what I do

what I do

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

The paper chase

Vanessa DeVargas

Llija Mirceski via Houzz

I have received a lot of feedback on my recipe binders so I thought I would write more about the use of 3-ring binders for organizing all kinds of papers. I have mentioned before that to be organized means to be able to easily find what you are looking for. Limiting the number of places that the item can be is crucial.  Papers are no exception, in fact probably even more important!

Generally, I have three places that my papers go (besides the trash).  Each piece of paper that comes in the house goes in a "to-do box", in a "designated file" or in a "3-ring binder". The exception is something that I put directly into my calendar but that is rare. I will post later about using a calendar and the other files. I use binders for my personal papers, my design business, and running my home.

I use a binder for each of my clients. Inside each notebook I put every email correspondence that I need to keep, photos, samples, tear sheets, etc. so that when I am working on a particular client's project I can grab their notebook and I have everything in one place. 

I also store all my invoices, business records, tax receipts in binders. I also have separate notebooks for design ideas, business cards, paint samples, etc. 

I use the kind of sheet protectors that don't require that the papers have holes punched. If I need to reference a paper or make a copy, I can pull the paper out of the protective sheet and it is intact without holes.
Real Simple
For home use I have a binder for my recipes, warranties and instruction booklets, remodeling records, recreation ideas (past vacations, resources, places I want to visit...), etc.
When my daughter was sick and the paperwork was mounting and just too much to fit in her medical file, I made a notebook just for that - it made it easy to reference the information I needed for insurance claims and speaking with doctors. And of course we have a wonderful 3-ring binder on the wedding.

I use binders that have plastic around the outside so that I can slip in my printed labels. I print the labels on card stock and insert them into the sleeve on the spine of the binder. I prefer white binders - to keep it clean, simple and the labels easy to read. 


Anonymous said...

I'm a big fan of storing things in binders with sheet protectors too. I still have the one that I created for when we were building our home and every once in a while when I need to check back on something, there it is all neat and tidy!

Unknown said...

Hi PK! I know, I was thinking that I should have added the benefits of flipping through neat pages in a binder vs. a stack of papers in a loose file. It is so much easier to see what you have and to keep the papers in order.

pamela said...

This is a great post. I am learning so many useful tips from you Sherri! So glad I found your blog, and thanks for your kind comments too - very encouraging for a new blogger!!!

pamela x

L said...

Thanks for going into such details in explaining how you do your binders. I love the idea of getting paper clutter out of files & piles. A new project for me!

Poetrycherie said...

WoW if we could only be so organized in my home.