June Bazaar: Tools for Organizing

Craft & Design

By Susan Beal
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Magnetic Inspiration Board
These sleek, stylish magnetic fabric boards by are paired with covered-button magnets in the same prints – an easy, beautiful way to make an ever-changing inspiration board, or keep your important papers or project receipts handy in your craft room, kitchen or bedroom. MooreMagnets makes these in sizes from 10″ x 10″ to 24″ x 24″ and they mount right onto a wall. I really love the stems and leaves pattern and the Amy Butler Optic Blossom fabric versions – the unframed squares are so beautifully simple.

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Inspiration Boards by MooreMagnets on Etsy, $22-55

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Expedit Shelves
There are so many ways to use this versatile open shelving from Ikea in a craft room for organizing and storage – I like to cover simple cardboard boxes with scanned fabric to hold my color-coded scraps, while Rachel mentioned earlier this month that she hoped to make a cutting table that doubles as fabric storage for her new studio space with this clever project from Jamie at Prudent Baby.
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Expedit shelves from Ikea, from $40 for a 2×2-cubby unit to $200 for a 5×5

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Kate’s Grocery Planner
I use this fill-in grocery list every week, which was beautifully designed by Kate Pruitt – it’s so easy to add to or cross off as you keep a running list. Kate made up three versions for Design Sponge and generously offers them as a free download. She also gives instructions to create the coordinating clipboard and pen/receipt box in the same post! I use different ink colors to write up my list, if I’m going to different stores or farmer’s markets the same week and want to keep my different outings organized. My three-year-old likes to draw on it too, so there’s a bonus – keeping her occupied while I do my grocery shopping.
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Kate’s Grocery Planner at Design Sponge, free!

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Japanese Datebooks
I love a small, efficient-but-cute paper planner and the one I picked up for this year is this Rilakkuma flip-book with adorable monthly calendar pages – plus plenty of room to jot down addresses, notes, phone numbers, and any other details you need to remember. It also has a zip-tight bag on the back for receipts or other essential bits and pieces, and lots of subway maps in case you have any exciting international travel coming up! Japanese planner/datebooks like this one are usually available in the fall at larger bookstores like Kinokuniya, or online (check back in a couple of months for the new 2012 planners if you’re interested!). I’ve found these in Portland, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Seattle over the years. One last thing – they usually don’t have US holidays marked so you can fill those in yourself.
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Assorted datebooks, Kinokuniya, about $20

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Susan Beal is a West Coast freelance writer and lover of all things crafty who lives in Portland, Oregon. She writes for Stitch, CRAFT, ReadyMade, BUST, Venus, BurdaStyle, and CraftStylish. She's the author of Bead Simple, Button It Up, Modern Log Cabin Quilting, and World of Geekcraft.

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