Sunday, July 15, 2012

How to make your own organizing system

This is a re-post.  I was asked how I make these organizing units.

 I have spent a lot of time re-organizing. If I spent half the time actually scrapping that I do re-organizing my scrap space my albums would be full by now and I would have run out of photos to scrap.

My latest project was re-organizing my Stickles. I loved the CD case I had for storage. It spun around and stored my bottles upside down so they were always ready to use, but it didn't even store half the amount of bottles I had so, I spent an afternoon making this storage unit using cross stitch mesh I got at Wal-mart and cutting it up to fit into this drawer I got at Target.

I love how many it holds, even though it still was not big enough for all the bottles I had, it still works better.

The drawer slides right into one of the shelves on my Jetmax cubes.

To find the bottles I wanted easier, I added a blob of Stickles on the bottom of each bottle so I know exactly what they will look like on my projects.  I can fit 60 bottles in this drawer.

What was left I put back into the CD storage case I had. This storage container holds 36 bottles. I really did like the idea of the double layers of storage on this unit.  The top layer lifts up so you can get access to both layers.  Both layers also rotate around so you can see everything. I just needed something larger.  This one is now holding my overflow of Stickles that did not fit in the drawer unit I made. I have 22 bottles in it now.
The above was an old post.  This is how I made these.

I started with plastic canvas you can get anywhere, I got this at Wal-Mart for about $0.39 a sheet.  It is 10 1/2 inches by 13 1/2 inches. You want to get 7 square, this means there are 7 little squares in the mesh per inch. I tried this with 10 square, it does not work as well.

Once you have this, decide what you are going to store your items in; a drawer, a iris cart, a photo storage box, etc.. this will decide how many items you can store and what measurements you need to cut your plastic canvas to.

I wanted to use these plastic drawers I found at Target. They fit perfectly into my Jetmax storage cubes.  So once you know what size you have to work with.  Measure the inside.  My inside measurements were 12 3/4  inches by 6 inches.  So I cut my strips of plastic canvas to these measurements  Height of my strips is 10 squares high or 1 9/16 of an inch but it is easier just to count 10 squares and cut along the next square so you have 10 full squares showing.

Now measure what it is you want to store.  If are are storing these little bottles: Stickles, Re-Inker bottles, or alcohol Ink bottles that 1 inch squares works out. If this fits perfectly into your storage unit then you can start cutting.  If you measurements are a little off, like mine were. I could store 5 bottles one way and 12 bottles the other way but would still have a little extra space so I had to adjust my edges.

I left one block to start with, then cut every 7th block, ending with 2 squares leftover.  This works well for keeping my bottles standing up.  If I cut exact measurements to fit my bottles, they would wobble around in the drawer when the unit was put together.

So count 6 blocks and on the 7th block cut up 5 blocks.  These cuts will be your cross sections to assembly the pieces together.

On the longer strips I started with 7 blocks then cut on the 8 block, (again because my measurements did not match up perfectly so this was the overflow) then for the rest I counted 6 blocks and on the 7th block I cut up 5 blocks.

Now just keep cutting all your strips until you have enough for your project.  To assembly, simply start lining the rows up and add the opposite strip to the top, kind of like a jigsaw puzzle.  If you want this to be more supportive, you can add a dab of hot glue to where each piece of mesh meets.

Here are some photos of the units I have made and how I store them.

This is a Jetmax cube or Recollections Modular Storage Cube with the drawers from Target.
 This one took a while to make but I love it!  It holds ALL my cartridges (about 111) with room for a total of 119 stored 7 rows across by 17 rows back.
 This drawer has my Stickles and Stampin Up! re-inker bottles, 60 bottles in each.

The bottom drawer has my glue gun, glue sticks and alcohol ink bottles (60 bottles)
All the drawers slide in and out very easily and if  wanted to take an entire collection of something to a crop these drawers will fit inside in Iris clambox case.
Hope this helps you get your supplies organized.

Etsy Shop
Stampin Up


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  2. I am at awe at all of your Cricut carts. I have 29 and in a bad way looking for a new way to store them. The storage case I have now only suppose to hold 16. I didn't know stickles had so many colors. I only have 12. I am so glad I found your blog.

  3. Hi Malou22u ... I did the same thing with cricut cartridges except I put it in a snapware ribbon container bought at Michaels which is two layers. That way it is easy to carry to crops. The top layer I put in the cartridges and the bottom layer holds the books. I had to use the 10 square as that is the only plastic canvas I had ...

    I made little cards in front with labels with a label maker to say which cartride and made little dividers for the books. I actually use the cardboard dividers that come with the photo boxes from Michaels but you could just as easily make some from card stock or cereal boxes or paperpad backing.