Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Organize It Tuesday: Bags & Bins Part Two

For those of you who haven't read the previous post, I recommend reading Part One first.

Now, the boring "where did I get this stuff from" part!

I purchased the bins at the Dollar Tree near my house. They all came with a white lid. Each lidded bin cost me, you guessed it, one dollar. I dislike lids so I have them in a big tote somewhere. These bins hold up well. The plastic they're made of, paired with the labels I adore using (Up & Up brand from Target), make for an easy clean. Messed up a label? Added something not listed? Peel off the label with ease and slap on a new one.

At the same store, I purchased a box of 60 resealable sandwich baggies for one dollar. I went through most of the box, roughly 50 bags, and had about seven to ten casualties. These bags are inexpensive, and they are cheap. It took me tearing three bags in a row to realize that the plastic used is thin and the seal is tough to open without using fingernails. However, once I figured that out, I was able to safely open the remaining bags without any further casualties.

The Dollar Tree is my first stop half the time when I get into an organizational mood. They have bins, baskets, supplies, and so much more. Plus, one dollar for every individual item means I'm spending significantly less half the time. I do compare prices, so I tend to avoid certain things.

Okay, on to organizing!

I grouped the items I used in these bins by similarity. Initially they were organized by stage (bags hold gifts; tape and stickers decorate bags; ribbon and twine tie it all up nicely). Now they are in groups halfway between similarity and stage. 

All the ribbons, garlands, and twine and ornaments go together. I separated each into their own set of bags. Ribbons in one, garlands in another, twine wrapped around tags went into a bag whereas the spools stayed out, etc.

The stickers and washi tape and fabric tapes are adhesive backed, and therefore go together as decorative adhesive options. Circle stickers of all sizes and patterns go in one bag, separated within that bag by smaller jewelry baggies. Hearts go with hearts. Scallops with scallops. Squares with squares. And then oddly shaped stickers go in a baggie together.

If you're wondering what baggies I don't recommend, please avoid buying the snack bags as they fit awkwardly in the sandwich bags. They needed to be cut or folded and become unnecessarily bulky. Plus, even though they're clear, they have a slight discoloration when stacked. Labels only help so much.

I do recommend what I bought. A box of several hundred small jewelry/bead baggies from JoAnn's. They're in the jewelry section, which is almost always on sale, so these reasonably priced baggies cost even less with the sale discount and a coupon. I think I paid three dollars for a box of 500 baggies, 2.5"x4" or something around there. 

I used those little bags initially for my in progress jewelry projects, then my in progress jewelry projects while I was at craft shows, then bead storage, then I gave some to friends to package up their sold jewelry... I realized I had so many remaining, I could use them for other supplies!

Finally, the last bin! Bags and clothespins! Sorted by type (glassine, itty bitty bags, cello, resealable, etc.) makes my life easier. I can clearly see the different sizes grouped together, and the clothespins all go together.

Please note that the items you see in these bins are only some of my crafting supplies. I have tons of other boxes, bins, carriers, shelves, and bags I use to store my supplies, most of which are able to be used for snail mail. 

I am very lucky to have access to these items, which is why I am so happy to do swaps or just Random Acts of Kindness to those in need of some supplies. I am a supply hoarder, and that's not right to the people who have limited funds or limited access to supplies.

Anyway, I hope you enjoyed today's post. Onward, my fellow organizers!

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