Organizing your Inspiration

Stop storing all those magazines and start organizing them into inspiration books!... which are also known as “swipe files”.

I have subscriptions to craft, fashion and décor magazines that are loaded with fun projects, colors, ads, etc. Frequently, only a few pages out of the whole magazine contain a color, image, project or idea that I like and want to incorporate in some creative way. Over the years, I got tired of earmarking pages that interested me and so, I started to cut out the pages and recycle the rest of the magazine.

At first, I put the magazine cut outs into envelopes, but soon found that to be inefficient because every time I wanted to look for an image I had to dump out the entire contents of the envelope. From here, my swipe files evolved into fun, organized inspiration binders and scrapbooks!

I have a book for wardrobe, one for fabric, one for furnishings, etc. Sometimes I even use them with clients to illustrate diferent styles of furnishings. Now I am stating one for traveling, there are so many places I'd like to see... This can also work for events, gift lists, a crafty hobby and almost anyhing you are interested in.
There is no wrong way to create or organize your inspiration book as long as it inspires you to do something creative. All you need are some images, an adhesive like glue or tape, scissors, paper in any color you want (I prefer black) and some form of binding like a binder, a scrapbook or spiral notebook.

Since this book is just for you, you can organize it any way you like. You can have separate tabs for separate projects or topics or separate books altogether. The best part of your inspiration book is that your images don’t have to be literal, meaning; an image of a bathroom can be placed as an inspiration book for a bedroom or maybe an image of a pumpkin pie can be color inspiration for your fall wardrobe. You can also clip some text, web addresses are very helpful! and of course, add your own notes!

Lastly, my two bits of advice about the creation of your inspiration book is this: one, when you get the newest edition of your favorite magazines in the mail, it is time to clip last month’s and add it to your book. Second, have fun with it! Make your inspiration book a monthly treat for yourself when you can sit back and really let your creative mind wonder.

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