I've been hanging around many message boards. It seems that some people have a hard time organising paper so I thought I would share my process. To me, organising paper isn't so much about how to sort it into piles but about understanding how I create.
The last craft rooms have taught me a few things about myself. I don't think 'wow, this would look perfect with manufacture X.' I don't scrap themes. (mostly) I don't really care about patterns. I do think, ' this would look perfect with that colour.'
I'm totally colour motivated. I choose colours based on what's going on in the picture, how I want a layout to feel, how I feel, what's already on my desk, the weather ... I will choose to scrap one picture over another based on the colours in it. This means it makes sense for me to sort by colour. My categories are: Red, pink, Orange, Yellow, Green, teal, Blue, Purple, black, brown/cream, rainbow. I added teal since I found it was taking too much time to decide whether something was blue or green. Rainbow is the last hope.
So my take on some of the issues I've seen discussed.
I ask myself, which side do I want to use and then file it accordingly.
I'm often a 'B' side scrapper. Meaning, the patterns on the back often appeal more to me than the front.So, frequently the paper is filed by its backside colour. It's OK, the designer won't hunt me down for turning their paper over.
Collection Packs/Paper Stacks
I ask myself what is the predominant colour in the collection.
Here are 2 examples:
1) DCWV Lemon Flower
2) Basic Grey Oliver
Oliver seems pretty straight forward to me, it is blue. Yes, there are other colours in it but the colour which jumps out at me is blue. Lemon Flower is a bit trickier, I call it yellow. That is the colour that jumps out at me first. The non-yellow papers support the yellow ones but I can see a case for calling it black or green. Its all about how you see it.
Anyhow, once I have decided which colour is dominant that is where I put it. After some time, when are only a few papers left in the pack, I separate the pack into individual papers and file those by their colour. Scraps I keep with the pack until I break it apart and then I separate those into their colour envelopes.More on scraps another day.
Again I ask myself which colour do I see first.
This example, Bo Bunny's On the Go - Planes is a challenge. I see filing it with blue, since I would likely use it with blue papers.
Sometimes I file a piece like that one and rediscover it later when I am
I do have themed sections. These categories are almost all unfinished projects. Someday, really I mean it, cross my heart, they will get done but, I'm sure by then I will have dreamed up new ones to fill that part of the cabinet.
Food and cooking - I have an ongoing project of a family cookbook. I can't see ever finishing it completely. There's always more recipes to be tried and paper to be bought. :D
Travel - maps, destinations, places, tropical... Mauii, our cross continent trip and various excursions
Calendar - in a box in the closet (the shame of it) includes birthday, Christmas, Halloween, and any other special days in the calendar year as well as the papers for making my yearly gift calendars.
Wedding - I still haven't done my wedding album.*gasp* I'm completely intimidated by it. I'm so ashamed maybe by our 15th annivesary ...
Vellum, mulberry, lace, high gloss, fabric, water colour, and all of those kinds of things have their own sections and dividers in the cabinet,
The rainbow category
I really try to keep this section empty, at the moment there are 3 sheets of paper in it but sometimes a paper will defy categorisation.
and the wrap up (finally)
It wasn't that time consuming to set this up. I have found that when I just went with my gut the paper was put into the 'right' section. When I spent a lot of time agonising over it somehow that paper was lost until the next shuffling round. Does that make sense?
Speaking of shuffling, I read, quite sometime ago, the perfect justification to regularly reorganise my paper. She was saying, and my apologies for not taking the time to look up the thread at Twopeas, that she used more of her stash when she moved the current half of her paper to the back and the back to the front. I tried it and it does work for me.
Way back everything was divided by manufacturer. I still have a couple of these namely Basic Grey and Scenic Route. These ones are so large but I do use them, honest. lol Lately I've been thinking about splitting those up too. If I do I will do another post, this time with pictures.
I hope there was enough content in this post to justify the time it's taken you to read all of it.
Have fun sorting.
PS if this post is where you're at there's the My Love Affair With The Label Marker post too, though some of the links maybe dead now.