Welcome to the Party, Karin!

We’ve been featuring cards from Karin Åkesdotter all month. She’s shown to us how fabulously well she can showcase a variety of styles and products – all with equal aplomb. Today, she’s back with one more January guest post.

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How great is this idea for a birthday invitation or party activity? A photo of the birthday boy provides the perfect canvas and a handful of die-cut accents created with the Photo Booth Props Die-namics (slide them into a coordinating envelope you’ve created with the You’ve Got Mail Die-namics!) allows the recipient to have some fun dressing up the man of the hour.

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Wait, did I say guest post? I guess technically, this is Karin’s last guest post but that’s only because with our February release countdown (which starts in just two days!) Karin is joining us as the newest member of the design team. Welcome, Karinwe’re so glad to have you.

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Watercolor Dream

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When it comes to beautifully unique backgrounds, Barbara can’t be topped. She’s got a way with combining subtle colors and textures into a background that provides interest to the card without overwhelming the layers positioned on top.

The Tiny Hearts Background is the perfect vehicle for adding heat embossing and a stunning watercolor resist look created with MFT ink refills. Background stamps and stencils allow for so many different mixed media techniques!

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We’d love to see what you’re doing with MFT background stamps and stencils! Make sure to tag #mftstamps when you share your projects on social media so we can give you some love.

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Wear Your Heart on Your Sleeve

PrintBefore we get to today’s Creative Challenge, I’ve got a long list of winner’s to share from last week’s 5 Days to an Organized Crafty Stash series! If you’re one of the lucky ones listed, please email Susan with your name and mailing address so we can get those packages shipped out as soon as possible! Make sure to include MFT Prize Package # Winner in the subject line so we can process these quickly :) Ready?

Prize Package #1 Winners: Stamps

Tara Chaussee (commented January 19 9:54 am)

Denise Evans (commented January 19 4:44 pm)

Prize Package #2 Winners: Stencils

Michel E. (commented January 21 8:04 pm)

cathy (commented January 20 8:32 pm)

Prize Package #3 Winners: Die-namics

Ann (commented January 22 10:44 pm)

Susan Powell (commented January 23 11:06 am)

Prize Package #4 Winners: Card Stock

Shanice (commented January 23 12:01 pm)

Sabrina Radican (commented January 22 3:25 pm)

Grand Prize Winner

Karin Sylvester (commented January 24 7:14 am)

Congratulations to ALL the winners! We had such an amazing week and hope you’re all feeling just a bit more in control of your stash. We have so much more planned for the months ahead – stay with us for so much more excitement!

Now, onto the challenge!

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Card makers are a pretty sentimental bunch overall and we think that is a great thing. We spend our time showing family and friends (and sometimes strangers!) that we care deeply for them. This month, we’ve challenged our team to embrace this season of love full-force by creating projects that feature love in the most literally way: with lots of hearts. Any color, any material – hearts will stand strong as a dominant design element that simply can’t be missed.

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Kimberly dyed hemp cord to create this stringed delight. The Stitchable Heart STAX Die-namics is the perfect choice for a look like this – the holes are already included for easy placement of your brads and cord!

Ready to see what the rest of the team has up their sleeves? Click on through for inspiration to that will keep you crafting into Valentine’s day and beyond.

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5 Days to an Organized Crafty Stash – Ink Storage

Print Print Here we are at the end of the week! I trust you’ve got a weekend of organizing on your to-do list. If not, we’ve given you enough ideas to get you motivated to find some time to work on your creative spot!

Today we’ll focus on all of those glorious inks and refills that you hoard have and how you can get them organized.

If you love to “get inky” as the saying goes, you’ll love the ideas you’ll find here today, and I can GUARANTEE that you are going to super duper puffy heart the Grand Prize we are offering today. But I digress! We’ve got some inspiring and versatile ideas to tame your ink obsession.

Ink and Refill Storage and Organization Solutions

Let’s start simply with a concept we’ve been hitting home ALL week long. It’s important to label everything and your ink pads are no exception. Take a look at how Stephanie labels her ink pads for quick identification and a perfect match.

Stephanie

Amy has a great way to label her reinkers. She punches a small card stock circle and adheres it to the top. I love how she keeps the circle punch right there in the ink drawer for easy access.

