Category Archives: the stash

So Where Have I Been?


I’m scared as I write this blog post.  It’s been so long since I worked on Crash Your Stash.

It’s hard to believe it’s been a year since I posted on this blog.  How time does fly! So where have I been?  What have I been doing?

When my mom died of cancer in late 2016, my creativity, art and writing, pretty much shut down.  It was how my grief manifested itself.  Ever since then, I’ve struggled to reclaim it, and it still isn’t all the way back.

And for most of that time, I’ve been concentrating on my fiction writing instead of serious crafting.  I actually published a book in 2017, Daughter of Atlas, which you can learn about right here.

But now, having done National Novel Writing Month for the seventh time (and won!), I need a break from writing.  And so my spirit turns once again to papercrafting, which in its own way, I love as much as writing, and it means as much to me.  Thus, renewed attention to this blog.

Not unalloyed attention, though.  My crafting has some issues that need to be addressed.  To wit, hoarding and obsessive buying.  I have so much stuff now, I can’t find what I want, when I want it, because I can’t remember what drawer, box, or pile it is in.  I really need to weed and de-stash a lot of my hoard.  Give some of it away to people, donate it, maybe sell some of it if I can be arsed to.  I have so much stuff that I have bought things, and then bought them again, because I forgot I ever have them in my vast stash. So all those duplicates need to go.

And I have to also just plow through my stash.  Just use things up!  If you followed the blog back when I was regularly posting, you know I barely scratched the surface of my stash list that I based this blog around.  And now there’s even more stuff.

So I have come up with four strategies that I think will help me actually use up and enjoy some of my stash, instead of just staring at it all the time:

  • Kill the kit — I have many, many, many card, papercraft , jewelry, and just general craft kits that I have picked up along the way, by subscription, or one-offs, or from Barnes & Noble or Michaels.  Most of which sit untouched, unopened.  A good way to clear out some of my craft room mess would be to actually use some of those kits!  Make the projects! Use the supplies!  Then keep what I like, and toss out the packaging and the scraps.  I have struggled with this in the past, because I’ve found one thing I enjoy most about my crafting is novelty — always having a new stamp, paper, medium, or technique to try.  (I will write more about this in the future.) I get bored staying with the same papers and stamps long enough to work my way through a kit — which is why I no longer subscribe to kits anymore.  But if I approach it as a challenge, I might find new interest in it.
  • Throwback stamping — this is what I call a philosophy that I hope will guide my crafting in 2019. Basically, the idea that I already have enough stamps and supplies in my stash to replicate most any project I see and admire, without having to buy the new materials showcased by that project.  (Because design teams, brand ambassadors, and You Tubers, are all there to do one thing — push new product.)  I already have enough butterfly stamps, enough leaves, enough flowers, enough medallions, that I don’t need to buy anymore.  Likewise, enough watercolors, enough inks, enough markers, enough embellishments.  I would be hard pressed not to find something in my stash that closely matches a project that I like — because at this point in my craft journey, I know what I like, and I’ve bought it. I’m unlikely to be stricken with a sudden hunger to make many projects full of cutesy animal stamps a la Lawn Fawn, or creepy big-eyed human images like Magnolia, or gingham paper or what have you.  What sparks my interest is usually some new take on a theme I already like — leaves, butterflies, Art Nouveau, henna designs, and so on. So, the goal is, to CASE or near-CASE a project I like with stash I already have, instead of buying all new crap I don’t need.
  • Stamp-a-Day — this is a project I’ve been doing the last couple months that I’ve had some success with — just pulling a new unused stamp or stamp set from my “to be used” stash, and quickly making a card or ATC with it.  Just using the stuff, instead of hoarding it.  I have been posting these on Instagram, which I like for following papercrafting, with the hashtag #stampaday2018.  (Soon to be 2019, hopefully.) I’m on Instagram as kmcorby2. (I have no idea who the original kmcorby is, but rest assured I hate them. I’m not used to sharing my name!)
  • Note Card sets — As I said, I love novelty with my crafting.  Almost every card I make is a unique one-off that I don’t feel the need to replicate.  I love that about cardmaking!  Every card is a unique and special piece of art that I share with one person only.  But, if I do make some card sets, of the same or similar cards, that I can give away to people as gifts, that will help use up some of my supplies.  Plus also, gifts.  People admire my cards, and I’m sure at least some of them would like to receive a set of their own to use.

