Organize Simplify Create Design

It is perpetual, living life and keeping it simple. Peace of mind comes from having a place for things. As I watched "Horton Hears a Who", with my grandchildren I thought about no matter how "tiny" the thing, it deserves a home. So I live by the old adage, a place for everything and everything in its respective place...

About Me

My photo
Houston, Texas, United States
Ten things I am or have been: 1 Wife, 2 Mother of five, 3 Grandmother of 16, 4 Hair Dresser, 5 Bookkeeper 6 Bank Teller, 7 Scrapbook Store Owner, 8 Reporter, 9 Gardener, 10 Photographer,

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

My new pink boxes!

I love my little girlie pink boxes that fit in my Making Memories Embellishment Center. I was so lucky to find them because they are discontinued. There's nothing in them, they just sit there and look cute!!!!

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

If you have to scrap in a closet, add a mirror

I know I am fortunate to have a scraproom to create in. Those of you who only have space for a closet to dedicate to scrapbooking can use the mirror idea to make the space feel larger.

Scraproom Closet Completion

This is the opposite side of the closet. The Sterilite bins fit perfectly into the Ikea Expedit shelves, which allows for compartmental storage of large punches, Creative Memories cutter templates, extra adhesives, etc. The containers are available at Hobby Lobby.
I have some albums stored in other shelves and some punching tools, a portable light box and other accessories and tools.
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Monday, June 28, 2010

Photo Organization Form

Filling in a form like this may seem menial, but you will be amazed at how easy it is to slip piles of photos into an organized system. 

Click on the link to the left where you can send an email to request this form as a download word document. Simply email and request the Photo Organization form. You can then open it in a Word document and edit it.

If you want to use this as an outline for creating your own form you can easily customize it by adding family member names and birth dates, anniversaries or other holidays you celebrate, list any event where you take photos every year, maybe you rent a house boat each year or hold a family reunion the same month every year. Keep this one as your master and copy it each time you organize a new year of photos.

Copy the master for each year of photos you are organizing. The year is filled in when you use the form. Fill in the ages of children or family members for that year. Then you are ready to begin.

Set up your file according to how many photos you need to organize. I purchased archival manilla folders and placed them inside hanging folders in file drawers. You might not need a system this large and you can purchase a file box at an office supply store, or fold your form in front of the photo storage boxes if your prefer. 

The memory joggers on this form prevents you from having to remember how old someone was in that particular year. As you begin, look for clues in the background of the photo. If you moved or changed flooring, furnishings or wall color, this may give you a general idea of time frame.

Once your photos are organized they can be easily placed in albums, scrapbooked and even shared. 

Send any questions.
Shirley :)

Photo Organization form

I am fairly new to blogging. Since this is a form I cannot seem to post the form here where it will be useable. If anyone knows how to do this please teach me how. If not we will have to figure out another way for me to give this to those of you who wanted it.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Finally the Scrapbook Closet

I am fortunate enough to have a large walk-in closet in my studio that has truly been a thorn in my side. It houses decades of photos. I wish I had taken before photos because the closet was so filled with clumsy mismatched filing cabinets to tons of Sterlite bins. The lighting was so dim I could barely see inside.

I plan to post the progression of this closet. Bear in mind that I used to own a scrapbook store so I probably have unusual amounts of supplies and tools. But anyone can use these organizational principals for their own space.

This photo shows an Ikea Expedit that so many of us have adopted for our rooms. They are an ideal solution due to the 12x12 capacity of the shelves making it perfect for our needs.

I struggled to figure out the type of bin I would use to replace file cabinet folders that were already done. I settled in the Lekman clear bins and I put a 12x12 piece of patterned paper that coordinates with the studio decor in front of each bin to disguise the contents and make it pleasing to the eye.
The magazine files above are all that is left of my giant magazine collection. Most of what is in these files house "how-to" books from punching to paper folding and journaling. The black boxes are photos by year which can be a space saving way to store photos if you don't have as many as I have. The markers are stored in the nifty containers made by EK Success. My husband installed a replacement light that is like daylight now. I can easily get what I am after now.

As you can see I had to alter the bins. Because of the lip that goes around the Lekman it prevents a hanging folder from being attached as I originally anticipated. I purchased the hanging folder racks from the office supply and the hanging folders were already in my old filing cabinet. In my case each bin holds a decade of photos. These folders can be ordered from . I do not want my photos exposed to acidic elements. If you have boxes full of photos I can help. I have a form I used to help me sort my photos. Let me hear from you if you are interested in knowing more about this topic.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Stamp Stuff

I would most likely be considered a novice stamper. I have some foam stamps, some rubber stamps and some of the clear stamps. I found this cute box at Hobby Lobby and store my foam and rubber stamps inside.

