In addition to using the shoe organizers, plastic bins and storage saver bags everyone else has mentioned, I use food vacuum bags in the one gallon size to organize many types of fibers. My personal favorite is the Reynolds wrap system. The battery operated vacuum works really well! By removing the air, I make them flat for easy storage. An added benefit is that they cannot be ruined by unforeseen disasters, such as bugs or water leaks!!!
To sort everything, I cleared my dining room table and used two bins. Things that I wanted to use soonest went into food bags and the shoe organizer. Things I had no immediate plans for went into vacuum food bags, then a vacuum sweater bag for storage in the bin. Each sweater bag holds different weight yarns, so that I can pull just one bag out of stoarge and know that everything is a certain weight. It is easy to see the many different types and I can pick one type without making a mess in all the rest! So far, it all seems to work and takes up a minimum amount of space. The bin and shoe organizer are both in my guest room closet. It took the better part of a Saturday afternoon, but I also got to play in all my stash! Now when I buy something new, I come home and put it up right away with a minimum of fuss.
And I like to use pretty glass vases and bowls for my needles and such... sort of abstract flower arrangements!
I like to use the 35-50 gallon plastic bins from Wally World :). I organize my yarn inside using bags (much like the blanket/pillow/comforter bags) that have mesh up the sides. Keeps the bugs out, lets the natural fibers breathe and they are see through so I can tell which one is sock yarn, worsted, etc.
I got them at cleanersupply.com they come in small, medium and large, i got the small ones. They were something like $12 for a dozen. They are also rectangular so they stack on top perfectly. I can fit 4 or 5 in one bin. Great for people who don't have an extra closet or have limited space. :)
TrunkFullOYarn on Ravelry
I was wondering how the vacuum bags are working out for you. I read somewhere else that it was not recommended. Something about the yarn not being able to breath. I guess I could understand this about wool yarn. Most of mine is not wool. I also have been using clear bags to store my yarn and would really love to use the vacuum bags. Anyone have any bad experiences?
For the current projects I am working on or plan to work on, I use one of those hanging sweater shelf things. I love it. I can easily see all my projects and it's easy to grab.
Last summer the first moved out, roots and wings! The youngest sews, so very excited we got a "knitting/craft room" for stash. The room has one of those futon bunk beds. I took clear tubs and sortted yarn and stacked them up above. Then got two darling printed sweater organzers and hung those in the close for all my really pretty "scarf" yarns. You know, that soy merino blend that you only have two skeins of, but the colors were gorgeous and it was such a killery deal, that one day it may become a hat, or fingerless gloves, or..... so this way I can look at my pretty yarns when I am at the computer and there's a futon couch to sit on. There were some bookshelves at the back of the closed so I have knitting book storage. I took children's hangers and hung scarves on them, ones t hat need ends finished. They are pretty to look at and I am motivated to finish as colder weather is coming (I really dislike finishing) .I also took all my ufo's and put them in a couple of tubs. So I have a new mid-year resolution. The first two week of the month I can knit/crochet/start anything I want...come the 15th i must finish at least one project and work on a ufo.
This has been working really since July, I have finished two afghans, three hats and several scarves had their ends finally woven in! Yay for Christmasgivingstash! Instead of my January resolution ,this will be my Christmas in July resolution.
Also I know the plastic tubs aren't the best, so I do air them out and am keeping my eye out for some of those large cardboard storage boxes. Having this room to even just sit and read/escape in has been so great and a long time coming, I still can't believe it and feel almost guilty sometimes!
Organizing your room = the Key to getting so much accomplished. It surely must be invigorating to see all your recently finished projects and that in turn gives you more incentive to keep it going. Congratulations, enjoyed hearing your story!
And all the women who were wise of heart spun with their hands, and they kept bringing as yarn the blue thread and the wool dyed reddish purple, the coccus scarlet material and the fine linen. Ex. 35:25
I have really been inspired by all the inovative ideas for stash storage. I am lucky enough to have my own room for all my creating ideas. I have over 30 years of stash yarns, fabrics, notions, etc and have started sorting and organizing more times than I can count. Even moving across the country from Alaska to Indiana didn't work! I plan on using many of the ideas I've read here asap. I have numerous hat boxes, some were my mom's that she used for her current knitting projects. THanx for all the great ideas. I'll be on this site a lot now that I know about it.
Thanks for writing and glad you'll be using the site often.
I just stumbled upon your organization site. It's great. A few people asked if vacuum bags were safe. I didn't see your response. Any hints at all on saving your back would be greatly appreciated. Right now I have those big plastic drawers in the closet but my yarn is not in plastic bags in the drawers. I think that would be helpful. What kind of plastic bags do you recommend for separating the yarns within the drawers. I also have plastic bins on top of the closet but I have to reach for them. Maybe lined baskets on the floor? All in my son's room. He is married with his own home.
Hi Barbmango, so nice to "talk" to you.
Pauline wrote that she uses citrus soap in her pillowcase bags to prevent a musty odor and to keep a fresh smell in her wool. I use fresh sprigs of Lavender from my garden to hang in the actual zip up stand alone closet. I notice that some plastic gives off a slight fume when it is closed up tight for a length of time so this neutralizes the gas. Of course as soon as you unzip the bag the gas escapes.
kacdragon wrote that she uses food vacuum bags and has no trouble and likes the space she saves because they store her yarns flat.
Cyndy@13 wrote asking how the vacuum bags were working for kacdragon and it seems so far, that she was pleased with them.
