Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Organizing with Boston Handmade

presented by Allison of Fraske Designs

If you are anything like me, you struggle with maintaining organization in your life. This problem can be particularly daunting when your crafts – both supplies and end products – continue to grow and multiply! I asked several members of Boston Handmade if they had any tips to share to help streamline the organization process, and following are their helpful hints:

Katy of muchacha K Studios and The Speakeasy Boutique reflects on her mother’s advice:

“It's like my mother always said, ‘put like items together.’ It's how I cleaned my room when I was 10 and it's how I clean my sewing studio now! As for actual organization devices, I do better with methods that both organize items as well as allow me to see the items when stored. For example, I keep all of my fabrics in cubbies, not drawers. I can see what's there quickly when putting a project together!”

Jessica of Reclaimed to You has a great idea for organizing those magazine clippings, postcards, and how-to articles that pile up:

“One way I get inspiration is from looking through magazines and keeping pages or parts of pages to look at later over time. But the problem is those pages pile up, and pile all over the place. So I started a system of organizing those saved inspirational clippings into binders with 8.5" x 11" plastic sleeves that I can page through whenever I need a jolt. The binders are categorized into themes like art, craft, and how to. I also collect postcards, old photos, and random other scraps of found paper into these binders so the sleeves help keep them neat and uniformed."
Mimi has a great method for sorting and evaluating her items that accumulate without being overwhelmed with one big organization project:

“I try to go through all my stuff at least once a year- touch everything. (Not all at the same time though- haha!) For example, I will rearrange what is on a set of shelves- everything comes off, boxes are sorted through, shelves are put back in order. I do this because I try to evaluate each item. Am I still interested in the supply/book/whatever? Should the item be in a prominent studio location which means it is relating to the work I am doing now? Or do I like it, but it can be stuck in the back of a closet until I find the right use for it… or should I get rid of it? I find touching my materials very inspiring. I always find things that I've forgotten about and love as well as stuff I can rid of- which makes room on the shelves.”

"I took all the bins and books out of these shelves (photo on right) and replaced them with the wool fabric I am using these days."

I’m definitely going to heed this advice. For further reading about cutting down on clutter and simplifying your life, check out the blog at unclutterer.com. I recently discovered this site and am going to continue to check back for great organization tips!

1 comment :

  1. I should add that I totally stole the cubby idea from Jay McCarroll of Project Runway fame. When Tim Gunn went to visit his house and he had all those cubbies of fabric organized by color...well my eyes pretty much popped out. So yes, my mum gave me great organizing advice, but so did Jay--all of my fabrics are organized by color :)


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