For me, this is the most challenging challenge ever. Did you ever try to take pictures of your craft room? First you have to clean up the mess so you can find your desk. Then you must tidy up your supplies. When it's cleaner than it has ever been, you dig out your camera, and looking through the lens you see all the flaws...Notice you won't see the floor on any of these pics? Yeah, I didn't feel like vacuuming...
Honestly, I think I'd almost rather post a picture of myself nekid than let everyone see the hole that I call my craft room. Seriously, my "Rubber Room" is a spare bedroom in the basement with a teeny tiny little window, ugly blue carpet and really crappy flower panelling (flowers, seriously? who panels a room in flowers?). Totally not the creativity-inspiring decor of my dreams. One thing I DO like, is that it is super organized, so I can easily find what I am looking for.
My craft stash shares this room with the guest bed. That means... when we get company, I have to fold up my tables and lean them against the wall, and I can't get to my crafty stash until they leave. Waah waah waah.... We moved into this house 11 years ago, and this room is on the bottom of the list for renos. All the furniture in this room (except for the bed and the folding tables) was salvaged, and free is good.
Enough blabbering, here are the pictures. (BTW, I've labelled these all "My Craft room Before" on my computer, so that when I have the time and money to paint and get new flooring, lighting and shelving, I can take some "after" pics) Obviously, I do not hold group gatherings in this room, this is my private cave.
This is the first thing you see walking into the guest bedroom, it's my daughter's corner,and I spread out onto that table too when I need more space. OK, I usually have that table (and the bed) covered with my
Over to the right is my corner, don't let the small footprint fool you, I have a TON of stuff crammed in there! My card/scrapping supplies are all out in the open, the closet on the right holds my photo albums, boxes of pictures waiting for a home, my sewing machine and all sewing/mending supplies. When I need to sew, I just swing my chair around to the other side of the table, open the closet doors and tada! Instant sewing nook. There is a heavy duty desk back in the corner there, which is great for stamping and punching on. Under it, is a rolling cart full of punches and Cuttlebug folders/plates. Why yes, that is a curtain hanging there, thanks for noticing. When we have to convert this to a guest room, I can throw all my junk on my desk and pull the curtain to hide it. I may still make curtains for the shelf units too.
You can see my laptop on the corner of the table, but may wonder where is my printer? I actually have a wireless printer that is shared by everyone else in the house, and it is in the office just outside of this room, so I don't have far to go when I need it.
And here are some closeups of my supplies, and some of my organizing ideas:
My Cricut, and all of my embellishments are housed here in the little nook above my desk in the corner. I am toying with the idea of sorting my embellishments by color, but right now they are sorted by item, and I can still find them.
I'm a Ribbon Ring Gal. Isn't it pretty? I like my ribbon to hang straight and not be all twisted up. I can see what I have, and when I can't decide what ribbon to use I can drape it over my project one at a time without unrolling and re-rolling ribbon tubes. If I have bulk rolls, I cut a 3 ft length to hang here, and put a little red dot sticker on the card to show that I have more in the box of extra ribbon in the closet. Works for me...and it holds a lot, those little cards each hold 3 or 4 different ribbons. I can see by this picture that I'm short on blue and green ribbon...
You may have noticed this by my table in the big picture, and wondered what the heck is that? It's my embossing clipboard! I covered it in tinfoil so it heats up from the back too. I can clip my piece up there and not burn my fingers holding it while I point the craft heater at it. I must say this works really well! I just leave my craft heater hanging there all ready to go...
My CTMH stamps are stored in these plastic shoeboxes. Each box will hold about 40 stamp envelopes when they are full. I removed the foam insert from the packaging(saves a lot of space), and flipped them around so I can see the name and number on the top corner as well as the stamp set that's in it. See that big white binder on the top shelf? It's my master stamp catalog. I stamp all my stamps in it when I get them, helps to season them and I can check for defects. The binder is organized by theme, and I can just flip through it to look for a stamp I need, but the stamps themselves are organized alpha numerically...it's easier to find them and to put them away this way. I used to waste so much time searching for a stamp, but since I've organized my stamps like this, it's super easy to find what I need. Even my 11 yr old daughter can keep up with this system, so I let her use them too. My non-CTMH stamps are cataloged the same way, using the same binder, but the stamps are stored in a drawer under the desk in the corner as I don't use them as often.
I like things to be organized (you think?) because I hate wasting time looking for stuff. It has to be right at my fingertips or I forget I have it. Whenever I have a creative block, I organize my stuff. Sometimes just going through my supplies will trigger an idea. So this is what I did one evening while watching Gray's Anatomy:
I'm a big fan of using the CTMH cardstock color swatches as labels! I used a round tab punch to make labelled color coded sponge wedges, no more washing out yucky sponges and no more inky fingers. I've been using these ones for about a year, and they are holding up really well. I also used a hole punch to make easy to find tops for my reinkers, because those bottles all look the same in a box.
My cardstock is sorted by color too, and I use the vertical Cropper Hopper storage system for it. I took another ring of CTMH color swatches apart, and used it to label my tabs. The lighting isn't great in this room, so I find these colored and labelled tabs really help me to find the right color without squinting. Oh yeah, and I put my cropper hopper files on their back, with the open part facing front (because I'm weird), I like to be able to slide a single piece of cardstock in and out without having to hoist the entire 20lb full container off of the shelf. This vertical system works so well for me, because as you can see, I have a ton of paper. Storing it this way instead of in horizontal bins uses way less space and is easier to pull out individual pages.
My patterned paper, most of it CTMH Level 1 and 2 kits, is stored vertically on the shelf below. I just keep them and their usable scraps in their original bags, sorted alphabetically (why yes I am a freak, why do you ask?) by name so I can find them.
Hello, my name is Lorrinda and I am a paper hoarder...don't judge me.
Jenna's favorite thing to do is shop for new school supplies, I wonder who she got that from? Do you think we need therapy?
I even keep my scraps sorted by color, in these narrow drawers. This is a new addition, I used to keep them in an accordion file. But this way, I can easily toss my scraps in when I clean up, and they are easy to quickly look through before I cut up a new piece of paper. I told Jenna she can use all of the paper in these drawers whenever she wants, and we're actually using up our scraps now!
So, that's pretty much all there is to see here. The view from behind my table is a very uninspiring wall with a bed and a dresser against it, but it has a TV to keep us company, and a door to shut out the noise and the boys (which, according to Jenna is the most important thing!) At least we have a place to keep all of our crafty stuff so it isn't all over the house. This room isn't a good spot for big group projects, but it will accommodate 3 or 4 people quite easily. So we can still have a friend or two come over to play!
Now, you must pop over to HEART 2 HEART to drool over the pretty craft spaces and super organization tips from the rest of the design team! And, most importantly, we want to see YOUR craft room! That's the challenge this week...share your craft room with us, or, if you're like me and don't think your space is worth showing off, then show us your orgnization ideas! We could all use those! I could really use some ideas for Cuttlebug folders and Nestabilities...
Thank You for visiting my space.
Hopefully someday I'll be posting "after" pictures!