I worked on my craft supplies storage issues yesterday when I really should have been chopping celery or something to get ready for Thanksgiving. In a way, though, I was getting ready for Thanksgiving because my supplies storage issues have been making my house a mess. And I don’t like a messy house on a holiday.
I can take it any other day, but I like things to look a little sparkly on a holiday.
I started out, after moving in here, thinking the office/craft room would be a great place to keep my supplies. I have my sewing machine in there and some shelving. Then the wood stove moved in, taking up some space, and then my crafting took off in some additional directions. I love to make candles and soap, and I’ve gotten back into making more various little crafts. All the little odds and ends need a place to live so I can find them, in some sort of organized fashion, when I want to make something. But where? I have my sewing and knit/crochet supplies in the office/craft room, but there’s just not room for other supplies.
Though, of course, I tried jamming this and that here and there. And then other supplies made their way into the pantry. And on top of the kitchen counters and dining room table and the floor and anywhere else I could stash it just to get it out of my way. Which wasn’t really out of my way.
Recently, we acquired (free) several old cabinets. I combined them with some plastic storage bins with drawers and (brainstorm!) made a craft supplies storage area on my back porch! Very handy, just outside the kitchen door. The back porch is a “service” area, not much for entertaining. My cheese cave fridge is back there, and the grill. It’s a cat hangout because I keep the gate on the steps shut all the time so the dogs can’t get into the cat food. I’d been wracking my brain trying to come up with a storage solution–and never thought to look outside the house for the answer.
I recently came into a candlemaking stash, by the way. Always let people know what you like to make–you never know when someone might decide they don’t want their craft stash anymore and they will think of you.
The candlemaking stash included a lot of wax.
Some of the wax is dirty so I’ll have to work with it, but when someone’s giving you $100 worth of candle wax, you can’t complain.
There was a big box of fragrance oils.
Some were old and had lost their scent. I sorted through them, choosing the ones to keep.
And a lot of jars, most with some candle wax still inside them.
The wax can be cleaned up and scraped out to recycle into new candles.
Some are still good (still have scent and are full jars)–I brought one inside and starting burning it! I can use dabs of wax from the jars to add color when making new candles even if I’m using new wax, too. If nothing else, with this wax-palooza of old candles, I’ll make firestarters.
There was even an extra electric burner. Now that I’ve got all this stored outside, it might be handy to just make candles out there. (When it’s not snowing…..)
There was another wax melting pot, too. I’ve been wishing for a second pot so I could do stripes more easily.
(Banged up but still serviceable.)
I’ve also got my soap mold and other soaping supplies in one of the big cabinet drawers and lots of other crafty notions and supplies for smaller projects. For the first time in a while, I feel like I know where everything is–and that’s a good feeling. When I get ready to make a craft project, I like to be able to put my hands on what I need when I need it, and I love not having it cluttering all over the house. Do you have a craft supplies storage room or closet or back porch? Are your supplies organized? Tell me your tips!
Sheila Z says:
Wow, a mother lode of goodies to play with!
On November 23, 2010 at 3:51 am
You did a very nice job! I don’t craft much so I don’t have your problem. It is amazinghow much I have learned from you, if I ever live out of a city I feel I could do some of the things that country life requires..
On November 23, 2010 at 4:14 am
Karen Anne says:
Wow, that’s a lot of stuff for someone to give away, when they must have been really into making candles.
On November 23, 2010 at 5:22 am
Shelley (eastern Roane County) says:
Your porch craft storage is very nice. We built a storage rack along the sheltered wall of our workshop porch from 2×4’s and furring strips and can store approximately 30 large plastic totes labelled and filled with various supplies that we do not need inside the shop. It stays relatively organized and relieved a lot of clutter in our workspace.
On November 23, 2010 at 6:11 am
LOL just this week Ive been organizing my craft clost which is really more of a attic eve. Must be in the air 🙂
On November 23, 2010 at 6:17 am
The majority of my craft stuff is on the back porch. lol. Its closed in more like a mud room type of place. But too cold in the winter to do anything back there. Right now its too cluttered so I need to clean it out. My mission for over Thanksgiving break. Unless another long awaited project comes up this weekend. 🙂
Love free craft supplies!!!! That happens to me a lot also. Let people know what you are into at the moment and you will find someone who collected the whole lot and is tired of it and want rid of it. Usally involves getting rid of the old yucky stuff. lol.
On November 23, 2010 at 6:48 am
That’s a nice storage area!!!! And to be able to the candles and soap out there (when it’s not freezing)…a whole new craft room!