If you notice thatt he manufacturers use clear plastic bags to ship yarns in packages of 12. At the yarn shops I visit, those yarns are in the bags for any varying lenght of time with no harm done or they wouldn't use them to ship in.
The reason I like using the stand alone zip up closet is that I hang the clear plastic bags on hangers, so they are visible without my having to bend down, thus saving my back. Also the closet itself is "airtight" so I don't worry about the bags of yarn being vacuum airtight but I think those bags are a great idea as well I also use the hanging shoe organizers inside the closet and put yarns in those slots and they can also be inside clear plastic as well, if I choose.
For your ? about having to reach for your bins on top of the closet, may I suggest what I pictured. A lower end table (or cabinet) on the floor of your closet, then stack your plastic drawers on top of the end table as high up as you are comfortable with. Then you won't have to stoop down too low to access the lowest (first) drawer and the rest should be at hip height, then waist height, chest height. I also use this arrangement inside one of my closets and I do love it. The end table does not have to be new. You could put a table cloth or cover over it with some fabric you love or want to make good use of. That will save you from stretching your arms up, hurting your back or being tempted to stand on a chair to reach.
I'd love to hear if you try any of these, how it works for your needs. Great to hear from you!
I received a big box of yarn from a friend's mom's stash. She was clearing out some of her mom's needlework stash. In the box were 12 skeins in the original package sealed & unopened. Along with it another 12 skeins of a different yarn. The latter, I used some of to make a vest for which I made the pattern. It did turn out very well. It is called Spinnerin Frostlon-Mouline, 67% Mohair, 33% Orlon in a varigated blue, pink & white.
Now, I am thinking of using the other yarn, which makes me keep wondering what she originally intended to use it for. I guess I will never know. The best I can do is use it all. So now I am going to search the internet to see if I can locate this brand of yarn and maybe what it would be suitable pattern for it. It is in it's original box and is called "Fantasy" made Napoli, 70% Wool, 20% Mohair, !0% Vinyon. Made in Italy. It's in a shade of orange and there are also a couple of loose skeins in a deeper orange.
I do have a blanket to finish and another vest I want to do as well before I actually start on making something with this yarn, but it doesn't hurt to start searching for ideas now.
Well it was nice sharing and if anyone has any information on these yarns or patterns for them, I would love to hear from you.
wow aren't you the lucky one? what a nice surprise to get something in the mail like that! and coming from a friend's mom. i love stories like this. history in the making. someone loved that yarn once and had a project in mind. now it is your duty to make something beautiful from it. the color sounds so nice. love orange. are you going to combine the 2 colors? that could be really nice. can't wait to hear what your plans are for it. keep us posted!
since one of my new interests is lace knitting, i think you should do a pretty shawl in lace. can be a larger pattern, doesn't have to be the teeny sz 0 needles. haha! i believe you would need less yarn for a shawl? have fun planning your adventure!
Lots of great ideas in here! I only wish I had a spare closet!! Or even better... a spare room! Someday when my oldest moves out and hopefully my currently 4 year old son is able to share with his currently 2 year old brother around that time as well (3-4 years from now)... he has autism, so that's dreaming for us!
For now I have a cedar chest in our sun room that has yarn in 2 small totes. I have totes of fabrics and finished/unsold projects in there as well, so only room for 2 totes of yarn. My current project bag has started to house yarns I'm not using (currently working on a baby sweater and only need 2 skeins... but there are like 6-7 in there!) and I also have some in a plastic storage bag in my bedroom closet.
Even though it means bending, I am surprised I hadn't thought of under the bed storage!! I don't mind kneeling down to look through my yarn, and hopefully I'll have a craft room back in a few years anyway.
I use the hanging shoebag item in my guestroom closet for the leftover yarn skeins. Yes it is easy to find colors and weights when you are doing a scrap or small project. It came in very handy when making dolly clothes and a blanket for the little grand!
I group things in plastic pitchers or bins for projects - we all have those inspirations where we buy all the yarn for that shawl, sweater, etc. I buy it and will be making it when I get "'round to it". Haven't gotten one of those " 'round to it" things yet so those projects are still waiting on me! LOL Small projects like lace weight for shawls are stuffed into clear Gallon or 2 Gallon plastic pitchers you can get at the dollar store. They have a handle on them, stack nicely, best of all they have a pouring spout that I use to thread the yarn through when I'm doing the project. Cheaper than one of those yarn bin things. Larger projects like sweaters and afghans go into those square bins they use for file folders (it can hold 6-10 skeins of yarn). I tuck the pattern that inspired me in there with the picture on the wide side so I can see it and I even tuck in the needles. ( I can spare them as I have inherited Momma's, Grammy's and Aunties needle collection. Not to mention the yard sale bargains I have to buy up when I see them). Yarn, Pattern and accessories all in one place when I get inspired ( or "'round to it")
I stack them up on one side of the craft room. Pretty colors and all. The file folder bins also work nicely as a quick "project table" when they are put 4 together in a double layer - like saw horses for my craft room.
I love that hanging shoe bag. The slots/pockets are clear and it saves space because it uses up all the vertical space from top to botton. I also use the stackable drawers that pull open like a chest. They can easily be moved and re-arranged if necessary. It's great to be organized. Like your project table idea.
Again, your kitten has a gorgeous face!
Some great ideas for storage here, this is how I store my wool, which lives in my sitting room. I got the storage units from argos but they are available in a lot of stores - they were quite cheap- £18 for six so I bought 3 lots (18 bins) and stacked them into two units - they are on castors so they are easy to move about. Sorry picture is of bad quality but have lost my camera lead to computer so had to take this with a little webcam.