A Few Craft Storage Tips

Hello, fellow crafters! Since January is the traditional month of reorganization AND great storage sales at the craft and office supply stores, I wanted to share some of my craft storage tips. I’ve been wrestling with getting this post done for longer than I’d care to admit, but I got an e-mail from one of you specifically asking about paper storage… Thanks, crafty pal, for the incentive to finally get this post finished!

One note before I start… I am not affiliated with any company mentioned in this post and, unless otherwise noted, bought all of these items on my own (always on sale! lol!). I just mention them because they work for me.

I live in an efficiency apartment, which is NOT an efficient way to craft if you want to eat (with the kitchen counter and stove often covered with current projects) or sleep (as sometimes the boxes are all out and sitting on the bed and have to be put away first if I want to sleep comfortably)! In fact, the only place off-limits to my craft stuff is the bathroom. (TMI, I know!)

So, let’s start with paper storage. The hallway has been lined with some shelves and a few of the Ikea Trones shoe storage cabinets that I got on sale.

These bins tilt out and are the perfect size for storing specialty papers! You can fit two 110# 8.5″x11″ stacks side by side or 12″x12″ paper pads with 6″x6″ or 6″x12″ packs beside them (think G45 chipboard or Elizabeth Crafts Shimmer Sheets):

I struggle with scraps. Do you? What I’ve found that works okay is putting them in IRIS 12″x12″ Portable Project cases in my Ikea cabinet. Sometimes you can find them 60% off at craft stores. Being in a closed box keeps the scraps fairly organized (by color) and prevents them from falling out all over the place.

And there’s room on the shelf beside them for the larger Sizzix and Spellbinders dies or some boxes with 12″x12″ mulberry paper and vellum and some adhesive foam.

Speaking of those large dies… If you save the packaging they come in, it makes great storage for your small ink pads! (You could buy a Stufftainer, but “free” is better!)

Larger pads do fit in there, too…

Before leaving my Ikea Pax wardrobe that fits neatly beside my bed… did you know an ironing board and iron holder fits the end perfectly?! In an efficiency, every inch counts!

The main room of my efficiency is divided off at one end with a set of bookshelves and a desk on the backside… supposedly for bill paying and such, but often overrun with crafting ‘stuff.’ I can spin my chair around to the desk behind me that is dedicated to crafting that looks out onto the patio. Against the wall are a pair of Sterilite drawers. The bigger drawers hold, among other things, my rainbow of 65# letter-sized paper:

And the smaller drawers hold ephemera, dimensional glue dots and spray adhesives:

The best storage I have found for stamps are 9L Really Useful Boxes. I have found them on sale (and, occasionally on clearance) at Office Depot and Staples. Most stamp sets that are 8.75″x5.5″ or less will fit on their sides in their original packaging (= no need to go through the time & expense of putting them in a different, often larger holder that is so popular, nor label it) and larger stamps can sit on top.

What I like about these boxes is that they stack nicely and are lightweight, so I can easily move them to get to the box I need without straining. Also, they’re see-through… I put a piece of paper on the inside telling me what manufacturers are in the box.

For red rubber stamps like the older Kraftin’ Kimmie, Quietfire Design and Unity Stamp Co., I put them on 8.5″ x11″ Crafter’s Companion EZMount Lightweight stamp storage panels. They have holes to go into a 3 ring binder, but I find they fit perfectly in the 9L Really Useful Boxes, with a little room to spare at one end. I stamp the whole sheet onto a sheet of copy paper to be able to easily see what stamps are on the sheet:

Now, let’s take a peek at my 29.5″x29″x11.75″ bookshelf that I got second hand. I took some lace from Joann, backed it with a solid and made a curtain that matches my home decor. It’s on a little tension rod and keeps the unsightly out of sight:

On the bottom shelf are my ArtBins for dies. Dies that match stamps, I store with the stamps. Universal dies, like basic shapes, coverplates, words and letters are stored on magnetic sheets in ArtBins. I have found the magnetic sheets super cheap at Create and Craft and got the bins on clearance at JoAnn.

On the top shelf of my bookshelf I have two of the 9L Really Useful Boxes with divider inserts. One has my embossing powders and equipment and the other has my watercolors like Daniel Smith DuoChrome and Ken Oliver’s Color Bursts:

The other side of the top shelf on my bookcase has some Tiny Container Bead Storage Trays and Assorted Bead Storage Trays by Bead Storage Solutions (found at JoAnn or Amazon) and used to store sequins, seed beads, and googly eyes. They come with labels so you can keep track of what’s what to know what to re-order. I like the clear plastic top that holds everything in place, but still lets you see what’s inside.

