Monday, October 12, 2015

Magical Monday Organizing - Stash Dash 2015

Coffee + Planning = Magic
Isn't organizing a magical thing?
I hope so, since I spent my extra time this weekend trying to get scraps of paper, this and that off my desk and into a place where I could find what I need when I need it.
After you're all done it does indeed feel like you waved your magical organizing wand. Ahhh.

The thing which started all this was very simple: one of those accordian files from the Target dollar spot. Yes, it cost one dollar!

I didn't know what I was going to use it for, and then I realized. It's the perfect size for the little pieces! Stickers, scraps, die cuts, etc. These are the things I use all the time for my planner, scrapbooking, art journaling, tags and cards.

When I cut up a pretty piece of patterned paper, I like to use it all. What has been happening is, those little scraps I'm not using right away get piled up into a tray. Lately, that tray has been out of control! Enter the dollar accordian file.
 Once I started sorting my scraps and bits and bobs, it was very clear what my categories should be. The little file came with a label sheet for the tabs. I decided that my labels did not need to be in alphabetical order -- I'm such a rule-breaker! Instead I put them more in the order of how I would use them. I put the kiss-cut store-bought stickers under the general tab of "stickers" and my planner stickers, which I usually download from somewhere and print on a shipping label sheet, under the tab "planner stickers." Then I had some cardstock scraps which were nicely trimmed, some were die cut, and others were clearly just scraps and they were sorted accordingly. Here's how it ended up looking.
 I plan to die cut lots of flowers and hearts soon, so I made a section for those. Nice, eh?
Kiss-cut Stickers, Planner Stickers, Scraps and Diecuts all organized!
I packed this organizer full to the brim, and yet it still closes up very nicely! It fits right into one of my cubby shelves, so it is at the reach for any project. It would also travel well. Mission accomplished.

So here we are in October, and every month I've made an effort towards the 2015 Stash Dash I started way back in January, tips and all. You can see it here: 2015 Stash Dash

 I've upcycled, recycled, repurposed, and tried to make the most of what I have. This year I've probably done the least craft shopping ever. Once I get my latest project, my beautiful stitched Midori Traveler's Notebooks finished and selling, you can be sure I'll be doing a Michaels-Hobby Lobby-JoAnn run (they are all within a couple of miles of my house, I literally could run!). But I think this time, I'll be a smarter craft shopper--buying what I'll need and use, and not what will collect dust in my stash.

Eat, Write, Dream, Stitch


Wednesday, October 7, 2015

WOYWW 331--I Heart Paper and Fabric

Visit What's-On-Your-Workdesk-Wednesday at Miss Dunnit's place and share your craftiness or non-crafitness in action!
Here's a view of my craft desk this morning and what's all around it. I've been diecutting at the ole Big Shot with the really thin dies. I love these squares and have been making a lot of them for different projects. Fun! My big fat beautiful Midori Traveler's Notebook is laying there...I call it a stitchydori because I stitch them myself. I think they are fun to put together and I even love making the booklets for the inside. Mine can hold six booklets! Visit here to see the little updated walk-thru in my Midori if you are interested in these fun traveler's notebooks. It just combines my love of fabric and paper!
I love this Sizzix set of scalloped squares

Also there is my basket of knitting, my most used stamps and ink pads I keep in a repurposed makeup bag, my tablet, a tray of paper scraps, and a stash of planner stickers.

 And can I just say to everyone across the pond who already gets to see the new season of Downton Abbey...I'm jelly of you!! I miss my castle!

Now I'm going down the list at the desker party to visit a few. I hope you have a wonderful week. I am pretty sure I've found a craft fair to go to this weekend. Yay!

