Monday, November 9, 2009

Organize Your Stuff Challenge - Week 25

Good morning, my scrappy friends! I won't lie to you - this week will bore the pants off of you. BUT - it will finally get one more thing off our "I really should do this, but I HATE doing this, so let me go watch tv instead" list. We're going to tackle our NEGATIVES (hey, come back, there's nothing good on tv right now, really!!!).

Unless you have your negatives all neat and orderly, then shoo. Go watch tv.

For the rest of us who have them shoved in shoeboxes, there are 2 main goals I want you to focus on in sorting your negatives. First - they need to be in some sort of order in case you accidentally mess up every photo you've ever had printed from them and you need to find a replacement fast, you'll be set. And second, they need to be in a safe storage method, away from light, heat, Kool-Aid fingers, and mouse droppings. Unless you plan on accessing these on a regular basis, it doesn't have to be user-friendly as much as your embellishment storage would be. And if you never, ever use a film camera anymore, it may not need to be expandable - just accommodate what you already have.

You will have one other decision to make - to store these separately or with your photos. Either way will work fine, it just depends on what suits you best.

Below are some links I'm come across for storage methods and ideas. Choose one that fits the space where you intend to store your negatives - if you don't plan on accessing these very often, then it doesn't have to be your scrap space, it could be a closet shelf. This is also one of those areas where I personally feel that pretty can take a back seat - if your negative storage isn't going to be seen, then don't splurge on a beautiful and elaborate storage system. Make do with what you have around the house, if possible. And, as always, the links I posted are intended to give you a visual idea of what it is I'm talking about - it doesn't mean I endorse the product or the store.

Sentimental Playground negative pockets: http://www.organizedphotos.com/Merchant2/merchant.mvc?Screen=CTGY&Store_Code=TSP&Category_Code=O
Filmbin Box with envelopes: http://www.lightimpressionsdirect.com/item.action?itemGroupId=332
FoldLock sleeves: http://www.lightimpressionsdirect.com/item.action?itemGroupId=51
Negative sheets: http://www.lightimpressionsdirect.com/item.action?itemId=430
With photos in a Cropper Hopper negative/photo holder: http://www.cropperhopper.com/search.aspx?find=ch46-p
In acid-free envelopes
In storage sheets in a 3-ring binder: http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/61728-REG/Vue_All_V8000_Negative_Saver_Archival_Storage.html

I will not be posting a photo this week of my negative storage because I, in the past, have always chosen the "watch tv" option and my negatives are crammed in 3 shoeboxes in my attic right now. Bad scrapper! Bad scrapper! I do, however, have a 50-pack of the Vue All sheets and a 3-ring binder waiting, so I will be enduring this painful journey along with you.

In closing, I want to add my 10 rules for organizing. I'm going to post these at the end of every challenge, because I think that they are very, very important. I want you to keep them in mind as you tackle each of these projects - they will make your life easier and the task less daunting.

1. Label your containers.
2. Be consistent in your methods.
3. Don't be too specific - your search for your items within your space should be short and simple.
4. Your organizational method should be easy to take out AND put away.
5. When organizing, break any large piles into smaller groupings. Have a 2 foot tall stack of paper to sort? Do it in 1" high chunks, it will be easier to handle mentally.
6. If it's something that you use on almost every project, then keep it within reach of your main scrap area.
7. Don't stress your containers. Get a new system or purge your stash.
8. For most items, product packaging adds bulk. Toss it. One exception - rub ons.
9. Repurpose when you can - almost anything can be painted or covered in paper/fabric.
10. THE GOLDEN RULE - FIRST choose an organizational method, THEN choose a container that fits your space and style. Always shop for containers with a list in hand - a beautiful container is simply clutter if it doesn't have a dedicated purpose in your space!

Hopefully we can all survive this together and make it through to week 26, when we'll tackle one of my favorite topics - keeping it neat and album organization! See you then!

Stacy

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