Let’s see, one more tip – Ribbon storage. A long time ago I got this useful tip for ribbon storage… wrapping ribbon around small cards of mat board (for matting pictures) and securing them with a rubber band. Time consuming, but it REALLY cuts down on space as those spools waste LOTS of space. HOWEVER, learn from my mistake: don’t wind your ribbon too tight or you’ll end up with kinks that need to be ironed like you see in the pink ribbon I’ve laid out.

Another ribbon storage alternative: I won this Ribbon Box from The Original Scrapbox (Oh, how I’d love to have one of those incredible Scrapboxes! It’s like a crafting area you can close up into a wardrobe. So cool! A girl can dream!). I’m not fond of the fabric and intend to recover it some day. You have to get used to not pulling out too much ribbon if you don’t want the fussy hassle of trying to re-wind it back onto the spool and re-thread it through the holes. That said, it is quite useful! Right now I have 66 spools stored in that 13″x13″x5″ box!

Ok, dear crafters, I hope you found some useful tips and wish you the best in organizing your crafty space! Who knows, maybe I’ll get the rest of my space organized and let you peek in on it in the future, too.

Have a lovely week!

~D.Ann

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Recovering the Car Center Console Armrest

Hello! Since winter in Florida means one can finally do things outdoors without sweating buckets, the whim has taken me to a much needed re-upholstery job… the armrest in my car desperately needed recovering… UGH!

Of course, it was over 10 years old and the previous owner had dogs. The question was… would I be able to do it?

Let’s take it apart and see… a few screws later reveals just some fabric tucked around the frame with a light foam batting.

I went to JoAnn Fabrics and found a soft faux leather remnant, then traced the old piece with a sharpie on the back of the fabric and cut it out.

I placed down the new batting and stretched the faux leather over the frame, using E6000 adhesive on the under side. Some binder clips secured it in place while drying.

Screw it back in and voilà – a brand new soft and comfy arm rest that’s easy to clean!

Have you been thinking about trying something like this? If I can do it, you can, too!

~D.Ann

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The Aristocats – Everybody Wants to Be A Cat Pivot Pop-Up Card

What is it that everybody wants to be? If you remember the tune from the 1970 Disney movie, The Aristocats (Yes, I know a lot of you hoppers weren’t even born back then, but surely you’ve seen this cute film!), you know that it fits purr-fectly with the Cat Lovers Hop!

I will admit that I got stumped after I made the inside and had stamped Roquefort the mouse on the front looking in at Berloiz on the phonograph, I could’t think of what to put on the front of the card. I had thought of putting something about losing something since the song inside continues, “because a cat’s the only cat who knows where it’s at!’ (Oh, yeah!) But I couldn’t really think of anything that really worked. Then I was looking for some musical note stamps and remembered the Hero Arts My Monthly Hero from April and the Cinco de Meow stamp sets and used “Gato feel the Mewsic!” Which is a fun play on the Spanish word for cat (gato) which can sound similar to ‘got to.’ Still, I’d love to hear if you have any good ideas for a cover sentiment as I’m sure I’ll be making this card again! Please let me know!!

I happen to like several features about this card. First: the cover cardstock. I don’t know how long JoAnn’s new line called Park Lane has had this 110# marbled cardstock, but it’s fabulous (they have other patterns, too)! The core and back side are white which is perfect for the inside of cards and 110# feels like a ‘real’ card. I’m hooked!!

TIP: When using the pivot pop-up, don’t forget to leave the card area smooth in the two spots where the corners will be brushing against it as they go up and down. (as in it catches just slightly on the edge of the frame… I should have left the inside frame off.)

Also, things can hang over the ‘mountain’ edges of the pop up panels if you don’t glue them down…  and don’t go beyond the edges of the card when folded down.

I also love that Berloiz on the phonograph disappears as you open the card and it pivots for the pop up panels! where scat cat and his gang, along with the kittens are feeling the beat as O’Malley is mesmerized by Duchess’ sapphire eyes. I will definitely be making an anniversary card with them and his famous quote: ‘Why, your eyes are like sapphires sparkling so bright. They make the morning radiant and light!’ : )

I had thought to made the background a night sky using the paper I marbled with Marabu Easy Marble (see THIS post if you missed it), but then I decided to put in the window and that didn’t work. (Although I did ponder a bit over whether I could have something like a shooting star on the front of the card swing down into the window when you open it. But I already had smoke coming out of my head trying to make the window just right for the phonograph stamp. Lol!) So now it’s just some wild wallpaper… typical of Scat cat and his gang! By the way… did you see notice how the gold shines?!!