Amy

Keeping it together is a smart way to increase productivity and lessen frustration. Jodi keeps her used daubers with the coordinating ink colors. And they are labeled, too. OF COURSE!

Jodi

Kimberly keeps baskets handy filled with her mini blending tools and foam blending tools so that they are easy to grab in the midst of creative inspiration!

Kimberly

Barbara stores her inks upside down to keep the ink pad juicy. Her labels even read correctly in the upside down position!

Barbara

Cindy’s inks create a beautiful rainbow as she orders her colors and ink types according to hue. This makes searching for just the right pink (or red, blue, or green!) an easy task.

Cindy

Lucky Michele! Her husband created this custom ink shelf with space for pads and reinkers side-by-side. It’s 15″ long x 10″ tall, 3 ¾” deep with about 3″ between each shelf. As she claims, “He needs to make a bigger one!”

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Julie’s collection is seriously *gasp* worthy! Her inks are stored in this Standard Ink Pad Holder from Stamp-n-Storage. Since the storage units comes in natural birch, she was able to customize them with a little paint to fit the dark espresso color of the rest of the furniture in her craft palace.

Julie

Sharon’s Distress Combo Holder comes from Stamp-n-Storage as well. And can I say Holy Crapunzel! There are slots for ink pads, reinkers, AND markers. Seriously. I die.

Sharon

Melody purchased her handy storage solution from our friends at OrganizeMore, a family owned business in the hills of Tennessee. This 60 Ink Pad Organizer has room for her ink pads, reinkers, and sponges.

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MFT Founder Kim is a huge fan of her Pro Ink/ReInk Organizer from OrganizeMore. There are 64 slots for ink with 64 corresponding cubbies for the reinkers. Isn’t it dreamy? Wouldn’t you like to have one, too? Keep. Reading.

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Ready to hear about that AWESOME, AMAZING, and downright ASTOUNDING grand prize?

One commenter on today’s post will receive the following GRAND PRIZE in celebration of our 5 Days to an Organized Crafty Stash series: 50+ Hybrid Ink Pads from My Favorite Things and the Pro Ink/ReInk Organizer fromOrganizeMore!! Are you still breathing?

And just so YOU aren’t left out of all of the awesomeness, OrganizeMore is offering every single one of you this discount code : MFT15. This offer will be valid until Saturday, January 31st, and will give you a 10% discount on your entire order (before shipping).

Here’s how to enter for your chance to win our Grand Prize: Leave a comment on this blog post letting us know which tip from this blog or the blogs of the Design Team members was your biggest AH-HA! moment this week. All winners from the blog series this week will be announced next week! Who knows? It could be YOU!

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Now scurry off to the blogs of the Design Team to see what else they have up their sleeves when it comes to their ink storage.

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blank dividerLet’s all get organized, shall we?

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blank dividerCreative Ambassador for My Favorite Things

5 Days to an Organized Crafty Stash – Card Stock Storage

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Day four is here! Are you EXCITED? Print

We are having such a blast sharing our ideas with you this week. Let the craft room purge and organization commence!

Today we shift our focus to the bread and butter of our hobby –  card stock.

The card base is the foundation for our handmade greetings, and while we often cover it with delicious stamping, adorable die cuts, and creative techniques, it wouldn’t  and couldn’t come together without card stock. From storage and labeling to scraps and inspiration, we have a myriad of options to get you thinking!

Card Stock Storage and Organization Solutions

Whether your card stock supply is small or mighty, it’s important to have a dedicated spot for keeping everything organized.

One simple way to store card stock in an easy-to-access way is to utilize a file drawer and hanging file folders like Melody does. Standard hanging file folders comes with plastic tabs for easy labeling. Melody stores hers by color, but you could alphabetize as well. It’s all in what works for you!

Melody

Michele uses shelf space to display her card stock. It looks awfully pretty, and it’s easy to see and get to in a flash.

Michele

If you have a larger craft room, you could use office mail slots for card stock storage like Cindy does. Scour thrift shops and second hand stores for pieces like this. And you’ll notice that Cindy still needs to work on labeling everything. A true testament to the fact that craft room organization is NEVER done! And we get a bonus peek at how Cindy stores her ribbon rolls as well.

Cindy

Sharon stores her card stock in magazine holders. She also protects each color family and keeps them together with Job Ticket Holders like the ones that you can find HERE from Office Depot. And of course, each one is properly labeled!