Eat, Write, Dream, Stitch

Monday, October 5, 2015

Planning...Listing...Doodling and Decorating in My Midori

I have called it a Midori, Fauxdori, Dolldori, and Stitchydori -- but whatever it is fits me perfectly in every way. And it's like having both a personal assistant and a muse.
Stitched with matryoshka fabric plus a little doll bead on the elastic
Classic Midori Travelers Notebooks measure 4.33X8.25 inches, are made of leather, bound together by elastic and can hold anywhere from one to six booklets.
Backview shows off the pen loop stitched in with a piece of elastic, and how I left on the selvage edge of the fabric.
I stitched up my own Midori at first and realized it wasn't fat enough for me! I love using my favorite fabrics, lining them with felt, embroidering in them for wearable art, and even making my own planner and booklets for the inside. So I didn't mind taking the matryoshka fabric I love (for my "dolldori") and trying out the bigger size of 6-1/4X9 inches. After a month, the results are in:
     I LOVE this bigger size
     I LOVE planning in my Midori
I decided to punch all the holes in the spine--I added another charm at the top

I like the larger size because I stuff my Midori fat with five booklets, a six-pocket folder, a clear plastic folder and a dashboard. That's a lot. But it makes me feel like my planner and craft room and listy notebooks go with me everywhere. My Midori has two elastic straps.

Here are the first three books on the first strap.
Inside front cover pocket - and my weekly planner
First book: Weekly planner - six months at a time

A planner page with lists, to-do's, some stenciling, stickers, and daily prompts for a Midori Instagram challenge I was doing.
This was a free downloadable planner and it was fairly easy to print up. I make my covers with plain white cardstock and decorate them with stickers, scraps and diecuts, and protect them with washi tape and packing tape.
I do have more than one planner--like a lot of planner girls. I think I'm one of the original planner girls, I just didn't know it. Anyway, my dori planner has really become my go-to planner. I like to write down my usual planner things, but then when I'm doing that there are ideas and thoughts that belong in other booklets, and I can go right to them, yet keep it all together. The nicer lettering is done with stencils I keep right in my Midori, purchased off Amazon. I've also used washi tape to tip in some food journaling sheets in the back of my dori planner--so far, I'm sticking to it!
Junky listy book front cover
Book no. 2 is made with multi-color lined pages. I've put a table-of-contents in all my booklets and this one is dedicated to ideas for my side hustles, like my Etsy shops, writing and craft selling.
My junky listy journal
I call book no. 3 my junky listy journal. I made it from a pad of yellow lined paper, and it's a shorter width than the other books' pages, but perfect just for all the lists I keep. You know you're a major lister when your lists have a table-of-contents!
You can see where the two straps are here--Art journal front cover

Inside my Midori art journal

 The first book in my second strap inside the Midori is the art journal I made out of watercolor paper. It can take wet and dry medium and plenty of sticking and gluing...that makes it my therapy, my yoga, and a way try out ideas for all my arts and crafts.
Triple duty dashboard--front cover

Dashboard inside cover and six pocket folder inside

Another angle of the folder inside the dashboard
Clear plastic folder inside six pocket folder--also where I keep my stencils
Dashboard back cover with swingout washi tape pallet
The second book on my second strap does triple duty. It is a dashboard folder (laminated so it's a place for extra post-its) and inside is a six pocket folder (made with a tutorial on YouTube) and inside that is a clear pocket made from colored pencil packaging. On the backside of my dashboard folder I hinged a washi tape pallet using my crop-o-dile and a grommet. I cut and upcycled an old plastic planner cover to create my pallet so that I can keep washi tape samples inside the Midori. Is that the hardest working dashboard you've ever seen!
Last booklet: A place for quotes and thoughts
Inside back cover is embroidered - wearable art!
My last booklet is a place for random quotes, thoughts and inspirations. When I need a boost, I go here. When I can give myself a future boost, I go here.

