Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Stamp Out Chaos: Paper, Ink, and Stamps

Hello, hello friends!

Happy Wednesday and welcome to another installment of Stamp Out Chaos.  In case you missed our first post on this series, you can catch up here.

This week, my dear friend Lindsay and I are tackling supply basics- stamps, ink, card stock, paper- the foundation of many paper crafts.  I wanted to tackle this area first because it's so important to have these supplies handy and functional.   I have lots to share, so let's begin!

Stamp storage 
For my stamp storage, I use the Avery Elle envelope/Fridge Binz system that Jennifer McGuire introduced about a year ago.  I have two Fridge Binz full of stamps which fit perfectly in two of the cubby openings in my Expedit.  I apologize that I don't have photos of this system in place in my space.

I set up this system last year and it works so well, that I didn't even touch it in preparation for this week... When evaluating your space, take stock of which systems are working for you and which are not.  Focus your time in efforts on improving the ones that are not working.

Card Stock
Ahh card stock...  I use this supply most of all.  It's really the starting point, so I wanted to get the right solution for me in place.  Previously, I was keeping my full sheets of card stock in one of the Expedit openings using a Large 4 sort divider from the Container Store to keep it upright.  It worked ok, but it was really best suited for full sheets of paper and scraps needed to be stored elsewhere.... enter these...

I was storing all my scraps in Iris drawers like what you see above.  I had 4 sets of drawers and each drawer was a different color (ROYGBIV), plus a few drawer for patterned paper.  The problem with this set up, for me, was I was not reaching for these scraps.  Most of the time, I would just cut another piece of card stock rather than go hunt for a smaller piece... AND it took up a lot of space. And putting my scraps away? Forget about it!  They would pile up and threaten to take over my workspace. 

I spent some time considering my habits and which organizational tendencies came naturally to me.  As it turns out, I am really good at dropping things and piling things.  Keeping my strengths in mind, I ended up going with an Elfa File Cart from the Container Store. 

This works so well for me because it's already built for 8.5 x 11 paper and it makes the most of my organizational strengths.  I just drop the paper into the files and pile the small scraps in the drawers below.  I love that the paper files are open and easily assessable, plus it's on wheels and can wheel out or tuck back under my workstation.  Here is my cart in action. 

I keep full sheets and large scraps (card base size or bigger) in the file folders any scraps smaller than that go into the drawers below. One tweak I made to the cart was to adjust the number of sliding drawers.  The unit comes with one 1-runner drawer and one 2-runner drawer; I opted to purchase two additional 1- runner drawers so I could devote a drawer to colors, a drawer to white & cream, and a drawer for neutrals. 

I printed some labels for the drawers on card stock and slipped them into an Elfa drawer label holder.  Now this unit was a little pricey at $99.00, regular price, but I did purchase it during the annual Elfa Sale which The Container Store holds each January-February, so that certainly helped.    

Patterned Paper

Next I moved onto patterned paper.  I don't use patterned paper as much as cardstock and I took an opportunity to purge my stash considerably.  I also trimmed down my scraps as well as paper patterns that I thought were particularly well suited for card making to 6 x 6 sheets and placed them in a plastic bin that I picked up at the Target dollar spot.  I also placed my 6 x 6 pads in one of the plastic bins which will sit on my desk. I placed smaller scraps in a paper mache suitcase shaped box that I also picked up at Target. 

The patterned paper that I left in 12 x 12 sheets I placed in a Medium Multi-Purpose bin from the Container Store. 

12 x 12 sticker and accent sheets were also placed in a small multi-purpose bin and placed on a shelf in the Expedit. 


Before I blew up my craft room, I was using a wooden cassette holder I found on Craigslist to store my ink.  While this worked pretty well, some of the slots were not tall enough to hold thicker ink pads like Hero Arts Shadow ink.  

I decided to gather all my full size ink pads together and stack them on my old Making Memories Embellishment Center. 

I took some time to label the sides of the ink pads with my handy dandy label maker.  

I love having all my full size pads at arms length and putting them away is super easy- just stack and go.

I store my ink cubes in a plastic supply box that I picked up at Hobby Lobby.  Three cubes fit in each opening.  I am in the process of labeling the sides of the cubes.  This system is perfect for crafting on the go and fits neatly into drawers. 

 So whew, that was a lot to review, so I have just two more pictures to share... a little card I made with all my newly organized "basic" supplies. 

Using some of my card stock scraps, I put together this thank you card.  The sentiment and stars are from Paper Smooches Bold Buzzwords stamped in black ink.  

That's all for me today.  Don't forget to stop by Lindsay's blog for her organizational brilliance.  We will be back in two weeks time with ideas and solutions for organizing embellishments!  

Thanks for visiting!


  1. Great tips for organizing inks and papers, Katie! Thanks for sharing! And your card for today is super fun! Love the bold colors!

  2. Super cute card and great organizing ideas! I spy Lego in your craft space... :) I have a kiddo who builds me creations too!

  3. Very nice to see the way you organize. Thanks.


Your thoughts mean so much to me. Thank you so much for taking the time to let me know you stopped by!