The amount of stuff beading, bead making and jewelry making accumulates to is ridiculous.
I have a rule that i can't bead until every bead is organised. Its stupid, but its the only way i can keep them tidy. It also takes up a lot of time (11 hours to reorganise them into drawers at the last count) and gives me RSI.
But I've come up a few ideas that i hope will help out before someone else ruins their back.
First off - shop around and spend the money.
OK, that nice set of plastic drawers might fit half of them in, but what about the other half? and can it take the weight of the glass beads? does it have sturdy wheels? will it fit your tools in it?
Sure, Bunnings has those cheap little tool suitcases with the removable compartments, but turn them sideways and your in hell.
Get yourself a sturdy option that can be added to.
- Stackable drawers are a lifesaver. Get ones with good quality wheels and rails. ours cost us 120 bucks from K-mart(in the scrap booking stuff) for 12 drawers that can be stacked,moved around and have trays on top that can be used as work spaces. 120 is about half of what we spent on numerous sets of drawers that broke or were too small.
- stacking pots are good for seed beads if you get good ones and don't overfill them.
- Curtain rods for threading spools of tigertail are great.
- Cardboard tubes and a thumb tack keep ribbon tidy.
- For heavier tools such as vices, doming blocks etc. use a sturdy wooden shelf or store them in a box at your feet
- Bead mats are fantastic for preventing spilling and only cost about 3 bucks, great if you teach.
- Always fix your craft wire onto the spool, using either an indent in the spool or electrical tape.
- If you keep your beads in packets, buy a cheap pegless clothesline from a camping store and just hang it above your workspace with the beads attached.
- pliers can be secured to a rail in easy reach with rubber bands; just make a loop around the rail and tie in a knot. the remaining loop goes over the end of you pliers.
- For storing the actual beads use compartmented containers - do not use double sided containers! -try and get ones with 2 clasps on the front rather than just a lip that clicks into place.
- finally, try and get a work surface that can be used for anything. I use an old granite chopping board. You can often get them at garbage tips because they blunt knives. I can use mine for hammering on, soldering on, polymer clay and as a raised surface to do beading on when I forget my glasses.