Thursday, March 24, 2011

Storing Those Pesky Paper Scraps

Storing scraps of paper leftover from projects is something that was once a waste of time and space for me, but now I love it!  For a long time, I would separate scraps by color into gallon zip lock baggies. This was perfectly functional, kept them corralled and I didn't waste any.  The only problem, was that I NEVER went back and used any of the scraps.  About a year ago, I found this link (can't believe I was able to find it again!)  I thought it looked great, appealed to my Type A personality, was very contained and orderly.  I knew this would work for me if I could get over cutting up a piece of paper of which only a 2x2 section had been used.  So - I got started with a plain white photo box that I already had from Walmart - (LOVE those boxes, but sadly, I don't think they carry them anymore.)  If I could get a 4.25x5.5 rectangle or two, I would - otherwise, I'd trim the paper into rectangular or square pieces.  I try not to keep anything smaller than about 1.5"x 3" unless it's an absolute favorite. I filled up one box and then started on another just from cleaning out my zip lock baggies.  I cleaned up weird cuts so everything had a straight edge & threw away any that were bent or wrinkled.  You can see below I have one box that is P(ink)ROYGBIV and then a second that has all my 4.25"x5.5" pieces (great for card fronts) and neutrals.  
This was very freeing - I gave myself permission to throw away those itty bitty scraps and only keep pieces I can do something with. These are great to use with punches, for cards, to cut letters on my Pazzles.  I have a ton of white cardstock scraps and those are great to stamp on for pages or for cards.  Even my girls love it because if they are working on something they can pull out a couple pieces for their projects.
A couple months ago, I was participating in an online class and realized it would be helpful to have some 12x12 strips (out of which to punch borders or cut thin borders to go across an entire page) so I have started 1 ziplock baggie and will put 1-2"x12" strips in that sometimes just to have a little stash of those.  I'm also now in the habit of going to my scrap boxes first - before reaching for my full size sheets. 

I bet you are wondering how I keep up with all the scraps as the multiply like rabbits... Do I meticulously file them away after every project?  Those of you who know me, I'm sure already know the answer to that one (wink, wink).  No way! I keep a plastic shoe box/tub thingy on my desk or on the floor next to my desk and throw the scraps in there.  Then once a month or so, I'll go through and cut them down to rectangles and file them.  Doesn't take long at all and everything stays nice & neat! If I'm working, with them, I leave them out with the lids off, but when I clean up, the lids go back on and they go back to their designated spot. As Mattie would say "Easy Peasy Pumpkin Squeezy!"  (I have no idea what that means!)  Anyway - I'd love to hear how you store your scraps!  Stop back by tomorrow for the Friday reveal of Mystery Scrap Week 3!


  1. Well this idea and the rings for stickers and die cuts I have now accomplished woohooo! I worked last night on cleaning my stickers up and now have order in my life of those and for the scraps well I didn't have the storage boxes so I went with the gallon bags. Needless, to say I got rid of a lot that I didn't need and they are in order too. Thanks for the idea!!

  2. Rockin idea! I've gotta get organizing now!! We tell Nate all the time "easy peasy LEMON squeezy"! LOL