Sharon

Speaking of labels, here are a few ideas for keeping everything in tip top order.

I use these paper holders from Storage Studios for all of my cardstock. Though it’s somewhat obvious which colors go where, I’m a bit of a label fanatic, and I like to make things pretty. I used my computer to create these labels in a Word document. I then printed and circle punched them and added a scallop punch behind. With the help of my Crop-A-Dile, I punched a hole in the plastic and the label and tied on a ribbon.

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Kim uses her label maker and Post-it Durable Tabs to be able to quickly identify which pink is which (or any color for that matter!).

Kim

Jodi has a cute way to label her card stock that also serves as decorative and allows her to play with die cuts. All colors are identified with a heart in the appropriate color and a white die cut flag with the name. You can see that she uses stacking clear desktop trays in her room.

Jodi

Amy keeps track of her card stock colors in a portable way that can sit on her desk and makes it easy to find the exact color she is looking for. Cut a small rectangle of each color, write the name on it, punch a hole, and add it to a ring. Smart solution!

Amy

Kimberly loves to find color inspiration from our MFT Color Challenges. She prints out the image of the color combination and then punches circles to match. What a great way to choose colors when you feel like you’re stuck in a rut or need some inspiration.

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Now what about those scraps? Yep, we have some ideas for that, too!

Julie has found yet another resourceful way to use the Large Clear Pockets from MFT — pop your scraps inside

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And finally, Barbara has come up with an ingenius way of making her scraps useful. Once she’s cut into a piece of card stock, she trims A2 sized panels and keeps them in a small file box with dividers. If you use less than half of the piece, you should also be able to create ready-made card bases, too.

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All of this glorious color has really been DEEEEElightful, hasn’t it?

OK – let’s admit it. You want to know what prize is up for grabs today. Let’s see what we have for two lucky winners today: a card stock sampler (that’s 43 sheets of sensational hues!), 25 sheets of smooth white card stock, and 4 paper holders from Storage Studios! How awesome is that?

Here’s how to enter for your chance to win: Leave a comment on this blog post letting us know which color you find (besides neutrals) you always find yourself reaching for. All winners from this week will be announced next week!

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And as you know – these tips are only the TIP of the proverbial iceberg. Head on over to the blogs of our Design Team members to explore even more amazing ideas to tame your card stock stash.

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blank dividerCreative Ambassador for My Favorite Things

5 Days to an Organized Crafty Stash – Die-namics Storage

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Alright, we’ve gotten your stamp and stencil stash under control. What’s next?

Yes, it’s definitely time to tame your growing collection of Die-namics! From oh-so-cute to girly and graphic, there’s a dizzying array of dies to be had, and if you’re anything like me, YOU WANT THEM ALL!

From simple do-it-today to completely revolutionary, we’ve got a veritable smorgasbord of ideas for you to peruse. Warning – this post may cause you to forego all laundry folding, dish doing, dinner making, and errand running.

OK – I know you’re just DIE-ing to get started, right? Let’s cut to the chase and get started! {I enjoy puns so much, don’t you? *wink*}

Dienamics Storage and Organization Solutions

Let’s set the scene — your new dies arrive in the cutest little box from My Favorite Things. At this point, everything else in life ceases to exist. Give yourself permission to go DIRECTLY to your die-cutting machine for the sake of organization. I’m not even kidding!

Here’s what Julie does. When the new Die-namics arrive, she cuts every single die in the set and and puts the results with the dies. I know that there are times that I don’t know what it will look like until I cut, so I love this idea! And she gets to play with and squeal over her new Die-namics immediately. See? Permission granted.

Julie

The large and small clear pockets from My Favorite Things are an excellent solution for getting everything organized. You can see how Michele has used both sizes for her Die-namics.

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Don’t forget to label everything! We’ve created printable label templates for you to download for our MFT stamps, stencils, and Die-namics. These .doc files are fully editable and are compatible with 1 3/4″ x 2/3″ 8195 Avery Return Labels, 1 3/4″ x 1/2″ 8167 Avery Return Labels, and all comparable sizes. You can find them HERE.

On Monday, Barbara shared a smart tip about storing Die-namics that are compatible with stamp sets all in one pocket. What a clever idea!

In Keisha’s pretty craft room, stylish storage is the name of the game. Find a great basket and store your Die-namics there. You can see that she makes use of the clear pockets as well.

