Learn how to Shop your Stash

Empty shopping bags representing shopping what you already have.

This is probably one of the most important posts I am going to create in the Cardmaking category. We are surrounded on all sides by creative inspiration, but as many of us know there are two hobbies cardmaking and collecting crafting goodies, this addresses the second one.

Why you need to shop your Stash

Last week I talked about finally getting my hands on the Tim Holtz Stamping Platform and of course I needed some stamps to play with. I couldn’t resist ordering some new Tonic Stamps to go with my Stamping Platform, however, I really needed to take stock and learn to Shop my Stash and I am sure you would benefit if you Shop your Stash.  Any crafter (unless they are on a really strict budget) is going to tell you that they can’t resist getting the latest shiny new thing when it is released but how often do we actually look at our back catalogue of goodies.

Amassing quite a collection

I have subscribed to Cardmaking & PapercraftQuick Cards Made EasyPapercraft Inspirations, Simply Cards and Papercrafts, Papercraft Essentials and Creative Stamping for quite a few years. These are just the standard magazines I get I have not started on the specialist ones like the Hunkydory Magazine. As you can see, I’m sure, my collection has mounted up and with all these magazines comes a free gift. It is these gifts that I purchase the paper copies for in the main as the majority of the titles are available on Readly which I have talked about before.

Readly to take your Inspiration with you

If you have not seen my previous posts I absolutely love Readly as it allows you to subscribe to hundreds of digital magazines for the price of less than two printed copies a month. If you love lifestyle magazines that do not come with extra free gifts and you have access to an Ipad/tablet what are you waiting for? You can have all your magazines (complete with large collections of back issues at your fingertips. No more piles of magazines kicking around that you have not quite finished with. You simply have to choose which magazine you want to read and it remembers where you were up to last – fantastic!

The benefit of the Paper Copies

As previously mentioned though I like to still get my paper copies even though I can access them digitally purely for the free gifts. However, this is where the problem arises… I unpack these lovely sets of stamps, dies, embossing folders, stencils and paper packs – you get the idea – think how lovely they are and then put them in a draw, or more accurately one of about seven draws and forget I have them. Then, you’ve guessed it, not know what I have in my Stash and need to go out and buy more. Which gets used for that particular project then put away in a draw.


Do I have deja-vu? Have I talked about this before? If so please forgive me and blame it on the Fibro Fog. However, if I have not talked about this situation on here I have certainly been “having a word with myself” about it for some time. So I have a Plan – Stan!

The Great Stamp Off of 2017

As we discovered when I tested the Tim Holtz Stamping Platform, not all stamps are made equally some (but certainly not all of the ones that come as free gifts) are often sub-standard and simply don’t give a good image. So I have a plan. I am going to slowly work my way through all of my stamp sets. I will stamp all the images in each set onto their own piece of paper. Then, if the quality passes the test and I am going to keep them photo each one and add it to my Evernote Crafting Inventory Notebook with suitable tags for the images included. Then I simply need to give each set a reference code of where I will find it and store them neatly away.

Living Creatively with Fibro | Learn how to Shop Your Stash

Organising Collections

One of my longest-running quandaries has been how to store collections. I tried splitting items up, like for like, with the stamps altogether and the embossing folders altogether in the early days when I had less Stash (before I subscribed to so many magazines!) but I never knew I had coordinating items so this didn’t work. I then started keeping all the items from a set together, but this is proving to be a nightmare trying to store tidily. So I am going to use my Evernote Crafting Inventory (which I mainly have things like ink pads and Nuvo Products recorded in) and create myself one amazing searchable database of all my stamps, embossing folders, dies etc which will enable me to cross-reference which products are part of a set and therefore store all my items like for like in well-labelled storage.

How I can and you would be able to Shop your Stash

Once I have completed this project I will be able to either look through Evernote to find what I am looking for or browse through my physical collection of stamps or dies then check on Evernote what products I have that work with it. This project is going to take my quite some time but it is very much my hope that I will get through it and when I have finished I will have a fabulous record of all my wonderful crafting resources. Maybe I won’t need to buy as much stash in the future (she said and then laughed and laughed and laughed) Well it might mean that I will be making more organised purchases of what I really do not have in my collection rather than ending up with several nearly identical stamp sets.

Until next time,
Gentle Hugs,

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