It’s a sad fact but true, that I like nothing better than organising, setting up the perfect system to get my [insert topic of the moment] under control – recipes, pantry, paperwork, desk drawers – you name it! I’m forever devising new plans and I am always convinced that this new plan is THE ONE. You know the one – once I get this system in place, I’ll never be untidy again! In my dreams!! Anyone who has been to my house can testify to the fact that I am better at setting up systems than sticking to them. But I press on in the hope that one day the perfect system will lend itself to perfect organisation.
One area that cries out for systems and strategies is my digital content. I really do have more content than I could possibly use, and I really really don’t need any more!! But then I see new content and I just have to have it!! So my stash grows and the systems I had in place start to burst at the seams. Next thing I know, I’m reorganising. I think it’s an incurable disease. But based on the response to my recent tip, Corral Content Chaos, I am not the only sufferer.
I could fight it, but to tell the truth I don’t really want to. I like having my content well organised! I like being able to find the right paper or embellishment or title when I need it. You know what they say – “Organisation is just for people who are too lazy to look for things”. If you have read my blogs for a while, you’ll know this is not the first time I’ve written about this topic. But this time I really have found a system that works for me! Really! I’m pretty excited so I thought I’d share it for those of you who have asked for details. This is how I do it, and if you find it helpful, feel free to use whichever aspects you find useful. But be warned – if you have a lot of content, this is not a light undertaking. I spent the best part of the weekend setting it up, and I’m not quite finished yet.
In Artisan (and in SBC4) there are 3 levels of organisation – library folders, categories and tags. There’s a lot of details on this website about that (here’s a link) so I won’t explain that now, but I’ll cut to the chase and tell you what I’ve arranged.
These are the folders I have created:
- as discussed in the Corral Content Chaos tip, I have created a library folder for each designer. The content is from Creative Memories unless otherwise stated.
- I have also created folders for each type of content – digital kits, alphasets, overlays etc. I figure this makes it easier to scroll through just digital kits, for example, or just embellishments, when I’m searching for inspiration.
- I keep my Pixie Dust in a separate folder, with a PAK for each month’s collection.
Here is where it gets a bit complicated, but stay with me. I need to have categories broad enough that I don’t spend forever categorising and never get to make pages, but narrow enough to enable me to find what I need without scrolling through dozens and dozens of kits. Some kits lend themselves to categories naturally, like Christmas, Baby and School. But other kits don’t have such obvious themes, and I used to lump them all in a category called Digital Kits. But as my collection grew, that category became huge and unmanageable. Thinking about how I scrapbook, I tend to look for colour themes and styles. I will look at the photos and then decide if I need a bright, fun page, or an earthy, grungy page etc. Suddenly the lightbulb came on and I realised that’s what my categories should be. Not to replace those themed categories but to augment them. So I created “Bright & Fun”, “Earthy & Grunge”, Mono & Metallic” & more.
That plan came unstuck when it came to overlays, since they are pretty much all black. Again I thought about how I scrap, and created the following categories: Geometric, Floral, Decorative & Patterns. Patterns being anything that’s not floral or geometric or decorative! I made those categories for overlays, but many kits also fit those descriptions, so they go in those categories too.
Are you getting my drift? Here is a screenshot of all my categories. Essentially I have 3 different types of categories – themes, colour palette and style. I have found that everything will fit at least one of those categories, and theoretically most kits will be in 2 or 3 categories. For example Primary Christmas would be in Primary Power Palette, Christmas, and also Bright & Fun. I have grouped the colour and style categories by putting “.” in front of the name. “PP” keeps the Power Palettes together.
I have already posted about my tags. I am bravely showing a current screenshot of my tags, to demonstrate the way my ‘system’ evolves over time, partly because I get new kits that need new tags, and partly because I am constantly tweaking and re-evaluating. For example, my “birthday” tag was getting so full, I now have separate tags for “cake” and “candles”. Before you ask – no, I don’t have every single element tagged. But I’m close. If I just stopped buying more content …
I am often asked to share in detail about my tags & categories, so here it is. If you have a system that works well for you, you probably have stopped reading by now. If you’d rather have root canal than tag content, you are not alone. But if you were looking for a few ideas, I hope you have found some here. I’ll finish with a few screenshots to show you how pretty my organised content looks now 🙂
And since this will be my last blog for 2013 (already!!), let me take this opportunity to wish you and your family many blessings over the holiday season. Thank you for being part of our family here at pixels2Pages. Here’s to many scrap-worthy memories in 2014! Cheers!!
Click on the images for a larger view.