Sunday, April 24, 2011

Tips for storing & catagorizing your stamps

I have so many stamps it's ridiculous.  I can't seem to part with any of them so I need a lot of space for them.
First thing I did was purchase extra clear cases from SU to store the stamps in. 
Second, I removed all the wooden backings from my stamps and turned them into cling mounted stamps.  Not an easy task but worthwhile.
I listed every stamp set I have by name and catagorized them...Christmas, flowers, sentiments, whimsical, juvenile etc.  I did this on an excel file so then I could sort by catagory. 
Then I assigned a number for them.  All my Christmas ones are in the 100's but I also took it one step further by putting more than one stamp set together in the same case.  Both of those sets would be given the same number and the number is placed on the outside spine of the case and placed in my book case like a book.
Every stamp set I own is pictured and placed in my own catalogue and has its own number.
I started with the number 101 and the catagory was backgrounds Take a look at the picture below:

Notice that 3 of the backgrounds have the same number...that's because they are all in the same case.  I highlighted the number in the last set of backgrounds so I know what the last number was used when I go to add more in the backgrounds category.  Now in my catalogue, I have a picture of each set.  The name is listed and beside it is a double box. One side is for the corresponding number so I can go to my bookshelf and find it and the other box is to tell me if it is retired or not.  If it's still available, my ladies know right away and when they become retired all I have to do is fill an "R" in the empty box
Doubling and trippling up the stamps in the cases saves not only space but money because I don't have to buy more cases than needed.
The ladies in class look through my catalogue, pick out what they want to use and go directly to that number on the shelf.
On the top of the spine you can see where I've added the corresponding number.
It's been a long process but a worthwhile and ongoing project.
By the way...I have looked at DVD holders but there just isn't one big enough to hold all my stamps so I used a book shelf with adjustable shelves.

I hope this has helped some of you get organized especially if you're the type who just has to have it all, like me!
Oh ya a couple more things...  I made the list of everything I had first and then I worked from there to make catalogue pages and covers for the cases.  That's why in the first photo you see a column for catalogue and one for cover.  This tells me if I've completed it or not because I'm still working on them.  You can see on the second shelf some of the cases are still clear.  That's because they still need a picture for the case and probably put in my catalogue.
I have a printout list of all the stamps I have with the corresponding numbers even if I don't have a picture available.  This way when someone asks for a stamp by name, I can look it up and go and get it for them.

Happy Stamping


Kathy said...

Oh my gosh -That is so nicely organized -I am a new stamper and if I would just start now doing this I would be way ahead of the game -I'm going to attempt starting this thank you for sharing your ideas.

Susan said...

thank you for sharing this info.., lots of work, but well worth it.

chary belfield said...

You are very organised lots of work but well worth it. I am going to give it a try