On November 23, 2010 at 7:05 am
My craft room is my sun/computer room. My supplies are on a shelf along with a small tv and a recliner so hubby can visit. . . there just isn’t room, though, for all my yarn. I have under the bed storage boxes full of yarn – but too many to go under the bed! So, they go in the extra bedroom – along with BOXES of craft supplies that I’ve almost forgot about – now I gotta go dig through them! Thanks, Suzanne . . . 😆
On November 23, 2010 at 8:11 am
How fortunate you are to have received such a wonderful stash – and I KNOW you’ll put it to good use! LOVE your storage area! You did a great job!!! :snoopy:
On November 23, 2010 at 8:24 am
I have my daughters old bedroom upstairs as my studio. I have my painting supplies in one area and the rest of my supplies are in plastic totes under the bed, in the closet, stacked along the short wall and anywhere else that they will fit. I also have a collection of picnic baskets filled with stuff. I kinda sort stuff into the baskets that are used to finish a project. Then I can move it around more easily and hide the mess when I want to put everything up really fast. Oh, did I mention I have a sewing room packed to the gills with fabric and sewing machines (4) and half of the garage is filled with my tools (saws, sanders, drills, wood). My husband must be an angel because he rarely complains about all of my stuff.I have been working on downsizing for a couple of years, but the stuff is overwhelming and I swear it is multiplying!!!
On November 23, 2010 at 8:44 am
Looks like you did a great job organizing and making a craft area on your porch. Lucky you to aquire all that candle-making stash! Can I come over and play??? :happyfeet:
On November 23, 2010 at 8:45 am
Congrats on feeling organized and clutter free! Just more to be thankful for! 🙂
On November 23, 2010 at 8:53 am
I think craft supplies and sewing things have lots of babies while in captivity! If we had no art, craft and sewing supplies our house would be SO clutter free. We are thinking of having a separate little building on our farm to house those activities. A studio? There is no place to store anything here, so that would be a big improvement. Suzanne- your storage solution looks good. Watch out for things that cannot take big temperature fluctuations like paints.
On November 23, 2010 at 9:12 am
Getting organized and decluttered helps so much when you are working on a project!
On November 23, 2010 at 9:15 am
claudia w says:
How fun to know where everything is! I have a craft room. A small bedroom that my crafts literally took over when my youngest daughter moved out. There are plenty of storage units in there (all free), my sewing machine on a repurposed desk, shelves, my cutting table and my Q-Sanp quilting frame. Oh, and did I mention? A very narrow path through it. I will be reading your other followers comments to see if I can gleen any suggestions for my craft area organization!
On November 23, 2010 at 9:42 am
I so need to organize and declutter all my out of control crafting stuff. It makes actually doing a crafting project so much easier if you know where everthing is and have a clear space to do it. I am hoping to get that done soon, but things are so hectic around here right now with the holidays, it is hard to find the time or the space. Good job Suzanne and congrats on the candle making stash.
On November 23, 2010 at 9:44 am
Suzanne: I have some candlemaking items that was given to me if you would be interested in them. Wax, scents,for sure…haven’t went thru it all yet….Let me know……. My one wish is to be able to sort my yarn into bins by color so that when I need red yarn I can go and get red yarn and not have to go thru all of my “stash”.
On November 23, 2010 at 10:07 am
That’s what I have decided…I’m looking on freecycle for anyone replacing cabinets and getting rid of the old ones…I already have a corner in my basement waiting and ready…then ALL of my crafting supply collection (which I have accumulated YEARS and YEARS worth…will be organized in one place…I have been doing the tub method for a long time but that’s not working for me very well other than keeping it out of my way.
I want a place that I can go craft awhile, whether it be jewelry, candles, soap, sewing, or whatever, and when I’m done I put it in it’s space in the cabinet, (or leave it out until the next day), and turn out the light and go upstairs…
Right now, I have soap curing and supplies stored in spare rooms and on my kitchen table. Metalsmithing and beading stuff in another area, in tubs…yarn and crochet/knitting needles in my bedroom, my sewing machine sits in a spare room…calling my name….but I hate to get it out because I have to put all of it away when I’m done, and it makes working on a project not so much fun when you have that to look forward to…for me anyway….
This inspires me to get busy searching a little harder.
On November 23, 2010 at 10:13 am
Sue Nugent says:
:snuggle: Oh, no! Your headed down the same path I took. I am still trying to get my “crafting stuff” organized,after 32 years of collecting it. I have the same PROBLEM. Accepting everyone else’s NO LONGER NEED OR USE items,(I can’t say no,either)I am in my 5th year of retirement, but still cannot see the “light at the end of the tunnel”with my organizing. Good Luck!
On November 23, 2010 at 10:24 am
Miss Becky says:
That organization looks awesome Suzanne. I’m wondering – is it alright for certain things, such as the scented oils, to freeze? :bugeyed:
On November 23, 2010 at 10:28 am
I used to have a room for my stuff…cabinets, drawers, worktable…it was great! Then I moved. I have my sewing machine stuffed into a corner in my bedroom with a few essential supplies, everything else is out in “the mud room”!! I wouldn’t trade living in the country, tho’. Someday another child will fly from the nest and I’ll have a room to take over!!