I like the feel of lining my stitchydori's with felt, and for my own dori, I took the time to embroider for the inside back cover. It says, love your life and it has my signature typewriter with the flowers. When I open my Etsy shop or sell dori's in a local shop, some of the stitchydori's may have applique or embroidery on the inside back covers. They will all be unique and one-of-a-kind. My goal is not to be a manufacturer, but a creator.
My one-of-a-kind dori with the selvage edge on the back, and trimmed in machine embroidery
And that's the end of this doribook. Stitching my own Midori meant doing whatever I wanted, like leaving the selvage edge on the back of the fabric (I'm a weird sewist who loves the selvage edge!), and embroidering what I wanted, and putting the grommets in the best place and adding the charm and bead and places for my quatro pens. Once I started trying it out, I quickly arrived at the best way to package my life-in-a-dori. Making and decorating my own booklets just makes me happy, the way scrapbooking and art journaling make me happy. Just good art therapy for the soul.
Yes, I also made a matryoshka bracelet
I like it so much I'm creating more, just for fun, with owl fabric, Mary Engelbreit fabric, and a Santa Clause print that's super cute for Christmas time. I don't know how I got hooked on this, but I think it started with my journey for planner peace and ended up with Midori peace. It's like stitching and scrapping combined.

That's why art and crafts can change your life. Future plans include making a floss and needle holder for my Midori for cross-stitching on the go. There's no end to what you can put in your Midori, if you're creative enough.

Stitch happy!

Eat, Write, Dream, Stitch

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

WOYWW 330--Lazy blogger, busy crafter writer girl

So here's a clean desk for you...

It is What's-On-Your-Workdesk-Wednesday time. I am busy on a few writing projects, which are on my computer, not here...and some stitching projects on another table. But here is some knitting, a sheet of stickers I just printed out, my Midori where I'm doing planning and art journaling daily, my morning cuppa in my Minnie Mouse mug that I love, some planner supplies in a repurposed makeup caddy, and all of that adds up to my lazy blogging!

Hopefully I'll get some blogging done next week--I am just loving working on my writing projects and I will have to interrupt that soon to make an anniversary card for some special friends. If it turns out halfway cute, I'll share! I found this free printable. I print these on the Avery Shipping Label sheets to make them into stickers, and then my 2-inch circle punch is perfect to punch them all out.

Summer is turning into fall today it seems...I don't like it, but I like it more than winter! Also for my British lovelies, I have some news. I did one of those DNA kits and it says I'm 30% Great Britain!! Now I know why I love all my Downton Abbey, Call the Midwife, and Mr. Selfridge programs! It makes sense now. From there it narrows down to 20% Iberian Pennisula, 19% Native American, 8% Irish and so on. It's all amazing.

Have a happy week.

Eat, Write, Dream, Stitch

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

WOYWW 329 - Midori Re-Do

Playing with some scraps for a Midori September challenge
Happy What's-On-Your-Workdesk-Wednesday! Here on the pullout on the side of my crafty desk, for a change of view, I've got my new Midori. I know, call me crazy crafty, but I made myself another Midori with the matryoshka fabric, because I wanted it to be a bit bigger than the first one I made for myself. I need my Midori to be around 9X12-1/2 because it must accommodate my five notebooks and a six-folder pocket inside a dashboard. The notebooks include a planner which I'm really loving and an art journal made of watercolor paper. I think it's time to post another little tour of my Midori. I'm making several from this fabric, some cute owl fabric, some Mary Engelbreit fabric from my stash, and some Christmas fabric. I'll either sell them on Etsy, or in a local shop owned by a friend if that works out for around $25 for these large ones without notebooks and $30 with a 2016 planner and notebook included. I line them with white felt and include a pocket in the front. But for my own Midori I took the time to embroider the inside back cover. I love wearable art, and this is kind of like wearable art--being able to take your embroidery around with you everywhere.

So it's time to get on the treadmill (I'm watching a show called Land Girls these days) and have my coffee and go for some desk visits!

