pictures when I am done. I got a lot of wonderful ideas from your post so thank you so much!!!! I pinned away!
:) Hugs,

Riette said...

(Telling myself: thou shalt not covet. thou shalt not covet. thou shalt not covet!)
I don't have a dedicated space for my crafting. You are so blessed.
My little bit of crafty stuff is in a 3-drawer trolley under the stairs and my paper in a large flat plastic box. I have to unpack everything and clear the little kitchen counter if I want to get creative. NOT FUN!!
You ARE organized - my goodness - everything is labeled so awesome!! Thanks for sharing!
Riette (Red)

Janet Perafan-Babar said...

I am in LOVE with your stamp and die storage system. **want*** & **wish*** for that mini hanging folder box. Too darn cute!!!

Happy Scrappin'!

Kate W. said...

I am going to do a post on this but the PTI birthday bash has gotten in the way. When I saw this I had to tell you. The newer sets fit perfectly (on the sheet they came on-just "slap" on the sticker)in a photo box. I got mine at Michael's on sale.


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