Sunday, May 2, 2010

My Organizing Journey

This weekend I had the urge to organize my studio - as in open up every file folder and magazine that I own and throw things out or catalog the information - organize. I don't quite know what came over me, except that I hope it sticks around for a little while till my studio is complete, as well as create new habits that will help me keep on track and not drown in inspiration.

First, I realized that I had a 2 foot stack of magazines that I had purchased over the past few months - not counting the ones I subscribe to (yes I am addicted to pretty inspirational images, I admit it!). Which then led my eyes to the magazine file's that are stuffed with my back issues of HOW magazine...and when I looked at the dates, and saw '2002', I knew it was time to adios them and make room for something more relevant. 2002? Yes, really! BUT I can't just recycle a perfectly healthy magazine full of inspiration without pulling out the pages I love, now can I? NooooOOooo! So my Friday night turned into a night of tearing out inspiring tidbits of design information, which left me inspired in the process!

I re-discovered artists' work that I love, such as Illustrators Jess Volinski, Katie Daisy, Ann Field, Nate Williams, and Susan Black who sells her work at her Etsy shop 29 Black Street. Also PopMats from PubliqueSHOP which are unique paper place mats that feature stylish scenes that pop off the table. And the list goes on and on and on!

Once I tore the pages out, I 3-hole punched them and put them into a binder labeled 'Design Inspiration'. What's quite fulfilling at the end of this little inspiration-tear-out-and-organize journey, is that now I have a 2" binder full of things that I love instead of a 2 foot stack.

While going through an old Real Simple magazine, I came across this quote about de-cluttering and organizing, "If you don't know what to do with it, or where to put it, or why you ever bought it in the first place, or if looking at it depresses you, throw it out. Never keep anything that makes you feel heavy or weighs you down". So, may that be my motto! The article went on to say to throw out 50 things (and 50 magazines actually count as ONE thing). By golly, I think I'm going to do this! I've already thrown out and recycled things that I've had laying around to "someday fix", or things I just "didn't know how or where to put them", and feel so fabulous about it!

In addition, since I was discovering so much inspiration, I started adding my inspirational bookmarks to Delicious so I can track them from my laptop and my desktop, as well as share them with you. I have added them to the right side of my blog.

I hope you enjoy and they allow you to discover new things to inspire you as well!


  1. AnonymousMay 03, 2010

    It must be time for Spring cleaning, I've been going through my magazines this weekend and was planning to cut out the pictures that inspire me and paste them in journals but, after reading your post, it sounds like too much hassle. Bring on the ring binders! Thanks for saving me loads of time (and glue). :)

  2. AnonymousMay 03, 2010

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  3. HOW, Communication Arts and Print magazines are SO hard for me to get rid of! My mom subscribed long before me so when I went through my stack recently I realized I had back issues from the 90s. They are such beautiful magazines that I couldn't stand to pull out the pages before getting rid of them. I spent an afternoon looking through them and drinking in inspiration before donating them to the library (they sell them in their annual fund-raising events). I wish I had at least thought to scan in some pages before giving them away. I still have huge stacks that I have not gone through. And I tend to want to keep all of the annuals--but since there are so many between all three mags, I even have to narrow that down to my faves!
    I really long to be as organized as you with my inspiration. Having everything in binders and quickly accessible is such a wonderful way to do it!

  4. My stack is unfortunately still high, BUT I have created a special bin that I put all my tear sheets in, and they slowly make their way to the binders. It's a long process, as you know. Ditto on the numerous subscriptions! It's the only way to go!

  5. Rosy Lady - I'm so glad to have saved you glue and especially time! I figured this method would be best for this type of inspiration. I didn't want to spend too much time on this project.

    For my print inspiration, I do end up cutting out each piece, which takes LOADS of time. But it's pretty and easy to go through when I'm finished. My plan is once a month for that type of inspiration to keep up with it all : )

  6. Jenean! - Soooo true! That's probably WHY I've hung onto my magazines for so many years and packed them to move with me half way across the US! They are beautiful!! I had to force myself to do something with them : ( My magazine stacks were getting out of hand, and I found I wasn't EVER getting into them : ( What a great idea to donate them to a fund-raising event!

  7. Megan - Yay! Sounds like the two of us are on the same page! We should compare organizing notes ; ) I'd love any extra tips you have!!

    It truly is such a long process...I think the only thing that motivates me to do it is that my love of the final result is more than my loathing of the amount of time it takes. : )

  8. I'll confess, I had seen links to Delicious on various websites, but it wasn't until I read this post that I actually checked it out. Thank you for opening my eyes!

  9. Meghan - You're so welcome, that is so great to hear! I know, it's so new to me too...I'm still figuring it out : ) So far it's been pretty cool. I look forward to finding other friends' bookmarks too!

  10. Oh I do hope I get that urge soon!! My once organised inspiration collection is in chaos in in much need of my attention!!
    Thanks for sharing 'Delicious" I'm very intrigued by it...its looks like it will be a great thing to get set up!


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