Wednesday, April 16, 2008

REDUCING AND ORGANIZING

I am running out of space! Or more accurately I have run out of space!!!! So I decided it was time to take drastic steps. No, I am not going to stop purchasing stamps. That's just not realistic is it? (I am assume those reading this post are fellow stampers and not my DH!) Christine had a segment on ScrapTime that dealt with "unmounting" Stampin' Up stamps. That is taking them off the wood.

Now don't anyone get me wrong I love my wood. It is so silky smooth to the touch. It's soft, well at least softer than acrylic. And I think it smells nice. But it takes up so much room having every stamp mounted on a 1 inch thick piece of it. If I had a 20 x 24 foot stamping room or some such thing I could manage, but in my little bedroom turned stamp room space just plain ran out!

I've actually been thinking of doing this for a year or so. That's when I first read a thread about it on SCS. The folks talking about it there loved doing it. (Well most did.) But they made it sound very time consuming and very expensive. They were talking about removing the rubber not only from the block but also the foam padding and remounting it on E-Z Mount which at over $5 a 8-1/2 x 11 sheet was more than I wanted to spend. Also there was much talk about storing the newly unmounted sets in binders verses plastic CD jewel cases. I was over whelm with the prospect and kept putting making a decision about it off even as free space dwindled more.

Then Christine showed how quick and easy it was to do this and also that there was no need to purchase new foam. I saw the light and I have begun. Thank you Christine! Here is a photo showing the stacks of stamp sets that when unmounted will fit into the wire CD basket sitting next to them. Unbelievable!!!! What once took up a 10inch deep x 12 inch wide and 24 inch tall stack now fits into a 11inch deep x 5-1/2 inch wide and 6 inch tall space. I LOVE IT!!!!!!

I use my microwave to soften the glue enough so I can gently peel the stamp off the block with the foam still intact. I experimented and found that it does take 20 seconds. For the small stamps it takes about 15 seconds. The picture labels also peel off nicely, though as Christine said they come off cloudy. Doesn't bother me though. The labels I place on the outside top of the CD holder. I had started putting them on the inside of the top cover till I realize that meant when I looked at the CD holder the image was reversed which made it very difficult to read the sentiments. They stick nicely. Here you can see what a set looks like in its new home. This was a set that I hadn't actually mounted yet so the label is not cloudy.

With sets that haven't been previously mounted this is very easy, but you do have to tape the stick foam on a fabric service more than the others to cover up some of the stick. I found this tedious to do, but certainly not hard. Some of the stamps I unmounted did not have much adhesive left on them at all, but I think enough that they will hold on the acrylic block to stamp with them. If not I will try adding some Scotch Double stick tape.

I did find that I needed to tape the label down on the spine of the container. I used clear packing tape cut in a strip wide enough it would wrap around the edges. Here is a picture of the CD box with the individual cases in it. That was this morning. Now I have only 3 or 4 more jewel cases to fill. Then I need to head back to The Container Store and get a few more of the metal boxes. I like these because they have handles, they stack and they are relatively inexpensive. I think they are $6.99 each. I also got the jewel cases at the Container Store. They were $6.99 for 10. But thanks to Christine I have found a much less expensive source on line. It's called Effectuality Inc. Even with shipping they are much less expensive so I think I Will be placing an order with them.

I do have one problem now though.....what do I do with all these empty blocks????? They are stacking up. Yikes! Clutter!!!! I might try and sell them on E-Bay in a large batch. Who knows? First I need to get up the courage to post items on E-Bay. And I do need to do this since in doing this I can no longer ignore the number of sets I have.....I've done over 25 sets and I haven't even scratched the surface. Some must go! The question is which ones??????????? Well, it's too late now to think of that. Such a vexing question will have to wait till tomorrow.....or the next day....

7 comments:

Lee said...

Ohhh..........Suzanne......very coool!! But I just got done mounting allllll my new SU stamps!!! LOL I'm gonna wait and see how my new little craft room looks and how much room I have. But I do have tons of unmounted already and I do love them!!! Ahhh.....ebay.....I MUST take that plunge soon too!!!!

Christi said...

You brave woman! LOL I'm so scared I'm going to unmount mine and then want to sell them! :) I have decided to go ahead and unmount the ones that I know are keepers for life and the other ones get to stay on a shelf. One thing I have going for me is that I only have maybe 20 sets? LOL I'm such a newbie! :)

cookingmama said...

Me 2 I only have like 20 sets too. Good luck with unmounting. Sounds like a lot of work. I would be too scared to try it, but tempting to save space.

Beth said...

Whoah...you HAVE been busy! Everything looks great and I love those baskets. Me? I'm waaay too chicken to go unmounted. Then again, I'm a relative newbie, too. Though I will NOT count my sets. ;-)

Give me a call and we'll both get over our phobia of posting on ebay together - I got *ahem* a few Longabergers I could unload!

LadyDoc said...

Suzanne- I can save you some ebay time and effort. I have some unmounted stamps- clear and red rubber- that I am ready to take to school for the kids to use. BUT- dealing with acrylic blocks and keeping track of things there would be a real hassle. I have actually been LOOKING for wood blocks to buy- so can I buy some of yours????

Sarah said...

Suzanne - you are a brave, brave woman!! The set up looks awsome! I think I would be way to intimidated to try to unmount all my sets (I have close to 300, not counting wheels!!) Good luck on getting all these done!

Diane said...

I came flying to your blog to check out the unmounted post after visiting Sarah newly organized craft room. You may have to demonstrate the unmounting process this summer...just thinking about unmounting my hundreds of sets (well, I'd never do them allllll), makes my knees weak. But BOY would less bulk be great. You are SO BRAVE!!!