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From the Archives: Organization Week

I'm out of town for the week filming the new season of Scrapbook Soup TV.  While I'm away, I hope you'll enjoy these posts from the Balzer Designs archives.  You can always search the archives for past gems HERE.  Enjoy!

So, this isn't actually a post.  Rather it's a collection of posts all about organization from January 2012!  I tried to pick one of the posts, but I couldn't.  You need all the posts.  I hope you'll take the time to click through and read everything, and let me know what you think!  Just because I'm out of town doesn't mean I'm not reading comments!  :)

This is a week long series about getting your creative space organized!  Click any of the links to be taken to the original post.

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January 9, 2012: Throw It Away

As you can see, I have a working studio.  It's not a pretty Pottery Barn catalog studio.  But I can find absolutely anything I'm looking for in under twenty seconds.  Because what my studio lacks in beauty it makes up for in functionality.  In order for your space to be functional it needs to be filled with things that you actually use.  Read more here.

January 10, 2012: How Does Your Brain Work?

I want you to start thinking of your crafty space (be it an enormous room or a corner of the living room) as a functional space.  Your tools and supplies need to be out and accessible and everything needs to have a home.  Read more here.

January 11, 2012: Storage Containers

It's pretty obvious why storage containers are important, right?  What's less obvious is that using the wrong storage containers can be disastrous!  I'll give you an example:

You're all excited about being organized!  So you head out and buy all these big beautiful storage boxes.  Maybe some of those big deep plastic bins with a lid?  Very sensible choice.  And then you head home and put your entire fabric collection into that bin (like-with-like).  You carefully label the outside and admire how beautifully neat and clean it looks all closed up in there.  Repeat with several other supplies and stack.

Fast forward a few days and you need a piece of fabric.

Well, first you need to lift the other boxes off of the fabric box.  Oy.  Then you need to open the fabric box.  Now you need to root around inside the box to find the fabric you're looking for.  Keep going.  Boy, that container sure is deep!  Ah, found it!  So put back all of the fabric you went rooting through.  Put the lid back on.  Now restack those other boxes.  Phew.  Only took you fifteen minutes to find the piece of fabric you wanted...oh, wait!  You wanted the one with blue stars...!

Doesn't sound fun, does it?  So what's the trick to finding the right containers?  Read more here.

January 12, 2012: At Your Fingertips


Today it's time to put together the heart of your studio: Your desk area.  Personally, I think it's vitally important that everything from your list of "ten supplies you must have" be within arms length of your main desk area.  You shouldn't have to get up to access any of it.  Bend over, turn around, reach -- okay.  But try to keep all of it very very near. 

Why?  Read more here.

January 13, 2012: The Art We Make

If you want to have your artwork around you, I suggest a gallery wall, like the one we created for Nat:

It's a great way to be inspired and yet keep your studio functional.  If you don't have the wall space (I don't) for a gallery like that, just try a single piece or two hanging up.  And simply rotate new pieces in and old pieces out.  Read more here.

January 14, 2012: Specific Solutions (Part 1)

You can see that along the bottom of the wall I hung a bunch of wire grids.  I have my embellishments grouped by type (that's the way my brain works) on book rings, hanging from these wire grids.

Read more here.

January 15, 2012: Specific Solutions (Part 2)

My alphabet stickers have been an ongoing nightmare.  I've tried many, many, many systems and this is the one that I keep coming back to:


This is a rolling file folder cart.  I like that it rolls because I can bring it inside of my primary work space and then push it out when I don't need it.  (The drawers hold my adhesive and some secondary level tools.)  Read more here.

Thanks for stopping by!