Thursday, November 11, 2010

Organizing Your Projects - Part IV

If you have as many projects going on as I have, you have to have some form of organization or you will go crazy. And I don't have any time to go crazy because I have a lot of creating to do and I'm sure you do too.

As I bring home yarn, print new patterns or buy another book, I think about where I am going to put it. I have a lot going on with my needlearts so it is always a battle with space and organizing. It feels so free having things in place where that you can find what you are looking for when you need it. But there are times when I will be looking for a pattern or something I saved on the computer for longer than I would like to mention. And when you are into the needlearts you are bound to have that problem.

Isn't it wonderful that we have such an array of information, patterns, yarns etc? But it is also dangerous because then we want it all. I've already confessed that I am a project hoarder. I love starting new projects and learning something new. So I've been asked, how do I keep up with all of my projects?

One way is to use recyclable bags from grocery stores. I've also been to a lot of events from my old job and they would give a give-a-way bag and so I use those.
I crocheted a pouch with a zipper for basic supplies so that I can taus it in my bag and go.

I can appreciate those that work on one project at a time. OK, there are those that have two projects that they are working on. Well, I am neither. I have several projects that I work on at the same time. Yes, I am a junkie for projects. They keep my excitement on high. Don't think that it can't get chaotic sometimes because it does. I've put the pattern somewhere and I can't find it. I've moved my project bag and it gets lost in the shuffle. I'm not frazzled free but most of the time I have it together. Perfect I'm not.

Now when you are using non see through bags then you need to use something to identify what is inside, that is, if you are like me and you are cramped with space and you have several projects going on. Well, if you have been to a lot of conferences then you received a name tag. I'm not talking about saving the stick on kind but the ones that either pin to your clothes or go around your neck. I saved mine because I knew they would come in handy. I have used them at some of my classes if there is no table so that I can remember names. I am bad at names. But I know I have lots of company out there with the same problem. So they can be used to put on your project bags. You fill out a sheet the size of the name tag holder with what the pattern is and if you want include a piece of the yarn. Hang or pin them on the project bag and you know what is in the bag. So if you are like me and your bags need to be hung up to keep things organized then you don't have to bring the bags down to see what is in each bag. It is on the outside and you can pull the bags down only when you want one of the projects.

Something else that comes in handy is a to-go bag. You can have one packed and ready to go with project, pattern, and what you need to work on it without any extra thinking. I will leave one project that is easy just for a to-go project. It has to be small, portable and simple so that I don't have to concentrate on any special stitches, decreases/increases etc... This also works for knit groups and I don't have to think of what I am going to bring with me. There are also zippered plastic cases that I use for small projects. I know what you are thinking - socks. Yes, it is great to hold your needles and yarn for making a pair of socks. You need to use point protectors so that the needles don't poke through the plastic.

In the picture it shows two items that help me to keep organized. These are all the essentials I need to work on my projects. I have one that stays at home and one that travels with me. The one for home I found at Wal-Mart in the fishing supplies department. I like it because the little compartments are adjustable so that I can make it the size of my small items. The one I take with me out was a give-away bag at an event. I love the different compartments and zippered pockets. Keeps everything so organized.

One other thing that is essential to working with my projects - my needles and hooks. I wanted to talk about this at the same time that I talk about organizing projects because without our needles and hooks there would be no reason to buy yarn. Now you have several different kinds of organizers that are used specifically for needles and hooks. You have the roll-up kind, tubes, and cases. And if you want to look around your home to recycle something, you can use an old pencil case or tooth brush holder (clean it first) for your hooks or other small items. And if you sew, then the skies the limit as to designing something that is perfect for the different sizes and one that could fit both a variety of needles and hooks for carrying out with you. I forget about my cases because most of the time most of my needles are being used by projects. It's all good.

These cases can be purchased at your local craft store, knitting/crochet convention, or on line.

The next post will be sent out on Monday. Happy organizing!

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