Tuesday, November 22, 2011

The Scrap Pile Yelled at Me - a follow up

The article I wrote a few days ago on how a scrap pile out of control impacted me and my creativity created a lot of responses.  Organizing and keeping track of scrap paper seems to be a universal problem.  Here are some of the (unedited) comments I received.

Great article and a huge problem I have too! A 2x2 is hard for me to toss..... Carolyn Bennett

Loved your article!  I attacked my scrap pile a few years ago and now have it organized by color in 2 iris carts (6 drawers each).  I took the wheels off one of the carts and put it on top of the other cart.  It fits neatly between a shelf and dresser I have in my craft room so it isn't in danger of tipping over.  I am in a monthly card swap and have gone to the scraps several times recently when I wanted to use a particular color that is retired.  None of us are demonstrators so we can use whatever we want.  I ONLY use SU cardstock, but still have quite a stockpile of retired colors so having organized scraps is a big help.
Thanks for sharing!

I have done this also, putting my scraps into 3 ring binders.  I have 2 color families in each of 2 binders separated and labeled according to the color family name and each color in the 3 ring pages with labels on the page with the name of the specific color (I get 2 colors per page holder by putting a piece of cardstock between the front and back of the page holder—one color on one side, second color on the back side.  I have a 3rd binder for specialty paper and DSP and a 4 binder with retired colors.  Hope this is clear as mud!!

This has worked well for me, my stamping group, scrapping friends, and the 4 H girls who I scrap book with.  The 4 H girls (6 year to 14) have finally gotten used to using the scraps and the first thing they ask when they need a paper is, what color family is this and then they look in the binder—took some persistent training, but oh so worth it.  Everyone reads the label on the back of the binder, picks the appropriate binder, goes to the section for that color and picks their scrap.

Love it and yes, it is so much better than a box with lots of paper scraps!!!

Janet Headrick

I use a divided sorter like an office mailbox slots.
I sort using Roy G Biv and the other 2 slots are black/gray and brown/tan.
Takes up room on my counters but is very accessible.

I have all my card stock in a 4 drawer file cabinet.  Each color has two folders.  The first one
holds my whole pieces and packs of a color and the second folder holds the scraps.  I put my
scraps in a labeled Stampin' Up! clear bag [found on the supply list when ordering]  I label the
bag with the color in the top left corner of the bag.  That way, when I need a color, I pull out
a couple of pieces of whole card stock and my scrap bag and can determine if the scraps are
big enough for my needs.  I have the folders sitting in box bottom hanging file folders so there
is plenty of room for several packs of paper in each one.  Re-filing my card stock is easy this
way....also, it makes it easier to go through to order card stock I am getting low on.
I used to have drawers with colors like Red, Pink, Purple and Blues and another Greens.  I 
found I didn't go to the drawer much because I had to go through it each time and see if the 
color I needed was in there.  Too much trouble.  

This method works great for me.  I also organize my card stock by color.  My first drawer has

Vanilla, Yellows, Oranges, Greens, Blues.  That way, if I'm looking for a green that works well
with my project, I can stand at the file and pull each out and see if it works and then go to the
next color and try it.  Makes it easy to get just the right color.
Stampin' Hugs from Colorado, Judy  :)

I only use SU cardstock so the sorting was not that difficult for me. I keep my paper in a vertical file. I keep one pack open at all time and slip my scraps into the open slot so when I pull out a paper choice the scraps come with it. This has kept my scraps to the very minimun and I only throw away the tiniest amount of paper now. This has saved me money and frustration.
Debbie G. in Bellevue, WA

Keeping my scraps organized is something I have done for a very long time.  Some of my smaller pieces I will use my punches to punch out the shape and put it into a container and save it until I am in a hurry and want to put a project together quickly and need it.  The containers I used were the Gerber Baby Food containers - they are plastic with a lid - perfect to hold punched pieces.  I have these in a box in order of sizes of - circles - ovals - shapes.  I don't watch T.V. often but when I do I am working on a project - punching shapes from my scraps is one project that I do.  I use my super small scraps such as a 1/4" strip that is cut off to put in the inside of my card to add to it.  I don't like having a mess of scraps piled up and I hate to throw it away so I have no choice but to use it!   Cathy Bell

Thanks for sharing these tips as I am forever looking at what's leftover after getting ready for a class and trying to figure out what to keep or discard without being so wasteful. 
Dianne Sloan

LOL... I have two ways of storing scraps. The first... I have a two drawer legal size lateral file which I purchased at our local hospice store for $25.00... filled with pendaflex folders, one for each card stock, and each one has a legal sized manilla folder in it too. The smaller scraps go into the manilla folder, the 1/4 card or larger scraps go behind the manilla folder with the full package(s) of paper. I keep one pack of paper open at all times as Debbie mentioned in her post.

I also have an "inspiration" scrap pile. Generally, this is very small... and I work very hard to keep it that way or it can get out of control very quickly. The "inspiration" scrap pile has bits and pieces I've stamped or punched, maybe something that didn't quite turn out the way I had hoped... or a relief punch from an image that looked interesting and usable. When I'm trying to find inspiration, I'll thumb through the pile and be inspired... sometimes, and other times I just throw some of the stuff away.

My 12x12 paper is stored in 14" cubes with shelves in a vertical tower atop the lateral file, two columns so it doesn't go too high and I can use the flat top area for additional storage, my embellishment towers are on top of the paper towers.

Thanks to every one who shared their scrap organization ideas.

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