Have you ever had to move a pile in order to use a common tool? Have you ever wanted to give your stash away and start from scratch? Do you ever feel overwhelmed by your stash? These are all questions I could honestly answer "yes" to. My craft stash has seriously grown to an insane amount. Compared to some people, it may not be much at all, but for me (someone that deals with anxiety), it's overwhelming. When I first started scrapbooking, I shopped clearance. ALOT. Like 95% of what I purchased was from clearance. And I bought it because, well...I like deals! But between that, winning giveaways, and trading products with fellow scrappers, my stash has become downright unruly.
So I decided to get real with myself and what I own. That means be completely honest with myself about the 80 paper flowers I own when I don't even like flowers much...
How to REALISTICALLY go through your stash.
1. Create three labels: 'Yes,' 'No, and 'Maybe.' Use washi tape to adhere them to the wall. (They don't have to be anything fancy). Keep some good distance between the piles since they will grow quickly.
2. Go through your ENTIRE stash one area at a time (shelf, basket, pile, hanging. What ever it is you may use).
3. Place what you KNOW you want to keep in the "yes" pile. (That means no hesitation whatsoever. You are still so in love with the item and it takes your breath away when you look at its prettiness).
4. Place what you KNOW you don't want in the "no" pile. (Easy enough, right?)
5. Now here's the tricky one: the "maybe" pile. While I was going through my stash, if there was any hesitation or I thought about the product for longer than 5 seconds, it went into the "maybe" pile. This might be scary for some people (as it definitely was for me!) but remember that it's still there and you can always take it out.
So here's how I ended up: a lot of my ribbon went into the "maybe" pile. Once upon a time I used to be so in love with ribbon and bought it by the yardfuls. But that love seems to be waning and I use it less and less on projects. I could not believe how much paper went into my "no" pile. And I hardly had ANY to begin with! There was not one piece of patterned paper in the "no" pile that made me consider moving it into the "maybe" pile. Paper that just wasn't my style anymore or didn't really appeal to me. Why did I save all this paper I didn't even like?!
I left my stamps out of the great big purge for the simple reason that I went through them recently when I switched them to new storage containers. Stamps are hard to get rid of for me because they are my "go to" for cards and are so versatile. I did go through my stamp pads though and got rid of any that were dried out or were in colors I no longer liked.
My "yes" pile was the largest (of course) and had a lot of my newer and newer-to-me product I recently received that I loved in it.
Once you are all done, take everything from your "yes" pile and mix it back into your stash. Next, bag up all of your "no" products to donate or give away. (I used the Hefty JUMBO 2 1/2 gallon ziplock bags. They hold so much!) Finally, go through your "maybe" pile. Take out anything you think you JUST CAN'T part with right now. If there's things in your "maybe" pile that you didn't even remember you HAD, or you haven't touched in at least a month, it's time to get rid of it! Finally, if you are just torn between some products (as that happened with me with some of that good ole ribbon...) put them in a box and mark it 30-day pitch. If you don't use it after 30 days, it's time to get rid of it. Bag up the rest of your "maybe" products to donate or giveaway.
So there you have it! You just REALISTICALLY cleaned out your stash! Give yourself a high five because YOU ARE AWESOME! Parting with craft supplies is one of my least favorite tasks, but when you look at your stash and ONLY SEE things you love and motivate you to start crafting right. this. second, it is such a great and refreshing feeling!
Have you ever done a big cleansing of your craft stash?
I'd love to hear about it!