I know when I’m in the ‘process’ of creating, I can be messy – but savvy creatives also know that being organised, helps ‘process’ to go faster and smoother, and when your organised items used in the craft process are also better looked after and it’s easier to know if you’re running out of things.
So without focussing on any ‘individual’ type of craft, what are the key ingredients to creating a great craft area?
Look at your key elements – how many core items do you use? Concentrate on differences in textures, sizes, colours, weights and bulk. Separate flat items and whether fabric, (remnants or in bolts), paper or card think on how best you can store these flat and with enough space to avoid folds and creases. Tiny items obviously need to be separated like with like and need to be housed in something with lids to avoid spillage. Avoid round containers, you will lose linear space. Square/rectangular containers can butt up against each other. Try and keep uniformity in size when it comes to stacking vertically. Label each container, especially if you cannot see through the boxes or plastic tubs.
Tools need their own special area, as do supplies for these tools, heavier items to the lower shelves, and never place heavy items higher than waist-level. Books and instruction manuals need a place, as do any electrical appliances used. Keep cables neat and tied to the appliance, and if possible near the power point you will use. If you use chemicals in your work, it may be an idea to store these bottles/cans on trays on top of shelves in case of spillage, also ensure that if they are sensitive to light and heat that they are stored correctly. When working make sure you have a work area near a window to provide adequate ventilation. Obviously if there are children who have access to the room, also ensure that dangerous objects are up high out of harms way or locked away. Lastly, have an area for recycling and off-cuts.
Look at How You Work
Think about the process that you follow in order to make your creations. Most of us read left to right and so it makes sense that your production line should work left to right as well. Are you left or right handed? Keep immediate and constantly used items ergonomically on the side of the hand you use, and make sure that your chair is comfortable and that your desk and chair are the right height. If you work with craft that needs drying time, you may also want to ensure that you have a small area to allow objects to dry without disturbance, e.g. vacant shelf, suspension cables, racks etc. Where colour is important make sure your desk has ample natural light. If you have children, maybe look at including a smaller desk or separate area for them to work at while you are working.
For other ideas and links to some great inspirations for craft rooms check out my other articles: