Oct 5, 2010

QOTW: Floss, Floss, Floss!

How Do You Keep Your Floss Organized?


My first experience with floss was a tangled up mess of embroidery thread in my mother’s sewing basket. I can still remember sitting on the floor and patiently untangling the blue and pink colors so I could “sew” my first cross stitch piece. I don’t remember how I stored those, but there were only two colors so it wasn’t hard to keep track, lol.

After I really got “into” stitching during the 80’s, it was popular (at least according to the magazines) to store floss on bobbins. I bought a bobbin winder, and never looked back. I stored my DMC in the large bobbin cases. At one time I had ELEVEN boxes!

Several years ago, I learned about the "Jammer" cases, which are storage cases for matchbox and hot wheels cars. I don't think the brand exists anymore, but there are similar generic cases on the market. Walmart carries them from time to time. Don't use Ebay -- they're a small fortune on there!


On the left are two cases I store my DMC. Some stitchers have been able to get all the colors in one box, but I wasn't able to do it. Maybe their floss bobbins weren't entirely full... dunno. On the right are duplicate DMC wound on bobbins left over from the 11 original cases.*


Side View of Jammer Box

I have a bunch of DMC still in skein form that I list on my Stash-For-Sale blog. I keep them in gallon size ziploc bags, organized by 100's. All the bags are kept in a laundry basket.


Almost forgot, I do have some DMC on large plastic bobbins. I think they came in a box from a Freecycler. Anyone use these? The anal side of me is seriously considering re-winding them onto regular sized bobbins.


Look how HUGE they are!


I also have a bunch of DMC floss on a different type of bobbin that came in a plastic case. I bought this off eBay *years* ago. It has practically all the colors, and it's my "go to" box when I'm stitching ornaments or other small projects.


On to Specialty Floss....

I store my Rainbow Gallery threads in an awesome embossed tin I found at a thrift store. I made a simple cardboard divider to keep the threads organized. Works perfectly!


Krenik spools (Yeah, I know *ewww*) are stored in Plano 20 gauge shotgun shell cases. These can be found at almost any store that sells sporting goods. I keep VFB in one, and all the other types in the other.


The different brands of hand-dyed/over-dyed floss (GAST, Carries, SSS, Clayton, etc) are stored in gallon size ziploc bags according to manufacturer.


I organized some even farther by putting the floss in quart size ziploc bags alphabetically (A-D, E-J, K-M, etc). Inside each gallon bag is the checklist (from the manufacturer website) of colors available. I have a checkmark beside the ones I have, so I know at a glance and don't have to go digging through the bag only to come up empty handed!


DMC Light Effects are kept in a fishing tackle box. (They are such a pain to work with!)


When I am working on projects, I keep the floss for my projects in a smaller bobbin box. Since I only work on 2-3 projects at a time, all the bobbins will usually fit in my yellow box (JG has it's own box).




So now, how do YOU store your floss? Put an entry on your blog how you do it (with photos), and comment to let me know you blogged about it, and I'll throw your name in a drawing for a stashy prize. :) I will draw a name the old fashioned way: Little pieces of paper in a bowl... on the 18th.


*Believe it or not, with all the DMC I have, I actually ran out of two colors while working on TMQ!

34 comments:

Berly said...

Wow! You seriously need to come to my house, Meari! I'm putting you on my blog now.

Terry said...

You are sooooo organized!! lol I have the bobbin boxes from the 80's and I have the tags on rings that I received from someone on freecycle. Those I keep in two small storage bins. I have to go through it all when looking for colors as I don't have all the DMC colors. lol

Sue said...

OMGGGG!!! Love your floss storage!!!! I would love to wind mine, but the thought just scares me to death.....would take forever...LOL

I will post to my blog!

Hugs,
Sue

Julie M said...

I've posted before about how I store mine so won't get into it again but thanks for sharing how you do yours Meari. Love the kreinik storage! Might have to steal that idea.