Eat, Write, Dream, Stitch

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Visible Storage in a Make-Up Bag for My Most-Often-Used Stamps and Ink Pads

 Now I can see my stamps and ink pads! It all the started the other day when I was ordering my favorite Anew moisturizer from Avon and needed to up my order a little to get the free shipping. So I found a four-piece makeup bag set marked down from 20. to 8. The perfect amount! (sorry, I think they sold out of them, but this is a common type of makeup bag.) When I received it, I realized that a couple of the bags in this set should be repurposed for crafts.

I love using makeup bags in the craft room--case in point, my hanging makeup bag that houses my jewelry making tools and findings, and the small pink Caboodles Jellies organizer that holds my planner stuff.

I wasn't sure right away how I would use these new bags until I stared at them for a few days. Then it hit me. I always wanted a way to keep my most-often-used ink pads and stamps so that I could see them, have space around my desk for them, and also just grab them on the go. This big square clear bag was perfect for that.
This bag holds a lot, zips all the way around, and has a handle on top. Inside I have six big ink pads, three small ones, three square acrylic blocks, one large rectangular acrylic block, my big patterned stamp cube I use all the time, several other wooden block stamps, an alphabet stamp set, my Smash date stamp with the green handle, and several unmounted stamps as you can imagine. The unmounted stamps are the ones I'll switch out sometimes depending on what I'm working on. But I do love my typewriter stamp, so it will live here.
It doesn't look that big but holds a ton!
And it all zips up nice and tidy. So nice that I can hold it up and see what's in there! Yay! I can easily switch out stamps from the large storage of all my unmounted stamps and additional blocks. I don't have that many ink pads--but I tend to go to a few favorite colors anyway. And I still have three other makeup bags that came with this set that were meant to go inside this clear bag. Woo hoo! Thank you for the sale Glad I got this while you had it. Have a good week.

Eat, Write, Dream, Stitch

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

What's On Your Workdesk Wednesday 328 -- I am Back and I am Blessed!

Happy Wednesday lovelies! This is actually my first blog post in two weeks. I had an eye surgery, and had to go through a two-week recovery process which included pretty much staying off the computer except to watch Netflix or videos. Can you imagine? It was hard! And they didn't really prepare me very well for my recovery process, so that just added to the hardship. I won't go into detail. However, I am blessed to have a brilliant surgeon, great medical team, and an awesome family. I continue to heal with my left eye and get better vision every day.

After two weeks, not much going on with my crafty desk that you can see. But, if only you could see the plans in my head!

Visit all the desks at What's-On-Your-Workdesk-Wednesday.

#creativemidorichallenge Day 12 - Keep it real
 I'm happy to start feeling like myself again. One of the things that really got me through this two weeks was, of all things, my Midori traveler's notebook. I wrote things in my planner which I keep in there--kind of amazing considering I wasn't going anywhere or doing anything except recovering...yet I needed my planner to make me feel like a human! I also have a list book in my Midori, an art journal made of watercolor paper, a notebook for my side hustles, dashboard with folder, and a notebook for quotes and thoughts. This kept me motivated on these days when I wasn't allowed to do much else. It was so nice that all these notebooks were together in one place. And I had the time to finally put a table of contents in my notebooks which I now love, and I did some journaling about how I was feeling along with a Midori creative challenge every day in my art journal. The creative challenge goes through this month, and I was ahead on it, but no more now that I'm back in the office. I'm now struggling to keep up with it every day. But I'm not giving it up.
the little desk that stayed by my side with my few little creative goodies
My family took good care of me and brought me little presents every day which even included some washi tape! Boy, they know me. The cats loved having me home every day. My hubby bought me the softest neck pillow which I needed during recovery. It became my "Wilson." (You'll know what that means if you've ever seen the movie Cast Away) I guess my Midori was my Wilson too.
I love my fabric Midori - I call it my Dolldori
Now I'm happy to be off to do something I couldn't do for two weeks. Forget my troubles and visit you guys!

Eat, Write, Dream, Stitch, Be Happy