Monday, May 18, 2015

The Daily Magic of Crafty Tidyness

Imagine knowing exactly where everything is in your crafty space. Your tools, your scraps, your supplies and your bits and bobs all have a place. Something magical happens. You feel more inspired to create things. Your mind clears. You stop buying duplicates because you forgot or couldn't find something you already had. You're able to start a Make List of what you really want to work on, and you know exactly what you want to do with it.

That's the daily magic of crafty tidiness. I arrived there one day and now I don't want to ever leave. My craft desk, shelves, sewing nook, and worktable are just a mish mash of different pieces of furniture, and some things built just for me and my craft storage, but now they are all actively working for me. My cubbies were being thrown away and my husband salvaged, repaired and painted them. Now I know what's in every cubby!
I've been calling this year my Stash Dash 2015 (since January), in an effort to bust my stash and make the most of what I have. Stash Dash has arrived at my crafty space. At some point when you accumulate your new things, old things, scraps, and supplies, it's easy to get a little careless in where it all lands. I think it was the night I watched an episode of Hoarders that I realized I was tediously managing a controlled craft hoard. Too much was coming in and not enough was going out.

At no time do you want any space in your house to become pure, uncategorized warehouse storage. I didn't just need a cleanup, I needed a big change. My main desk had just become a dropping off place, and it needed to be a good productive workspace again. So it all got cleaned out at once--and I didn't hesitate to throw things out!

Because my cubby shelves were so stuffed with things I wasn't even using and had really lost track of, I started there. Now every cubby is either active with something I use a lot, or it's clean pretty display space. Some of the desk drawers were acting as old, wasted storage with things I hadn't looked at in years. This kind of thing needs to get cleaned out and done away with, all at once. I'm working here under the influence of the book, The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up. It sounds too simple, right? But piddle away at it, and you won't change a thing. Do it all at once, throw it all out, completely reorganize, and the magic happens.
Always needing just a quick needle and thread? Make a place to always find it.
The awesome thing is, I already had compartment trays, baskets, and containers to make this all happen--they just weren't on my side yet. Everything was stuffed with stuff--but I wasn't using it. Here's the big mistake people make in reorganizing: they buy a bunch of containers and store things. That makes it worse. Stop being a warehouse. You've got to purge. And when you pare down to what you need, it frees that creative spirit!
This makeup bag holds my jewelry making tools and findings.
 Once you purge, consolidate. My sewing stuff is now all together at my little sewing nook. My bureau has drawers dedicated to beads, favorite craft books I actually look at, a cross-stitch drawer, paper drawer and a special place for fabric scraps I plan to use soon. I consolidated my jewelry findings and tools into a hanging makeup bag I had been given. I don't need tubs and tubs of jewelry making supplies. This is the perfect amount for me to make earrings and bracelets for gifts and my craft booth, and I can see it all! AND, it just hangs onto the side of my worktable--always handy, not hidden.

When you put things in their place and they have a place, your storage becomes handy, not hidden. If you hide things too forget and don't use them, and at some point you're paying to keep things that you don't care about.
My little sewing nook
I had just won 25 random stamps from Unity. So excited when they came in the mail! And that prompted an entire cleanout of my stamp storage. Because I don't really have a huge inventory of stamps, my storage had been unorganized and sloppy. So with the relatively small amount of stamps I have...compared to other scrapbookers and was worth it to take the time and come up with a great system for me. I'll share that one later in the week, and also talk more later about my little sewing nook.

Completely reorganized my stamps--will share that later!
What you really have to do, when it comes to your own personal crafty space, no matter how big or small, is have a brainstorm. That's right...a good old-fashioned brainstorm. Really think about how you use it every day, what you want to accomplish, if you care whether it's a pretty space, or simply productive, and how you can get your hands on exactly what you need for a project, know where it is, and know what you don't need to keep for "someday."
My old craft table is my cutting and ironing table.
Every day, my craft desk is a great place to land--I can work on the computer, or my latest craft project. It's always ready for me to just spread out the photos and papers and scrapbook. It's easy to keep an ongoing list of supplies I need, and things I want to make with what I have. The best thing is, I'm better at throwing things out now! That just took a couple of Tiny House episodes. Let me tell you, these people in the tiny house community really know how to pare things down and make furniture do double duty--very inspiring. I do still have a lot of things because I'm a maker. I need some inventory and supplies. As long as it's active and organized, that's what matters in making my crafty space magical.
Eat, Write, Dream, Stitch, Tidy Up

1 comment:

  1. An inspiring post!! I know I need to have another purge in my creative space too and this gave me great incentive to get started. Tomorrow.