Of course, the card wouldn’t be complete without Napoleon asserting his rank! I printed the adapted quote on label paper, then die-cut it. Peel & stick is so easy… Hmmm… I think I should use label paper more often! : )

Here’s a video of the card in action. If you get this post as an e-mail, you will need to click on the post title to see it online, then scroll down and find this picture again and click in the middle of it (there should be a white arrow):

Supplies:

  • Character World Disney Aristocats: The Finest in Paris, Scat Cat & His Gang of Alley Cats dies and Aristocats A6 stamp set
  • Karen Burniston Twist Panel Pop-Up die set
  • Spellbinders Conversation Bubble 3 and Sing It Loud 1 dies
    • Note… for those of you counting Spellbinders dies… I had to go back and edit the post on the Art Impressions Kitten Vanity PopCard… that was Conversation Bubble 1… Just sayin’ : )
  • Die-Versions My Micro Font 1/4″
  • Hero Arts My Monthly Hero MH0418C and Cinco de Meow stamps
  • Sweet Stamp Shop I Made It stamps
  • Park Lane 110# white core marbled cardstock
  • Core’dinations 65# cardstock: white, cream, blue, purple and black
  • Avery label sheet
  • Tsukineko Memento Tuxedo Black & Desert Sand (envelope) dye inks
  • Tombow dual brush pens: N15, N65, N89, 195, 533, 703, 723, 761, 815, 856, 933, 942, 951, 977, 985
  • Shuttle Art Gel Pens
  • Ranger Inkssentials Glossy Accents
  • Spectrum Noir Sparkle pen – clear
  • Marabu Easy Marble paints: aqua green, gold, rose pink and turquoise
  • Simply Defined Permanent Plus Adhesive and Stay Put glue
  • Misc. acetate from die packaging

I’m playing along with the following challenges – click on any one of them for more information on how you can join the fun:

 

*****      Giveaway now closed      *****

Ok, let’s pause for one last giveaway with something to keep your paws warm in it. Check out this little package (#4) of feline goodies I have to give away to one of you:

Pawsitively purrfect! Cat knee-highs, a color in cat card, a magnetic bookmark, sticky notes, washi tape, cat eraser, kitty tissues, and even an adjustable cat ring! Pawsome!

What do you have to do to be eligible to win my prize package #4? If you’re interested, just leave me a comment using the word “pawsitive” somewhere in your comment.

Bonus entry option #1: Be a follower of my blog and leave me another comment.

For a second bonus entry, follow me on Instagram (@d.ann.c), like and comment on the post featuring this project. (It doesn’t have to be a long comment, just a heart will do.) Come back here and leave a comment letting me know that you did it and your Instagram name.

Bonus entry option #3 (for a total of 4 possible entries): Follow me on Pinterest(@dannscraftingand re-pin any one of my cards or projects that you like. (If you don’t like them, you don’t have to pin any. lol!) Come back here and leave a comment letting me know your Pinterest name.

You will have until Midnight, Eastern Standard Time, October 28, 2018 to get your comments in. Sometime after noon Eastern Standard Time on Monday, October 29, I will publish a post listing all winners from giveaways on my blog from this hop (chosen using Random.org). Winners will have 48 hours to claim their prizes so, if you’re not subscribed, be sure to check back later that afternoon for that post!!

Phew! Time for a cat-nap… see you on the prowl tomorrow!

~D.Ann

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p.s. any ads on this page are placed by WordPress and are not endorsed by me.

Ice Cream Solves Everything Kitty Cone Cards and Key Chains with Newton’s Nook Designs

Hello, there! I’m so glad you could stop by as I have some cool summer fun to share with you today! Go grab some ice cream, this is a long one. Just sayin’!  For some reason I couldn’t get my brain to work on saying things succinctly. (Plus there are 4 cards this time.) So I won’t be offended if you just take a quick scroll through the pics. : )

First let me start with a story. A long time ago our family developed a code word for ice-cream. It seems someone in the family was always getting flowers when they were sick or needed cheering up and one day they finally admitted… ‘I sure would be cheered up a lot more if it was ICE CREAM instead of flowers!’ So, from then on whenever this person was sick we’d ask, ‘would FLOWERS cheer you up?’ and if they said ‘yes’, they got ice cream. Now the whole family uses FLOWERS as code for ICE CREAM. It really does make us feel better! Of course if you get BOTH… that’s just a win-win! : ) When I saw this ‘Ice Cream solves Everything’ sentiment I KNEW I had to make up a card for you-know-who! Who knows, maybe it’ll catch on and some day Mirriam-Webster will have a footnote under ‘flowers’ that says “n. – slang for ice cream in the early 21st century’ Hahahaha!

