Our task was to sort and store everything from the past 3 shows - Witness for the Prosecution, The Phantom Tollbooth, and Arsenic and Old Lace. Lots!
Here's the jumble of bags containing not quite all of that stuff. Some more arrived after I took the photo. The things have been at various houses being washed and aired and stored until this day arrived. Men's suits had already been hung up on their storage rack.
Here's how we do it. We lay out numbered papers representing all of the 54 boxes of Stuff. These go all around the living room and dining room.
Then we go through the items one by one, determine which box it belongs to. I have a checklist of all the things pulled for these shows and which boxes they came from. As we go, we label each piece with the box number as often as possible (meaning that the item has a label or facing to write a number). Occasionally, we move things to different boxes in an attempt to make the storage more logical (ha, ha!), and I make notes about that.
Eventually, we have piles for each box.
And then...... lunch!!!! You can see how absolutely elated we all get about this process. (Or are we elated about the prospect of felafel and shawarma? Hmmmmmm..........)
We also keep a pile of new things that were acquired for the shows, or that were donated by families and friends. We go through that pile and discuss what we might be able to use. We try to limit what we take in to things that are not easily found at resale shops. We decide what box might have room for something new, and I take notes on color, size, style, etc. for each piece.
A few boxes are stored in the basement of another house, and those things go home with someone who will stash them away there. And some gowns and large or special things come to my house to hang in a closet and the upstairs hall. My closet, behind the clothes, also holds the hanging racks and hangers that we use backstage, and the jewelry boxes.
We started at 9:30, had lunch at 12:30, and finished up at 4:00. It really is a full day's job. But we love our Stuff and enjoy sorting it out together.
And a plug for our inventory program - and yes, I do have an affiliation. We use Helix, which is the data base my husband has been head programmer on for about umpteen years now. A brand new, super updated version is due out any day now!
And now, I feel like summer is truly starting for me!