My craft room is four years in the making. This week marks four years that I've lived here and finally finishing this space was one of my 2012 goals. I've been collecting the pieces in this room over the past four years, searching secondhand stores and discount stores for the most functional items at the most reasonable prices. Some items are left over from my childhood and others are recent purchases. If your craft space isn't meeting your needs, I hope this tour gives you some good ideas for how you can improve it on a budget.
When I first moved in, I intended to use this room as my office and left open the possibility of using it as a guest room. I might have graded papers in here once or twice in four years; I simply prefer to work in my classroom. At the time I moved in, I was quite used to having a gigantic desk. Both in college and at my apartment in France, I had a three foot deep desk. As it turns out, you can't easily find a desk like that on the retail market, but I loved the size. I bought a kitchen table to be my desk and it's been working out great for crafting because there's so much space. The table and four chairs was about $150. I use two of the chairs elsewhere in the house.
My Cuttlebug station sits just behind my desk chair. It's a computer desk that I bought at Habitat
Restore. It could use new paint, but I would probably just mess it up
again while being crafty, so for now I'll just say it has some
character! All of my Cuttlebug supplies fit on the top. The keyboard
drawer holds my glue gun and heat gun along with a craft mat. Below is
more open shelving for storage. My sewing machine lives at the bottom of this
cabinet as well. Check out that blue beauty!
I love, love, love using these plastic drawers for stamp storage. I paid
$2 each on clearance at Walmart because the color was discontinued, but
these are generally available for about $6. If you want some, look in a few weeks when the back to school items go on clearance. One layer of wooden stamps
in each drawer isn't heavy enough to destroy the unit (though doubling
up in all the drawers will cause them to start buckling). I have my $1
stamps sorted by themes and I use them often thanks to the ease with
which I can locate them. Line the drawers with grippy shelf liner to
keep stamps from sliding all around when you open and close the
drawers. On top of these shelves, I have a Canada Dry caddy that was 50
cents or $1 at Goodwill. It holds all of my pens, tools, scissors, and
the like and it's super sturdy. See the serving fork there, ready to make bows?
Scraps and full 8.5 x 11 cardstock are stored in these two bins. At
about $5 each plus the cost of file folders, they are an inexpensive way
to sort papers and remain portable Nearby, the green plastic drawers
hold rarely used tools like a tag maker, large stapler, circle cutter,
and more as well as supplies for other crafts I enjoy.
Most of my storage is boxes on shelving. This Ikea bookcase has been
around for a long time. I picked it out for my bedroom when I was in
elementary school and it's been serving me well ever since. I have no
idea what my parents paid for it, but I know that it's been well worth
the price. The binders hold my stickers. Paper trays hold cardstock
that I've purchased by the ream. Small plastic shoeboxes hold random
embellishments like chipboard sets, extra adhesives, and more. I keep a ream of 11x17 paper on hand to cover my work space if I'm going to be inky. Under the shelves, I store my cropping tote.
A plastic shelving unit holds my lightbox, ribbons, clear stamps, and Stampin Up sets I rarely use. It was about $11 at Habitat ReStore. I keep cards that are ready to go in a large FRB on top. This one's about half full.
I glanced back through my post and totaled up what I've spent in storage for my room- about $300, half of which was the dining set. I know everyone has a different budget to work with, and I was hoping this might inspire crafters on a low budget to look into secondhand stores for items that could work. I am more concerned with function than looks, so I don't mind the mix of colors and materials in my room. If it's important to you that your space be cohesive, look for items that you can paint and opportunities to pull in a fabric such as on chair cushions, curtains, and wall art. For now, I will be happy to sink my craft budget into papers, tools, and postage for OWH instead of perfectly matched furniture.
At four years old, my craft room is finally "done."
What creative storage solution makes your space work for you?
Cards shipped to OWH in 2012: 928 blank and 215 AnyHero (as of 6/26)
Cards shipped to OWH in 2011: 1695
Check out OWH at www.operationwritehome.org to learn more about its mission and how to get involved.