January’s Cool Tools: Containers!

Rated: E (for everyone)

This last weekend, I declared that it was “Get A Grip Weekend”! I have been so disorganized recently because of my show – I couldn’t seem to get my head around tidying up.  Though I am never as organized as I would like, I do love a good container and I thought I would share some of my favorites with you.

I have always collected beads. During college, I used the pretty colored rectangular plastic containers (which are still around) for my tiny treasures. Then I moved to the stacking, screw type ones, which definitely have limitations. The stack I bought a few years ago can be “fussy” and the top will screw only on one of the rings. When creating with beads, this is not a good feature – I can’t count how many times have I had themopen and Jasmine decides to help and we have beads everywhere….Then I found these containers at The Container Store. The are called Lock-ups and come in several sizes. They each have a top and lock on to each other. You buy each container separately, so they are more expensive, but they are well worth it.

I do a lot of hand sewing and have acquired many acrylic templates, as well as the ones I make myself. This all translates to many small bits, requiring organization. Another cool item I buy at The Container Store, is this little handled guy. It’s called a portable project case. Can you see – there’s a clip on the lid for papers and there’s enough depth for small projects. In the case below, I have all the templates for hexagons and their parts, as well as a few sewn bits.

Peter and I were shopping at Staples the other day and I found a new holder for pens, pencils, scissors and other office junk. The one I have had for many, many years is in two parts. If I have a fat pen in there and pull it out, the top section comes out with it and spills supplies all over my desk. It’s very annoying! This design is one piece and has all sorts of fun pockets. It is appropriately called a desk organizer.

I have been trying to trim down the magazines I have and organize the ones I keep. I also like to “decorate” my office things so they look pretty. I found these cardboard magazine holders in Ikea (and boy do they have great storage things too!!!). They come flat, are plain white, and you assemble them, so they are really cheap. I used some pretty scrapbooking paper, so it’s a bit stiff, and decoupaged strips on the ends of the boxes. I was making one the other night and thought I should use these in the kitchen for cooking magazines. I save all the Christmas and Thanksgiving issues to look at each year and thought I might group them in their own holders.

If I had to choose one place to help me contain my stuff, it would be The Container Store. I discovered them when we lived in Colorado. It was a 45 minute drive, so I didn’t get there often, but I so enjoyed perusing their items. Now I live about 5 minutes away and I have to pace myself. A close second would be Ikea!

My favorite magazine dealing with this topic, is Cloth Paper Scissors Studio magazine, which comes out 4 times a year. It is full of fun studios and ideas from simple to extravagant. I much prefer their layout (crisp, clean, focused) to the other magazine that also deals with studios and organization.

Time is passing and I really should get back to tidying the studio….. hope these ideas help you with your precious tidbits!!!

2 thoughts on “January’s Cool Tools: Containers!

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