Sometimes it just feels good to organize something!
Decluttering and organizing are right up there with a nice hot shower for busting through a creative block, but even when I’m not facing a challenge it’s just nice to sit back and see a nice, orderly space, you know? And since so much of my day (and yours, too, admit it) is spent online, it’s important to do some digital organization from time to time.
(Even though it’s a lot easier to ignore a digital mess–chances are we’re not going to trip over it!)
My current task is to get Pinterest under control. I was an early adopter but slow to actually put my account to good use.Â When I started planning a wedding, though, it became a really useful tool. Not only is it great for it’s intended purpose–keeping track of visual elements in a pretty package–it’s great for communicating. I created a board of engagement shots I liked and sent it to my photographer and we were able to work many of them in. Some didn’t work as well as others, but at least we gave them a try!
These days I mostly use Pinterest for keeping track of recipes. At first this was my least favorite thing–I own well over a hundred cookbooks and don’t even cook from a recipe half the time, so why do I need to pin other people’s recipes? Because there’s so many tasty things to try, of course! I’m not going to go into my menu planning method in this post (because I already covered it here) but instead of bookmarking the recipes I want to try in my browser, I’ve been saving them to my Foodie Goodness board. It’s a lot easier to click on them through the Pinterest app on my phone when I’m in the kitchen than to scroll through the Chrome bookmarks (which also could use some serious housekeeping). Of course now that I’ve started doing that, the FG board is getting a little out of hand.
What I really wish was that Pinterest had a folder option or that I could nest boards inside of other boards. This would make my profile much more streamlined if I could have a board for Food with boards inside it for different types of recipes. Same with the wedding boards that I no longer need but don’t want to delete, either, because a) they’re still getting repins on a regular basis and b) I might want to refer back to the for other reasons.
Now, you can move pins between boards, but combining all my wedding or food boards would just get me right back where I started. Instead, I just try to keep my boards in groups that make sense to me (and hopefully anyone else looking at them).
If you’re already pretty Pinterest-savvy, these next few tips you probably already know. But I’ve learned never take anything for granted or to assume that what I think is common knowledge really is, so here are some basics on how to deal with your Pins ifÂ they start to get wild and wooly.
Rearranging Pinterest Boards
The easiest thing to do is to move an entire board to where you want it. To do that (from your computer, at least, I haven’t tried this on a tabletÂ and the mobile app brings up other options when you press and hold a board) you click and hold your mouse over the board you want to move and just drag it around the screen. As you can see, the other boards will shift around, making room when you get close to one side or another of a board and you just lift off the mouse button when it’s where you want it.
I like to group my boards into like little clumps–so my house boards all together, my food boards all together, wedding boards all together (and those are now down towards the bottom of my profile since I don’t need to access them very often). Again, folders or a nesting function would be my biggest Pinterest wish, but until then I’ll just work with it like this.
Moving Pins from Board to Board
There’s two ways to do this (three if you count repinning a pin you’ve already pinned onto a different board, and how many times am I going to use the word pin today? the word is losing all meaning!).
To move a single pin between boards, you just need to open the “Edit this Pin” window for the pin. If you hover over the pin some icons will appear at the top of the image, one of which is a pencil (aka the universal symbol for edit). Click it and this screen opens. You can select a different board from the drop-down menu or you can create a new board on the fly by just typing it in (there’s a text field that will show up when you click on the down arrow on the menu).
You can also update the description, website url, and location of the pin on this screen. Handy if you need to fix a link or the description is something like IMG_1245.jpg instead of something useful.
Alternately, if you’re in a board with a lot of pins that need to mass-migrate to another board, use the Move Pins buttonÂ (it’s up along the top, above the actual pins).
Click on the check boxes on each image that you want to move, turning them red, and then click the now-red Move button up there on the top. This will open a window for you to select the destination board. You can also copy pins in bulk using this same screen, see the “Copy” button up there? Useful if you’re repinning some of your pins to a group board!
Editing Pinterest Boards
Below each board (when you’re on your profile, not within a specific board) is an Edit button that opens a screen where you can change some of the particulars of the board, including making it secret or not. Foodie Goodness wasn’t really working for me anymore–it was overgrown and had a lot of different types of food content inside. So I decided to rename it “Recipes to Try” and move all the rest of the stuff into other boards. (This is an ongoing process, there were almost 200 pins in that board!)
A word about editing cover images. When I was shifting and creating new boards I found that the boards created on the fly didn’t have cover images assigned and, horror of horrors, the Cover > Change option wasn’t showing up in the edit field?!?! After refreshing the screen a couple of times a randomly assigned cover image was at least showing up on the new boards, but only some had the option to edit the cover image. Almost all my old boards had it, though, so it could be something you need to allow a little time for.
When the Cover > Change option is there, though, you can flip through the pins on the board and even adjust what part (of tall images) is seen in the thumbnail. Some uber-users even create specific board covers (you can upload images directly to Pinterest, you don’t have to pin them from another site) to really spiff up their profile. I’ve not felt the need just yet, but I can see the appeal.
Commenting on YourÂ Own Pins
It sounds a little vain or weird, right, commenting on your own pins? But Pinterest is a social network in its own right, and likes and comments can become valuable parts of a pin. I like to use it to follow-up on a recipe I’ve tried, for instance,Â to say if I liked it or if I would change something about it, were I to make it again. These sorts of notes are not only helpful to me, but could spark a conversation or help someone else who finds the pin later.
I still have a lot of pins to go through, but when I’m done (for this round) accessing the pins that I need will be easier and some things that I’ve pinned and forgotten about might move up on the to-do list!
When’s the last time you spent some time organizing your pins?