Thursday, October 31, 2013

This Month In My Scrap Room - October 2013

This Month in My Scrap Room is based a regular series of posts by Sue Althouse, who graciously allowed me to use her idea on my own blog. Each month you'll find me documenting the little (and big) things that I'm working on to make my scrapbooking space more efficient so I can spend less time looking for things and more time playing with paper!

It's Halloween and my scrap room is looking just a bit...spooky.

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Seriously, guys, it is a big scary mess, and not just because of the Christmas album festivities that have been going on here this week (by the way, the Simple Stories Sn@p album giveaway is still open). I really haven't been doing much beyond basic cleaning between projects (oh, so, so many projects!) in my office lately, which is why July was the last time I posted one of these scrap room updates. There were a few things that just couldn't wait any longer, though, so I've launched into a few organizational tasks that'll be ongoing here for the next little while.

This month most of my projects centered around the two Alex carts that are currently behind my scrapping desk. I used to store punches and washi tape in them, but apparently the weight of the items in the drawers was more than they could take and, well, this happened...

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The drawers look a little sad, don't they? I think they'll be easy to repair, but first I had to get those heavy punches out of them (the washi will move when I've finished making its new home) and into something that was a little more sturdy. I researched punch storage ideas on Pinterest and considered everything from an over-the-door shoe holder to curtain rods on the wall before deciding on something super easy- 12x12 plastic Iris cases in a set of wire mesh cubes that I picked up at Target.

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I already had the Iris cases on hand and had been meaning to clean some old product out of them anyway, so except for the wire cubes (about $25), I didn't have to buy anything new to do this! The wire cubes now live in my scrap room closet (the Antonius and Raskog carts that were in there are destined for a new home in my scrap room as soon as I finish another construction project I have planned, also with existing items), and the punches are sorted roughly by theme- animals, basic shapes, holidays, etc. The other Iris cases hold either design team product that I have to keep separate from the rest of my supplies or unfinished projects.

One of my two Alex carts (the one that didn't end up with broken drawers) is destined for my Mom's scrap room as soon as I've cleared it out, and I'm going to use the remaining one to hold lighter items for die cutting. I've already filled one drawer with 6"x9" felt (I love this sampler pack from Benzie's on Etsy) and foam sheets, and a couple of other drawers hold dies, other die-cutable mediums like glitter and cork pads from DCWV, and Silhouette mats and tools.

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I was also super inspired by this ink storage post by Jennifer McGuire, especially the part where she showed all of her ink pads "filed" in the drawer of an Alex cart. I don't have nearly the collection that Jen does- it's her job after all!- so all of my ink pads fit into one of the deeper Alex drawers with room to spare.

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I'm also slowly adding labels to the side of my ink pads showing the color of each, and every once in a while I'll turn on an episode of Stargate, pick up some ink pads and labels, and get a stack of them labeled in a super low-key and no-hurry fashion.

I also tweaked my video setup this month. For most things the Nikon D5100 is great, but for kit videos where the focus changes constantly it was making some viewers a little seasick. There's not enough light in the room (even with the softboxes) to set the f-stop high enough to have everything from the top of the desk up to the lens in focus, so I've had to add my iPhone (which for some reason is better about that than the DSLR!) back into the mix. I'll still be using the D5100 for process videos where everything is flat on the desk (it has more storage space than my iPhone, which is why I switched in the first place), but I've got an extra mounting arm in place now so that I can use the iPhone when needed and rotate the mounting arm out of the way when I need to use the D5100.

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The setup here is super simple- a Manfrotto Super Clamp attached to the D5100's monopod, a Manfrotto Heavy Duty Flex Arm that attaches to the Super Clamp, and then an iPhone tripod mount that attaches to the flex arm. I've already filmed two kit videos with it and it works great, so hopefully this will be a good solution.

During the summer I was alternately scrapping up a storm in my office or spending time outside, but now that it's getting colder I'll be working on a little more organization. I have several other projects on the radar for the winter months, including:
  • Build a new stand-up scrapping table using two bookcases and a sheet of MDF (that I already have!).
  • Build a dedicated computer desk separate from my scrapping table (no more mist splatters on the iMac screen!).
  • Install pegboard on the back of the scrap room door to hold washi tape, markers, and other items.
  • Clear out all the "decorative" items, including the tissue paper pom poms (you can see those here) to freshen up the look of the whole space.
  • New paint, mist, Distress Stain, and embossing powder storage (also using existing stuff- yeah, baby!).
I'll have details and some in-progress photos to share for these items in future scrap room posts, so stay tuned!