When my sewing friends come to my house, they always comment on how organized my little sewing room is. So I thought I'd share with you some of my organization tips. Keep in mind that I'm a mix of practical and creative, so I like cute colorful things as long as they serve a purpose. I'm also fairly frugal (cheap?) and realistic, which means that I'm good at talking myself out of purchases.
Here's the Tip of the Day: When in doubt, throw it out.
My favorite organizational aid is the trash can. I used to save and collect things (it was ridiculous) but I've trained myself to think like my friend Maria. Maria reads a magazine, tears out what she needs, files the idea, and throws the rest of the magazine away. I learned from her. Then I took it to the next level. I stopped tearing things out. And you want to know why? I never looked at them. Really. Never. I have cute little boxes adorned with neat little labels with matching lids ... all covered in dust. So now I use Pinterest. And when I'm reading Better Homes and Gardens and am tempted to tear, I think, "Will I really use/do this?" If the answer is yes, I use Evernote on my Droid. I take a picture of the idea and catalog it on my phone. Then I recycle the magazine.
I don't save many fabric scraps because I never used them. I have rules like nothing smaller than 2" x 2". It keeps me sane and focused. Clutter weighs down my creative spirit. I know this and, when tempted to save, I ask myself, "Will this little piece of fabric help me be more creative or will it clog up my space (mind)?" I have a arsenal of small project ideas and I only save things that I could use for a particular project. If I can't think of anything, I toss it. And guess what? It hasn't killed me!
This approach isn't for everyone. You also have to be (1) incredibly honest with yourself, (2) disciplined enough to let go of something, and (3) accepting of the fact that you might regret your decision later. If you feel horrible about getting rid of things then donate it to a youth center, the Girl Scouts, or a senior center.