Organize Your “Crop”



Photos, Photos, PHOTOS!

    • Decisions…
      • By DATE or BY THEME?
      • One set PER CHILD or one set PERIOD for the family?
    • Sort, Sort, Sort…
      • Remove ALL photos that are blurred and not top quality. You don’t have to throw them away, BUT YOU DON’T NEED TO WASTE YOUR TIME PUTTING THEM IN A PRECIOUS SCRAPBOOK EITHER! Once they are out of site, trust me, they are out of mind. You’ll get old and forget about them!
      • Pictures that are still on a disk or loaded on your computer? Search through them and move the ones you want to keep to a new folder. Load that folder onto a pen drive or a cd and HEAD TO TARGET, HEB, or your favorite photo processor. Set a date to complete this target! Did you hear me? Set a date TODAY! You’ll only accomplish goals if you set them, write them down, and STICK to them!
      • How many photos to choose? Once you have them in order, SORT AGAIN! Try to complete one 2-page layout for small day-to-day activities and 4-6 pages for big holidays with lots of people you don’t want left out of your book. Rule of thumb: Choose 3-4 photos for each page you plan on completing. You’ll never finish if you try to use every photo you have! Some photos (Like school pics and photos with Santa) will probably stand alone on a page, so plan accordingly.
    • Storage…
      • Store 4×6 photos in a simple storage box. I personally love those By, but even a simple shoebox will work.
      • Store Larger Photos in THE SAME ORDER in a larger accordion organizer.
        • Tip: Place an index card with your 4×6 photos to remind you that you have a larger photo in the other organizer that you want to add to your layout.
        • Leftover photos that you just can’t part with? Put them in a shoebox, stack them in your guestroom closet, and when you die family members can decide what to do with them, but you won’t have to endure the pain of throwing them away!


Paper…mounds and mounds of PAPER

    • It’s cheap…it really is! In the habit of collecting paper? Don’t worry, we ALL ARE! However, some of it has just seen better days. GET RID OF IT! You don’t have to feel wasteful…send it to your child’s teacher. They always need junk paper for school projects. It’s not worth storing if it’s not paper you will actually want to see for years to come in your albums.
    • Scraps smaller than your photos (4×6)? THROW THEM AWAY! They get in the way and you will lose valuable time that could be used on your pages trying to go through them to find what you want. At about .59 for a whole sheet, it’s just not worth the aggravation!
    • Sort by theme, color, or both? The choice is truly yours, but here’s what I suggest:
      • Sort by theme-specific FIRST. Witches are for Halloween and shouldn’t be placed in the mother-in-law stack (UNLESS she dressed up as a witch for Halloween, you’ll have some serious explaining to do).
      • Sort by color next. You many have chosen a pumpkin colored background to go with your witch in the night sky, but that doesn’t mean it won’t coordinate well with your Thanksgiving photos, so don’t get caught up thinking with a one-track mind. You’ll save yourself lots of money if you can see how the paper can work with several “themes”.
      • Have lots of paper stacks? SORT THEM OUT! Place them with the theme or color block they go with. You’ll keep from flipping through the pad OVER AND OVER again wasting valuable scrapbooking time.
    • Storage…
      • Have 15 or 20 dead trees in that pile of paper? You need a FILING SYSTEM. Retrospect makes a simple box with hanging file folders that fits beautifully in your closes and has handles so you can port it back and forth to your scrapping area if you need to.
      • Have less paper because you are just FULL of WILL POWER? You need a smaller system like the Accordion 12×12 storage systems. You’ll need one of these for crops as well (even if you are a paper collector).
      • Lucky? Have a scrapbook room/area all to yourself? We can special order shelves to meet your specific needs. You’ll still need an accordion storage system for crops.




    • Follow the same advice as paper. Stickers include ANYTHING THAT STICKS and are not thicker than ¼ inch! You may have theme-specific charms that are flat (and don’t stick), but you’d use them similar to a sticker, so place them with the stickers.
      • Sort by theme (THROW OUT THE JUNK or give to your child’s teacher).
        • Holidays, Events, Seasons
        • Letter stickers/rub-ons by color
        • Have a sticker that can fit under several headings? CHOOSE TODAY AND DON’T LOOK BACK! General Sport sticker??? Place it under Football or Baseball NOW and don’t change your mind. You’ll waste time making pointless decisions later! TRUST ME!!!
        • Place in filing system
          • Large box…behind all paper
          • Accordion box…just for stickers or a binder system works well too!



  • This is where it gets FUN! You’ve got decisions to make when it comes to embellishments. They are what make your pages UNIQUE but they can also be the biggest headache.
  • You already know the drill: Throw out what you are not madly in love with or give them to your mother-in-law!
  • Place all brads together. I suggest taking them out of their boxes/bags and place them in an embellishment organizer. They are cheap and stack well.
  • Place all eyelets together.
  • Place all embossing inks together.
  • Place all ink pads together.
  • Place all stamps in a stamp organizer…you get the idea.


  • Find your favorite and stick to them! If it can be refilled, it’s going to be easier to remember the names/types of your favorites! GIVE THE STUFF YOU HATE TO CHARITY! Stop fighting with it. Not all croppers have the same best favorite!
  • Have trouble remembering? Tell us and we’ll keep it on file for you!
  • Only take 1 or 2 to a crop. You don’t want to waste time making that type of decision. If you only have a few choices you’ll move along at a quicker pace.


  • Tried embossing? Found out it wasn’t your cup of tea? GET RID OF IT AND EVERYTHING THAT GOES WITH IT! That goes for any tool you’ve tried and decided you don’t like…scissors, die cuts, etc.
  • Basic tools are best utilized when you can get to them easily. This is where your tote GETS you ORGANIZED and keeps you that way. Rolling totes or shoulder organizers like the ones from Crop In Style and Croppin’ Companion aren’t just for toting to/from crops. They actually organize your “crop” at home too!
  • Find a tote that:
    • Organizes your pens/markers
    • Scissors
    • Adhesives
    • Is large enough for your favorite trimmer
    • Fits a 12×12 album
    • Has a place for what YOU CALL ESSENTIAL to getting your scrapbooking completed because that is the goal!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *