Designing new spaces

I am changing my crafting space!

No matter what I do, or how much time tidying and organizing, it is always a cluttered space. It’s time to look at the space from a fresh perspective!

I am so excited to re-jig my space!

It takes a lot to plan out how to make the most of a new space. Often I am trying to make do by reusing storage shelves we already own, or using a space that was previously meant for a different purpose. This crafting project is like a breath of fresh air as far as organizing my space goes! We decided to put some money into it, and buy some new furniture!

You really can’t beat Ikea prices! And I have seen a lot of great ideas for using the PAX wardrobe pieces for storing crafting supplies. So, I headed to the Ikea website to try to use their planner program to design my very own craft PAX wardrobe.

At first, it seemed easy….I want this, and that, and this drawer, or that organizer! I designed the perfect space! BUT, I overlooked a few things. First, in the planner software on the Ikea website, it’s very important to put the doors on before picking all the inside customizations!! (BOOM! I just saved you at least an hour of time! *Slaps forehead*) AND, if you pay attention to it, as you go along with the planner, you can see the cost adding up…

So, I redesigned the space…a few times….

After I was finally satisfied that my new design would fit everything I wanted it to fit, I went ahead and ordered all the pieces. Of course, some of the pieces are unavailable for now, so I will wait for some of it.

Moving all of my craft equipment and materials into a new customized space gives me a fresh start, and fresh eyes for how I will use my new space. Having a huge room for it all meant that I could dump WAY more than just crafting supplies into the space, which means….accumulation of clutter!

For this new space, even before thinking about what materials or furniture I may need to buy, I asked myself what crafting I really want to do. What materials do I want to craft with? What kind of storage do I need? What works now? What doesn’t work now?

This process helps me by pre-emptively decluttering my materials in my mind. I can already visualize the new space in terms of what I really want to accomplish and how to keep it functional.

Trying to determine how much storage space I actually need is another reason why visualizing the space is so useful. Especially when buying new furniture for storing the stuff! It’s so easy dream big! To dream even bigger than you really need – which leads to the cycle of “needing” to buy more stuff to fill the space, then needing more storage solutions for the stuff, then needing more space…you get the idea! Instead, think minimally! What do you have now, and how much space REALISTICALLY, do you need for storing that stuff? Not what can you store now, plus another 15% space. Just plan to store what you already have. You can always add more bins, or more furniture later (if you ACTUALLY need it) – but you may be able to get by with less furniture, or less storage solutions if you plan ahead and pick storage solutions that focus on function! Typically, you only need more space once you have more materials than you can really use. BUT, when you are starting from scratch, you can plan for what you have now – assuming you will use stuff up once you are inspired by your new space!

So to simplify, when planning a new space or moving your items to a different space, follow these steps:

  1. Decide what items you either use most or want to focus on
  2. Decide if the materials are currently stored functionally or not. If not, look into options or ideas that add more function to the space
  3. Decide on a budget for new storage bins, furniture, shelves etc, or see if you have items you can upcycle to make your space more functional
  4. If buying new – plan your space before you buy. Read up on how others store the same materials, get ideas, and get inspired. Read reviews! Find out what people like and don’t like about the products. If not buying new – plan how to use the space more functionally! Again, you can look up ideas for how to use space more effectively
  5. Then finally move your stuff over to the new space, decluttering as you go of course!

I used to come across old storage bins, get excited, then move all of my stuff around – simply to find that the “new” solution didn’t even work, and I moved everything back again. It would have saved so much time if I had just followed these basic steps way back then. Sometimes you just gotta wing it, and hope for the best. But when working with a lot of items or similar categories of materials, it’s best to think ahead a bit.

I can’t wait to show off my new crafting space! Pics to come.

Thanks for coming home!

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