Ali Edwards Capture life. Create art.

September 8, 2011

Organizing Studio AE/Technique Tuesday Stamps


As I worked on cleaning up my office last week I finally had a chance to get my newer Technique Tuesday stamps organized.

Currently I’m storing all my Studio AE (monthly stamp club) and other stamps I’ve designed for Technique Tuesday in this little metal basket that I think came from Target at some point over the years.

organizing technique tuesday stamps
Are We There Yet? ( Two Peas | )

I removed all the sets from their packaging (I leave the thin plastic that lays on top of the stamp sheet in place) and attached Avery 2-inch index tabs with the name or theme of the stamps. This is making them so much easier to see, grab and use. I moved stamps around/lifted them up to accommodate the adhesives on the index tabs.

organizing technique tuesday stamps

This could work in a small basket or box too.

organizing technique tuesday stamps

In the past Technique Tuesday packaging used 8.5×11 sheets (they are all now being produced on the smaller sheets – same number of stamps just different packaging).

organizing technique tuesday stamps

I keep these sets together using giant binder rings.

organizing technique tuesday stamps
Life In Pictures ( Two Peas | )

They could definitely be stored inside an 8.5×11 album (which I’m pretty sure was the original intent) but I’ve found this is more accessible for me.

organizing technique tuesday stamps

They hang on the side of my work table for easy access.

I use a variety of different stamps. Here’s where some of the others are currently stored:


Many of my wood mounted stamps are in bags in this box that sits on a low shelf. They need to be pulled out and put somewhere more accessible because it’s too easy to forget they are there.


Other clear stamps are currently in this drawer (part of a six drawer unit of supplies – from Ikea).


And a few others are stored inside my lockers (both in the basket and next to it). You can see that’s where I keep my inks too. I also have a few larger stamps that are in a wall-shelf-unit that I couldn’t get a good photo of right now.

What’s your favorite way to store stamps?


  • 1.

    I have been re-organizing my stamps over the last few days. Like you, I find it very easy to forget about them. For wood mounted stamps, I am using a metal silverware container, with spray inks (mists) and alcohol inks in the wider end units. My acrylic stamps are in a two-up photo binder, and alphabet sets are going in either their own boxes (Stampin’ Up, Hero Arts, etc.) or old videotape cases. I think for my unmounted wood stamps, I will use CD jewel cases with temporary adhesive; not sure yet (I don’t have many of those).

  • 2.
    Janette said…

    I don’t have very many stamps yet – just started getting into stamping recently and I’m hooked! I only have about six or so wood mounted stamps and for now I keep them in a photo storage box. I LOVE the clear stamps that you design Ali. Again only have a very few but I joined Studio AE this month so I’m very excited for new ones to start arriving! I just (last week) bought a “Clip It Up” (base unit + upper tier unit) which I’m in love with! I’m using the bottom (base) unit for my clear stamps and longer sticker sheets, and the upper tier for smaller embellishments. I’m loving the functionality!

  • 3.
    Danielle said…

    I store my wooden stamps on a custom shelf that my dh made for me. All of my acrylics are stored in cd cases which I labeled on the side. They are store on a store bought cd/dvd stand.

    • ….
      Sue said…

      Me too! It took a while to get organised but I love being able to glance along and see what is inside each case without having to search through binders, drawers, etc.

  • 4.
    Michelle L. said…

    I did a major stamping organization overhaul about a year ago, and it has been SO helpful. My clear stamps are now stored in clear plastic flexible DVD holders that are the perfect size for most stamp sets. (They’re made by Wilson Jones and have three-hole punches so that they fit in a binder, two to a page.) I have a few large size binders, organized by topics. So, for example, travel stamps are all in one binder. At the end of each binder “topic,” I have a few pages of white cardstock that feature stamped images of other stamps that are in that same theme but are stored elsewhere, with a note about where they’re stored. (So, let’s say I bought a stamp set that is predominantly in another theme, like “Flowers & plants” but it includes one great travel stamp. I would store the stamp set in my “flowers & plants” binder but create a stamped image in my “travel” binder of the one travel stamp with a note that it’s stored in the flowers & plants binder). All of my wood stamps are referenced on these white pages at the end of a specific theme, which allows me to store them out of sight, but not feel as though they’re out of mind. When I did this major organization blitz, the commitment I made to myself was that anytime I got a new stamp, I’d fit it into the system immediately so that I wouldn’t get backlogged with unorganized stamps. It has worked so far! :)

    • ….
      Barb in AK said…

      Michelle, I like this idea!

