Sunday, March 20, 2011

My Three Loves

When it comes to scrapbooking, I have three distinct loves.  I think you could really even say I have three separate scrapbooking hobbies.  The first (obviously) is the act of scrapbooking. Getting pictures and words down on paper to tell a story about a particular event or to tell part of the story of our lives.  The second is information collecting.  I love to gather ideas, read about techniques, new products. I (somewhat obsessively) collect sketches & layouts to scraplift.  I spend hours reading magazines, books & blogs about scrapbooking.  The third is organizing my stuff.  I love finding new ways to organize that work for well for me. There are so many different ways to organize paper, stamps, stickers, embellishments, etc. that I find fascinating.  What works for one crafter may not work for you because of the space you have to work with, because of how your brain works or because it's not visually appealing to you.  In between our Mon/Weds/Fri Mystery Scrap posts, I'll share some things related to my other two hobbies.
Today I'm sharing one of my favorite simple and inexpensive organizing tips.  Binder Rings! You can find these at Staples or maybe even Walmart and they come in a variety of sizes. They have so many uses - here are a couple of the ways I use them...
1.  To organize & store stickers, rub'ons, etc. You can separate by color, by theme, by season, by person you plan to use them for, etc.  I have several rings - one for baby related goodies, one that is mostly decorative, one for holiday & seasonal.  Letter stickers would be another good one.  I hang these in the closet of my scrapbook room from the wire shelving. You could also hang these on a peg board, from a curtain rod (like in one of my first posts), on a coat rack, or put them in a basket. This makes it so easy to grab to take with you to a crop.
If you are anything like me, it's difficult to throw away birthday or special occasion cards.  So, after each birthday I add the cards to a binder ring for that person (if someone gets a Thank you card or Valentine's card, I throw it on the ring also).  This is a picture of Evan's (see the heavy chipboard E?) I should probably add some ribbons to the binder ring to make it a little cuter!
This next idea came from my Stampin Up! Demonstrator, Traci.  It's a ring that holds examples of each of my punches. I cut out squares of cardstock - punched a punch, added any notes (like 1 3/8" circle), then had them laminated at Staples (you can fit several onto an 8.5x11, so it cost a couple dollars).  This is so helpful because you can lay the laminated piece over anything to see what it would look like if you punched it out - and works great to see which punches would work with which stamps.  I also got a couple of my friends to punch theirs for me, so I know what I could borrow if I needed it!
Finally, here's a link to a video showing another great way to use binder rings. Just in case you can't view it, it's Lain Ehmann from Layout a Day talking about how she organizes her inspiration.  She takes pictures, gets them printed when there are sales wherever she gets photos printed and then punches a hole in the corner and sticks them on a binder ring.  She keeps it near her desk and it's always handy to flip through. 
I hope you enjoyed this - and let me know how you already use or will use binder rings!  See you tomorrow for Mystery Scrap Week #3!

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