Just about everyone does one craft or another. Knitting, scrapbooking, card making… What’s the one thing they all have in common? They can easily take over our living space with their various tools, supplies, and materials. Keeping your craft supplies in order not only helps maintain your sanity and the appearance of your home, it also helps keep your materials in good working order. In addition, it allows you to sit down and complete a project without having to dig out first. The best part is getting your craft area organized doesn’t have to take a lot of time or money.
Keep reading for some quick and easy tips and tricks to help you maintain order wherever you complete your craft projects.
Here are a few questions to consider:
- Do you have adequate workspace?
- Do you have adequate storage space?
- If you can’t finish your project today, do you have space to leave the project out?
- How easy is it to access and put away your supplies?
Storage and Work Space:
Start by assessing the amount of space you have to work with. If it’s just a closet, consider installing a closet system with a workspace so that you can craft and then simply close the doors to have it all out of sight. The Container Store (www.thecontainerstore.com) sells Elfa systems that can be customized to your space and craft.
If you have a whole room, picking out storage products is a little easier. Browse design websites for inspiration, and if your hobby has a magazine, purchase a copy or two for ideas. Consider purchasing some repurposed furniture such as library catalog card files to house your smaller tools. Visit yard sales, flea markets, and browse Craigslist for used furniture you can refinish and recycle.
Consider browsing your home for furniture. A hutch from the dining room can be turned into a craft supply cabinet, an old kitchen table can be used as a work surface and even rolling tool carts can be used for portable supply storage.
If at all possible, look for solutions that allow you to put uncompleted work away. But furniture pieces aren’t the only way to accomplish this task. Having the right storage pieces for similar items makes cleanup a cinch!
Storing Your Supplies:
Once you have your basic furniture structure in place, and then consider your organizational accessories. Again, these don’t have to be specialized or expensive items. These products will be the key to keeping your space organized.
Visit your local dollar or superstore to find items that can be used to store craft supplies. Here are some ideas:
ü Pails-Hang from the bottom of a shelf with a mug hook for marker/scissor/pen storage.
ü Garbage pails-Use to house rolled wrapping paper, or rolls of fabric.
ü Tackle Boxes-Use to hold beads, thread, buttons, etc.
ü Ball Jars-Use to house anything small. (Then store the jars on a small shelf with a tiny ledge to prevent jars from falling off. This gives you a visual of the items in the jars and easy access.)
ü Food Storage Containers-Great to for preventing paints from spilling and making a mess.
Keep the Best:
Once you have all of your organizational pieces in place, make sure that you get rid of any supplies that are too old or too small to use (such as scraps of paper). Donate anything that is usable, but you no longer want or need to a local school art department. Then categorize, contain and label the remaining items. Purging the items that you are keeping “just because” gives you the space for new and better items.
If you want some help using up your stash of extra supplies, check out Lisa Fulmer’s book, Craft Your Stash. It’s full of ideas that use very little or small sizes of materials you probably already have one hand. The projects are described well and are easy to complete. This is a great book to get before the holidays-many of the projects would make awesome gifts! The picture in the books are great and there is no chance you’ll read this and NOT be inspired.
Other Things to Consider:
Safely is an important issue when designing and organizing craft spaces. Make sure you have adequate light to see what you are doing. Adhesive LED lights are an inexpensive option for adding light where there are no existing fixtures. Also, make sure that any sharp tools like scissors or craft knives are well out of reach of children. If you are using knives or needles in your craft make sure to have a first aid kit nearby.
You want your craft space to make you happy. If possible, paint it a color you enjoy. Frame or display some of your previous masterpieces in the space and put up a bulletin or magnetic board to capture inspirations from magazines or photos.
A craft space can be located any where in your home. The most important thing to remember is to make it functional and FUN! If you just don’t think you have the time or inspiration to create your perfect craft space contact a professional organizer who will assist you with the task.