Some Studio Storage Solutions

As promised, this is part 2 of my posts about my Studio ReDo. Here’s the first post where I told you all about redoing the studio to make it a beautiful space!

In this post, I’m going to show you some of the storage solutions that I’ve utilized in the studio. I want my studio to be creative and attractive to keep inspiring me. Part of that is having supplies kept in nice looking and innovative containers. Sometimes I have a hard time thinking “outside the box” so I am always searching the interwebs, magazines and books for creative storage ideas and attractive, creative studio set ups. There are a lot of really inspired studios out there with some wonderful ideas! Here are some things that I’ve used in my studio.

One thing that is really important in my studio is that most of the supplies have to be accessible for children. I was very inspired by Soulemama‘s book The Creative Family in which she stated that in their family, they don’t separate the adult and kid craft supplies. I do understand though that art supplies are expensive, especially the good stuff.

The way I look at it is that if kids are given nicer materials then they will spend more time on their artwork and put more effort into it, making the cost worth it. Also, with the popularity of scrapbooking, colored paper for one thing is not that expensive, looks better and lasts longer than construction paper! I purchase a small set of oil and chalk pastels from the local art store. We also got an inexpensive set of watercolors there – the brand name is Yarka and they are the best watercolors for kids! The cost really hasn’t been prohibitive, especially when we purchase supplies over time.

Onto the storage! There are some photo/video boxes that I found at Ross Dress 4 Less and a couple other containers that I found in stores, but for the most part, I try to find things at thrift stores. The benefits to this is that they’re cheaper of course, but also there is a wider variety of fun and different storage options. I like a little matchy-matchy, but for the most part, I love variety!

See this photo on flickr with notes!

This is the main shelf in the studio. It holds all the supplies that are kid safe. The top holds supplies that we use fairly often- paints and brushes, crayons, scissors, pastels and the like. The second shelf is mostly papers. The red box on the right holds a ton of ATC blanks all cut up and ready for us to get started on. The bottom shelf holds more supplies, but mostly these are ones that are completely safe for the baby to get into and I don’t mind cleaning them up. The clay toys (the clay is in a container that he can’t open), his big chunky crayons, magazines and the stamps. The stamps and ink pads are in the shoe box in the middle of the bottom shelf. On top of them, there are letter and number stamps in the baskets.

Mr.Man’s favorite activity is to take all the baskets off the shelf and empty them out. It’s a pain to clean everything up, but he lets me work for a really long time while he wreaks havoc, so I put up with it.

Art Paper
I searched for the longest time for something to store paper in a kid-friendly way. Of course those huge flat files with the shallow drawers are what every paper artist and crafter dreams of, but they’re expensive or hard to find. Until I can make or find one, I found this set of drawers at Walmart. They fit 12 inch x 12 inch sheets of paper. But, it’s ugly plastic. So, I took paint samples and cut smaller squares out and used spray adhesive to stick them to the front of each drawer. Lastly, I spread a coat of mod podge over the top to seal it all.

The drawers can be taken out to set it on the table, and the labels on the front help kiddos put the papers back where they belong.

Other papers- sketchbook, doodling and watercolor papers are kept beside this box in a cut down priority mail box. I cut it to look like a magazine box. I covered the priority mail box with some pretty paper. I used more of these boxes in other areas of the studio too. Next to that, we have the scrap box- these are the itty bitty pieces that might otherwise be thrown away. For this box, I used a box from Amazon – I cut off the fold-over parts and used a little spray glue to cover the box with some paper. This is my favorite way to make ordinary boxes look nice!

This is one of my favorite things- I saw the idea of storing larger sheets of paper on a blog that I can’t find now and of course forgot to pin! I’ve had this crock for a while, but it has a crack in the side, so I can’t use it for fermenting. Now it gets to be useful and attractive!

Little Bits
These are magnetic spice tins. They are really perfect for keeping little mosaic pieces, brads and googly eyes. I keep them on a metal baking sheet. The Hubs put nails through each corner so it could stay to the wall.

recycled tin can pen and pencil caddy wrapped in yarnSee this photo on flickr with notes!

Pens & Pencils
Now there are a lot of ways to reuse tin cans to make a pen and pencil caddy. I searched and searched for a long time for ideas though because I didn’t know exactly what I wanted. I stumbled upon a tutorial from the Long Thread for hot gluing 4 cans together and then wrapping them with clothesline. This was very nice, but I didn’t have clothesline and didn’t want to be that exact. I did have yarn, so that’s what I used. I wrapped the yarn all over crazy-like, making sure to cover every inch of the sides. I put a droplet of hot glue at the tops and the bottoms of the cans to make sure the yarn didn’t slip over the ends.

The little pot is from the Dollar Store. It holds odds and ends- erasers, pencil sharpener…. you can even see a die in there. Gamer household!


See this photo on flick with notes!

I have another one here on the shelf which holds crayons. I don’t usually like the Dollar Store (too much plastic), but I couldn’t resist these bright colors.

We used to have a pile of oil pastels, chalk pastels, pan watercolors, etc… sitting there on the edge of the shelf and I couldn’t figure out a good way to store them. So they just sat there in their topple-y (I just made that word up) pile. Then I stumbled across this amazing kid’s space in a letterpress studio. See the awesome wooden crate with the brushes in front and the boxes in back. That was an “ah hah!” moment for me. I grabbed this basket from the garage to hold all of our topple-y things.

You can also see the brayers hanging on nails in the background. This is great to keep them from taking up precious shelf space elsewhere. If you’re thinking of storage solutions, think up!

Brushes in a handmade mug I found at a thrift store.

Next to the crayons, you can see a ceramic dish I use for a paint palette. I have no idea what it’s supposed to be used for. It has ridges all across the bottom. It makes a great palette though!

All the photos are available on Flickr and some have notes!

I am always always looking for more and better storage solutions, especially creative ideas – what are some amazing and creative ways that you’ve come up with to store your supplies? Link to it or tell us all about it below!

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