Jennifer said...

Lol Organized like a true stitcher I am envious I have posted about it on my blog Happy stitching and have a great Tuesday :)

Bette said...

Wow! I'm impressed. I wish I could be half as organized as you are.

Jennifer said...

lol I added the before pics of the apartment sorry about that I just found the folder on the computer :)

Emily said...

Dang you are very organized, make me look bad, will get around to posting on my blog.

Cindi J said...

I love all of your floss storage ideas. My cases are from years ago - before all the nice floss storage systems came out, and when the large bobbins were the thing to use. I guess I need to re-organize.

Jennifer said...

Thanks for the Bday wish but it isn't until 10/30 Carmilla was one of my gifts that I had received early :)

Sarah Giles said...

Wow.. I wish I had THAT many threads to worry about storing lol. I have 5 large DMC storage boxes and one small box for my Anchor (Yuk) threads. I have my speciality threads just in a ziplock bag lol. I love love love the idea of the shotgun casing. I might have to have a nosy on ebay to see if I can find any.
thanks for sharing all your tips and a peek at ALL your threads. Oh, I live for the day that mine look like that.. not sure hubby will feel the same way tho hahahaha.
Love n hugs, Sarah x (SewCraftyStitchers)

Kathy A. said...

Wow, now that is organized.
My DMC are in the boxes from Walmart.
My Kreinik's too.
My silks and hand dyed are bagged separately, ringed together by company and then bagged and in their own drawer.
Odd flosses are bagged. All threads are in my new storage case drawers from Michaels. Love those things.

Maggie said...

I have nowhere near as many threads as you do, how lovely they look all together! I just wish i was as organised!!

Anonymous said...

You are very organised with your floss Meari. I use the usual bobbin cases but would love to find the jammer cases since they hold so much. LIke you, I also put the threads I am using on current WIPS in a smaller bobbin case all together. I find it much better than having the floss in several different bags and not being able to keep tabs on it.

You did a great job with the framing!!

Hugs,
Lynette

Shelleen said...

Jammers are still sold at Walmart and are around $6. I Have all the regular DMC in one box and have 1/4 of the box empty . I don't have the variegated or Metallic or their other Specialty threads in it. I am going to go take pics of how I store my floss.

Sunshine said...

Very organized! I don't have near as much as you, but I do have a few Kreiniks that I need to store. I just asked DH to pick me up some shootgun shell containers. Thanks for the pics. I have posted on my blog with pics. Happy Stitchin! Love the Flatfold too!!!!

Melody said...

It was fun to see how you organize it all! I didn't know about the larger jammer cases...I will have to look for those.

I keep my dmc on bobbins in the smaller plastic boxes like yours. I too have several. I think there are 7 of them, some are doubles.

Nancy M said...

Carl bought me one of those antique looking cabinets that I now store all my DMC's in. I use the ammunition cases for my Kreiniks too. My extra DMC is in bags labeled by the 100's and my specialty flosses are on rings by manufacturer.

Mary said...

I use the bobbin boxes for my dmc. I don't know how many I have. I have used some of the spare space for full dmc floss that I haven't put on a bobbin yet. I have divided my GAST in zipper type bags by groups of letters and then I put the bags in a box that I picked up at Joann's. When I am working on a project, I started using a metal ring to keep my floss in alpha order so I can find the color easier.

I do have a problem of putting the leftover floss back in the storage location when I'm done. I need to work on that in 2011...lol.

Great question! I love your methods for storage especially the Krenik.

Vicky said...

Okay when are you coming to my house to organise me LOL

Kathryn said...

Been there, done that.

http://threadsofdesire.blogspot.com/2007/03/organized-not-so-much.html

That covers the DMC though I do have every color of "normal" DMC on bobbins organized in plastic sheets organized by color family for design decisions, not stitching. The linens are in plastic storage drawers by count. The specialty threads are on rings by product number or name if there is no number. All are separated by manufacturer, then all together in huge plastic box. The patterns that are not kits are in a file storage box by subject in separate file folders and the kits in another huge plastic box. The needlepoint canvases are in their own box. Projects have their own plastic bag (small), traveling case (medium) or pillow case (huge).

