Cricut Cartridge Storage and Organization

The best way to organize and store your Cricut Cartridges is by using a Catalog and Numbering System. This system allows you to add cartridges to your collection, without having to “rearrange” or “re-organize” your existing cartridges. To use this system, you can either leave your cartridges, booklets and overlays in their original cases, or you can remove them from their cases and store them in a Cricut Cartridge Tote or Cricut Cartridge Storage Case. Regardless of the storage method you choose, the catalog system will remain the same.

The first decision you need to make is whether you plan to keep the cartridges in their original box or if you plan to condense them down using one of the storage tools mentioned earlier. If you plan to use one of the storage tools mentioned earlier, you may want consider keeping the boxes stored elsewhere, just in case you decide to sell the cartridge at a later date.

Start by numbering each of the Cricut boxes, cartridges, booklets, and overlays. If the box is labeled # 1, then the corresponding cartridge, booklet and overlay will all also be labeled #1.

Your next step is to collect the images of the shapes on each of the cartridges you own. You can either photocopy the back of the box or you can get the images directly off the Cricut Website. In either case it will be helpful and beneficial later to have the images stored both digitally and physically printed out. At minimum I would recommend 2 copies of each printout. The first for the appropriate section in your 4 Section System, and the second for a separate catalog. When you print out the image(s), give that printout(s) the same number as the corresponding cartridge, in this case #1. Generally most of the cartridges deal with a single “theme”, but in some cases, they may be appropriate for multiple themes. If the cartridge is appropriate for multiple themes, you will want to print out an equal number of images, so you can include one labeled (numbered) image in each section of your 4 Section System where appropriate. For example, if you had a Travel cartridge, that included lots of travel icons and also an alphabet, you would want to include an image of that cartridge in both the Travel Section and in the Alpha Numeric section.

Once you’ve printed out and numbered the images to match the numbers on the Cartridges, Booklets and Overlays, you can put the images into your 4 Section System, and into your Cricut Catalog (this may be easily combined with your stamps, punches, etc…catalog).

Your final step is to label the Cricut original box (if that is your storage method of choice) or the containers (Cartridge Tote or Storage Case) that you have chosen. Once this is done, you can put the cartridges, booklets and overlays into the appropriate container.

When you’re ready to crop, the image of the Cricut cartridge will “pop up” in the appropriate section(s) of your 4 Section System. In our example Travel; when you are scrapping Travel and you go to that section in your ScrapRack, you’ll see that cartridge image, the number on the image will tell you exactly where to find the cartridge, whether it is in a box or in a storage tote or case.



The Magnetic Crafting Easel

Hi Crafty Ladies -
 We've had so many questions about the Magnetic Easel that I thought I'd create a video to explain it better.

If you want to learn more about this easel, you can get more details on our website. Here's the link: http://thescraprack.easystorecreator.com/items/Special-Purchase/list.htm .


Organizing Photos for Multiple Albums

For those of you who have been a part of the Get Organized Challenge, you’ve heard me talk about the value of creating “holding albums.” Holding albums work great especially when you’re on track with a particular scrapbooking project. However, I, like most scrappers tend to be just “slightly” behind . My project last week was to get all of my photos that had been sorted by year and by event into groups by album. This was somewhat challenging on a number of levels:
1.) I create 3 sets of albums, one for each of my sons (London and Max) and one for myself.
2.) I have 2 different sizes of albums going (8.5 x 11 from when I first started and now 12x12).
3.) I had created some pages of some events for all 3 albums, but wasn’t consistent. 

The hardest part:
The biggest challenge was just sitting down with a notebook and listing what I had created for each album and what still needed to be created. I have to admit while I dreaded this part of the project it wasn’t nearly as bad as I thought it might be. I started by opening all of the albums together and flipping through them so I could see each event in each book. That made it easy to list what was completed and what was missing. This part of the process actually only took about 15 minutes. I scribbled down notes in 3 columns; Family, London and Max.   

Next Step:
My next step was to cut lots of sheets of 8.5x11 paper in half and label each piece of paper with the themes/events/holidays, etc. that were missing from each album. I used a different color of paper to represent each person’s album. This isn’t necessary, but it helped to keep me focused when I was choosing pictures. I also noted which size album and how many pages I wanted for each event. As I created these labeled half sheets I crossed them off the list.

Choosing pictures:
My goal was to choose 6 pictures for each 12x12 layout and just 4 pictures for the 8.5x11 books. It really helps to make this decision in advance. You want to try to avoid creating 6 pages of your adorable 18 month old eating an Ice Cream cone. If you know you only get to choose 4 pictures for a single page layout it will be much easier to decide and move on.
Since the photos were already sorted into chronological order it was easy to go through them and make selections for each album. Any pictures that were left over went into my purge box. It was easier than you might think to put them in the purge box, because I knew I had what I needed for my scrapbooks. I was also able to comfortably toss out “bad” pictures.

As I choose the pictures I wrapped them in the half sheets of labeled paper and put them in my READY to SCRAP photo box – again, in chronological order.
I tried to keep the “purge” box in some type of chronological order. When my family visits, I’ll let my mom, sister, mother-in-law, whoever is interested, look through the photos and take what they want. After the purge box has made the rounds, I’ll be able to confidently throw whatever is left away.

The Big Benefit
I’ll confess that it did take a few hours to get through the literally thousands of pictures that I had, but it was sooooo worth it! I went from over 4 photo storage boxes, down to just 2. There were several Labeled sheets, that I didn’t have printed photos for. I left these “empty” sheets in the photo boxes, in chronological order so when I come across them again, I will know I need to track down the photos on the computer.

Maybe now I’ll get “caught up” – LOL.
Tips and Tricks

Start with the list!
Invest a little time in making lists of what is in your books and what is missing. This will REALLY help in the sorting process. If you have to constantly be going back to the albums to verify what you have / have not done it will get frustrating and overwhelming. My list initially just had “what was missing,” but I found myself constantly going back to verify what was “done”, so it ended up being more efficient to include both “missing” and “done” on the list.

Prior to sorting:
Decide how many pictures you will allow yourself to choose for each page size / layout.
Decide how many layouts you will do for each event prior to sorting through the pictures.

Set yourself up for success.
Be sure you have all the tools you need; photos, photo storage boxes, paper, pens, etc. before you sit down to get started. If you have to leave your project to hunt for things you’ll get distracted.