Here I'm going to give you an idea to hopefully help with both these problems.
This is my Inspiration journal (first seen in Scrap 365 Nov 12) where I keep ideas and colour schemes which will hopefully help me when I create a project. It helps to serve as a record of what I have in my craft room and if I need help with an idea I'll look through for inspiration. Also, when I'm doing this, I find things which go together in a way I hadn't thought of before.
For example this page started out with the picture on the left which I pulled from a magazine. On the right I've matched up the colours and the feeling which I get from the image, which is a romantic theme, so I've gone for flowers, butterflies, scrolls and vintage labels.
This page started with the sweet wrappers, so you see inspiration can come from absolutely anywhere.
When given Vicki's colour challenge I did the same thing. I went through my stash pulling out anything and everything which matched the colours. It was while doing this I was pleasantly surprised to find that the Jenni Bowlin papers Modern Mercantile matched perfectly. I might not have made the connection if I hadn't done this exercise. By the way, I collect paint chips every time I go into the DIY store, they must think poor woman just can't make up her mind!!
I started to build the page up using what I'd found. Inks, papers, paint swatches and tape all went onto the page. I overlap things too just to see how they look together.
and here is what I made in the end using the colours and materials I'd chosen.
I hope this exercise has given you some ideas of how to catalogue what you have in your crafty stash and how to tackle a project.
See you next time