I'm pretty happy with my current paper system. Years ago, I purchased a ton of Cropper Hopper vertical paper storage holders. I've organized all of my 12" x 12" cardstock by color in one section:
My DCWV Cardstock Paper Pads are in another section:
And then there is my Basic Grey (which has long since outgrown it's cube):
Here are my suggestions to get your papers organized:
Step One: Gather It All Up
Find all of your papers and bring them into one place. All of them. Even the scraps.
Step Two: Decide How You Are Going To Store It
As I mentioned, I love vertical storage. I buy my paper holders at Michaels, using a coupon. Or, you can wait until they have a "scrapbook storage" sale and take advantage of buying a ton of stuff at once!
Before I had sooooo much paper, I used these clear trays from Display Dynamics:
I know a ton of people who have used this:
If you only have a small amount, you might try this (found at Michaels -- use a coupon!):
I have my cardstock sorted by color (ROYGBIV), I tend to buy patterned papers by lines within a brand (so that they coordinate with one another), and I sort them that way (for example, I just bought a ton of paper from the Hometown Summer line by Pink Paislee). If I have a ton of one brand, I keep all of the lines within that brand together (for example, all of my Making Memories lines are together in one big paper holder). I am an absolute whore when it comes to Basic Grey, so I have an entire cube of Basic Grey.
If I have a few remnant sheets or I bought a single sheet of patterned paper, I store it in my patterned paper holder by color.
To see how I store my scrap papers, you'll want to read this blog post from 2007. I'm still using the exact same system and I still love it!
Step Four: Purge
Really, how much do you need? I plan to purge and sell off the good stuff in bulk lots and give the really old (I've been scrapbooking since 1998 and still have paper from then...) stuff to my daughter's old pre-school teacher.
Step Five: Label
You won't know where it is unless you label it! If you are using the same vertical storage holders I do, it is very easy to label the fronts. I punch a circle from patterned paper and put it in a metal rimmed tag. The tag is glued to the front with a pop dot. I love being able to quickly access my papers when I need them.
Hop to it! Time to get that paper organized!