So these are the ideas that I hope will help me focus my crafting in 2019, and make a real dent in my craft stash.  I am also declaring a buying moratorium through at least the first half of 2019 — no new stamps, no new papers, no new mediums. I have enough!  All I will allow myself to buy is basic supplies like adhesive, black or VersaMark ink, scored cards, and white, black and kraft cardstock for bases.  Basic supplies only!

I know I’m not the only crafter who struggles with hoarding and acquisitiveness.  It is the topic of conversation for the New Year.  If this strikes a nerve with you, I’d like to hear your thoughts, and strategies for combatting hoarding in the comments below.

A Christmas Tip


I just found that Lindsay the Frugal Crafter has a “stash-busting” Christmas card tutorial on her blog from October, using patterned paper and washi tape, here.  If you like crashing your stash, you might want to check it out.

If I find similar things, I’ll add them here too.

UPDATE: Here’s another one at Lostinpaper.  A similar technique, using random strips of paper, but a very different outcome.

Updated the Stash Yet Again


Argh, I keep finding stuff!  I have updated the stash yet again:

  • alcohol inks
  • a sumi-e (Japanese ink painting) kit my dad gave me for my birthday last year
  • Bo Bunny Serenity Collection Kit
  • Vintaj Patina inks and metal blanks for jewelry and charms

The alcohol inks I have used a fair amount, but I feel I haven’t really stretched their capabilities yet — I’ve really just done the “faux stone” technique on glossy paper, and used them to color a couple metal charms.  I bought them, because one of my favorite parts of papercrafting is trying out new tools and techniques.  But once I did the obvious things with them, I really didn’t know what else to do with them.  Any suggestions?

The Japanese ink painting kit was a gift from my Dad.  He admires my papercafting; I was touched that he got me a crafty gift.  I have tried it, and not had much success — as I’ve said, I’m just not good at painting, I just have no instinct for how to control wet media like paint or inks.  But I saw a book at the library, and maybe if I study up on it I can have more success.

The Bo Bunny kit is an Asian-themed kit, so I got it, because I love Asian-themed stuff, and just squirreled it away.   I got it super-cheap a while back on, so I don’t feel too bad about it.

The Vintaj Patina stuff I got cheap on, because I liked the idea of it, but like so much other stuff, once it got home it went into a drawer and was forgotten about. I also got several of their Deco Etch and Deco Emboss folders to use in a die-cutting/embossing machine, to texturize the metal blanks.  The idea is, you emboss a pattern in the blanks, then color them with the Patina, and then sand them to reveal the pattern in relief against the Patina.  Really, it doesn’t look that hard.  I just need to sit down and try it.

And so, it gets added to the list.  The ever-growing list …

Another Update


I updated the stash again!  Something I had completely forgotten I had:

  • Martha Stewart matching metallic pigment inks and markers

Not sure what I’m going to do with those.

I am working on another Dazzles project. Should have pictures in a day or two. I also made two Valentine’s cards for my husband, and let him pick which one he liked better. I was a little surprised when he picked the more imperfect, but more sentimental one.  The other one was prettier, but he found the sentiment impersonal.  I used my stash for both!  If he lets me, I’ll upload pictures of them tomorrow.

Hope everyone had a Happy Valentine’s Day!

The Stash I Want to Crash


So, when I say I have a lot of stash to crash, I really mean it.  It is shocking.  What follows is a list of all the items I own that I have only used once, or a few times, or even not at all, and that I plan to mine for the “Crash Your Stash” project.

