Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Scrapbook Studio Update

Since we talk this week in the podcast about purging and I reference my "Great Scrap Studio Renovation of 2015" a few times, I thought some of you might like seeing how my room looks right now. (Okay, I took these pics last week, but you get my drift.) It's certainly not perfect, but it's WAYYY better than it was before.

In case you've forgotten, here are the pictures from last fall that sparked my desire to rework my studio space. Horrifying, right? I mean, I knew it was bad, but it took these pics to convince myself exactly how bad it was and that I needed a real change in there. Same exact space. Most of the same furniture and storage pieces. Same windows. The real difference occurred with color, purging, and organizing my supplies.

Let's leave crazy, hoarder land behind and gaze once more upon my renovated, fairly well-organized scrapbook space. I think it's important to mention here that I did NOT spend much money in accomplishing this transition. I bought paint; I stripped the linoleum off the wood floor; I bought a new rug and a Raskog cart; I bought two sets of embellishment drawers and a plywood top that I painted. In all, I'd say I spent less than $300 on the total room renovation. And let's be honest - I didn't HAVE to buy those things. I could've achieved a similar result by simply painting, purging, and organizing.

Here's the view from the doorway as you enter my space now. It feels clean, uncluttered, peaceful -> exactly my goal when I began the reno.

And if you turn slightly to the left upon entering, this is the view of my space. (FYI - I hate that ceiling fan but didn't see any real need to replace it since it's still serviceable.)

If you stand in front of my desk, this is the view now.

Slightly different angle...

If I'm seated at my desk, this is my view to the left. (I use the white foamcore board for photographing my finished layouts; sometimes I just use the little magnetic chalkboard that you see hanging on the wall there.)

And directly in front of my desk staring straight ahead, this is my view. I keep most of my stamping supplies in this cubby underneath the windows. On top, I have the albums I'm working in right now as well as my 2015 December Daily. It just makes me happy to know that I could look through them if I wanted, plus I'm still adding pages to the large albums. On top, I have a chipped up divided drawer where I store things like roller stamps, embossing powder, and various tiny products like spoons, acrylic blocks, and glitter. For real, though, I just think it looks pretty cute.

Here's what I see if I look slightly to the right of my desk. (Yes, that's a small pile of photos and ephemera on the right hand side of my desk. Once a piler, always a piler, I guess. Haha! I just try to keep it under control better now.) I also have a couple of containers on the right hand side of my desk near the lamp. The striped tin is holding stamps that I've recently purchased and want to use ASAP. I'm not sure if keeping them on the side of my desk will help me do that, but I'm willing to experiment with that possibility. The wire basket holds product that is new and I don't know what else to do with - mostly enamel dots and packages of printed diecuts. I'm still working on a plan to deal with those things. The crystal dish holds my tv/ROKU remotes, an adapter for my iPad, and a random cord. I should probably put the random cord in the drawer where I keep all extra electronic things, but I'm trying to keep it real as you look at my space. The muslin bag leaning against the lamp holds extra products from my Cocoa Daisy Daisydori subscription. By keeping them altogether until I'm finished with the last couple of months, I feel like I'm more likely to reach for them. It's not a long term storage solution, but it's working for me short term.

Washi storage that I'm trying - it's located within arms' length to the right of my desk on the sewing table.

Basket with supplies and albums in progress for my Paris 2015 trip. I have this at the other end of my sewing table right now since I'm trying to work on it a little bit each week.

Embellishment drawers divided by theme. The top drawer houses travel embellishments, the middle drawer is Valentine's day and school themes, the bottom drawer you see here is for stencils and stitching templates. I have 9 of these drawers in all, and I think that's plenty for me. If I ever did decide to organize by color, I'd have enough drawers to do so. For now though, I think I like thematic arrangements the best.

Paper drawers - I have four of these that honestly aren't very well-organized. This one houses my favorite paper organized in folders by manufacturer. Another drawer houses cardstock by color and printer/photo paper. The other two drawers are kind of a hot mess of paper without any real organization. It's one of the things on my to-do list. Maybe I'll get to it over spring break. :)

Seated at my desk, this is my view to my immediate right. I hang my cameras on the hooks and storage punches in the shoe cubbies.

