Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Thrifty Paper Storage

One of my biggest dilemmas in organizing my creative studio was how to store my scrapbook paper. Paper crafting is one of my favorite crafting mediums (although freezer paper stenciling now runs a close second) so I have LOTS of scrapbook paper. 

I'm almost embarrassed to show you this but this was my old method of storing scrapbook paper in a large plastic box.....

And as you can probably see, it just wasn't working anymore. The paper was not sorted and it would take me forever to find a piece of paper that I was looking for and worst of all - the paper was sometimes getting bent! 

So, I new I needed a new method and started searching for new ideas. I knew that I didn't want to shell out a lot of money for a fancy storage unit, I wanted to DIY it. So, I googled, I asked friends, I looked on Pinterest, and finally I stumbled upon this you tube video and the wheels started turning in my little head. 

So I took a couple of these boxes
mixed in with a few other supplies. 

And now, my paper is stored like this.....
Ahhhhh! Love it! Best part?? This storage system was under 10 dollars to create!!

Wanna know how I did it?  

What You will Need:
Large boxes - I used old priority mail boxes that are 14 1/2 by 13 1/2 inches. 
Ziploc bags
Post it tabs
X-acto knife
Paint color of your choice and foam paint brush
Hot glue and glue gun
Labels for outside of boxes

How to make the boxes:

1. Cut your box to size you want using the X-acto knife. I cut mine so that it was about 12 1/2 inches tall.
2. Put your box together and secure with tape. 
3. Now paint your box! My box needed 3 coats in order to completely cover all the writing on the box.
4. Once your boxes are completely dry, glue on your ribbon using your glue gun. I did this because I'm not the best at using an X-acto knife so my edges are a little choppy in places so the ribbon covers up un-clean edges perfectly! 
5. Create labels for your boxes and glue them on. I made my labels in my Silhouette software and then cut them out of white cardstock. I just used glue dots to adhere them to the boxes. 

Now let's talk about the different labels and how to store the paper.....
I ended up with 5 different boxes for the following main categories: Colored Cardstock (I have two colored card stock boxes), Holidays and Themes, Patterned Paper, and Paper Packs. Each box then has sub categories. For example, in the holidays and themes box, the paper is divided into subcategories like winter, Christmas, summer, cooking, etc...  At some point, I'll probably add a box for scraps and most likely end up with the holiday paper and themed paper each in its own box. 

When I was sorting the paper, my living room floor looked like this for a little bit....
Holy Paper Batman!

Once I had it all separated, each subcategory  is stored in one of these jumbo ziplock bags......
I got them at Walmart and there are 12 in a package for about 2 dollars. I didn't want the zip top on them so I simply cut them off at about an inch from the top.

Then I used these post it tabs to write the name of each category on....
I also got those at Walmart and there are 24 of them in a package for about 3 dollars.I just wrote the name of each category on a label using a Sharpie and then stuck it on the top of the bag. 

Here's what it looks like when it is in the bag with the label tab..... 

So I just did that for each subcategory and then put them in the box for each main category. I have both 8 1/2 x 11 paper and 12 x 12 paper in the same bags. I put the 8 /12 x 11 paper in the front of the bags with the 12 x 12 behind it. I have my boxes all lined up on my bookshelf and just love how it looks and how easy it is to just run to the bookshelf and just grab the bag I need and then when I'm finished I just slide the bag back in the right box. 

Here's a couple of more views...... 
close up side view of one box

front view of one box
top view of one box

Linking up to the link parties listed in my sidebar
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  1. Yay for diy, cost friendly organization! Love it! I like the USPS box idea. I have used cereal boxes and they aren't as sturdy. Well done!

  2. That is SUCH a great idea! I agree with Erin. You can even get USPS boxes free at the post office if you don't have a whole bunch of used ones hanging around. Also...if you turn the boxes inside out, it might take less paint to cover them ('cause then you have only brown cardboard to cover instead of writing. :-)

  3. Monika, I thought of turning the boxes inside out but there is now writing on the inside too!

  4. I am visiting via Someday Crafts. This is an absolutely adorable project!

    If you have written a post about a great restaurant, store or perhaps taken a fun trip I am now hosting a new linky party entitled Wayfaring Wednesdays. Come on by!

    Happy Wednesday!

  5. Great idea. I'm glad I saved my priority box. Maybe I'll get some more to reuse. I also really need to organize my entire craft room, not just my paper. Thanks for the motivation.

  6. Thanks for linking up at my party, Nicole! On a side note... I just noticed your "Motto" pic on this visit to your site. That is a super creative and cute picture!

  7. Great project! I found you through the linking party at Night Owl Crafting! :)
    I'd like to invite you to join my T.G.I.F. Linky Party to share your fabulous projects. I'm looking to grow my weekly party with fabulous projects just like this one. Here is the direct link and I hope you can visit sometime.
    T.G.I.F. Linky Party every Thursday evening - Tuesday

  8. Such a clever idea. I've been trying to figure out how to store my paper and scraps. I can never seem to throw paper out thinking I'll find just the right project and need a scrap of paper to make it perfect. But what to do with all the paper? I'm going to try your idea for the answer to my dilema. Thanks for sharing.

  9. Oh wow! Now that is some good thinking! Looks fabulous too!

  10. That is such a clever idea and it looks pretty too.

  11. Looks so much better. what a great idea. More the Merrier Monday will be open until Wednesday at midnight. I would love for you to stop by and link up your paper storage. http://diyhshp.blogspot.com/

  12. Organization! A girl after my own heart. Love this idea.

    I'm your newest follower.

  13. This is such a great, and very cute looking, idea!

  14. ohh, love this idea! Keep the organization tips a'comin!

  15. Lovely project! Found your project at C.R.A.F.T.

  16. This something I could really use. I have scraps of paper coming out everywhere,lol.
    I love the colors!

  17. So cute! I am going to have to try this out!

  18. Great idea! Love chic storage solutions. My paper scraps are all over the place now... stuck in random boxes, shoved into folders etc. Visiting & following from Thrifty Thursday!

    -caroline @ c.w.frosting

  19. Genius! We have a million of those priority boxes floating around. Why have I not thought of this before??? :) I'm pinning this one!!!

  20. This is such a great idea! I love how you made your storage area really cute & fun! It doesn't have to be plain, right?! Great job!

    I would love to have you share this at my first link party--


  21. Love these you need to post them to upcycled Awesome this week! http://tinyurl.com/upcycled67

  22. Do the bags not slip and slide down into the boxes?

  23. HI, I really love your hub on crafts I love crafts, but don't get around to doing them, I find it very informative. thanks