Things I like

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Organizing a la Tiffany Spaulding

Some time back I bought some of those giant page protector-type pages that are divided for craft supplies, but I could not justify paying -- at that time $90 -- for the binder they fit in.  I placed them in a regular 3-ring binder that certainly wasn't deep enough to hold the pages but it gave me a place to start.  You can see how messy that was.

Then I ran across her organization "classes" on YouTube and became inspired to make a binder from chipboard.  I covered it with Contac paper and suspended three dowels in the sides, with little screw eyes to hold them in place.  I can easily add things this way.  Her particular binder has about 7 3-ring binder things (no clue what to call them.) glued in the back and if I ever find such things I may change my construction.  But for now, this is much neater.
At this point I had not figured out how to keep the dowels from slipping out, or how to also make them easy to remove.

I didn't have any wingnuts, but I finally decided to use the screw eyes.  They are easy to remove.

Further,Tiffany Spaulding's classes had even more ideas and I ended up not only sorting things by color, but taking inventory -- and classifying -- the entire contents of my studio.  Let me enthusiastically recommend her organization classes.  I think I have indicated before that I live with my daughter and her family, and they probably have not spent an hour in my studio in the past six years, so they have no clue what is out there or where to find anything.  Well, now they do!  I listed every item, from embellishments to power tools in a key format, which shows not only what there is but where it is.

Tiffany's idea to number boxes, much like a library system, means I no longer have to have things in view in order to remember they exist!

The embellishments I use most often I have placed in drawer organizers under a fiberglass-topped work station, and photographed them for myself actually.  I have spent far too much valuable time looking for things and now that is over!

See how helpful?  I have tiny charms that can be used in mixed media as well as in the little window cards I like to make.  And all those sequins for shaker cards...

She also suggested something that makes perfect sense: why not just keep 5 or 6 pages of each color of paper within reach and store the remaining stock (catalogued of course) for replenishing later.  I am also creating some craft packs to be donated to nursing homes or schools.  I have enough materials to start my own distribution center.

This has been very helpful to me, since I jump from making greeting cards to now, making little paper houses and furniture.  And finally I am beginning to work on the several albums I must finish, which include many old pictures from my mother's collection as well as my own.  I have some collage projects that are waiting to be completed and I really would like to get back to painting.

My studio is now efficiently arranged with work tables for specific tasks.  I have an area for painting, for gluing, for constructing and for "thinking."

AND I just received the new cutter, the KNK Force, which is an amazing piece of equipment that cuts not only paper but plastic and thin wood.  I'm still learning what it can do.  (If you buy one through my link, I'll get a commission of course, but in any case, go look at it!)  It is brand new and the software is in beta form but is being worked on to the point that everything should be complete by the end of the year, I hope. For now, it will perform the basic functions of cutting, engraving and embossing. There is a Facebook group made up of all of us who just received our machines and are finding out what it can do.  There is some amazing creativity on display.

Back to work!  I am working with tiny people (commonly used in model train set-ups) to populate my tiny houses.  I will have to modify some of them with clay and paint to get the kind of positions I need them to have, and that will be fun!

So little time, so much to play with!