On November 23, 2010 at 10:54 am
I started making beaded earrings because they are fast and easy and now I have lots of small dishes all over the bedroom, kitchen table, and coffee table. I got 2 plastic storage containers at garage sales so I have started to put it away but when you get a creative idea you want to spread everything out and decide what color shape and size you need. So lots of space is required!! It takes organization. Its a process…Love your website!!! Oh, I like having all my crafts stuff because I know when I have free time I can do something for myself that I like. Gotta go make some Kaluah right now…
On November 23, 2010 at 11:05 am
I finally did it! I decided I wasn’t really going to do sewing any more and got rid of my sewing machines and boxes of fabric and patterns. Whew! feels great…but there are my stained glass supplies, my yarn, my beading. No No I WILL NOT TAKE UP ANOTHER CRAFT. I WILL NOT TAKE UP ANOTHER CRAFT. I WILL NOT TAKE UP ANOTHER CRAFT. Get away from me you temptress Suzanne. I’m not going to make candles…well maybe just one….
On November 23, 2010 at 12:29 pm
Suzanne McMinn says:
Candles are so much fun, Joy!!!
On November 23, 2010 at 12:33 pm
Oh, to be as organized as you, Suzanne. I’ll have to take a picture of my crafting supply rooms and show y’all.
As Patrice mentioned, watch out for storing things outside when it’s winter time. I’m storing my soap molds downstairs because my upstairs gets near freezing temps. I think soap molds might begin to crack due to temp fluctuations.
On November 23, 2010 at 12:40 pm
andrea pierce says:
In my craft room/office I have one entire wall floor to ceiling JetMax storage cabinets, which I got one at a time when I have 40% off coupons. That holds all of my scrapbooking and random craft supplies. In the closet of that room I have huge, long, flat totes on the shelf holding yarn, christmas ornaments supplies, and silk floral leftovers. And empty boxes and wrapping paper. And even with allllll of this organizational assistance, it is always a mess! Sigh.
On November 23, 2010 at 12:40 pm
That is a mind boggling treasure trove! Absolutely amazing!! As for moving it all to the porch: you were really! thinking outside the box that time. And, free cabinets to boot! It all turned out looking and functioning great. I’m sure that is what every crafter wishes for: a craft center. Congratulations, Suzanne.
On November 23, 2010 at 12:47 pm
That looks wonderful Suzanne. The dampness in weather won’t affect your supplies? I haven’t made candles in so long….maybe oneday again.
On November 23, 2010 at 2:15 pm
It looks to me that since you’ve been a good steward with your talents, the Lord has decided to give you PLENTY of materials to work with- at no expense to you! Love how the Lord works!
On November 23, 2010 at 2:35 pm
While driving home from work last night I had visions of Suzanne’s craft storage dancing in my head :dancingmonster: .
Then I wondered, is your porch enclosed? I would have a couple concerns with storing some things…temps for one….either too hot or too cold for some of the oils/fragrances and things like that. Moisture would be the other. My covered porch is on the south side of my house and when it rains, it seems to blow in, so I can’t have anything out there if I don’t want it getting wet. Moisture = moldy and mildew…
Just sayin’…..would be a bummer to lose good supplies.
For me….rodents and bugs and moisture would be a concern…
Mice will seek out bedding material, and what better place than a craft storage area if it isn’t mouse proof…cabinets are probably safe from that if they are nice and tight and chew proof.
On November 24, 2010 at 9:53 am
Angela Bethea says:
How will you keep critters (not yours) out of the craft supplies. You know raccoons love the challenge of unloading anything they even think they may want. Ever seen what the area looks like when a raccoon finishes digging in just a trash can? I’m thinking your poor porch might become a local night-time hangout for critters. Also, are there any products in your stash that might be dangerous to any animals should they ingest or become tangled etc….Hate to be a nay-sayer, just don’t want anything bad to happen.
On November 24, 2010 at 9:55 am
Been working on downsizing for a few years, now. A few years ago gave away a candle-making stash similar to your windfall. Sent my sewing machine to a group of Hmong immigrants so women can make some money for their families, fabric stash (considerable) went there as well. Left with thousands of beads and wires stashed in two copy-paper boxes (the kind with covers) in the furnace closet. Have a small 3-drawer moveable thingy for yarn. I’m going to do with crafts what I do in the kitchen: Something new comes in—something old must go! At least that’s the plan
On November 24, 2010 at 11:55 am
I am using my small walk in closet for now. I have plastic milk crates with the removable lids, and I bought 2 hanging sweater holders, and have placed my yarn in them. On the other clothes rod, I have placed my UFOs in plastic grocery bags and put them on hangers. I would like to get bigger clear bags for the UFOs, but that will come.
On November 26, 2010 at 12:42 am