    • ….
      Heather said…

      I have a simliar system. I stamp each image on an index card (multiple cards if the stamp should be filed into several different categories -like your flower/travel example). Then I have labeled sections in my index card box. It allows me to store my stamps out of sight, while still having the index card box handy to flip through for inspiration or to find that one perfect stamp :)
      I love reading all these ideas!

  • 5.
    christen said…

    i always pick up the little boxes when target has them in the dollar section. i use them for lots of storage in the my craft area too! i hadn’t thought of the tabs on my acrylic stamps though – great idea!

  • 6.
    Jeannette said…

    I primarily store my stamps in CD cases, as well as some of the clear DVD cases the SU sells….it seems to work best for me…i have pretty much broken up sets & organize by theme or what not…i also had scanned the sheet into my computer, and using Bridge created a “contact sheet” of my stamp sets, which lets me look through them all w/o having to take them all out per se….for the most part the system works for me…as for my inks, I got a great ink pad holder from that I love…i set it up whre it’s back to back on a carousel, and the top is where I keep my reinkers…works great!

    • ….
      Barb in AK said…

      Jeannette, Hmmm… I like the idea of making contact sheets, so you don’t have to drag EVERYTHING out :-)

  • 7.
    Judy Webb said…

    My clear stamps are in a binder that I thumb through. Actually, 2 binders, everything thinks growing. My wooden stamps are in a drawer in unit from Container Store. Also, noticed, that everything (all things) keep getting heavier. This is a sturdy unit with strong drawers. I suggest not buying if you can not buy sturdy. Love your locker unit, now, that is sturdy. Love seeing your work space. I just designed a new Studio sign for my door.

  • 8.
    Felicia Young said…

    What I am currently using is a binder and page protectors. It works really well because I can see the stamps and for those larger stamps I create my own pocket for them by sewing parts of the page protector and customizing them to fit.

  • 9.
    MaryM said…

    I have been buying stamps for 20 years and was having a hard time remembering what I had, so I sorted then and took over half of my laundry room for stamp storage. I mounted two large stamp wall shelves I got from ebay years ago. Bookcases below the wall shelves house all my other stamps in plastic boxes sorted by categories. Big categories like Halloween and Christmas are in two iris carts in the corner of the room. My clear stamps are stored on a Clip It Up that sits on the counter across from the wooden stamps. I LOVE my new system!

    I posted a picture of my room at 2peas if anyone is interested.

    • ….
      Barb in AK said…

      Very nice room!!

    • ….
      Barb in AK said…

      Mary, Maybe we should also have a discussion on how to store punches :-) I see you have quite a few, too. They really take up a lot of room in my sb room.

    • ….
      Jolynn said…

      Love how your room is organize. I need to figure out how to organize everything better in general.

    • ….
      Connie said…

      Mary, would you mind emailing me? I would like permission to post your photo on my blog. Thanks so much, Connie

    • ….
      MaryM said…

      Connie, I would love my photos on your blog… how do I reach you?

  • 10.
    Deb J said…

    I have an Iris cart that I have filled with my stamps. I have them divide by theme. I don’t use stamps quite as much as some do. I would use them more if I could find the sayings I want. I try not to buy too many stamps with figures because I find I don’t use them over and over. But those with verses or phrases or single words I will use over and over and over.

  • 11.
    Cynthia said…

    Love the basket idea for the Technique Tuesday stamps – think I will have to steal that one!

    I am in the process of removing my rubber stamps from their bases, putting them on EZMount sheets so that I can put them in a binder and downsize all the wooden stamps I have. It is definitely a process and I have definitely learned restraint on picking stamps to buy.

    Overall I find the organizing an ongoing process as I constantly try to refine and simplify my process. I do find that this is also an inspiring process as well.

