If you are a serious or novice crafter, you probably have some sort of craft room or corner of your house devoted to your DIY stash. My office also doubles as my craft room, and since making things is a full time job for me, you can believe I have quite a few supplies on hand. When we first moved into the house a year and a half ago, it took a while for me to figure out where everything should go in the new space. So it was a bit unpleasant working in here until I got it all sorted out. Organization makes life so much easier, you guys! I know it’s a pain to actually DO, but I’m always glad I took the time to do it. Here’s are the top things I use that make my DIY life so much easier…
Add some shelves: There’s a bit of an odd cubby shape in one wall due to the bathroom closet on the other side, but a previous owner was smart enough to make use of the space by adding in some really simple shelves from floor to ceiling. Shelving is great because you can spread them throughout a room wherever you have the space, and you can stack several above each other like I have. Mine hold a ton of storage boxes and bins, and they have been a big help overall in the hunt to find storage space.
Group (and label) by category: It took a night or two to organize, but I basically spread out all my boxes and containers and then grouped all my items into categories like paint, sewing supplies, tape, glue, jewelry making, leather tools, beauty product ingredients, etc. And yes, it’s totally OK to have a few “miscellaneous” boxes as well if there are items that don’t fit anywhere else. It’s a good idea to have a variety of box sizes since not all your categories will have the same amount of items, and you can also group all your items first into piles, and then go out and get containers in the appropriate size and number. Don’t forget to label your boxes (especially ones that you don’t use everyday) so you can find items quickly when needed.
Keep most used items accessible: There are a few categories that I use the most that I chose to put into drawer-type cube storage for easy access. Having smaller stacked boxes on my shelves keeps items together and organized, but would be a bit annoying if I had to get a box on the top shelf (that’s also under two other boxes) every time I needed glue or tape. So keep your most utilized items within reach.
Make use of hanging storage: Making a large scale pegboard was probably one of the best things I could have done for the craft room overall. There are some items like cutting mats and rulers that are a little awkward to store (they don’t really fit in boxes), so hanging them from the pegboard is the perfect solution. Just use a Crop-A-Dile or other punch tool to punch one or two holes in a mat and it’s ready to hang! It’s also good for hanging sharp objects like scissors, especially if you need to keep them up high and away from little hands.
Use large baskets for rolls: For a while I didn’t really know what to do with large pieces of paper, vinyl, and leather, but I discovered that rolling them up and then using a large basket on the floor is a great way to keep them all together and organized. Some people will store rolls laying down on long shelves so there’s no weight directed on one end of the roll like there is when it’s standing up, but I think you probably don’t have to worry about that unless it’s really special material. It’s also a good option for craft paper or wrapping paper rolls as well.
Find unique storage options: Most craft areas will have their share of easy-to-find storage solutions like shelves, boxes, and cubes, so it’s a good idea to throw an unexpected storage solution into the mix as well. I got these lockers from Elsie when she didn’t have a need for them anymore, and they’ve been such a cute addition to my craft space. I added shelves in some of the compartments to create more levels, and it’s a great place to store some larger items I have like sewing machines, my overhead projectors, print and art papers, or some taller objects that wouldn’t fit into a box. Items like old lockers, card catalogs, or even dressers can be an unexpected way to stay organized while getting a cool piece of furniture into the room as well.
Spread out when needed: If you don’t have a whole room to devote to DIY supplies, no worries! You can also spread your supplies throughout your space, and as long as you know where to find what, you’ll still feel just as organized. This is a great example of when it might be helpful to have a piece of furniture (like lockers or a dresser) double as craft storage. If you have to keep them in a living room or bedroom area, they will blend right into a room without sticking out as a storage solution. I have a few decorative boxes around our home that are rather unnoticeable to others, but in reality they contain craft supplies I didn’t have room for in the craft room (I have scrapbook supplies and stamps in the grey boxes above). No one needs to know…
I really do think that the more organized you are, the easier simple tasks and life in general becomes. Knowing where to find things and having a home for all your supplies will help you max out on your creative hours instead of spending half of it going, “Now where did I put that…?” Whether you can use one or all of these tips when it comes to organizing your supplies, I hope that it helps you find the best craft space that works for you! xo. Laura
Credits: Author and Photography: Laura Gummerman. Photos edited with New A Beautiful Mess actions.