  • Dazzles stickers
  • A turquoise Inkadinkado ink stack
  • several Recollections cardmaking embellishment packs
  • Embossing folders
  • Glitter pre-folded cards (DCVW, I think)
  • Assorted Punches
  • Inkadinkado Stamping Gear Deluxe Set (round)
  • Shrink Plastic
  • Twinkling H2Os (a kind of iridescent watercolor paint)
  • Foil cardstock
  • Inkadinkado Scene Builder stamps, Space theme
  • Tim Holtz Distress markers (and other markers for different techniques)
  • Distress Stains
  • blue and green coordinating embellishments in bottles (forgot the name, but I got the set at Michaels)
  • Bo Bunny decorated brads
  • ERA Graphics Petroglyph stamps
  • Hero Hues layering paper in Foliage color scheme
  • Hero Arts Shadow Stamps
  • Sakura Glaze pens
  • Sakura Souffle pens
  • Spica glitter pens
  • assorted packs of Studio G shaped cards
  • Studio G one dollar sentiment and image stamps
  • Recollections distressed cardstock (different from Tim Holtz, just generic cardstock with a distressed finish)
  • Acetate sheets
  • Distress Stickles
  • Martha Stewart jewel-tone dry glitter
  • hexagons (stamps, dies, chipboard shapes, etc.)
  • assorted wafer-thin metal dies
  • almost the complete line of My Mind’s Eye Indie Chic papers and embellishments
  • assorted birthday stamps, papers and embellishments (you can never have too many birthday cards)
  • washi tape
  • washi sheets
  • Tim Holtz Fragments (little acrylic shapes for stamping and jewelry)
  • Peg stamps, assorted sets
  • Vellum
  • glitter tape
  • American Crafts self-adhesive ribbon
  • sundry blank ATCs in all sorts of media including wood veneer and sheet metal
  • watercolor pencils
  • various colored embossing powders
  • wood veneer embellishments
  • enamel dots
  • mistable chipboard shapes from various vendors
  • eyelets and an eyelet setter
  • various unused Cricut cartridges
  • Inka Gold pigment
  • Martha Stewart matching metallic pigment inks and markers
  • alcohol inks
  • a sumi-e (Japanese ink painting) kit my dad gave me for my birthday last year
  • Bo Bunny Serenity Collection Kit
  • Vintaj Patina inks and metal blanks for jewelry and charms

See, this list is just crazy.  I never meant to be a hoarder, it just ended up that way. I’ll bet there’s other stuff, too, that I’ve completely forgotten about.  If I find anything more, I’ll add it. (UPDATE: And I have, several times.)

But the good news is, if I work with just one of these products a week — and plenty of them I could use for more than one week — that should take me clean through most of the year, up to the holidays as the plan requires.  Stick to the list and I should be too busy to worry about buying new things.

I’m actually excited to work with some of these things that I’ve had for so long, and neglected. Onward!

A Tour of My Stash


So I thought I would show you my stash that I intend to crash, to give you a better idea of what I am talking about..  This is a tour of my craft room.

This is my craft room/office. I am fortunate to have it.

my craftroom/office

PC on one side, craft desk on the other.  This works very well for me.  The pink rolling cart contains most of my tools that I use regularly — adhesives, inks, embossing powders, glitter glue, and various embellishments of which I have too many — three drawers full!

This grocery bag contains all the stamps and stamp sets I have bought and have yet to use.

a whole bag of unused stamps!

Filling this bag was a big part of my decision to go on a stash-crashing, supply-buying moratorium.  This is just crazy!

This gray rolling cart contains the bulk of my wood-mounted stamps.

an overflowing cart of rubber stamps

Please don’t call Hoarders on me!

It is so overloaded, the drawers are falling off the tracks.  I really ought to upgrade, but to what?

These clear shoeboxes hold my clear and cling stamps.

Shoeboxes full of clear stamps

This system works well for me.  I tried binders, and just didn’t like the way I had to pull a whole binder off the shelf, and they way the pages flopped around while I searched for individual stamps.  This way, I can see  what’s in the individual boxes, and just grab the box I need.  I labeled the boxes by theme with clear packing tape.  They also stack nicely.

a huge stack of paper pads

Here are my all my patterned paper pads.  It was quite a job hauling all these out!  Wait, no, actually, this isn’t even everything — it doesn’t include all the 6 by 6 pads.

This is just a taste — there is even more stuff crammed into my office I didn’t dare show you.  (Luckily the picture of all the crap piled on the sofa didn’t come out.)  But I think this is enough to make the point — I have too much stuff. I need to use it, and use it up!

That’s what this whole project is about.  I’m sure you agree — it has to be done!

What’s in your stash that you’d like to use up?