With the hundreds of thousands of scrapbooking papers and embellishments available on the market, it is easy for your craft area to become overwhelmed by scrapbooking supplies. This becomes an especially difficult challenge for scrapbookers who live in small spaces such as apartments or dorm rooms. Never fear-with a little effort you can follow a few easy steps to create a space for your things that is organized, clean, and beautiful.
You will likely need the most time and space to organize your papers. A good option for this is a paper saver, as made by most of the larger scrapbooking companies. Usually made from plastic, these folder-like portfolios are large enough to hold hundreds of papers and include tabs to separate your pages into categories for easy organization. If you find that you do not have enough room in a paper saver, you might also find it useful to invest in a filing cabinet or one of the sets of drawers made especially for scrapbooking. These are available at all craft stores and online.
Once you own a tool for organization, the next step is to decide how you want to categorize your supplies. The option most often used is color, but you can also separate your paper into themes (holidays, wedding, etc) or by marking, such as solids and stripes. You can also use this system to organize flat embellishments, such as die cuts or stickers.
You also need a place to store your tools and embellishments that are not easily filed. One good way of doing this is by using baskets and a shelving system. Store cutting tools in one basket, glues in another, markers and paint in a third, and so on. By buying baskets in bulk, you will save more money then if you use photo boxes, and the display will be uniform and attractive. Remember to label your baskets so you save time when you're looking for a particular item.
If you need to save space, however, a basket and shelving system may not work for you. Instead, keep all your tools and supplies stored somewhere safe and out of the way and keep a "kit" of your most used items close at hand in a photo box, basket, tote bag, or other container. That way when you only have time to do a quick page or two, you can use your kit to complete it and then quickly clean up. On the other hand, when you can devote an entire day to scrapbooking, you can pull your supplies out of storage to complete many pages of your album.
Try to remember that keeping your space clean and organized will make scrapbooking easier and more enjoyable in the future. By labeling your storage containers and sorting your papers, you will be able to quickly find the tools you need. Organization is the key to stress-free scrapbooking and creating beautiful albums.
Written By: Tom Ambrozewicz