This little nook under the desk is where this cute box is stored.

These cute little cases I purchased to add character to the themed room and made for cute decor. However, I have since found that this one for instance, holds my Around the Block Tape Writer, it is basically like  the old Dymo that we printed stamped plastic labels on years ago. This turned into a perfect storage container for this tool because I grab the case and put it on the desk when in use.
One of the coolest things about this tool is using it with what I call Duplex papers, meaning one side is one shade and the other is lighter or darker. I cut it into strips and feed it through my tape writer and the letters pop out because of the contrast on the opposite side!! Example below:

LOVE THAT! It's just fun to experiment. Of course I bought duplex in every color, just in case!

Getting back to stamps:
Behind the Ikea door unit is Tim Holtz grunge board, Daubers, sponge tools, etc.
This fabric Ikea bin holds Fancy Pants Stamps (some of my favorites, Acrylic blocks in various sizes for stamping with clear stamps. The Fiskars Easy Stamp Press and my Colorbox stamp pad. My other stamp pads are stored in the Tim Holtz case. I also have the Tim Holtz case that holds clear stamps like an album. I fell in love with all of his shiny cases. I know a lot of people have fun altering theirs but I love them like they are, at least for now. This type of storage works fine for me since I do not have a lot of stamps to categorize, again I am a NOVICE stamper, (although, I can see how easily addicting it could be, I think I have every Cat's Eye color made!).

One of my faves

Brads, eyelets, scrapbook nails! (probably some things I talk about for scrapbooking are not even for sale anymore! sorry, but I still store what I own and you could use the storage for other items)
These adorable wooden books were found at Hobby Lobby in the bare wood section. They pull apart to store things in. I painted mine black and had this cute book binding tape, pink and black checks and used it to decorate every other one. Then I found these nifty Tic-Tac containers near the beading section in my Hobby Lobby. I can sort the small embellishments by color and guess what? They fit perfectly in these nifty book containers! This is one of my favorite storage finds.

TIC-TAC type containers available at Hobby Lobby in case you don't want to eat them all! :)
This would make awesome storage for beads too!!! The great thing is I wear salon nails and it's very easy to remove and open these containers in spite of having my nails done!
In the cubby to the right is a wooden box that holds my straw, jute and raffia pieces. My Bazill paper swatches and an adorable paper snipping my daughter gave me.

12x12 Paper Organization

I purchased these plastic storage containers at The Container Store, they hold and organize 12x12 paper perfectly.
This wooden bin is from Ikea, they come filled with little drawers like the ones under my roll around desk that I covered with decorative black and cream papers. I turned this vertical and used it to hold my 12x12 Bazill cardstock. The drawers from this unit are inside my desk drawers to organize things like adhesives.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

We recently painted my Making Memories Embellishment Center

I think I'm the last person on the planet to buy one of these. I did not have the wall space for it until I turned my Expedit (Ikea) unit horizontal to hold my printer and new Cricut Expression! I know there are more tweaks in store for this unit. I threw a few things up there for the photo. My husband painted it black for me, I may alter this further, not sure yet.

This "Scrapbook Connection" sign used to hang in the mall where my store was. My husband thought it ought to hang in here.

Scrapbook Room Decorative Touches

Deciding on a theme for my room was fun! I already had my desk my husband had altered to fit the wall in our new home. I had to work around the Murphy bed so when we had guests they would feel comfortable in my workspace.
My children had given me a cute little sign that said "One shoe can change your life" - Cinderella. This stems from one of my favorite movies and storybooks as a young child. I always believed my prince would come, and boy did he! So the pink, black and green struck a cord with me. I went to Hobby Lobby looking for fun additions to the decor, I liked the French theme and chose black and cream toile for fabric. These cute inexpensive home decor items add such fun to the room. The two diamond shaped plaques are tin. Notice the little block letters mounted on a dowel that spell magnifique! The letters were painted black spelling "create" and edged in pink. The two large photos were taken in my garden. I had the walls painted and shopped for bedding and draperies.

I made the clock from a Heidi Swapp kit.
Continuing across the top shelf of the desk unit.
Camera reel tins that gifts came in, old cameras, feathers cute framed saying my daughter gave me. Check out my glass slipper, good thing he didn't ask me to try that tiny thing on! :)

Note the dress form draped with the boa, I had to have this to go with my antique child Singer sewing machine I used to play with at my seamstress grandmothers home. Just fun stuff, surround yourself with things you love!

