Sunday, March 06, 2011

Craft Room Organization

My time hasn't been my own lately, so I haven't been able to do much stitching. When I finally decided I could sneak into my sewing room, I found it pretty messy. What is it about the beginning of the year that always sends me scurrying around cleaning up and organizing?
I wish I could call the room where I usually work my "studio", but it's a small spare bedroom and it's always been called my sewing room. (Then I'd have to call myself an "artist" and wonder why my output is so low...) My room is never TOTALLY organized - I never know what to do with some project ideas, patterns, drawings, etc. But I do have a handle on fabrics, ribbons, beads, buttons, etc. Since I like to do CQ, that means loads of tiny little beads and flowers. I really like the clear plastic boxes with lots of compartments, like these. I have my beads used for embellishment sorted into different boxes by color. Even within these boxes, I still have small containers sometimes. The smaller boxes on the left side in the photo above hold mostly sequins. I recently found the perfect box for all those small embellishments at a scrap-booking store. I never thought to look there! Also in the top picture, you see my favorite organizing tool, my label-maker. I just love this little baby!
For my seed beads and E beads, I have a few different drawers in one of these:
You can see they're all labeled, with my favorite label-maker! One drawer is for full tubes, the way they come when I buy them,
and then stored in smaller containers (from Fire Mountain Gems), put in baggies by color. Every color bead in a big tube is also in a small tube, so my big tubes are my backup supply. If I need some yellow or gold beads, I just grab the baggy like this one You can see each small baggie has a strip of paper on the top of it to let me know what color beads are in that bag.
I store some of my threads in 3 of these drawer units, stacked up. More of my threads are stored on the back of the door, in a shoe rack that I got from Target. These include regular floss (the workhorse), my silk buttonhole twist, the silks, the rayon, metallics, etc. Then there are the ribbons. My sister gave me a couple of these storage bins - they have a shelf inside that sits near the top. I keep the narrow ribbons on rolls, if possible and the rest I just roll up and tie with some cheap lace or hem lace. I always have a zip lock baggie of the shorter pieces; I use the veggie bags, so there are holes in them to "breathe". For "special" buttons, I put a layer of felt or batting in the bottom of the drawer and then set the buttons on top of this. One time I saved a clear plastic divider that came in a box of candy and put buttons in this. Other buttons, that I have a lot of, I'll keep in a jewelry box, like this one that was my Grandmother's and has those handy drawers. I really like to see what I have; I use a couple of these sets of drawers - I don't know what they are called - to store small things. I'm not very creative when it comes to storing my CQ fabrics. I keep them in Xerox paper boxes - sorted by color, what else? Since some of them are silk, I don't want to put them in plastic, since I think silk needs to breathe. My room is small, but it's wall to wall, using every spare inch in the room. Lastly you can see my messy work table, complete with lace covering to conceal - what else - more boxes!There's a window over this table, so the light is good, and I have my all-important mood modifier - the stereo. I do have a lot of trouble keeping the table and the ironing board from filling with odds and ends, and then I find myself working on the floor. Not always the best way to work...but then sometimes the big fluffy fellow comes in to visit me and then he steals my chair, so where else is there but the floor? (Love those blue eyes of his) One of the best things about organizing is to discover you might actually have an empty drawer somewhere. The possibilities! How exciting! Oh well, it's the little things in life....
Happy Organizing,
Lin Moon

Wednesday, March 02, 2011

friendship dinner decorations

We recently had a friendship dinner at our church and I was in charge of the decorations for the tables. I chose "the gift of friendship" as our theme and wrapped presents for each table. I thought the presents came out really well - Here are some pix:

I punched some scrapbook paper for this one.

This is the punch I used; it is a Martha Stewart and it is so easy to use! No extra work lining it up all carefully - I love it!

It was a lot of fun layering all those ribbons and gathering up the crepe paper and all!
~Lin Moon