Keisha

If there’s a die you use ALL OF THE TIME, why put it away? Jody hangs her often used dies on hooks for easy access. Having what you use the most within arm’s reach is a must to spur on your creativity!

Jodi

A simple shoe organizer like this one pictured or the over-the-door versions can make organizing simple and affordable. You would be surprised at HOW much those pockets can hold and how durable they are. They are also great space savers. Thanks to Teri for this fantastic idea.

Shoe storage Teri

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Cindy gathers all of her Die-namics in the My Favorite Things  pockets and files them away in this handy bin from InterDesign (she got this idea from Jennifer McGuire). The bins work great for stamps, too. You can find them HERE. I wonder if InterDesign knew that their refrigerator bins were perfect for die and stamp organizing? I kind of doubt that!

Cindy

Sharon uses the same bins as Cindy. And here’s what’s pretty nifty — at 12″ x 4″ x 14.5″ these bins fit many cube storage options like these from IKEA. Make sure you measure before you buy, though. Not all cubes will work.

Sharon

I love Kim’s clever idea! She took the Cricut Organizer from Organize More and placed it on its side in a drawer in her custom craft cabinet featured on Monday’s post. As many others, she finds the clear pockets in both sizes helps keep everything together.

Kim

If having EVERYTHING out in the open is more your style, we have several cool ideas to create a statement in your craft area.

When my sister and I moved into our town home last March, we were delighted by the possibilities in the walk-out basement. We decided to remove the doors from the laundry closet to open things up and then got the brilliant idea to use it for craft storage. We turned it upside down and placed it against the wall. The dies attach to Avery printable magnet sheets that you can find HERE. The slats are awesome for placing completed cards, too! PS – I need to add MORE soon. Thanks to Erin Lee Schreiner, MFT Challenge & Inspiration Creative Team member for the magnet sheet tip!

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Speaking of Erin Lee, she simply places her magnet sheets on the wall – what a statement that makes! Her little red-headed guy is pretty enamored with it!

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Barbara has an impressive solution in her room as well! She places her dies on the doors of the closet in her craft room. Raise your hand if you want to visit Barbara and take advantage of that collection of Die-namics!

Barbara

I don’t know about you, but this post has been kind of amazing, right? Before you get started on the idea of your choice, take a look at awesome prize we’ve gathered for two lucky winners. We’ll ADD to your Die-namics stash with the following dies Stitched OvalsEmmitt Alphabet and Number & Symbols, and Pierced Circle STAX, but also give you the fantastic resource of 100 Small Storage Pockets.

Here’s how to enter for your chance to win: Leave a comment on this blog post letting us know what manual die-cutting machine you use and what you love about it. All winners from this week will be announced next week!

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And would you believe that there’s SO MUCH MORE to learn! Make sure you visit the blogs of our Design Team for even more tips, tricks, and ideas for Die-namics storage and organization.

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blank dividerI’m DIE-ing to see how you organize,

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blank dividerSusan R. Opel, Creative Ambassador for My Favorite Things

5 Days to an Organized Crafty Stash – Stencil Storage

Print PrintLooks like this series is getting you excited to tidy things up. Did you dream of labeling ALL THE THINGS last night? Good! We have more great ideas where those came from — I promise!

Today we’re going to focus on stencil storage.

Stencils have made quite a comeback in the paper crafting industry. I remember having an alphabet stencil on a ruler when I was in grade school. Now wasn’t that handy? And then in the 80’s those bad boys were used to sponge paint quaint designs on walls of homes and classrooms all around the globe. But these days they are paired with spray mists, pastes, paint, gesso, and all the delightful messy mediums, allowing us to playfully create with color and texture and style.

But how to store them? Let me tell you — We. Have. Ideas!

Stencil Storage and Organization Solutions

One of the best ways to start is by keeping it simple. Keisha has a plastic folder attached to the side of her desk where she stores her stencils. Talk about easy access! It’s simple, practical, and a great use of space.

Keisha - pocket on side of desk

Another great idea comes from Jodi. Since unused stencils are sometimes hard to see, she stores a “test” of the stencil so that she can easily see what it will look like once it is used.

Jodi - stencil example

Amy has a dedicated drawer for her stencil storage. When it comes time to create, she can grab this drawer and take it to her work area. An added bonus: there’s room for other supplies she’ll use when creating with stencils!