Of course now that I’ve told the story I see that I should have made a sliding sentiment that said FLOWERS solve everything on top and pulls out to say ICE CREAM! Per usual, I have 20/20 hindsight!! Next time!

The card was based on a sketch from the Inky Paws Challenge #77: 

Too bad I finished the card the day AFTER that challenge closed = I needed ice cream to ease the disappointment! Just look at these two darling kitties sharing a yummy ice cream cone!

20180804_170457_wm

(card #1 above) I have always wanted to do one of these backgrounds where part is colored and part is b&w, so decided to try that. I find it daunting to try to randomly stamp a background, but I tried a couple on regular paper until I got one that I liked and put it in the MISTI and laid my stamp on top of each place I’d stamped, picked it up and restamped it. I was able to crank out 4 copies in relatively quick time.

I didn’t want to cover up too much of the background, so, to make the kitties licking their ice cram cone stand out, I cut out some black paper just a bit larger than they are and put it behind them (I had already put the foam underneath them to pop them up, so the black shadow is down on the card base, making it ever more shadow-y.) Glossy Accents and Liquid pearls help the ice cream look more realistic.

Since the current Monday Challenge at Simon Says Stamp is Sprinkles & Splatters, 20180813_SSm I really wanted the sprinkles to pop, so added Nuvo Drops to them and to the kitty noses, tongues (love those cute little lapping tongues!!) and paws. To get Mrs. Calico Kitty’s tail in reverse, I just traced the back side of the stamped image on a light box.

Making the kitty cone: I was in JoAnn Fabrics when they had their 75% off sale and found these cute beads… I thought looked like kittens (they say they’re mice so I added a more kitty-like nose and mouth with a Sakura Identi pen, which stayed on the ceramic (whereas the Sakura Pigma Micron whisker extensions I’d done wiped off the next day), and some pink to the inner ears with a Copic) They reminded me of the kitty cones on my card, so I went looking for something that would look like a waffle cone. I found a Utility Cotton Fabric called, amazingly, Waffle Weave! I drew a semi-circle on a piece of tagboard from a cereal box and cut it out, then cut the fabric slightly larger, and then glued it to the tagboard, folding the edged over and gluing them to the back side. Then I curled it into a cone and glued it together. Once dry, I colored in the debossed waffle squares with a Copic marker. Using a headpin, I made a loop at the top of the kitty and hot glued it in place and hot glued the kitty snuggled inside the ‘waffle cone’. I added some pearlescent seed beads to make the kitty cones hang lower than keys and added a couple of pawprint charms and they were good to go.

I recently told my friend that I remembered after my first day of school, mom would always take me to DQ and that gave me something to look forward to all day… Yep, ice cream solves the tedium of that interminable long first day of school! So I decided to make another card and keychain for my friend’s daughter for her first day of school this week. They had ice cream cones after her first day of school, too! A great tradition has started!! That fits perfectly with the Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge for this week: Back to School.

Back to School is also the theme for the current MarkerPoP! Challenge #138  This time I used fancier beads on her keychain and another I made for someone else:

Aren’t those kitty cones just darling? I love that they match the stamps!!

The CURRENT Inky Paws Challenge (#78) is Summer/Beach.  

Since I had more backgrounds with my summer ice cream, I kept on doing cards with that same layout from the previous Inky Paws Challenge. As I’d used the new Finesse alcohol-proof dye ink by Spectrum Noir to stamp the backgrounds, I wanted to try using alcohol inks on them and decided to try Spectrum Noir basics and Copics. FYI, they both worked fine and the Finesse ink didn’t bleed at all.

The Spectrum Noir sheet was a bit darker than I wanted, so I decided to use vellum over most of it. To take a break from coloring, I left this kitty white.

