Another long one today, so grab the beverage of your choice and a comfy seat; todays challenge…
Never buy another double unintentionally again.
The larger your craft stash grows, the harder it is to keep track of it all. Do you ever get home with items that clash with everything you have, or discover that you have just bought the same stamp etc that you bought some time ago? If that sounds like you, there is a way to avoid this happening.
Now for all those lucky crafters who already have their craft space just the way they like it here is the way to keep track of all your stuff when you are out shopping. The following are just suggestions, ideas to get you started, amend them to your style of crafting and the products you have.
You will need an A4 binder, some blank card stock, and some clear page protectors. Page dividers are helpful too.
- Ribbon & Thread
These groups are broken down into smaller groups
- Stamps could be grouped by design; Animals/Christmas/Nature/Lettering, or by brand;
- Stencils could be grouped by style of design, or by type of stencil eg embossing or paper pricking;
- Colour grouped by type; chalk, dye based ink, pigment ink, solvent ink, pens, embossing powder;
- Ribbon & Yarn; ribbon vs. yarn.
These smaller sections get a dedicated page each where you create a sampler.
At the top of each piece of card, title it with your chosen product, and then create a sampler as described below. For example;
Dye Based Ink (this is your page title)
Using a small stamp, stamp an image in each colour of ink that you have of that type, on to the page. Note the inks colour name, and the brand, next to each stamped image.
Repeat this idea with all the coloured products you have. Each type gets its own dedicated page. When you want to replace a dried out pad it is then easy to find out which one it was. And is also useful when you want to co-ordinate colours with those you already have.
This page shows a group of embossing powders. I cut squares of card and embossed them individually, then attatched them to the page. Each line is a different Brand, so you only have to write the colour name under the image.
Title your page with the name of the group of stamps you want to keep together, e.g. Christmas.
Stamp an image from each of the stamps you have, that apply to this title on your page.
If you wish you can also list the brand, stamp name and number next to the image. This is useful if you take part in swaps, where people are likely to ask you the details of the stamp that you used for your projects. Repeat this idea with all your stamps, dedicate a page to each group of stamps, for a new group/style start a new page.
I am lucky that DH has a photocopier as part of his printer so I can photocopy the stamps onto a single page. If you want to do this, place the stamps picture side down onto the photo copier, cover with white card/paper then cover with a blanket and press print. You use the blanket as the stamps will be too bulky to let you close the copier lid but you need to block out the light.
The white paper is to stop the copier getting a patterned background from the blanket.
Threads & Yarns
Take a strip of paper about 1” wide, using a hole punch, punch two holes next to each other. Cut a small piece of ribbon and knot it between the holes. Note the brand and colour details next to it. Repeat with all the ribbons and yarns that you have. Place the finished strip into the binder stuck to a page titled ‘Ribbons’ or ‘Yarns’.
You could group your ribbon by type, size, colour or brand. Do list colour numbers as it is a pig to replace ribbon with the same type without it.
Scissors and punches
You could also make sampler pages in the same way for; punches and decorative scissors. Glue punched shapes to a page for their samplers, and for the scissors just cut a small scrap piece of card and glue on a page marked ‘Scissors’.
Stencils come up great photocopied.
Here are some pictures of my folder to give you an idea of how it all will look.
Now I realise this sounds like a lot of work and if you have piles of ‘stock’ it will take a while to do this. Take it in small steps, one shelf/ drawer at a time. Take lots of breaks and give yourself crafty rewards each time you finish an area.
How much detail you go into with your folder is personal preference. I find it useful to note brands and colour names/numbers next to items, as it really does make it easier when you want more of the same thing again.
You will find long lost stash in the process of creating this and if you take your binder with you when you go craft shopping you can easily see if you already have an item. It is also handy if you are looking for coordinating items to go with stock and images you already have, with the stamp images page open in front of you, finding the perfect partner for it is easy.
Thanks for reading and if you got this far go give yourself a crafty reward. You have earned it.