  • 12.
    Kimberly said…

    i LOVE the idea of the mesh basket for clear stamps. I just have mine in a giant heap and it is hard to find anything.

    My husband made me a simple wood storage rack for my wooden stamps. It is great, doesn’t take up too much space and is really pretty simple! :)

    I don’t seem to have a great photo of it, however it is in the background of this photo from my blog

    • ….
      Juanita said…

      I love this! I’m going to show this to my husband.

  • 13.
    cinback said…

    I have an ALEX drawer unit from IKEA. It has 6 rather shallow drawers that are perfect for layering my stamp sets. I have a drawer labeled Alphabets, Holidays (Christmas, Valentines, etc.), Occasions (birthdays, weddings, etc.), Circles, Flowers and Assorted. This has proven to be a fabulous way of storing all of my stamps flat so that I can see them. In some cases, they are stacked in two layers, but easy to move a stamp set aside to see what is underneath. The entire unit is short enough to fit under my desk. It was well worth the purchase.

  • 14.
    Barb in AK said…

    Enjoying this discussion, as I need to organize my ever-growing collection of stamps. I have several wooden stamps and notice one or two or you have removed them from the wood. I’m not sure if I’m ready to do that yet. What do you ladies do with the wooden mounts after taking off the stamp?
    Ali, I think I need to hear a discussion about punch storage, too! My cup runneth over with those babies ;-)

    • ….
      April W said…

      I so totally agree with this!! I have 3 drawers full of punches and just keep buying more, lol!
      - April W

    • ….
      Angel said…

      For most of my punches (the larger ones), I use the over-the-door shoe organizers. They work great – easy access and I’m not taking up drawers or shelving space. If it is a “medium” punch, I have put two punches in the same pocket. For my smaller punches, I just use a basket.

  • 15.
    Linda said…

    I have lots of wood mount stamps, mostly Stampin’ Up so they are in plastic cases. I put them all in 12 x 12 craft envelopes – I cut sturdy cardboard to make them ridged. Each envelope holds up to 4 sets. All to the envelopes are in a big wicker basket and I can easily flip through them.

  • 16.

    I love your ideas and the way you spell it out so carefully (and show us with pictures).
    Any thoughts on long term photo storage? My computer is getting full and I’m aware that it could crash at any time… an external hard drive would be nice but isn’t there that same risk of crashing? Anyhow, I’ve been doing DVDs and CDs for now but feel that is cumbersome. Any ideas would be greatly appreciated!

    • ….
      Martha Thomas said…

      I have the same question…long term photo storage??? What to do??

  • 17.
    elana said…

    Ali – just curious what brand of ink do you use for stamping?

  • 18.
    Sharon Russell said…

    Ali—check out Close to My Heart’s storage envelopes! You can purchase just the enevelopes that their stamp sets come in–p.135 of the current catalog–you can get the 6×6″ and those enves fit in the storage containers they have (same page.) I purchase the plastic for stencil making (craft store), cut to fit, stamp the sheet with the images using Staz-on, and store the stamps that way. I just label the sheet as well as the enve with the stamp company name and set name. This really streamlines my storage system!!! They also sell the 8 1/2×11″ envelopes but I tend to like the smaller ones and the containers. A container will hold up to 15 filled envelopes! I make a label for the front of the container so I can see what themed sets are in that container: sayings and sentiments, holiday, summer, etc. Hope this helps! ; )

    • ….
      Martha Thomas said…

      I would LOVE to see pictures of what you are explaining….it’s hard to “see” in my head. If you do have photos it’d be great for you to share…. :)

    • ….
      Sarah said…

      I have been looking all over for the CTMH envelopes. I don’t see them in the catalog, am I blind? I see the boxes, but not the envelopes. I’d love to know where to buy some.

