I admit it…I hoard fabric 🙂 If you have a tendency to collect as well then you definitely need these fabric organization tips to keep you sane and your sewing space tidy! I’ll warn you now that this post is a bit long but hopefully you’ll find something to help you keep the stash under control.
Before I go into details I want to share my #1 Tip:
Have some extra space for your stash to grow.
I’m always using my fabric and supplies but I also buy more so having some space to put those things away when I stock up is essential. When things get too full it’s time to do some stash-busting but if you have absolutey no extra space to begin with your system is doomed to fail. Now on to the tips!
I keep the bulk of my fabric on my bookshelves with the yardage folded on comic book boards. I found mine on Amazon (100 boards for $12.95). I thought that would be plenty but I’m now working on my second set of boards 🙂 Basically you just wrap your fabric around them like a bolt you’d find at the fabric store. It keeps everything neat and tidy and it’s easy to see what you have in your stash. I sort by fabric type (wovens and knits) and I have anything from 1/4 yard cuts up to 2-3 yards stored on these. Seriously love them!
My bookshelves are the BILLY shelves from Ikea. I added on the glass doors and they are perfect! I can showcase my pretty fabrics up top and then hide a lot of other supplies in the lower half. It also deters my kids from de-shelving everything as they’re a bit hard to open without any knobs.
I save pretty much any usable scrap and they get pulled out all the time for appliques or small projects. I’m always glad I have them 🙂 The woven scraps are sorted by color in these little bins I found at Jo-Anns on the top half of my other bookshelf.
Maybe a little OCD but I love having them sorted 🙂 They’re just folded up like little index cards that I can flip through. I have one extra bin as my “receiving bin” that I can toss things into and sort out later. Once the bins get too full I do a little purging and let my toddler go to town with any un-wanted scraps
Don’t worry though I am definitely not perfect…here’s the underbelly of this bookshelf 🙂 I have photos and cards in the boxes, buttons and KAM snaps in the little organizer, paper patterns and ribbon scraps in the bins and assorted junk on the bottom shelf (laminator, scrapbooking bits and pieces, some interfacing, etc.)
Underneath my fabric bolts in the other bookshelf things are a bit more tidy. In the chevron bins I keep my knit scraps (1 bin for solids and 1 for prints), extra serger thread and my flannel scraps. The next shelf down has my ribbon spools, paint, and black and white thread (when it’s on sale I buy BIG). The bottom shelf is Anne’s sewing supplies for her fabric organization and my camera bag
On this shelf is also one my favorite little organizers ever! I collect bias tape, ric rac, piping, etc. whenever I find it at the thrift store so that I always have some on-hand. To keep it all tidy I store it up-right in a box our Christmas Cards came in. It’s so much easier to see what I have and it keeps it from all unwinding
The little drawers aren’t great for fabric organization but are amazing for storing smaller items. I keep a lot of my scrapbooking items in here (stamps, card blanks, etc.) along with my sewing notions. I have a drawer for zippers, 1 for elastic, 1 for snaps and velcro, etc. Will pulls out the elastic all the time so I gave up on winding it but at least I can find it when I need it 🙂
I keep my thread up on my sewing desk and I always keep every color on-hand. If I run out I make a note and pick up another spool the next time Jo-Anns has a 50% thread sale. It really saves me a lot of hassle to have any color I might need (or close enough) at home. And yes I like to sort by color although looking at this there are a few runaways 🙂
My sewing desk also has a few cubbies and I use one for fabric organization to store all of the projects I’m currently working on. Items I don’t use frequently (more upcycles, my Cricut, scrapbook paper, etc.) are stored in the bottom cubbies. I keep my scissors, tape, seam rippers, etc. in the little drawers and other frequent use items in the little black shelving unit on my desk-top.
It was a huge under-taking to get all the fabric organization set up but I love it! Everything has stayed right where it belongs for over 6 months now which I think is a good sign that this system will continue to work well for me 🙂 I’ve had many other systems in the past and they all failed miserably so I’m glad to have something that works!