Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Tuesday Tidbit: Spring Cleaning Part II

   Welcome back to another Tuesday Tidbit, and the second part of my new "Spring Cleaning" series!! Did you all make a plan last week about what you want to accomplish in your crafty space this season?  How do you feel about your plan? Are you excited to get started or are you still unsure what your end goal is? If you still are not sure, sit back down and re-work the plan! You need to make sure you have a definite end goal to accomplish!

   Bear with me this week! This post might be a little longer, but I want to you to get a good grasp on where to start with things and give examples of organization that worked for me and other highly organized people! So let's dig in....

   Today I want to focus on the "big task". The one that most of us put off and ignore because we know it's going to take the longest, be the biggest hurdle, and frankly might not be the most fun to do (at least for some people).

This is how I feel about office paperwork some days!
   When I was in college, I had a prep course/crash course for time management and organization. The idea that stuck with me the longest from that course was this: when you have a to-do list or multiple tasks you need to accomplish, start with the one that is the biggest struggle or will take the most time. This way when it's done, everything else will seem like a breeze to complete.

   Some people don't like this idea (me included). I hate starting with the most daunting task. I would rather get a lot of little tasks done and crossed off my list so I feel like I did more, but that still leaves the "big task" to be dealt with.

   However, you might feel about this theory, this is my challenge to you for Part II of this series:

 Find the biggest task having to do with your plan, and start doing it! 

   You might not get it done this week and that's okay, but you will have started it and now have a feel for the direction you are going!

Organizing Supplies Tips & Tricks:

   When I started my office overhaul last Spring, I was overwhelmed by the amount of supplies I had to go through, organize, sort, and try and fit back in my space! I didn't think I would have room, and I started to panic that maybe this wasn't a good idea! However, when the time came to start going through all my supplies, I broke it down into a series of tasks.

   The largest task for me was to go through all of my paper and organize it in a way that made sense to me!! I have a huge paper stash (like most paper crafters), but it wasn't organized in a way that I liked. I still could re-work my system today, but it works for me and I can find what I'm looking for a lot easier now! Here are some embarrassing, candid photos of the "before":

This was my desk set up when we first moved in. Everything was in piles and was shoved where ever there was room. I needed a lot more storage! You can sort of see some of my paper organized in the cubes under my desk. These didn't fit all my paper, so I had paper stashed in random places, too! It's hard to use what you have when you don't have everything you could use in front of you!
These are two huge boxes stuffed full of just pattern paper!! You can start to see that I was organizing paper as I was packing it in these boxes before we started the office remodel.
   How did I even start to organize my paper? Well I share with you what worked for me. When we decided to remodel the office, we had to pack everything up into boxes and bins and carry it to a separate room (mostly the master bedroom). As I would pack things away, I would organize them and go through them. I had a keep pile, a toss pile, and a donate/sell pile. I went through every sheet of paper I owned. Literally...EVERY SHEET! It was worth it, though. I found what I was still "in to", sorted by category, and got rid of what I'll never use!

   The 12x12 paper organization system I use works like this:

1.) Organize designer paper by brand (My Mind's Eye, Heidi Swapp, Close to My Heart, etc)
2.) Other pattern paper organized by theme/category (Christmas, Fall/Halloween, stripes, dots, etc.)
**I should note that I keep paper packs/stacks together. I don't separate them out.**
3.) Non-CTMH colored cardstock all together
4.) CTMH colored cardstock sorted separately (for quick and easy use of a specific color to match)
5.) Non-CTMH paper scraps filed in folders by color
6.) Specialty paper and/or chipboard organized in the same spot (Vellum, Laser cut, acetate, etc.)

   When it came to other sizes of paper, I organized those so like sizes stay together. I have an upper cabinet that has all my mat stacks, 8x8, and 8 1/2 x 11 papers organized on separate shelves. I put all my 6x6 pads in a cube system with four drawers. The other drawers in that system house journaling pads, tags, and notecards.

   Everything has a specific home, and all my papers are together in one spot. It is much easier now to find what I need because I have all my paper within a triangle reach around my center island! Here's some pictures of my new organization system to give you an idea of what I did:

Here are the same Michael's stackable cubes from my office before, but I added many more of them into my system! On the lower, left side of my desk I have all my pattern paper (as shown here).
Here's a close up of my organization system. I used chipboard and post-it notes to label each designer's section, and then sectioned the rest by theme or category (stripes, dots, Christmas, etc.)
These cubes are on the lower, right side of my island when I am standing at it. The organizers on the left in this picture house Non-CTMH scraps sorted by color. The papers on the right in this picture are what I have left of my Non-CTMH cardstock sheets.

These cubes are on the lower, left side of my island when I'm standing at it. These slots are for CTMH paper collections only! This way I can keep my business papers and projects separated and easy to find when I'm creating!
Some of you have seen this before!! My husband made two of these paper towers for me to help me organize and sort my CTMH cardstock by color. They sit on either side of my desk and house only CTMH cardstock, Fundamentals paper packs, and glitter papers! We used melamine board, bracket supports, and the metal sides from an old organization system from college to make this awesome tower! These make me happy just looking at them!!
This is one of my upper cabinets above my desk that house other sizes of paper! In this cabinet alone I have 8x8, 8 1/2 x 11, and mat stacks!
I have lots of drawers in my island, and a couple of these drawers house 6x6 pads of paper. Similar drawers in the same cube have tags, journaling cards, and notecards as well! If I need to thumb through, I pull the whole drawer out and get what I need!

   I know my "system" isn't the most organized overall, but it works for me! Plus it's much better than what it was before! I only have to take a step or two to get to all the paper I own!

   This definitely took me the longest to complete, and it was the first thing I put back into the new office when it was finished! It was so much easier to bring it back into the space once I had already gone through it and organized it!

   Another person that I will reference often in this series is Jennifer McGuire. She is the organizer queen of craft supplies! I love seeing her ideas and checking out her space, and I highly encourage you to do the same!

   She has been doing this a long time, and has recently remodeled her space as well! I am not nearly as "put together" as she is, but you're going to love what she does. Here is her video on how she organizes her paper:

   I love her ideas on organization!! I also love how everything is labeled! Eventually I want to have official labels, but my post-it notes work for now!

   I would love to hear what your big task is for this next week!! What will you be starting on? What's your most daunting to-do item? Make sure and share in the comments or over on my Facebook page! The more we share with each other, the more inspired the rest of us will be to start working on the same thing! Until next time:

Here's to life, love, and creativity!