Part 1: It gets worse before it gets better
When we get those first few days of spring weather, even though we all know we may get another snowfall before spring truly sets in, I always get the urge to clean up or reorganize my crafting space. I don't always follow through, but after the great migration of my sewing space upstairs last year (to make more room for Spack Craft Fabric), the much smaller area has felt quite a bit cramped.
Get rid of some craft supplies you think?
Nah, you never know when your stash will keep you occupied through a global pandemic. Although I am going to destash a little bit this year, I like having a variety of materials on hand for if I need to start a new project right away.
Get rid of some of the machines out on the desk?
Nah, I need to have them on hand and easily accessible or I wont use them.
Get rid of my comfy chair by the window?
Nah, I need a space to sit and be cozy surrounded by craft supplies, daydreaming of new projects to start.
What to do then?
My plan this year:
- To ditch anything that no longer works for me (the destash and trash portion)
- Are you local to Hamilton, Ontario? Check out the Ancaster Stash Swap held at the Ancaster Fairgrounds on April 23rd, 2022. Brand Ambassador Jackie and I will be there with our personal destash along with many other booths!
- Make better use of my vertical space
- Peg board and slat walls are great for this! I happened to have slat walls from reorganizing the shop, so I used those.
- Work through the many cut projects waiting around
- This will take some time as its way more fun to cut a new project, however for every new project I start this year, my goal is to finish at least 2 older projects
- Reorganize my storage (drawers, closet, etc.) - this is the super fun part for me!! (and usually how I start)
- Put away new supplies that are piled everywhere
- Complete the above tasks, a little bit at a time as the mood strikes me
Messy and embarrassingly disorganized photos ahead - remember, it gets worse before it gets better!
Before Images of the crafting space:
The UFO and supplies piles:
My crafting space is mostly sewing on one side and yarn/coziness on the other, part 1 will cover the sewing side and part 2 will cover the yarn side.
I use alot of the standard IKEA furniture in my craft space, and those drawers are great, but they could use a little help!
One of the first things I decided to tackle and splurge on, were drawer organizers.
I found these plastic organizer pieces that can be configured in many ways and can be trimmed to size on Amazon for a reasonable price and they immediately tamed my zipper tape, thread, and webbing.
In addition to my slat walls above my hardware corner, I love my parts cabinets for a few reasons: they are stackable - go go vertical space usage, they have clear drawers that can be swapped out easily, and they are perfect for labels! (I LOVE my label maker!)
Now, I already have a system in place, so this year was mostly about streamlining the drawers (making sure the items I use most frequently are the most handy), putting new supplies away and updating the labels.
That little pile of label backings was quite satisfying at the end of it all! Not much in the room escaped the label maker!
I always forget where I put things and when I haven't used them recently, it can take a while to find them. Adding labels to my drawers both saves me the time looking for things, but also reminds me where to put things away when they come in. I even label the clear drawers as it helps me locate things that may be in the back.
If you have rolls of items like I do - most of the cork, vinyl and faux leather I use comes in rolls, this over the door hanger is fantastic! I try not to store these items in direct sunlight and as this door is usually open, these rolls are tucked out of sight until needed.
Lesson learned though, don't use a command hook to put this up, I bought a cheap over the door hanger after it fell down the first time!
At the same time that I was reorganizing the drawers and parts cabinets, I was going through my supplies to see if there were opportunities to destash.
Its a great opportunity to remind myself what I had "in stock", even if I didn't get rid of as much stuff as my space would like. I also spent a couple evenings distracted by planning yet more projects with the materials I pulled out. Ooops!
I think as we grow and evolve as crafters, our taste in materials and supplies will change over time as well. There were a few things that I have held onto for years because I might need it, that I was able to convince myself may never happen. Some are easier choices though, so my first pass always yields the "low hanging fruit".
For example, I have inherited a few collections of vintage knitting supplies from family and friends over the years and I know that I almost never use traditional straight knitting needles. I kept the unique supplies and some memento pieces, but the rest could go! Like old books, I find it neat to see the old prices on some of these sets.
Since I am preparing for a destash event, I also wanted to be organized about that as well! All of the pairs of needles have been matched and the singles have been identified. Single knitting needles are fantastic poking tools for turning bags right side out so long as you are careful!
Putting New Supplies Away
There are some amazing fabric storage and folding ideas that I come across on Facebook and I often use it as inspiration when I need to come up with a solution that works for me!
For those unfamiliar with comic book boards, they are my preferred method of choice for storing fabric in the Kallax Ikea shelves. It creates a nice uniform size folded piece of fabric that makes my fabric shelf look more like a book shelf!
End of Part 1: Show-Off
I am quite pleased with the results of the first half of this spring clean/reorganize! I've even managed to complete a few older projects and treated myself to a quick new project as well!
Part 2 will continue with the other side of the room:
Until Part 2 is posted, please enjoy a single-use discount code for 15% off your order: SPRINGBLOG
I hope you found a few idea or motivation from this blog post to tackle your own space! Happy Sewing (and organizing!)