5 Crafty Things I No Longer Buy {Konmari Craft Room Series}

Mistakes? I’ve made a few, especially in the crafting department.  Today I am talking about the craft supplies that I will no longer be buying because they do not add value to my life or I have other items that fulfill the same purpose. Let me know if you have items you no longer buying the comments below!

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I am dropping some truth in today’s video. Please note that this is my list and some of the things I am no longer buying may add value to your life so don’t discard based on my list, you do you. We are all different and that’s why we should never just go buy what someone else likes without determining if it will meet our needs. I’d love to know if there are any items you will no longer by in the comments below!

Video!

Below are the items on my no-buy list.

1. Bulk card and envelope sets and bulk cardstock packs.
Why? Because the cards that come with envelopes are flimsy and I prefer to make my own card based with Recollections 110# cardstock and make my envelopes from the massive hoard of pretty paper I already have using my envelope punch board.  As for the multi color cardstock packs I have a good stash of colors already so I am just going to buy a few sheets of the colors I need open stock when I run out. *Note to self I need to keep a list on my cardstock cupboard!

2. Dies that match stamp sets. These are just to specific and can only cut the stamp sets they coordinate with and at $25 a pop it can get really expensive to buy dies to go with your stamp sets. Instead I invested in a Scan n Cut2 machine so I can cut out anything I have stamped. I paid $250 for my machine (on black Friday) and I can cut out all of my stamp sets (for the same cost as 10 die sets!) *this machine can hook to your computer and do a lot more but I only use mine for scanning and cutting stamped images:)

3. Ribbon: I have enough ribbon to choke a horse as it is and I felt so much relief when I gave most of it away and I do not want to reburden myself with more. Also I can use washi tape or a strip of paper to give me a similar design element if I run out.

4. Craft storage. I have enough and if I need to buy more it is time to get rid of my excess. More craft storage=more craft supplies.

5. Duplicates of non consumables. I will no longer buy 15 of an identical tool “just in case” I need it for a class or I loose, break, can’t find my original one.

What items will you no longer buy?

I set out to declutter my craftroom (home and life) after listening to the audio book “The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up” by Marie Kondo and it changed the way I look at my possessions and helped me clean out the excess. I have more time to spend on things I enjoy because I spend less time managing my stuff and less time cleaning.You can find the book or audiobook here. I also enjoyed her book Spark Joy, it is a more in-depth book on the Konmari method. I wrote a blog post and filmed an in-depth video about the Konmari decluttering process if you missed it. I only wished I did it sooner! Thanks for stopping by and til next time happy crafting!

 

Epic Craft Room De-Clutter using the Konmari Method!

Hi friends! A little over a month ago I read (listened to) The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo and it was the kick in the but I needed to get my home and my craft studio in order. I was feeling suffocated by all of the “stuff” that surrounded me. Up til now I’d shrug off the excess as “tools of the trade” and “this is my job so I need to keep it all” reasons excuses to keep so much. It wasn’t a problem until it started making me feel tired, overwhelmed and un-creative. It was time to clean up my act!

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Don’t get me wrong, I still have a lot of stuff, I think everyone has a different amount of items that feels “right” to them and your amount might be more or less than mine and that is OK. I also spend about 40+ hours a week working in my studio because it is my full-time career so I will typically have more than the hobby crafter because I am using it for videos or classes I teach. The last thing I want to do is make anyone feel badly about how much they have, this isn’t a contest, I just want to share my journey and hopefully encourage anyone else who is in the same boat. With that, here is the in-depth video on how I cleaned up my act in the craft room!

