Faded Shabby Blogs

15 March 2012

Getting Organized

Spring is approaching, and with it the desire to get things cleaned and organized. In the winter, I saw a great book display case being sold from a local toy store. I sent the Love of My Life a picture and asked about buying it for the Vs' play room. It would be great to help us get organized. Someone at work was selling some storage stuff; would that do, he asked. What he suggested was significantly cheaper and lighter to move; who was I to argue?

So we've had these three storage things in the play room since just before Christmas. There are a total of 42 little cubby spaces in them. Each cubby measures about 5 inches high and a little less than 7 inches wide, perhaps just a little deeper than the width. These little open cubbies would do nothing but take the toys vertical, making the mess that much more obvious to my eyes. I mulled over the options.

I'm a big fan of storage totes or little cubes. But I've seen none that small, and the units themselves aren't sturdy enough to have anything hanging out the front of the cubbies. And canvas totes are pretty pricey. I thought about sewing some, but there's my fear of using a sewing machine (yes...I *said* it! I have a small anxiety attack at the thought of firing up the sewing machine, but I love hand stitching and embroidering things...long story). I decided to make little "drawers" to function to hold the items.

And of course, I turned to paper. My love of Close To My Heart paper is deep, but the card stock is 65-pound paper; I needed a little sturdier if it would survive the Vs and their friends playing. I found a source that had flat rate shipping (paperandmore.com) and selected their dark chocolate 105-pound card stock with a smooth finish. It arrived yesterday, and I set to work. I had already done my measuring to configure square "drawers".

I ordered 12x12 paper, scored each side 2 3/4" from the side (9 1/4" from the right, so I only had to make one turn) and then folded all the folds, like so:

I cut to the intersection of the score marks on two opposite ends (and then, because I like making extra work, I cut an angle out of the tab that was created so I wouldn't have any edge issues when I folded in the tabs). I applied adhesive and then assembled the box. I'll admit to using a Stampin' Up! punch to get two rectangular holes in the "front" of the drawer and also on the tags I cut for the labels. I used the CTMH Art Philosophy Cricut cartridge, rectangle 6 cut at 1 3/4" height in CTMH Bamboo card stock. I contemplated how I would do the labels - stamp, print...I chose to write them with a Sharpie. I'm not expecting these to last forever, and I wanted to get this project DONE! I cut some bulk ribbon I bought from ribbonsandbowsohmy.com some time ago to 5 1/2" lengths. I could have "spared" a few centimeters with each tie by keeping the ribbon on the roll and cutting after the knot was tied, but I was feeling reckless today so I cut the ribbon first (after determining the shortest length I could knot and not have much excess to trim). I placed the label (also punched with the SU punch) over the holes in the front of the drawer and fed the ribbon through, like so:

I tied a simple knot and then trimmed the edges (not that they won't fray with usage by the Vs, but I like to start clean). You'll note that my label isn't necessarily straight or centered. And I'm okay with that. Frankly, this is better than what we have currently (large plastic bins all over the room, partially filled with various toys). Here's my tied knot and trimmed ends:

I'll admit here that I haven't completely decided on all the labels. So I've given myself permission to make this post and go to bed without having assembled all the boxes and gotten all the items into their little storage bins. I need to cull some plastic bins from Mr. V's room (currently sitting on the "shelves" of his head board) to make room for a selection of books to reside on those should-be bookshelves. There are knights and horses, superheroes and villains residing in those bins. If I move those to the play room, his room can be restricted to LEGOs and books (and a few stuffed animals that currently hide in some fabric bins). Ms. V's room seems to have books, babies and stuffed animals. Oh, and some dress-up stuff (but I don't think I want kids tempted to change clothes in the basement, so I'll let her have the additional category). Here are a couple of pictures of what I could see and clearly identify. Or so I thought. I have to rethink the "animals" bin. Or we need to reduce what we're keeping, which is the more likely reality!

You can see the animal overload. Some of the little bins haven't been filled yet. I still have things to find that have migrated to the Vs' rooms (without my caring enough to get them back to the play room). I was able to determine that one entire tea set needed to be eliminated; the plates were too big for the drawers I crafted. I'm certain the Vs will be excited when they learn that their stuff needs to fit or it needs to go. My goodness, I'm starting to sound like one of my heroes, my SIL. Hey...if you haven't checked out her blog lately (or ever), I highly encourage you to give her a read: www.theb-blogs.blogspot.com. I promise you'll find yourself laughing!

I know I've mentioned a number of other products I used on this project, but you know my passion remains paper crafting with purpose with Close To My Heart products. Today, CTMH launched our new Online Business Addresses. I hope you'll go take a look at what exciting tidbits are there! If you haven't already created an account through my website, I encourage you to do this at my OBA. Especially if you'd like to start getting a monthly newsletter to rev your creativity, which I'll begin sending April 1! No foolin'! My new site is julianne.ctmh.com.

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