My nephew's girlfriend Jennie came over and made an amazing video of the completed room for me. She is so talented and I love the video she made of the room. I felt that pictures alone couldn't give the full affect of the transformation that took place in here, so here is the completed room tour:
If the video doesn't play for you, here is the direct link to the Craft Room Makeover Tour.
I took this project on as part of the 29 Day Organizational Challenge at I'm an Organizing Junkie. It's funny because I had been living with the chaos of the room for so long I had sort of gotten used to it. But once I decided to start organizing, I really got going and couldn't stand it anymore.
The steps I took to get started: I made lists of things to work on and projects that needed to be completed. I like making lists because it keeps me goal oriented and I can see the progress as I check things off. Then seeing the before pictures and looking at the progress I was making really kept me motivated. I also had my sister come over and help me. We did an entire day of cleaning and organizing. It was great having her here because it kept me from getting distracted by all the little things.
The hardest part of the challenge was deciding what was really worth keeping. Of course I felt like I loved everything in here as I came across it or had the thought that it could be useful. I kept having to remind myself that if I hadn't used it recently that I probably wasn't going to anytime soon. Once I saw how much space I was creating, I started feeling better about the purge.
One of my biggest purges was fabric. Luckily my sister-in-law Cassidee is planning a project for her Gold Award in Girl Scouts that will need a lot of fabric, so I sorted through and pulled out everything I thought she could use. I also had a huge drawer of scraps and another bag under my desk. I went through all of that and narrowed it down to a small drawer of useable scraps. I also purged a lot of the decor in here. Most of that ended up going to my sister because it just happens to match her house. I really wanted to try and have the place not look like it was the room of "leftovers." The rest of the stuff I purged went into a pile to donate to Goodwill.
The best part of the whole challenge came just a few days ago when my husband was doing some work from home and I was working on some sewing. We were both in here, spread out in our areas and not in each others way at all. The most amazing thing was that there was still plenty of room to walk around too! The room is completely functional for us now and that was the main thing I set out to accomplish.
One of the best finds in organizing the room was the 4-tier shelf I got from Lowe's. It was only $15! It fit perfectly in the closet and allowed for so much more storage space. I used a bunch of dollar store shoe boxes to organize my craft odds and ends. My sister Aspen came up with the idea for the cute labels that we put on them. I made them all with my Silhouette and the designs all came from their online store. I also got a new file box for my coupons. The old one had a broken lid so it wasn't very functional. All the couponing stuff is on one shelf and should stay nice and organized. I also know exactly what is in each box now, which makes it so much easier to find everything.
Another great find was the Closetmaid rack I used for the ribbon and paint on my wall. It's original purpose is for canned goods in the pantry but it's the perfect size for all my ribbon. I don't have to search through totes and boxes to find everything anymore. And as luck would have it, I had a bunch of mason jars that my mother-in-law gave me for Christmas and found that they were the perfect thing to sort all the buttons and embellishments into. My buttons are all sorted by color now which is so awesome!
The boxes on the shelf that hold my Silhouette and scrapbooking supplies came from Ikea and really help contain everything so that I can find it. Before they were all mixed together in a big under-bed box. Everything would get lost in the big box and I never really knew what was in there. I found out that I had 3 boxes of photo corners. The funny thing is that I can't even remember the last time I used photo corners. The pots under the shelf that hold my scissors and paintbrushes also came from Ikea. I seriously love that store! They need to build one by me so I don't always have to drive to LA every time I think of something great I need. I found it so helpful to have the painting stuff accessible the other day when I went to paint something and I could see all the brushes I have as opposed to the mess of Ziploc bags they were in before.
The best thing I did in the room was rearranging the furniture. I don't know why I didn't think of it sooner but it is so much nicer in here. With the new layout, there is an "office side" of the room and a "craft side" of the room. Everything I need is in it's own area and very organized on top of that.
Overall the biggest thing I've learned from this is not to buy more craft supplies than I need for the project I'm working on. I have so much stuff - mostly fabric - that I bought just because it was on sale. Most of it will probably never get used and ended up going in a donate pile. If I can keep that in mind in the future, I know that it will be a lot easier to maintain this room.
The greatest piece of advice I can give you in tackling an organizing project of your own is that you NEED to get rid of things. If you haven't used something recently, it needs to go. If it's not functional, it must go. If it's not your style, let it go. The thing is that if you decide a year from now you want it again, there will probably be something better available. It's not worth the clutter to hang on to things because it might be useful.
I will also be linking up at these parties.