  • 19.
    Lisa W. said…

    Ahhhhhhhh love to see where you create…LOVE that!!! Oraganization is a constant battle in my scraproom. I think I do more than that than I do scrapbooking:) BUT when its a mess I can’t create. I was SO lucky to have come across a old shop class/drafting file cabinet. Its big and takes up so much room but I painted it, its full of skinny drawers (used to store house plans) So they are wide but skinny. The BEST place to store stamps. One glide and they are all right there. Another nice tool is the Close to my heart boxes to store their stamps. They have a handle and are very nice, exspecially for on the go. Thanks so much for sharing. I always enjoy a peak inside your everyday world:)

    • ….
      Camille said…

      I have some CTMH stamps sets and really like those envelopes.

  • 20.
    vanessa said…

    Great idea for the stamps.

  • 21.
    Camille said…

    I have tried to unmount all of my wood stamps. ( Some stamps are just nicer on the wood) I converted to the new Stampin Up cases that are dvd size and attach a piece of paper with the stamped images of the stamps in the cases to the box.I bought square baskets and divided the stamps up into themes then tagged the basket and can just pull out which basket I need. You wouldn’t believe have much room this has saved and how easy it is to find what I need. I still have some acrylics in a binder, but as soon as I get more cases, in they go. Doing this has also helped me cull out what is outdated or unused and I feel so organized.

  • 22.
    April W said…

    Thank you so much for this post Ali! I’ve been doing alot of organizing in my space lately and have wanted to come up with a better storage solution for my stamps. I use clear CD cases right now but they’re taking over! Thanks for the inspiration. ;)
    - April W

  • 23.
    Karen said…

    Love this post! I’m in the process of re-creating my scrapbook space since moving and would love to see more of your space. Ali, could you perhaps spotlight a certain area/storage of your supplies on a regular basis? Punches, paper, embellishments, etc.?

    • ….
      Martha Thomas said…

      Oh! Great idea about sharing your storage method for each type of scrapbooking item….embellishments, ABC stickers, etc. I know it morphs with time…but good ideas are always needed! :)

  • 24.
    Laura said…

    i really like the basket with your clear stamps tabbed to find easily i am going to do that with mine. i found your stamps at Archiver’s in Boise last time i was there and i did a happy dance!! i bought my niece the ‘sweet baby’ set for her baby shower and she LOVED it. you make such heartfelt stamp sets that it makes easier to journal and tell the story from the heart!

  • 25.
    Sarah Jay said…

    Most of my clear stamps are in their original clear packaging, sitting upright in CD/DVD storage boxes similar to yours so that I can flip through them. I’ve been using Tim Holtz’s stamp storage folders for a brand that comes without the clear envelopes. I considered switching everything over to the TH folders, but found that I “see” stamps in my mind with the original packaging, not just the name.

    My wood stamps are stored two ways: by category/set in Stampin’ Up and Stampendous plastic boxes and in an old printer’s tray. I love the tray, but it only holds the smallest stamps and takes up a lot of valuable wall space.

  • 26.
    Jen Demmon said…

    I use big note books for my acrylic stamps for the technique Tuesday and the Fawn Lawn I used my page protectors for 4X6 photos and put them in that way (I’ve attached little velcro dots to the top slots on the pages so they don’t fall out (that happened a few times). I use the baseball card page protectors for the really small stamps (from the cocoa daisy monthly kits, etc). So far it is working but I do have 6 binders so far (yikes). Ali, one (2.5 inch) binder is dedicated to your stamps (and it is full)! Wood stamps are in shallow drawers by topic (for the most part). Although some days it feels like I’m going on a scavenger hunt looking for the perfect stamp for a layout (nice problem to have I guess).

    Ali, thanks for the organization ideas! Keep them coming!

  • 27.
    Barbara said…

    I love all the ideas. I would like to see photos of peoples ideas. I’m working on organizing my scrapbooking supplies so that I can be more productive when I sit down to scrapbook. I would love to hear ideas for organizing other accessories too.

    I love reading your blog and gaining new ideas for my own scrapbooking/photography. I joined Studio AE so that I would have something fun to look forward to every month! THANKS ALI!!

    • ….
      Barbara said…

      I forgot to add… I store my wooden stamps which I have been collecting for 20 years in a plastic storage unit that is about 4 feet high and on wheels. Each drawer has a label with the subject of the stamps in that drawer. I store 3 of them under my stairwell – the idea was that I would wheel them into the scrapbooking area when I needed them but that never panned out. I just open the drawer and pull out the sets I need.

