Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Solutions For Stampers

I am a new found stamp collector. Not only do I love the look of stamped images on scrapbook pages and paper projects, I love shopping for stamps and arranging stamps on shelves and in baskets. Unfortunately, the sheer volume of stamps I own caused me to waste time when I had to search and dig for the perfect stamp to use in a project.

In an effort to save time, I was forced to create a stamp organization system that works for me.

Here are the details:

My stamps are organized by type and theme and stored in one corner of my scrapbook room. Wood-mounted stamps are arranged on shallow shelves divided by theme. (Newly purchased stamps are temporarily housed in a basket on my work table because I just can't bear to put them away.) Acrylic, foam and wooden stamp sets are stored in a cabinet under the shelves. Alphabet stamps are in drawers and unmounted stamps are in CD cases.

A three-ring binder contains stamped images of each stamp, divided into tabbed sections. This organizer was designed to save time, as each stamped image is labeled with the manufacturer and a code. When I wish to find an image or determine which stamp to use on a project, I no longer have to root through the cabinet looking for just the right stamp. When I need to know the manufacturer of a stamp, I just pull out the binder. The tab dividers currently read:

  • Alphabet
  • Animals
  • Background
  • Childhood
  • Floral
  • Holidays
  • Nature
  • Occasions
  • Sentiments
  • Vintage
  • Misc.

My coding system is simple: a two-letter code for the type of stamp and a four-digit number to help locate it by just glancing at the edge of the container. I printed sheets of clear labels with the codes, but you could also use a labeling machine.

  • UM - Unmounted
  • WI - Individual Wooden Stamp
  • WS - Wooden Stamp Set
  • AS - Acrylic Set
  • FS - Foam Stamp

While the original planning, stamping and labeling was time consuming, it feels good to know exactly what I have and where it is in the room. During my re-organization, I realized that I had many forgotten and neglected stamps. I plan to rectify that soon with my newfound extra time.

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