Friday, January 1, 2016

Happy New Year!

And we've officially rung in the new year! I wish you all prosperity, happiness and good health in 2016, and may your New Years' resolutions come to fruition!

I  had originally planned to make an awesome card to ring in the new year, but I've had a few busy days lately. I did get a chance to get crafty and created a couple of thank-you cards for some lovely and generous friends and family (who really spoiled us for Christmas!). They've already been mailed, so I can't snap a picture.

Instead, I figured I'd do a chatty/rambling little crafting update.

In my effort to prepare for the new year, I've been going through and organizing some of my crafty supplies. Organizing is kind of tricky. On one hand, it's a great way to go through all of my supplies to find hidden treasures and to get very inspired. On the other hand, it takes over my free time, so I'm not actually creating anything. It feels very productive, but there's nothing to show for it. However, it's still something I have to do a few times per year - such as during major holidays or when I need to pull out stamps I don't use all year round.

My big resolution/goals this year involve using what I have, and I thought it would be a good idea to go through some of my stash as a reminder of all the goodies I own. I also took the opportunity to put away the winter holiday crafting materials in a way that kept it neat and organized.

So, I thought I would share some of my organizing solutions that will help me stay on top of making cards this year.

- I have a mini-crate in my crafty cart with stamps I really want to use. This is more convenient and keeps me from constantly having to dig into my stash to find a stamp to use. In the crate, I have some of the newest stamps I got, a few favorites and a selection of never-before-used stamps I've been meaning to ink up. Having this crate is going to help me focus when I sit down without a specific idea on what I want to make. But the rest of m stamps are still close by in case I'm inspired to use a special stamp or two.

- I'm still using the mini-sticker dot system to mark which stamp sets I've used. I've also started putting check-marks on the dots with cards I've blogged about and a little dot on cards I sent out to family/friends for their birthday. I try to do something slightly different for each birthday card, so it helps me to know when I've used a stamp set already.

- I went through my paper pads and made myself mini paper bundles. This one took a bit of time, but I really think it was worth it. I started by pulling out all the papers that I liked or that I felt I needed out of a mountain of paper pads. Then, I chose several papers that fit a specific theme (ex. masculine cards) or palette (ex. pink, mint and gold) and bundled them together using a little piece of post-it tape to hold them. I really love this idea because I can quickly grab a bundle and know I'm set with all the papers I'm going to need for a card or 5.

- I chose some embellishments and put them in a plastic zipper pouch. I happened to have several of these pouches, so I was able to divvy up my embellishments into 4 categories: enamel dots, flowers, dimensional elements (woodchips, flair, etc) and stickers. I left my sequins in their containers, since they're really well organized there already. I will go through the pouches once per month and keep track of what's been used up.

- Lastly, I prepared a few card bases. Since I make my own card bases from cardstock, this involved cutting and scoring cardstock. It's a bit repetitive, but it's something I can easily do with music playing in the background. And it does save me a bit of time to not have to do it while making a card.

Thanks for reading!


  1. Happy new year Elle! I love it when you share your thoughts like this. I alternate between - ooh, me too....or what a great idea! haha

    I have a similar system with regards to your mini-crate. I started it last year and it is working so well for me. I put all my most used dies (I used to store them by manufacturer but I find myself reaching for these all the time so decided to keep them together) and then there is a divider and the rest of the box is filled with new goodies and things which I really want to use. I would love to hear how your system is working out for you.

    The idea of the dot system is great too!

    I would also be keen to see some pics of your paper kits to try and understand how you've pulled it together. It sounds like it would be a really worthwhile task.

    I do hear you on the prep work taking away from the creative time but when you are as productive as it sounds like you have been then I think it is definitely time worth spending!

    big hugs!

    1. I'm loving the crate. It's so nice to just reach in and pull out something that I know I will enjoy using! The only difficult part is trying to fit in everything in there. I think I have too many stamps that need to be inked up. XD

      I'll see about snapping a few pictures of those bundles soon! I'm really enjoying using them.