If you want to jump to a specific part in the video here are the time codes when each subject is discussed.
2:45 BEFORE pan of room and overview of the mess
11:28 Punches & Deco Scissors
18:59 Dies
25:47 Mini paper pads and origami papers
29:46 Stamp & Die Sets
32:50 Embossing Folders
33:36 Background Stamps & Letterpress items
38:10 Ribbon (holy crap, there is a lot!)
44:10 Fabric & Sewing Supplies
57:09 12″x12″ patterned scrapbook paper
58:26 Cardstock
1:01:47 Embellishments (the hardest category!)
1:14:23 Glitter & Embossing Powder & Flock
1:21:26 String/twine/cord/chain
1:28:09 Watercolors (no discarding LOL)
1:30:59 Drawing/Inks/Random update
1:35:15 Stamps
1:42:35 Pens & Markers
1:46:06 Dr PH Martin Watercolors & Inks
1:48:40 Random Stuff, Packaging & Framing (under die cut bench stuff)
1:50:18 Large paper sheets and watercolor pads (too long:)
2:02:13 Jewelry stuff
2:05:15 Packaging detail
2:12:27 ALL DONE! Have a look at the clean and Tidy space!
12:17:43 Scary Discard area (not for the faint of heart!) *I have tidied that up nice and neat and it is ready for my friends to come take what they want:)

BTW, the glasses I am wearing at the end of the video are Ottoto frames from Glasses USA. I have wanted dark plastic frames since I saw Jennifer Aniston wear some in an Aveeno ad and I finally found some that look good on a pale face:) They are very lightweight too!

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I am so happy with my craft space now, it is not perfect nor is it minimalist but it is just right for me right now:) Here are some after shots of the room. Honestly I was so disgusted with my stuff before the declutter that I only took video, it was cool to look at the before video to see the improvement because when you are working it can feel like you are not making progress so if you tackle and area in your home make sure to snap a before pic so you can see the results in full!

Details!

My desk is a hollow core wooden door (we took all of the sliding doors off the closets in your home years ago and replaced them with curtains and we saved the doors, they make lightweight but strong benches. The other 2 benches in my studio are also old doors 🙂 ) sitting on two 9 cube organizers.This gives me great shelf storage (I even have some inexpensive fabric bins to hold lightweight unruly stuff) on each end of the table and room underneath for rolling carts,shelves or drawers.

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The one above is the one you see as you enter my space so I try to keep it colorful and pretty with often needed items in there. The other end of the table has stuff I use for teaching and cleaning and items I do not need to access as frequently.

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I covered my table with white shelf liner. I really brightens up the place and I can put down paper when I am getting messy to keep it looking good.

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The markers are in a pen display rack a bought from a scrapbook store that was going out of business. I have the spinner rack for supplies I use daily. I have decided to organize my work table so it is easy to clean, instead of having everything at hand like I used too.

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My unmounted stamp storage worked great. I keep all of my UM and cling stamps in binders (I recommend 3″ heavy-duty 3-ring binders.) Since I had a mish-mash of binders I cut up a map I loved and adhered it to the spines and I made unobtrusive labels with blue card-stock because text can seem like clutter.

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Next to my stamp bench is where I keep jewelry supplies, my Brother Scan ‘n Cut2 and other stuff. I keep my Scan n Cut next to my stamps because I use it simply for scanning and cutting my stamped and colored images. This machine is why I have been able to resist most of the matching dies that are available for stamp sets now:) It has saved me tons of cash!

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I started putting paper vertically to take up less space and make it easier to access! Also putting my wooden paintboxes and table easels vertically on a shelf made them take up less space and I can grab one without having to unstack a bunch of things. If it is easy to get at I will use it! Also in the picture below you can see my wood stamp shelf and my large sheet paper rack. I keep a sarong on it to keep dust away. I was able to get this rack (a poster board rack) from Rite Aid when they were going out of business but the closest thing I have seen for sale is a school art drying rack if you are looking for something similar.

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I make use of clear plastic drawers under benches and stacked up (with wheels removed LOL) and you can’t beat it for cheap & useful storage! You can find them in different colors and with different depths, I like shallow drawers for embellishments and deep drawers for bottles of paints and mediums. A mix of depths is great to have! I might put paper in the front of the drawers to make them prettier but honestly it doesn’t bother me seeing what’s inside.

