It doesn’t matter if you enjoy crocheting, knitting, sewing, scrapbooking, candle-making, woodworking, jewelry-making, beading, cross-stitching, macramé, or painting – creating is messy.
I go through “craft binges” where I select a craft and immerse myself in it for weeks or even months before resurfacing. And whether it is scrapbooking, cross-stitching, or crocheting, things tend to pile up fast. Before I realize it, I’m surrounded by tools, scraps, and dozens of projects in varying stages of completeness.
If you consider yourself a crafter, you know how difficult it can be to control the chaos – especially in a small apartment. So how can you create a craft room (or at least a craft corner) that will hold all of the necessary tools and materials you use? It’s easy – just be creative!
You can convert an unused closet into a craft room. It takes a little more thought and planning than converting it to an office space where all you really need is a desk large enough for a laptop computer and some shelves for storage. A craft space contains some very tiny items (seed beads) to some very large items (sewing machine) to all kinds of odds and ends (buttons, ribbon, spools of thread). Creating a space for everything will be the key to making your craft area successful – no matter how small.
Make your work space do double-duty. If you typically work at the dining room table, for example, find an antique armoire or a pie safe – something with doors that will hide craft supplies. On the insides of the doors, cut cork board to fit and attach. Use this to pin photographs, instruction sheets, etc. Under a shelf, attach a paper towel holder. Place spools of ribbon on the bar and hang – you can pull the amount of ribbon you need without removing it from the holder. Use mason jars to store small items. Glue two or three empty cereal boxes together and then cover in Contact paper. Make several, and then place them on a shelf horizontally with the open side facing out. Use the “cubbies” you created to store card stock. Everything is handy when your dining room table is being used for crafts, and it is easy to put away when you need the dining space.
If you would rather keep your dining room a craft-free zone but you don’t have a spare closet to convert, try making a craft corner – place two small bookshelves perpendicular to each other in the corner. On one bookcase, remove the bottom shelves (and possibly one top shelf) to create a “desk.” Use the other shelves to store your craft supplies. Find a small chair or a stool (cut the legs to fit the height of the desk) and put it in front of your new workspace.
Plate holders and oven grills are great for holding paper, while baskets of all sizes and shapes hold supplies such as stamps and hole punches. Recycle items such as plastic containers – wash them out, then cover them with fabric, scrapbook paper, or decorative Contact paper. These are perfect to hold markers, scissors, and other items.
Shop the hardware store! Storage cabinets for nails, washers, and other tiny items are perfect for organizing seed beads, buttons, and other tiny items. And, if you absolutely don’t have space for a craft room, you might find a solution in the hardware or home improvement store. I was able to organize most of my craft supplies in a surprisingly spacious “toolbox” on wheels. It has a collapsible handle, several small storage boxes, and one large drawer for paper. I just roll it away into the closet when I’m done working and everything stays neat and organized.
If you like the idea of something you can roll out when you need it and then put back when you’re done but you need a table space, consider a kitchen island on wheels. You can pull a stool up to the counter to work and use the shelves and drawers to hold supplies. When you are done, just roll it against the wall.
Use your imagination – if you stumble upon an old trunk at a flea market, for example, consider using it to hold your craft supplies. Just line it with different-sized baskets and containers and add casters so you can wheel it out of the way – or use it as your coffee table when it isn’t acting as your craft center.
How did you create a crafting space in your apartment? Join us on Facebook and share your ideas!