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Your challenge this week is craft organization, including both of all your supplies and equipment and the room or area where you do your crafting. Craft Organization Challenge: How to organize crafts and your craft room, with step by step instructions. Part of the 52 Week Organized Home Challenge on Home Storage Solutions 101. use this Pin it button to save to Pinterest 2K+ Doing crafts or any other hobby is one of the pleasures in life, and I think an organized home should make room for such joys. I don't know about you, but making something with my hands and letting my creative juices flow brings me fulfillment, at least most of the time. The only time it doesn't bring me happiness and contentment is when I get frustrated because I can't find what I need to complete my project, or everything is such a mess I don't have a space to work on it properly. This week we're going to work on those issues to make crafting the fun, pleasurable experience it should be without crowding out the rest of your home, or driving you nuts from disorganization.uring the Craft Organization Challenge we will work on both your own supplies, as well as your children's art and craft supplies. Further, this article is not really craft specific, but can be applied to just about any hobby or craft you like to do, from quilting, sewing, knitting, crochet, cross-stich, embroidery, beading, jewelry making, scrapbooking, painting, drawing, model making, and on and on. Step 1: Declutter Craft Supplies & Gather Everything Into One Area The first step in the Craft Organization Challenge is to gather all of your supplies and equipment into one area, and then declutter. If you've got a craft or sewing room, or another area in your home designated as the place you do your hobby activities, make sure everything goes into that room or area and declutter it at the same time you deal with the equipment and other materials. It may be hard to let go of some of this material, since at least somewhere in your mind at one point you envisioned yourself working on these items. However, decluttering is often necessary, especially if you find you can't find what you need in the vast quantities you own, or the supplies are overflowing their designated space and making piles and stacks all over the place. I often find myself having way more of a certain item than I can ever realistically use because I love the idea of the project, although I haven't found time to do the project. I touched on that issue more in my article about emotions that can chain you to clutter, especially emotion #3, letting go of the dreams the clutter symbolizes. Here's my main list of craft items to declutter from your home: getting rid of craft and hobby clutter hall of fame Items no longer usable, such as dried up glue or markers If you've got lots of duplicates, keep the highest quality items and ditch those you know you would be annoyed to use because the supply is not good, or the equipment doesn't work well Supplies and equipment for projects that are either too easy or way too difficult for your skill level (yes, you can stretch and grow in your hobby, but be realistic with the amount of time and skill you've got) Get rid of the stuff you honestly just don't want to do anymore, either because you're not interested in that type of craft, or that particular pattern or kit no longer looks like as much fun as you first imagined Uncompleted projects that you know you can't or won't complete You'll need to keep decluttering until you can fit everything into the space you've designated for them. You may have one decluttering pass, and then begin putting things into containers in Step 4 below and realize you need to declutter more. That's fine. Come back and do some more until you can fit everything into the space you've designated. You can see a full list of ideas and decluttering missions for crafts here, plus several missions and before and after photos from others who've done these missions already. Step 2: Sort Remaining Craft Supplies Into Categories Once you've gotten rid of the stuff you no longer want, the next step in the Craft Organization Challenge is to categorize everything you've got left. Obviously, certain hobbies and crafts require certain materials, while others require different stuff. Separate the knitting from the painting supplies, etc. Further, categorize things for each separate hobby into the supplies (things that will get used up during the making of the craft), and the equipment and tools (the items used over and over to make the craft). Later, in step 4 you'll containerize these items by category, keeping like with like as much as possible. Step 3: Clear An Area Or Room To Do Your Crafts In As mentioned above, some people are lucky enough to have a whole room or area devoted to doing their crafts or hobby projects, while others don't. No matter which category you fall into, you've got to designate a space or area to do your crafts in. If you don't have a whole room devoted, chances are the space you use will be used for something else part of the time too, but that is OK. Know, in your mind, that at least part of the time that is your crafting area and make sure it is ready for your use in that fashion.

