How many scraps of paper do I need?
And how many ink pads do I need?
And do I really need a three inch container just for green paper?
I've been thinking about these questions a lot lately as I've been organizing my art and paper crafting supplies as part of transforming Henry's old room into a guest room/studio. I have a lot of stuff, and it's been hard to pare it down.
I did move from four baskets of paper scraps down to one and I gave away two big plastic bags of ink pads (plus tossed out another bag of dried out ones). The paper was a tougher go. I planned to keep 50 sheets of 12x12, plus 20 sheets of 8.5x11 of each color (plus keep all my white/cream, black and orange). I did pretty well with most colors, except for green and brown. I don't know if it's because they were the last colors I sorted through or because I had so much to start with, but I probably kept double my goal for those colors. I still managed to give away four pizza boxes stuffed with paper. I've also made a pretty good start on culling my art supplies.
Through it all, I've tried to keep my one little word for 2014 in mind. My word is illuminate, which means to lighten and to clarify. As I go through my stuff, I realize that what I want is to have room to be able to create the art, cards and scrapbook pages which I love. And I want to be able to easily find the supplies I need for those projects. So that when I have time to sit, I can create the things which really make my heart happy and which make my soul sing. Anything else needs to be cleared away. And with that as my guiding principle, I'm making progress.