Sunday, January 06, 2008

Paper Sorting: the SUUDDS Treatment

Paper Sorting: It's Not so hard to do!

How to give that stash the SUUDDS treatment. Wash those duds right out of that stash!! :)

Some people don't want to whittle down their stash.
That's cool. If you don't want to--dont. No harm. It's your home and
your workspace. But if you do want to purge a bit, but were at a loss
for how to go about it, try this.

Here is how I grab a stack of paper and decide if I want to keep it
all or not. This may seem like a lengthy thought process reading it,
but it is meant to teach some out there the thought process of sorting
HOW TOs. If you do it a couple times through, you will be able to do
it faster and faster.

1. Decide on a Donation Day.
Commit to doing this. You know that charities like the Girl Scouts, Ronald McDonald
House, high school art departments, Young Mother's Programs, or second
hand stores can use the donation to a good cause. Make a date with yourself to go through at least one stack in the stash and to donate or gift the resulting "duds" away. Now a
"dud" is not a horrible thing--its just a paper YOU no longer want. It
is a perfectly GOOD paper to others. It's just a dud to YOU. In fact, they will probably really love it. I also get a nice big box or envelope that will fit the donations so all I have to do is drop them into it and keep moving!

2. Start Big.
I grab my largest stack first. That helps me say YES I know I can find
at least a few sheets in here to give away. I do combine my patterns
and my plain cardstock in storage shelving together now y color because it is less volume than it was a few years ago. I still have at least 1 inch to 3 inches of paper per color stack in my paper
storage. I grab the biggest stack on Donation Day to get me started!

3. Know how you scrapbook.
Do you only make 1 page layouts? Do you
always work in two page layouts? Or do you prefer to scrap every photo
in a event and make multi page layouts as the norm? If you never ever
do a 6 page spread, then why ever have 10 of the same paper? Keep your style in mind when SUUDDSing the stash!

Here we go--SUUDDS and SORT
OK are we ready? I came up with this approach for my own stash. I call
it the SUUDDS approach to washing out the paper stash DUDS!


Ask yourself the following questions for each sheet in this color stack.

Be honest Do you have over 30 sheets of this exact paper? If you have 30 sheets or
more of the exact same paper for your personal use, why? If it was not
designated for a specific album, then you really may
have too much of the same thing. Even neutral and plain cardstock of
over 30 sheets identical is getting to be LOTS for any one person. You don't run a
store. And if you are a consultant of some sort with a big inventory,
that consumer-destined paper should not be mixed in with your personal
supply should it?

Paper doesn't 'go bad' especially in neutrals but come on....Don't hoard. Honestly, I say if you have more than 6 of any one paper-- and it is not for a specific page set yet--consider gifting a few. that's surplus. The only exceptions here might be stocking up for people who live in remote areas and don't have local stores handy to replenish basic colors. Otherwise, use it or lose it. You won't miss it.

Start with the obvious. Is this sheet of paper -- by first impression to
YOU --flat out ugly? Yes? Well, put in donate pile--easy right? Not ugly? Keep
going to next question with this same sheet. (But you'd be surprised
how many ugly sheets we all have in our stashes!! Let's remove them)

Ok it's not ugly, but do you have a use for this paper RIGHT NOW with
the photos you have ready to work on in your home? Did you buy this sheet
with a specific layout in mind? Yes? keep it. Consider starting a page
kit with it very soon. NO immediate use? You'd think you can still
keep it on hand right? Not yet.....go on to the next question.

Is this sheet mediocre in color scheme? In other words, of all the
papers in this color stack, is this really the most vibrant and true
of THIS color? Some teals are dull; some are vibrant. Face it, even national brand name vendor printers lots don't all match up on quality. If this paper is a dud in the vibrantcy dept even
in it's own color scheme, donate it. Some of my slab papers are
dull and others are great...even within the same pack. If it's dull, let it go.

Ok if it passes the dullness test, let's move it on to the next question.

When you see this paper, even though it is not ugly or dull and it may
have some it dated? Being dated means you can tell it is 3 to 5 years or more old. If the answer is yes, does this fact bother you at all?? Double yes means donate. If it seems dated but this is not really a big issue for you, bravo! It can stay. But only if you will truly USE it.

Don't trick yourself about your style. Know WHY you bought that paper.
Did you buy it with your scrap buddies at a convention? Good times.
Does it remind you of your baby's first tooth--even though you have
already scrapped that event? Is it just plain Yummy looking and it reminds you of
a warm happy place in your "shopping nirvana zone"?

Really --do you know you that in your heart of hearts you
will never EVER find a use for that fake leather paper that you can't die
cut, can't tear, can't scissor cut, and have no immaginable use for other than
you HAD to have it one saturday? Then let it GO! Sentiment is NOT a reason to keep a
paper if it has no possible future use to you. Specialty papers often
represent 'potential' of something we want to try or learn or do as a
paper craft. Saying no to a sheet of paper is not the same as saying
no to creativity.

Also, if you know in your heart that altering things and collagey
things are NOT your style, then GIFT those kinds of kits or items it to someone who alters books or covers
boxes or something. If you know it's not YOU, let it go. I may love paper with little lambies on
it and cute baby motifs but I have to say NO to myself because I have
absolutely no use for that right now. And honestly, I don't want to
save that kind of paper for another 5 years waiting....They will make
MORE cute baby papers closer to the time when I need it.

You can do this!
If you run this method a few times you get faster and faster at it. After you give a few sheets the
SUUDDS treatment, you will just whip through quicker and quicker with your papers. Sheet by sheet you can analyse if that paper will really do the scrapbooking job for you. If it can't pass
all the steps in this SUUDDS test, that paper really isn't earning its space
in the scraproom.

SUUDDS. say the keywords over and over a few times--or write them down.


It works. :) Let's get to it! Clean up your paper stash!
Once you make a decision to donate or gift something away, don't forget to follow up and DO IT!

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