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Think what you'd ideally have around you while you do your craft. Do you need a large flat work space, like a large crafting table? Or do you just need a comfortable seat and a good light over your shoulder? Clear such a space for yourself, and set it up to work for your needs. Step 4: Utilize Craft Storage Solutions To Containerize Everything Finally, the fourth step in the Craft Organization Challenge is to stock your supplies, tools and equipment around you to make them handy and easy to access as you work. Typically, the best way to do this for crafts is to containerize them, since they've got lots of small parts to them that need to be kept together. Ideally, you'll have your craft supplies, tools and equipment stored in the area you've got designated for your crafts. If this won't work, get creative (including using some of the ideas below) to figure out how to get the needed supplies near where you are when you need them. Your goal should be to give all of your craft equipment, tools and supplies a well defined space, so everything has a designated home and you can access and find it in a reasonable amount of time when you need it. Underutilized Spaces Perfect For Craft Storage Don't forget about these great spaces for storing craft supplies: Wall space, especially above, below, and to the sides of your designated workstation Extra closets On the back of the door, such as using an over the door organizer Containerize Your Crafting Supplies & Equipment The best way to store craft supplies is within containers, either open or closed, depending on the type of item you're trying to organize and store. The types of containers you need will depend on the amount of supplies you have, and what kind of craft you do. For example, if you sew you'll need to organize and store patterns, buttons, zippers, fabric and thread for instance. Or, if you do beading you've got lots of little beads to keep organized and contained. You need to choose what will work for your particular needs, but here are some general ideas: craft cabinet Organize Small Parts With Drawers [Click here to purchase on Amazon] Little drawers or small containers for small items (including old baby food jars) Clear storage containers, especially with drawers and/or that are stackable are helpful because then you can see what's in them, without having to open each one to find something Pegboards Ziplock bags (gallon sized ones can even be reinforced with masking tape on the side and hole punched for three ring binders to help organize and sort small stuff) Over the door shoe organizers are great for holding small stuff, or kids' art supplies, for example Rolling storage containers, can be rolled into a work area during the project and rolled back away into another area when not working on your craft project (and many of these can be stored under a desk for out of the way storage when not in use) Have Containers For In-Progress Crafts Don't forget to designate some containers for your current, in progress, projects too. Most projects can't be completed in one sitting, and you've got to put things away between sessions to keep your kids from getting into it, or so you can use the space in other ways in the mean time. Create a container that can hold the supplies, partially completed project, and any equipment and tools needed for it, as well as instructions and a note to yourself saying where you finished. You may want this container to be portable, so you can move it around with you, especially if do your projects in several places. An added bonus to having such designated in progress containers is that it limits how many craft projects you can start at once. That way you get some projects completed, not just started and then abandoned. Tell Me How The Craft Organization Challenge Is Going For You How to store fabric: file it! I would love to know how this week's Craft Organization Challenge is going. You can tell me your progress or give me more ideas for how you've organized both the items and area of your home in the comments below. I also would love to see before and after pictures of your organized crafts and/or craft room, once you've completed the challenge. Submit your pictures (up to four per submission) and blog posts and get featured in the Creative Storage Solutions Hall of Fame. You've worked hard to get organized, so now here's your chance to show off! I've already got some tips here on the site subArt Craft Tools, Material Supply Tips & Recommendations

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Artists know that you need more than just a great subject or inspiration to create art. The right art tools, art supplies and art materials can give you the freedom to bring your artistic vision to life. Hear from our authors & artists as they discuss their favorite art materials such as brushes, palettes, pastel primers, art studio lighting, knives, canvases and substrates – helping you bring your most to your next piece. Ribbon-Fantasy-detail-by-Arlene-Steinberg Colored pencil can create luminous effects and subtle hue shifts. Arlene Steinberg shows how to achieve these with an Icaraus Art heated drawing board. One of Birgit O'Connor's color-mixing charts Birgit O’Connor’s Color-Mixing Chart Create your own color-mixing charts to save time finding the right color mix when you're painting and to keep a record of the color mixes you want in your painting arsenal. pastel-journal-cd-R1191 | Artistsnetwork.com Give (or Get) the Pastel Journal 2015 Annual CD or Downloads | Pastel Inspiration at Your Fingertips Looking for a holiday gift for a fellow pastelist … or perhaps even yourself? Give (or get) the gift of hundreds of pages of pastel inspiration, tips and techniques in one searchable, printable and portable location—the Pastel Journal 2015 Annual CD or Individual Issues Downloads (pdf). Formatted for Mac and PC compatibility, both the CD and downloads... Yellow Pigments and Their Stories The first use of yellow pigments goes back to ancient times and, through the ages, artists have found additional pigments for yellows. Guide to Art Paper, Canvas, & Panels | ArtistsNetwork.com Guide to Art Paper, Canvas and Panels: Find the Right Substrate for Your Artwork Learn everything you need to know about the types of art paper, plus canvases and panels in this article from The Artist's Magazine. Step 11 for Glazing in Oils Glazing in Oils: A Flower Demo Growing & Pruning & Glazing Garden of Joy: Eleven Steps and Several Diversions Jane Jones writes out a step-by-step demonstration of how to paint her stunning, large-scale work, Garden of Joy (scroll to the bottom to see the completed piece.) In these 11 steps, she demonstrates glazing in oils, using Photoshop, editing composition and much... Art supplies on a budget | ArtistsNetwork.com Art Supplies on a Budget While I never advise using cheap, inferior art supplies, I do have my tricks. Before you go off bargain shopping, let me tell you what not to do. Nightfall in TX (watercolor on paper) by Frank Eber | plein air painting 8 Plein Air Painting Tips From Today’s Watercolor Pros Painting on site, a watercolorist has to overcome many obstacles beyond mosquitoes, dirt, sun and wind. We went straight to the pros to glean the joys and pains of plein air painting, and received expert tips no artist should do without. Find a few of these gems—and dazzling watercolors—here! McKinley-Opalescence_12x16_square Pastel Pick of the Week | The Landscape Paintings of Richard McKinley In his 40-plus years of experience painting the landscape, Richard McKinley has hauled his painting gear uphill, downhill, through woods, over fences, along roadsides and everywhere in between to capture the essence of a scene en plein air in pastel or oil. He has been to locations far and wide to conduct this artistic... TAM_experticon Lightfast Paint and Lightfastness Ratings Dear Duct Tape Users: Is it Duct or Duck? We don’t want you to be confused, so we will explain. The first name for Duct Tape was DUCK. During World War II the U.S. Military needed a waterproof tape to keep the moisture out of ammunition cases. So, they enlisted the Johnson and Johnson Permacel Division to manufacture the tape. Because it was waterproof, everyone referred to it as “duck” tape (like water off a duck’s back). Military personnel discovered that the tape was good for lots more than keeping out water. They used it for Jeep repair, fixing stuff on their guns, strapping equipment to their clothing... the list is endless. After the War, the housing industry was booming and someone discovered that the tape was great for joining the heating and air conditioning duct work. So, the color was changed from army green to the silvery color we are familiar with today and people started to refer to it as “duct tape*.” Therefore, either name is appropriate. Today, Duck® brand Tape is manufactured by ShurTech. After thoroughly familiarizing ourselves with the hundreds of duct tapes on the market, we have found Duck® brand Tape to be the most consistent in quality. And, we are delighted with the large array of colors that they manufacture (including camo tape and new “X-Treme Tape” which comes in hot day-glo colors). Jim and I do lots of appearances promoting Duck® brand Tape and do so without reservation. Therefore, we go by both The Duct Tape Guys, and The Duck Tape Guys. And, we use the words Duck and Duct interchangeably throughout our web site. So, whether you call it Duct Tape or Duck Tape... you are still using the “Ultimate Power Tool” in our estimation. --- Jim and Tim, the Duck/Duct Tape Guys Please explain lightfast paint. To what degree are finished works in the various media (oil, watercolor, acrylic, pastel and so forth) affected by direct or indirect sunlight? Why does protective glass seem to be recommended more for some media than others?