Thursday, November 6, 2014

Organizing Chaos

7:56 PM

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Ever saved a ticket stub from that first time you went out with your friends? What about that invitation to your Junior prom (corny saying aside)? Well, multiply that by about a hundred (or ten, give or take a couple of decimal places), and you get me.

I am a self-confessed hoarder. As I mentioned over here, my room is practically a garbage dump of odds and ends that I collected by myself over the years.

How do I keep everything organized, you ask? Well, I don't... at least not really.

My biggest problem back then was though I liked to collect things—from movie and theater tickets, to the clothing tags, chocolate wrappers, math scratch paper, and keychains—I had no idea where to put them. As a result, these little knickknacks ended up filling my drawers and cabinets 'til there was no more space left.

If you're like me, you probably keep these kinds of things because of their sentimental value (“this invitation to so and so's Bratz themed party is vital to my existence!”), and others because you feel that you'd be able to use them later on for craft projects.

Since I don't want YOU to end up buried in your own keepsakes, and because I also believe that everything is a keepsake in one way or another, here are a bunch of simple ways to help you to get some order going without having to throw anything away. (Unless it's a food-soiled anything...then you have to get rid of it unless you want insects to invade your room.)

1.) Keep a scrapbook/journal
I made my first “visual diary” as a project for art in 6th grade. Most of my classmates thought it was a burden to have to update it regularly, but I found myself really enjoying the whole cutting and pasting thing. I think that it's great to keep a (visual) documentation of your life so that you never forget that things have happened.

I've always wondered what my future self would say or think after going through my old scrapbooks and being transported back to the times embedded in their pages.

Scrapbooks are basically the same as photo albums except more fun, because you have the freedom to do whatever you want with the pages. Cut, paste, stick, write, doodle—it's all up to you!

If you're picky about these kinds of things, you could always go to the store and buy one of those blank sketchbooks or regular hardbound spiral books. Any old book with enough space works just as fine. This activity also gives you an excuse to buy lots of stickers, butcher magazines, and print out photos of your latest obsessions.

WARNING: This practice may lead to an unhealthy obsession with stickers and retro books/magazines

2.) Keep a Memory Box (or boxes)

This is simple because all you have to do is shove things into it. All you need is a suitable box (any shoebox or sturdy box will work), and you're good to go. These work great for bulkier items like keychains and thick brochures that obviously can't be pasted in a scrapbook. All you have to do now is design and label it, and you have a fancy MEMORY BOX. 

However, if you want to take it a step further, you could assign a different box per type of item. Letters could go into one box, pictures could go in another, etc. I personally like to keep everything jumbled up because this adds to the charm. 

Bonus: If you're not too overly-attached to the stuff inside your box, you can make it into a time capsule, which is essentially a memory box... that you bury deep into the ground. All you have to do is put a label on the lid containing your name and the year you want it to be opened, bury it somewhere legal, and you're good to go!

Once you fill up a whole scrapbook or box, make sure to store it in a safe place to guarantee that it'll still be there – and there you have it, two ways to preserve your precious moments (har har—er, memories). Now it'll be easy to look back and cringe at that photo from your G.N.O five years from now! 

What are you waiting for? Go forth and hoard! 

Other ideas: Keep an inspiration board/wall. That way, you get to display everything you collect before they get put into your scrapbook or box.

Article and Art by Gaby

Gaby is used to working quietly in the background. The Thing is her first big attempt at taking the lead. She isn't sure how it is going to go, considering that most of her time is spent trying to get her dog to listen to her. On most days, you would find her at her computer, excessively bookmarking links to DIY projects and articles about teenage wunderkind. 


  1. This is really cute and helpful. I love journalling and scrapbooking. I end up stocking on stickers and cute add-ons when I find nice ones. Hihi
    I love this blog. <3 I'm a follower.


    1. Thank you! Stickers forever <3 <3 -Gaby