The hundreds of Kreinik threads are all in a huge drawer higgledy piggley. I am going to my nearest gun shop TOMORROW to pick up those delightful cartridge cases. When I saw them I exclaimed so loudly that my husband came over to see what I had found. I told him he would not be as excited over your pictures as I was. LOL.

crossstitchbibs said...

My last post was in August on my blog but it shows how I store my floss. I bought 4 bins for storing nuts and bolts and screws. My blog only shows 1 set of bins but I ended up using 4 of them. I have the drawers numbered for the DMC floss. Before that I was using zip lock bags and I had a big mess!! Love my new system much better.

craftygal43 said...

Meari, I like to wind mine on bobbins like you. I have about 6 so far.One day I decided that was too much trouble and bought big metal rings and little floss bags with holes in the upper corner and I have them in numerical order.The only thing with that is they are so bulky and more difficult to store. I also have extras seperated in bags by the hundreds.I have recently started buying floss for each project and putting it all together so the project is ready to go but that isn't very practical to me and will probably not do that any more.
I would like to be entered in you drawing please. You are soo organized. I love your blog. You are THE WOMAN!
DebbieM
craftygal43@yahoo.com

Sharon said...

My floss is VERY organized but I use shoe boxes and floss bags. I love your see-through boxes much better! Making the transition to clear boxes and bobbins might just become one of my "chilly day" projects this winter. Thanks for sharing your WOONDERFUL organization ideas! :)

too_busy_to_stitch said...

I put all my DMC in large bobbin storage boxes (I have four of them now :)) Speciality threads are kept in various ways - I don't have too many of those....yet :)

Lyn said...

I have 5 bobbin boxes for my DMC cotton threads, one bobbin box for my extra wrapped DMC and I use a 1/2 gallon bag for my specialty threads. I have very few of these.

Daffycat said...

I've blogged about my thread storage before! You can find my posts on the subject under the label "stash" or copy & paste below...

http://itsdaffycat.blogspot.com/search/label/Stash

I'm always awed by the patience of those that store floss on bobbins. I find bobbins tedious and annoying but I must admit floss on bobbins is just gorgeous.

Katrien said...

You're so organized! I just love it. I've never seen such boxes around here :( I'll try to put an entry about my (lack of) organization on my blog.

Spanish Princess said...

MIne are all stored in containers like your first photo with the exception of my "specialty" thread. There are only a few of those (like 10) so I keep them in a zippered snack-size bag. You are very organized. I see why we get along!

mbroider said...

I have put in my organising floss post!! I cannot see any better way of doing this... Hopefully i will see some cutesie drawers and grab them, but till then no change...

I have already won stuff from you, Meari and thanks for that. So i will withdraw from the stashy bit...

Shelley said...

I gotta get me some of those shotgun shell cases now. You are the best organizer around!

Rebecca (Becky J) said...

I store my DMC floss on the cardboard bobbins, in the DMC plastic boxes. I just started using silk threads but they are in a fabric basic I got last year for winning a Give-A-Way. I like your ideas, will have to try it. If its ok with you. I have seven plastic boxes and the last are not filled.

Terri said...

Wow you are so organized lol I have a few ways I store will take pictures when I finish moving everything down to the basement

Rebecca Greco said...

Those Jammer cases are fantastic! I have four of the large bobbin cases, but I think the double storage of the Jammer case would be so nice! I keep my Kreinik spools in a large bobbin case as well, but it's neat that they fit so well into a shotgun shell case.

I need to get a little bobbin box for current projects. I always throw the thread I'm using into a little pouch, but it would be so much nicer to be able to see them all.

Thanks for stopping by my blog and sharing this!