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I also recommend these scrapbook cube organizers. I keep scrapbook paper flat here because the devided cubes make it easy to sort by topic and see what I have. You can get ones with drawers which are great for supplies you don’t want to get dusty. I put my ribbons in those drawers and I like it much better compared to on a shelf. I also like that they are pretty standard and modular so you can add to the configuration or change it as your needs change and budget allows. Since my basement is unfinished these cubes actually divide the space between my craft area and my husbands wood shop and they are sturdy so I don’t fear them tipping over, each cube can connect to the one under it with pegs. I still liked storing my lace in birdcages so they stayed, probably not the best solution in a dusty area but I love them!

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My solid colored loose cardstock is in an old record (as in LPs) cabinet. I used Jennifer McGuire’s tip on using job ticket holders to store cardstock by color. It it easier to remove a color family and it keeps the edges and corners from getting dented. I have my neutrals I use for coloring and card bases on top in a letter sorter (actually, you won’t believe this but this is actually a sandpaper display that my parents no longer needed in their hardware store, talk about upcycling!) Also speaking about letter sorters, I used and upright one to help me sort and organize pattern paper during the purge and ended up keeping in and I put it on the shelf behind my manikin to hold 9″x12″ pads of art paper vertically, it works like a dream!

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I keep my Big Shot, Dies, laminator and old Cricut machine in “die cut central”. I also have plastic candy jars with silk flowers in them. I scored them for 25 cents each at a party store going out of business, you sure can get some deals on shelving and storage when places go out of business, not that I would wish that on a store but they are keen to get rid of it. I have extra space here, I might make a “new product” or “Project in progress basket on this shelf but I am in no hurry to fill it up. Truth be told I have a couple empty cubes in here too!

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You can see more of the room in the video but I realize it is long and my mess might give some people anxiety and that is NOT what this post is about. If you liked this post I would love it if you pined it on Pinterest or shared it on social media using one of the handy sharing links below, sharing is caring! I also wanted to let you know that I am now an amazon associate (they just let Mainer’s join yay!) so I looked up the storage products I used and linked to them. If you make a purchase after clicking one of my links I earn a small commission but it doesn’t cost you anything extra and I thank you for your support! I also want to thank Audible for sponsoring today’s video on YouTube and invite you to check them out if you like audio books, you can listen to The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo free with a 30 day trial subscription. Thanks for stopping by and til next time happy crafting!

How I store markers and pencils!

Hi friends! I am on the mend. My voice is not back yet but I am feeling a lot better today. I have gone back and forth with different ways to store my pencils and markers and this way has worked for me the last 2 years. I used to have all of my pencils out in the clear racks my markers are in but I found that they were not as useful that way because I could not just grab a set and work with it elsewhere. My markers however worked perfectly in the rack because I would tend to pull the colors I needed from a project and it helped to see everything I had right there. You stuff is probably not the same as my stuff but hopefully this video can give you some ideas.

I hope some of these ideas helped you. You can also combine different brands of pencils into cups or jars if you don’t have complete sets of colors. Do what works for you. My storage videos are just that, how I store stuff. You do what works for you and your stash. Thanks for stopping by and til next time happy crafting!

How to store it: Die Cutting/Embossing Stuff!

Hi Friends! I am still shooting and uploading the organization videos, who would have thought there was so many ways to store your craft supplies? Today I am going to show you how I store my die cutting stuff. I will show you where I keep my cricut (I have it on another record cabinet so the mat can more freely around and not collide with other things on my die cutting bench), big shot, wafer thin and thick steel rule dies, embossing folders, sizzlits, letterpress plates, cutting pads and other accessories that pertain to using out die cutting machines. I will even show you my laminator that for some funny reason I like to keep here, I think it is because it takes electricity and it is handy here. Some things just work, don’t question it. If I used my comb binding machine more often it would be here too but I only have that out on rare occasion so it sits on a high shelf with other supplies I don’t need often. If you have any questions about my die cutting area you can leave them in the comments. I hope you find this video helpful:)

Oh! I have say a HUGE thank you to everyone who voted for me in the Craftsy Blogger Awards! You guys are so awesome!!! Voting is open until January 30th, wish me luck! Thanks so much for stopping by and til next time happy crafting!