(Card #2 above) Can’t quite place that tag die? I wanted a nice fishtail tag, but the only one I had (Spellbinders Decorative Swallowtail Tags) was too tall, so I snipped it down and ended up with a leftover decorative accent for another project…

20180812_185625_wm

For the Copic background, I die cut it and an uncolored sheet together at the same time so they’d be cut exactly the same and made two cards with the partially colored technique…

(Card #4 & 3 above) These will make nice little gift sets!

On the inside and backs of each card, I used a light ink nearly matching the cardstock for a watermark stamp. It’s so light the camera can barely pick it up, but it can be seen IRL. That said, I will admit that the first one I got so enthusiastic in writing that I wrote over the stamped image forgetting it was there, so it is VERY light. lol! I think next time I’ll do it a smidge darker! The inside has a kitty with a giant 4 scoop cone and says “You make life sweet!” I hesitated to show you this but now it’s a funny story so here we go…

Yeah, I don’t blame you if you can’t see it! The back has two kitty cones and says: “This card was handmade by” leaving room for my signature logo. (I really need to get that made into a stamp some day!)

I saved the best for last… I’m hoping my coloring on this pair reminds you of two famous kitties… can you guess their names?!

Hint: >^.^< N—–   and >^.^< H—– (btw: I love how the light hits that cone making a white streak… Note to self: next time draw in a white line just like that!)

Supplies – Cards:

  • Newton’s Nook Design Cat Treats & Newton’s Summer Treats stamp sets
  • Spellbinders Card Creator A2 Matting Basics A dies (first card)
  • Spellbinders Decorative Swallowtail Tags (second and third cards)
  • Simon Says Stamp Stitched Rectangles (third and fourth cards
  • My Sentiments Exactly Back of Card Set
  • Spectrum Noir Finesse Alcohol Ink Proof Dye Ink – Flagstone
  • Spectrum Noir Aqua Blend Pencils (first card only): Agean Blue, Anthracite, Asphalt, Beeswax, Black Umber, Cantaloupe, Chrome Orange, Fossil Grey, Honeycomb, Hyacinth. Persimmon, Petunia, Plum Red, Primrose, Sky Blue, Sorrel, Tobacco, and Watermelon
  • Tonic Studios Nuvo Crystal Drops – Gloss: Crushed Grape, Ebony Black, Ripened Pumpkin (first card only)
  • Tonic Studios Nuvo Glow in the Dark Drops – Neon: Apple Sour, Banana Split, Shocking Pink (first card only)
  • Spectrum Noir Basics (second card only): Blush, Bright Orange, Canary, Cerulean, Emerald, Hydrangea, Ivory, Muted Brown, Natural Brown, Red
  • Copic Markers (fourth card only): B02, 24; C5, 7;  E00, 11, 23, 25, 74; G05; R29; RV02, 20; V15; Y13; YR07
  • Tsukineko Versarmark Ink
  • Stampendous Beach Set: Sky Embossing Powder (all except third card)
  • Inkadinkado black embossing powder (third card only)
  • Ranger Inkssentials Glossy Accents
  • Ranger Liquid Pearls – Dark Chocolate
  • Core’dinations cardstock: Black, Blue & White
  • Scotch adhesive roller
  • Aleene’s Original Tacky Glue
  • Misc. foam adhesive squares (first card); sequins & vellum (second card)

Supplies – Keychains:

  • Darice Ceramic Mice (JoAnn)
  • Joann Fabrics Utility Cotton Fabric: Waffle Weave
  • The Jewelry Shoppe Ball Point Headpins
  • Beadalon Satin Silver 7 Strand Stringing Wire & #2 crimp beads
  • Misc. iridescent seed beads (first two)
  • Various beads, including: Millifiore glass beads, Czech glass cathedral beads , Seabreeze glass donuts, and Hematite rondelles…
  • Copic Markers: E31 & RV34
  • Sakura Identi pen – red
  • Aleene’s Original Tacky Glue
  • Hot glue gun
  • Misc. Cereal Box tagboard

I’m playing along with the following challenges – click on any one of them for more information on how you can join the fun:

Thanks again for the kind comments you guys always leave… it’s always a tread to read them!

~D.Ann

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p.s. any ads on this page are placed by WordPress and are not endorsed by me.

p.p.s Owning yet another oops… the back of one card managed to get into some of that Liquid Pearls Chocolate and Glossy Accents splattered and smeared across it. I just added a note around the stains: “It wouldn’t be realistic without a little chocolate stain and cat spit, would it?!!” : )