      My acrylic stamps are on the “Clip it up” but I’m soon out growing that so I need a better idea.

  • 28.
    P.J. said…

    I’ve used large pizza boxes (new, clean ones). I divided all my stamps per catagory–animals, plants & flowers, words, people etc. When I put this all together I stamped each stamp on a sheet of paper. Only stamps that go in the same box are on that sheet. I labeled the stamped sheet(s) and a box the same (ie – plants #1). Now all I have to do is go to my stamp notebook, find the stamp I want, then get the right box and there it is.

  • 29.
    jesa said…

    I don’t have too many stamps but the ones I do have are stored in Sterilite mini drawers labeled by category (shapes,animals, people,sentiments, etc.). I am able to both see stamps and easily access the type I want to use for each project.

  • 30.
    Tracey Caudle said…

    I only have a few wood mounted stamp sets, and I do not have any acrylic sets yet, only one or two single stamps here and there. Most of my stamps are rubber cling mounts. As an Stampin’ UP! demo, most of my cling mounts are already nicely packaged in a clear DVD case. They also sell empty ones, which I store my wood mount converts in. I imagine I would probably do something similar with any acrylic stamps I may accumulate in the future, :)

  • 31.

    Love the way thatyou have stored your smaller stamps using the Avery index tabs and using the small basket.
    I keep my clear stamps and cling stamps in big white binders. Each company I buy from has thier own binder(s). My SU clear sets come in DVD cases so I store them in black metal DVD stands. As for my wood mounted……I keep them downstairs on shelves that are mounted to one of my walls. Thanks for sharing all that you do. :)


  • 32.
    Sharon W. said…

    Great ideas. This is something I’m struggling with right now. When I make a card I usually just pull out a set of stamps and make the card from there. Now that I’m buying stamps to use more in my scrapbooking than my stamping I’m having issues storing and indexing them so I don’t forget what I have. You guys have given me something to think about.

  • 33.
    Roberta said…

    My clear stamps I store in CD Jewel Cases by style/subject and they are stacked in an IKEA CD storage bookcase alphabetically with labels on the ends for easy grab n’go access. My wooden stamps are stored in Highsmith corruboard boxes called “kit cases” that have handles for easy access and grab n’go access as well. They store two deep so that you can find the stamps easily and I sort them by subject matter and style as well…aka…journaling, holiday, celebrations, etc.

  • 34.
    Cosima said…

    This is great! Thanks for sharing :)

  • 35.
    Mallory said…

    Love your 8.5×11 sheets of stamps on the large binder rings. Mine are in a binder but I don’t like it because I am a “out of sight, out of mind” type of person. My wood mounted stamps are in those clear and white 3 drawer organizers from Target.

  • 36.
    Georgia said…

    I use chalk board trays that I purchased from IKEA, mounted about 8 inches apart to hold my wooden stamps. This way I can see them and they look pretty on the wall. I also have a large collection of acrylic stamps from Close to My Heart. I use small CD storage bins that I purchased at a Dollar General to store them, the envelopes the CTMH stamps come in fit perfectly.

  • 37.
    Beatriz Silva said…

    Hi Ali, this might be a lat post, but you are one of my favorite persons on organization matters. While I was reading your post above, came to my mind what could be a good idea.
    You like to separate or organize things on “subjects” or so, right? Why don’t you separate your stamps in that way, then stamp on 8.5 x 11″ cardstock, and then storage in a binder or like your technique tuesday stamps?
    That might work and you’ll be aware of them & actually used them all… I’ll try that though!! Ciao!

  • 38.
    cards by cara said…

    Thanks for your inspiration! I just did a post of my stamp sets and used similar clear tabs to label all my sets. If feels so good to be organized!!

  • 39.
    Bec Kilgore said…

    Is your organization system still the same? I was just curious as I am overhauling my studio.

  • 40.
    Christine said…

    I know this is an older post but I just came across it and LOVE it. I want to find a little basket to put my technique tuesday stamps in. I just started buying these and already am happy with my little collection. Thanks for the inspiration as always.

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