Monday, August 11, 2008

Tool Storage

Tabletop Organization

Just as we each have our own scrapbook style, we also favor a different set of basic scrapbooking tools, the ones we reach for time after time. Whatever your essential tools may be, keep them within arm’s reach for easy access and cleanup. Tabletop organizers, like this handy carousel (from Pottery Barn Kids), keep your must-have tools tidy and visible. A quick spin on the lazy Susan is all it takes to find the tool you need. This particular organizer has nine compartments, which are perfect for holding rulers, scissors, eyelet tools, adhesives, and other essentials. And because each side of the carousel has a label holder you can personalize, you’ll know exactly where to put your tool when you’re done.

Rolling Cart

Modular storage systems, like this compact six-drawer chest by Family Treasures, are ideal for keeping scrapbooking tools at the ready. The unit is sold in single or double versions enabling you to add more storage space as needed. Other varieties may have drawers of different sizes to store both large and small tools. Both this unit and similar units can be stacked to create tall towers of drawers that take up very little floor space. Whichever model you choose, look for one with casters for easy mobility. Add labels to each drawer front to make identifying what’s inside a snap.

Drawer Caddy

Keep items neat and tidy in desk or cabinet drawers with compartmentalized organizers. Look for an organizer that’s deep enough to hold your supplies but doesn’t require you to stack items, making them hard to find. You also want to choose one that fits snugly inside your drawer. Take your drawer measurements with you when shopping to guarantee a fit. The cloth lining of this canvas-covered model by The RPI Group keeps tools from sliding around as the drawer is opened and closed. Plus, it comes in fun colors! Shallow bowls for other essentials fill the space left beside the organizer.

Tackle Box

If you’re a scrapbooker on the go, a portable system comes in handy. A toolbox will help you move from your scrapbook nook to the kitchen table to a crop party with ease. Toolboxes, tackle boxes, and craft boxes come in a variety of sizes and styles. Plano’s compact tackle box boosts its storage capacity with cantilever trays. Each one is perfect for storing your fine-tip scissors, eyelet tools, adhesives, and other tools and supplies. The roomy base can hold your ruler, stapler, large punches, and a compact hammer.

Hanging Pegboard

Out of floor space? Shelves overflowing? Think vertical. Empty wall space can become a useful storage area, and it’s a great way to keep scissors and other scrapbook tools out of little hands. There are tons of choices for wall storage systems, but one of our favorites is basic pegboard. We picked up a sheet at the hardware store for about $5 and found a large frame with nice molding at a crafts store. After cutting the pegboard to size, we gave it a coat of paint and secured it inside the frame. Customize your system with tool-hanging gadgets—hooks, baskets, and shelves. A pegboard keeps everything visible, eliminating time-wasting hunts for the right tool.

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