Honestly, my closet probably still needs a bit of work. I'm cool with it how it is right now though because it's at least organized by zone/function. For example, I have all of my fabric crafts on one shelf (cross stitch, sewing, burlap, etc.) I have messy crafts on another shelf (stencils, paint, brushes, etc.)  The cubbies on the inside of the closet door mainly house scrapbook items that I don't use often as well as some odds and ends things like wire cutters, 'dirt' scissors, pencil sharpeners and the like.

My Raskog cart at the end of my desk houses all of the tools that I use each time I craft as well as a few embellishments I want to use more often, like Flair, PL cards, and clips. Each item is housed in a different container on the Raskog which keeps it from being too chaotic.

Here's a cubby that I placed under my desk and use to store items that I don't absolutely need very often - extra pics, tackle box embellishments, label makers, metal stamping sets, etc. It's kind of a catch-all for things I don't know what to do with otherwise, and I'm perfectly okay with that.

Against the wall under my desk, I have a plastic rolling cart full of photos that is a hot mess. There's another organizing project I could work on over spring break. The prospect of this does not excite me in the least. I also have a basket where I store new purchases I'd like to use right away. Behind that is my accordion file of scraps and a couple of carriers that I use when I need to take supplies or a layout somewhere. Honestly, those things should prob be stored in the closet now that I think about it.

And this is really my big quandary at this point in terms of organizing. I don't know what to do with the multitude of printed diecuts that I have. This little organizer is only a small fraction of them; there are many other packages in a basket of my desk that also need to be sorted and stored in a reasonable, easily accessible way.

Behind my desk on the wall that is immediately to your right upon entering is my tech center. I have my laptop (ancient!), my Silhouette (hardly used), and my printer (love it!) within easy reach to use. The cubbies store items that I don't use quite as much since it's not within arms' reach of my desk. Over in the far corner, you can see my three large cases of printed photos that are fairly organized.

Underneath my television cabinet, the top shelf is devoted to December Daily supplies and albums that need to be finished. The middle shelf houses all of my small paper pads. I don't like this location, but I haven't come up with a better plan yet. On the bottom shelf, I have this cool divided drawer that I've stored printed chipboard in by letter, number, and symbol. I think it looks cool and is a neat idea, but I honestly rarely go over there to look for a title. (It might be almost time to purge that...)

And here is my giant basket of mini albums that sits beneath the window of my studio.I sort of like seeing it bursting at the seams with albums, so I probably won't change anything there. (Except not allowing myself to buy anymore until I use some of them...)

Remember that I don't like purging and that my renovation process was, quite frankly, hellish. Go back and listen to the podcast about my reno experience (October 2015, I think) if you want to share my pain and laugh so hard that your belly hurts. Anyway, what I do love is that the purging and renovation I experienced did give me the results I wanted. I have a cleaner, more peaceful space that brings me joy when I go in there to play. I didn't spend a lot of money to achieve my goal, and the entire process only took me about a month. (I worked full-time and lived my life during the process; I did all of the work myself too.) The whole experience was totally worth it because I now look forward to going to my studio. That's what a creative space is supposed to be, right?

Before you go, take one more quick look at my renovated, peaceful scrapbook studio. Man, it makes me happy to go in there now. If you're thinking about purging, I'd advise you not to wait until your space is as out of control as mine was. Start now and keep in mind how far I have come...


  1. It looks so nice!! The color on the walls and the rug looks so fresh!

  2. It looks great! I just finished the podcast about the floor fiasco (hilarious, though I felt your pain!) so it's fun to see the end results.

  3. Love this detailed tour of your room, Tiffany!! And that rug is awesome!

  4. Redecorating, reorganizing, purging..all are a major PITA but the end results are so rewarding. Looks awesome!!!!

  5. Love your space! Loved listening to the podcast too. Laughed so hard!!