Let’s Organize Our Paper {and start a paper addicts support group…}

Hi friends! I love paper, almost as much as stamps and you can’t stamp without paper so there you go (it’s my own personal addiction glue.) I think my obsession with paper is why I prefer watercolor and pastel painting to other media, there is just something about the humble sheet of fibery goodness. If you are like me you have amassed quite a stash of it too so today I will show you all the ways I store it. If you are a sensible person and have far less paper then me I will share some ways to store a smaller stash too. I neglected to mention how I store my 22″x30″ sheets of watercolor paper in the video because they are not it my studio. I keep them in a large flat file under my bed upstairs where it is drier and more consistent in temperature because that stuff is my “precious” but NOT too precious to use. 🙂  Now brace yourself for 20 minutes of action packed paper storage!

I have been preparing to film the rest of the videos in the studio storage series. And by “preparing” I mean cleaning so you do not see what I hot mess I really am LOL! Seriously, I question the way I store things as I consider filming a tutorial and I think it has improved my workflow a bit especially in the die cutting and embossing areas, spoiler alert, that’s the next storage video! How are your craft storage projects coming along? Let me know in the comments below! Thanks for stopping by and til next time happy crafting!

Are your stencils out of control?

Hi Friends! Last weekend I came up with a new and better way to store my stencils and it cost less than $10. Have a look:

It was really just an update of this method but I love how I can grab all of my messy stencils and take them wherever I want to work. My other templates (tracing and cutting ones) live in a binder I can flip through but for the messy ones it does the trick.

Here are the categories I have my stencils sorted in:

  • Small stencils (6″x6″ and smaller in the front of the divider so I can see them from the outside)
  • 12″x12″ background stencils-store bought
  • 12″x12″ background stencils-handmade
  • 8.5″x11″ stencil backgrounds
  • DCWV brand 12″x12″ stencils
  • Oriental Trading 12″x12″ stencils
    *All others are 8.5″x11″
  • Basic Shapes
  • Nature
  • Borders/Designs
  • Occasion

The only ones that do not work in the Darice Spectrafile are my large decor and homemade hot glue stencils. I hope this gives you some ideas to corral your stencil stash. Happy crafting!

How I Store my Yarn Stash & Make a Center-pull Ball!

Happy Sunday friends! It is snowing this morning Maine, teeny tiny little flake that melt as soon as they touch the ground but it’s snow all the same! It really makes me want to bust out the winter crafts like knitting and crochet. I was getting a bit aggravated with the snarl of yarn that was forming in my travel bag and home storage rack so I spent some quality time this week untangling, sorting and winding the mess into submission. I thought you might want some yarn storage tips too so here is a quick video on how I store my yarn and I’ll show you what is in my yarn tote I bring with me to class.

If you are a beginner you might want to keep a list of the sizes of knitting needles and hooks you own, that way if you happen upon a sale you can pick a few needles and not duplicate. I have to say I think the Denise interchangeable knitting needles (while a bit pricey) are a great investment because you get every size from 5-15 in strait or circular needles and it is so compact. I saw on their website that they have a crochet set too…I know what I am asking for for Christmas! After I posed my yarn storage video I had a couple of comments from savvy knitters who did not know how to make a center pull ball so I made a quick tutorial for that too. Winding those loose floppy skeins of wool into neat tidy (and useful-non rolling) balls is a space saver and makes your yarn stash look so pretty! I am still in the process of winding loose balls but it is a good project to pick away at when I am not feeling inspired. 😀

I used to store my yarn in metal grid cubes, the trouble with that is I could not see what was buried in the back. By using these shallow baskets on the upcycled library paperback rack I have all my yarn visible and within reach. You might not have an old paperback rack kicking around but see what you do have and make it work! Thanks for stopping by and til next time happy crafting!

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