The Paris themed wall hangings came from Hobby Lobby. I picked the "memories" up on a trip.
Oh, and YES the French phone does work.

Desk level views

Before my carousel was painted, oh I like it so much better painted black! I love the Quickutz Magpie Black Nesting Storage System with the little pink tins!
So many cubbies to store things in this desk! I'm so glad my husband was able to alter it to fit!

Look right, check out the explanation of this checkered storage in my other post!

The magnetic strip on the back came from The Container Store, the tins with clear lids are available at Ikea, I think its the least expensive place to get them. I have since added a second row of the strip. The black and cream box houses ribbon stored on wooden palettes.  I have tried ribbon looped as a skirt on my dress form, purchased one of those ribbon see thru storage thingies, wrapped it on paddles, wrapped it on wooden clothes pins, wound it on spools. Nothing has struck me to leave it all in one place yet although I'd like to. Ideas? So I have it on my embellishment center on a rod, in this black box and stored in the shadow boxes and some in the jars you see here.
This is an old VCR cabinet. I hung on to it thinking it might come in handy because it matched the furniture in the room. Here is what I ended up doing with it. Can you say "Punch it UP"?
You may be asking why I have SO many punches? I owned a store and I let my customers use these during crops. Truthfully all of them do not even fit in this cabinet. I have some extra large ones stored in the closet, along with alphabet punches.

Texas Lady's Gallery: Croppin' Heaven!

Texas Lady's Gallery: Croppin' Heaven!

A look inside the drawers!

Adhesive Storage (Left Top desk drawer)

Cardstock stored in file drawer  (Beneath Left Top desk drawer)

Drawer to the immediate left of work station. Tools I use all the time: Colorful staples, Making Memories Distressing Kit, Silent Setter, MM Tools, Stapler (large and small)
Items I cannot scrap without! Portable paper cutters by Fiskars

Work Surface

I have beautiful natural sunlight that streams in the window. However, the under cabinet lighting makes such a difference, along with the ceiling fan and lighting from above. The lighting came from Lowes.

I recently moved the Making Memories black shelves with pink bins to the desk area. I found I was forgetting about supplies kept in them, now they are within arms reach! My dh painted my Making Memories carousel to match my other black storage pieces. I like it so much better. I used to have a Pampered Chef carousel, its new home is inside the closet for the grandkids crayons and crafts. Many people have inquired about the little shadow boxes on either side of the workspace. I found these unfinished at Hobby Lobby. They have divided compartments and a small latch on the side. There are various colorful embellishments stored in each, they are fun to look at inspiring and almost like a piece of art. The clear bucket has my embossing pens! I love these! So fun to use and no heat needed!

The Xyron Sticker maker is handy where it sits, the two Ikea buckets are magnetic and came from Ikea, the sassy magnets on the front make me smile. One holds my colored pencils, the other a few pair of Fiskars small scissors, which is one of my favorite tools.

Note: See the paint can opener hanging from the hook by ribbon on the magnet board? Comes in handy when I am opening those Prima flower bucket, saves the nails!

Glitter Anyone

I found this adorable container at Target! It is a perfect storage solution for my glitter. I love keeping colorful supplies in view, they inspire me and this? Just makes me want to sprinkle something! :)

Monday, June 7, 2010

When I work

This desk used to be a corner unit when I owned my business. Due to the shape of my room and the placement of the window, there was no way to use a corner desk. My husband altered the desk to fill the wall of my scraproom. As I began to crop in my space I soon discovered I liked using an L-shape with my roll around desk that slides perfectly out of sight under the desk when not in use. The chair came from Ikea, I pounced and scooted on many a chair before finding this one! I love this chair! The two wooden Ikea bins fit perfectly side by side! I covered them with cute cream and black papers to match the decor of the room. Actually there are six more narrow bins on top of each wooden box to add additional storage. The empty wooden piece that came with the extra bins? Turned vertical it fit perfectly in my shelf and holds all my 12x12 Bazill cardstock, love that. I used the extra narrow bins in my adhesive drawer to section it off. Having the TV in here is nice and my guests love having it when they stay. (I like that the desk can go under the desk facing the wall too in case there are small fingers visiting. Less temptation too!

Shown below, what is stored inside.
Bling and punctuation chipboard.
My brads are stored in a couple of different ways. The ones pictured in the screw together tubes purchased from The Container Store, these are specialty brads with patterns or designs on them, I also have some jump rings stored with these. Additional ones are stored in these individual containers purchased at Hobby Lobby. I love that I can see what I want in a glance as they are sorted by color, style and design.