This week's topic was paper. It is probably one of the few weeks I have 'off' as I like how I store my paper. Is it pretty? Parts. Is it neat? Parts. Can I find the patterned paper I want in under 60 seconds? You bet! That time frame works for me. Gives me enough time to think about what, exactly, I want. I remember reading on a blog somewhere that finding the patterned paper first is important in creating layouts. Cardstock is cheaper and usually easier to come by. I tend to agree so start with the pattern paper.
How do I store my paper? Very eclectic. After my daughter said, "mom, where are you going to put this" when I got home from a sale on paper, my storage changed. I have decided that finite is good. As paper goes out, new can come in. Since making this a goal, it has really made working with papers and finding them much easier.
So - my sorting methods:
Some - by line with embellishments and coordinating cardstock. This is the smallest group. Each group goes into one of those 12x12 plastic envelopes. The envelopes are stored in a box vertically. The cardboard box (nothing fancy) holds about 8-12 envelopes. These vary as they are often purchased for specific projects. After the project, anything leftover goes into general storage. Kids know not to take from this area.
Some by stacks/pads - whatever you wish to call them - most are DCWV, but there are others. I limit my stacks to 2, 12x12 cubes. If they won't fit there, I don't add (with an exception every so often for specific lines - ex: Rock Star Stack is not stored there. With kids playing guitar and singing - I collect all types of items/papers. On the plus side - I am on my third (and final I think) stack of that particular paper.)
Some by manufacturer or theme - these are my favorites I use quite often. They are also ones that I tend to purchase without specific photos in mind. I know I will use them. I have an old school room tray system that is 24" x 24" x 72" tall. It holds 16 trays - the lower 6 are for sorting my scraps by color. The top is for premade scrapbook pages. Usually from classes that I haven't decided what to do with just yet. The other 9 drawers are for my favorite manufacturers (Bo Bunny, Cosmo Cricket, Graphic 45, and October Afternoon) and themes (sports, music, farm, baby, scouts).
Next, we move to specific holidays. Christmas, Valentines, Easter and Halloween are kept in drawers of their own. Other holidays are kept in 2 gallon zip locks on the shelf with the rest of my patterned papers.
My general use patterned papers store in two methods.
First - most are stored vertically in an order that makes sense to me. No there is no pattern, just what I am used to. The container is 2' long and 14" tall. I try to leave plenty of room so I can pull something out a bit and push it back in without wrinkling. 1" seems to be plenty. Cardstock is stored similar in a unit on top the patterned paper.
Second - larger quantities of identical papers are stored in one of the wire racks like you see in stores. I have spots for 30 papers. Sometimes there are two or three patterns per tray, but I keep by mfg (ex: Jolly Holiday line - found clearance of 25 sheet packs for $2 - wanted 4 patterns - they are all together and easy to find). Some wonder about buying 25 sheets of a paper. Well, it works for me. I have gotten to a point that I know what I like and will use. If I find a good buy on a particular paper and only want 5 sheets - not an issue - either buy by the sheet or split the pack. I tend to split packs with people quite often.
I also have a 14 x 14 cube of papers in ziplocks or plastic envelopes that are for specific events. This cube sits next to my patterned paper. 1/2 of the cube is just papers/embellishments that are waiting for the pictures, the other half actually becomes page kits - everything assembled and ready to go.
That is my paper storage!
So what about crops? That is a common question. Do I have to pull together? Yes and no. The only pulling together comes when I decide what to work on at the crop. Usually I can be ready in under 15 minutes. I have been scrapping long enough that I keep one paper carrier full of cardstock. I use my supply at home to refill after crops and refill my shelves from that point. As far as projects - I can grab some of my ready made kits, put them in my wheeled tote, along with my adhesive and refills, grab my 'tool box' and I am ready to go!
I tend to take three items to short crops (add the gypsy and cricut if longer time periods).
1) wheeled tote
2) tool kit (plastic photo storage box with handle)
3) paper bag
Yes, this method requires duplicate items for tools, but really? after scrapping for over 20 years that is not an issue. I have trimmers, eyelet punches, scissors, rulers, etc.. All in duplicate. Short crops mean I don't always have my favorite, but I do like all the tools I have, so it works!