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Organising Art and Craft Spaces in 3 steps

Putting off organising your art and craft space? Grab yourself some chocolate, tea, wine, coffee or all of the choices and let’s get started. I promise you it’s not all bad, you will find some lost treasures, some endorphins from the sense of control and a fresh new space

Hands up if your play room, craft room or art cupboard, is well, let’s say tenderly chaotic (read whirlwind  masquerading as generously creative). No shame here. My art boxes and shelves can get gloriously untidy from time to time. Organising art and craft spaces can be daunting but a space left messy can seriously impact  productivity and how you use your materials. Have you been putting it off? I suggest you grab yourself some chocolate, tea, wine, coffee or all of the above, take a deep breath and we can get started together. I promise you it’s not all bad, you will find some lost treasures, some endorphins from the sense of control and a fresh new space to store you or your children’s creative tools.

Step One for organising art and craft spaces:

Collect or buy a good stock of various boxes, containers, baskets and large jars. My advice would be to look through Gumtree, Facebook buy and sell, Craigslist, op-shops and garage sales before buying something new. Old Tupperware containers, shoeboxes and produce jars (soak the labels off and use a few drops of lemon essential oil to remove the sticky label residue) are also handy. Whether you have have a whole room, a cupboard, shelves or drawers, your storage choices are up to you. Try and keep storage clear or labelled, because what you see you use.  Visit my pinterest board here for some visual inspiration for art and craft storage.

Step Two for organising art and craft spaces :

Now for the labeling; Start with a what is certain and build from there. Depending on your labeling system you may want (I strongly encourage you) to sort materials or toys into piles first. There’s nothing worse than when you have labelled a container with permanent marker to realise that not all the pencils you have fit into it. If you have clear glass jars you may or may not want to label them. My rule of thumb is if I can’t readily see what is in the container then it needs a label! These are some of my labels; collage, ribbons, toilet rolls, paints, beads, fabric scraps, buttons, stamps, pins and tape. Of course be careful where you place items if you have little mouths within reach. For inspiration on the labels themselves read this post by The Homes I have Made.

Step Three for organising art and craft spaces

Are you still with me? I haven’t lost you underneath a pile of fabric scraps and collage paper? The fun bit is here! Fill your containers and boxes, sort through what you have, placing materials in their new homes. A few last tricks: tin cans without their labels are perfect for pencils. If you are wondering what to do with all the odds and ends? Rather than label a container with erasers, scissors, bluetack, supersized paint brush etc. A simple “Odds” or similar can do the trick. Arrange in the drawer or on the shelf and your good to go. If you have a room that accommodates a peg board this can be very useful. You can tab the bottom of paint tubes so they hang off the board. I dream of one of these when move from my tiny 2 bedroom townhouse.

So what I find useful about this method of organisation is that I buy less because I can see and check more readily what I have. Things are so, so much easier to keep tidier as they have an allocated home. If you have children at home then it can help them be more active in cleaning up and putting things away. You can even get them involved in organising art materials and labeling. This method also lends itself to the reduce and reuse method because it welcomes a savvy attitude. I have a jar for example where all ribbon from presents gets popped in. If i just had random bit of ribbon shoved in drawers, i would eventually get grumpy and throw them out because they were “messy”. Instead they are neat and tidy in one spot and useful! Your more likely to see such things as a resource than an inconvenience because you’re not  just adding more clutter to the draw.

Do you use this organising method or one similar? I would love to hear in the comments below how you find it and if you have a favourite jar or box. Mine would have to be the collage box or ribbon jar. And make sure you check pinterest for some inspiration- you will find heaps!

organising art glass and box torage

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