Amy drawer

Each of Stephanie’s stencils is removed from the original packaging and lovingly labeled and placed in these flap pockets from Clear Bags. At 6 7/16″ X 6 1/4″, they are the perfect size for 6×6 stencils.

Stephanie - MFT pockets

Barbara uses the same pockets from Clear Bags, and once she has them all packaged and labeled, she stores them upright in a bin and categorizes them by type (with stencil supplies tucked neatly behind). Her section dividers are created using common file folders that you can find in any office supply store. They are sturdier than cardstock (and who wants to waste their cardstock?). You might have some already in your home office, right? Use a corner rounder to avoid getting the sleeve of your sweater caught on the pointy corners.

Barbara Bin

6×6 album pages like these in the My Favorite Things boutique are another fantastic option for storing stencils. Sharon stores hers much like Barbara does, but in page protectors rather than flap pockets.

Sharon - 6x6 and bin

You can also do what Kim does. She uses 6×6 album pages and connects them all with a loose-leaf ring. This solution is fantastic for hanging on a hook on the wall for easy access and more desk space.

Kim Stencils

Cindy likes to keep her stencils tucked away in a 6×6 album. It keeps things tidy (and awfully pretty!).

Cindy mini album

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Don’t forget to label everything! We’ve created printable label templates for you to download for our MFT stamps, stencils, and Die-namics. These .doc files are fully editable and are compatible with 1 3/4″ x 2/3″ 8195 Avery Return Labels, 1 3/4″ x 1/2″ 8167 Avery Return Labels, and all comparable sizes. You can find them HERE.

Wow! Such GREAT ideas, am I right? We’ve given you a lot to ponder about storing your stencils, and we want to give away two prizes, too!  We’ll ADD to your stencil stash with Concentric CircleLarge Chevron StripesStargaze , Graduated Hearts, and Sun Ray. Here’s how to enter for your chance to win these five stencils: Leave a comment on this blog post letting us know your favorite way to use stencils. All winners from this week will be announced next week! Print And this is just the beginning! Make sure you visit the blogs of our Design Team for even more tips, tricks, and ideas for stencil storage and organization.

PrintPrintPrintPrintPrintPrintPrintPrintPrintPrintPrintblank dividerNow you are ready to organize your stencils!

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blank dividerSusan R. Opel, Creative Ambassador for My Favorite Things

5 Days to an Organized Crafty Stash – Stamp Storage

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After the overload of the holidays, the new year brings a fresh perspective. If you’re anything like me, you have an innate need to organize, minimize, and prioritize, and often our goals and resolutions center around our craft. Am I right?

If you’ve been frustrated by the lack of organization in your creative corner, we’re here to help! We’re bringing you a whirlwind week of creative solutions to whip your crafty stash into shape.

You might think you’ll never be organized or don’t have the resources to take control, but we hope to prove you wrong and get you on the right path. You’ll find it’s easier to create when you can find what you’re looking for in a snap!

Our 5 Days to an Organized Crafty Stash series will focus on the following areas: your stamps, stencils, Die-namics, card stock, and ink pads and refills. And to sweeten the deal, there will be some fabulous prizes to be won each day! So buckle up and settle in for awesome ideas you can implement today.

Stamp Storage and Organization Solutions

To begin with, you’ll want a good supply of our Large Clear Pockets for storage. These pockets are a great way to keep your stamp sets organized and visible all at the same time. One of my best tips for organizing is minimize packaging. Use the pockets to help you to reduce the bulk of extra packaging leaving you room for MORE!

Sharon shows the pockets here with a stamp set ready to be stored.

Sharon Stamp storage

Below, Stephanie shows the pockets in action. You can see that she has added white card stock behind so that the stamps are easy to see. She has labeled each set as well.

Stephanie

Barbara has a great solution for stamp sets with coordinating dies. Simply slip the dies behind the card stock insert, and you’ll have everything all in one spot!

Barbara

Once you’ve got everything corralled, it is absolutely IMPERATIVE to label everything. I know you think you’ll remember, but you won’t. So grab a labeler and spend a fun afternoon or evening getting everything in order.

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Want an even easier solution? We’ve created printable label templates for you to download for our MFT stamps, stencils, and Die-namics. These .doc files are fully editable and are compatible with 1 3/4″ x 2/3″ 8195 Avery Return Labels, 1 3/4″ x 1/2″ 8167 Avery Return Labels, and all comparable sizes. You can find them HERE.

Here are a couple of ways to store your sets, once they are all in pockets and labeled.

Stephanie uses small bins and organizes her stamps by manufacturer. She can grab the bin and take it to her desk to look for what she needs.

Stephanie bins

Sharon uses a larger bin and divides her stamp sets according to type. You’ll notice that this bin is large enough to store the stamp sets side by side.

Sharon side view

When it comes to background stamps, we have a solution for storing and labeling those as well. Stephanie labels the back of each stamp and uses the same small bins she used for her clear stamps (as seen above). This unifies the look of her stamp storage. You can usually find bins like this in the dollar store, so stock up!

backgrounds stephanie

Let’s take a peek inside Kim’s craft cabinet!

Kim cabinet

Kim has a handy hubby (lucky girl!), and he was able to alter this beautiful antique armoire to suit her storage needs. He custom built pull-out drawers and added dividers measuring slightly over 6 inches.  These drawers are substantial enough to easily handle all of her products and keep her super organized. This concept would be simple enough to modify using a dresser as well.

Look at that stamp drawer! The small bins are simple to remove and keep everything under control.

Kim drawer close-up

The bins are manufactured by InterDesign, and though they are made for food storage, they are the PERFECT solution for stamp storage. Thanks for the tip, Jennifer McGuire! As you can see, they are clear which makes for a streamlined look. You can buy the InterDesign ‘Fridge ‘n Pantry Binz HERE.

Kim bins

Inspired? Already heading to the craft room to tackle your collection of stamps?

Hold on a minute! Before you go, take a look at this beautiful prize we’ve gathered for two lucky winners. We’ll ADD to your stamp stash with Photo BoothWild Things, and Friends Like Us, but also give you the fantastic resource of 100 Large Storage Pockets.

Here’s how to enter for your chance to win: Leave a comment on this blog post letting us know your favorite My Favorite Things stamp set OF ALL TIME. All winners from this week will be announced next week! Print

Our Design Team likes to organize, too. Be sure to check out additional tips and tricks for stamp storage and organization by visiting their blogs.

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blank dividerOrganizing makes me GIDDY! :)

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blank dividerSusan R. Opel, Creative Ambassador for My Favorite Things

Bold Birthday Greetings

It’s been so fun having Karin with us this week! She’s back again today with a couple of clean and graphic designs in a fantastic palette of colors.

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Check out that gorgeous, glitter ombre! The Friend Die-namics allows you to make QUICK cards that are absolute standouts. A simple stamped sentiment and a handful of colorful baubles completes this look in lickety-split fashion.

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Simple layers of color are punctuated by a classic die-cut heart and stamped birthday sentiment. The Wild Things stamp set isn’t all about the animals (though, they are pretty fabulous.) There’s a great collection of versatile sentiments as well! Mix and match your supplies and see what you come up with.

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It’s been a pleasure, Karin. Thanks for sharing your amazing talent with us!

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Whip that craft area into shape in the new year by celebrating with us as we  give you tips for craft storage and organization! Join us January 19 – 23 for 5 Days to an Organized Crafty Stash! We’ll give you tips, links, and inspiration. And there will be PRIZES. So many AMAZING prizes! SCORE!

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Always in My Heart

Karin Åkesdotter is with us again today sharing two more inspiring projects.

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Wild Things includes a full menagerie of furry friends for your cards and projects. I’d be lyin’ if I said I wasn’t smitten with this charming fellow. Karin’s simply layered design allows him to stand out against a colorful backdrop and Stitched Scallop Edges Die-namics grass.

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A pretty scalloped window from the Peek-a-Boo Circle Windows Die-namics frames a stamped flower from the Desert Bouquet set. Karin finished the card off with a perfectly placed stamped sentiment.

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Thanks again, Karin for sharing your work! I’m looking forward to seeing more later this month :) Print

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Whip that craft area into shape in the new year by celebrating with us as we  give you tips for craft storage and organization! Join us January 19 – 23 for 5 Days to an Organized Crafty Stash! We’ll give you tips, links, and inspiration. And there will be PRIZES. So many AMAZING prizes! SCORE!

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