Apr 12, 2015

Overdyed and Hand-Dyed Floss Organization

For years, I've been storing my different brands of hand-dyed/over-dyed floss  in gallon size ziploc bags according to manufacturer (GAST, Carries, SSS, HDF, WDW, etc.).

I organized them even farther by putting the floss in quart size ziploc bags alphabetically (A-D, E-J, K-M, etc). Inside each gallon bag was a checklist (from the manufacturer website) of colors available. I checkmarked 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. 

I had two problems with this organization method:
•  It took a lot of time digging through the floss trying to find the one I wanted.
•  I couldn't look at the colors very well if I wanted to come up with a substitution for another brand.

After looking at various organization ideas on the internet, I think I've finally come up with an idea that will work for me.

Materials List:
•   Used Medium Flat Rate Box #2
•   White Spray Paint
•   Steak Knife
•   Packing Tape
•   Peel 'n Stick Laminate (i.e. Contact Paper)
•   Velcro Squares
•   3x4" Jewelry Ziploc Bags
•   4x6 Index Cards

Long time readers know I like to reuse, repurpose, and recycle if possible.  I looked through the boxes I have saved in my basement and found a postal flat rate shipping box.  I'm *sure* I received stash in it, LOL.  It is the #2 flat rate box:  Outside Dimensions: 12" x 3-1/2" x 14", Inside Dimensions: 11-7/8" x 3-3/8" x 13-5/8".

I painted it white to cover up the sender/recipient info as well as the printed logos and writing on the outside.  As you can see, I didn't bother with good coverage.  I just wanted to make sure the printing was mostly covered.  I placed the box with the bottom side facing up.  See the front edge where the two sides meet?  If it's facing you, that's the bottom side.


Using a steak knife, I cut through the adhesive and separated the cardboard sides.  I was careful in doing this so that I only cut the adhesive and not the cardboard itself.


Then I cut the left and right sides open.  Not so pretty after surgery...


I taped the sides securely back together using packing tape.  Now this is more like it!


Using the Peel 'n Stick Laminate (otherwise known as Contact Paper), I lined the inside of the box first.  Then the outside.  The best part of using this is there are several colors and patterns to choose from.  I had this in my basement so it's what I used.


Looks pretty, doesn't it?

My next dilemma was how to keep the box shut.  After pondering what I had in my supplies, I came up with squares of velcro.  Perfect!

Four squares were placed along the top edge of the box which acts at the lid, and four were placed on the lip/flap on the box itself.

The box is pretty large, so I created a divider out of two pieces of thin cardboard.  I wanted a removable divider so I made it freestanding.  I just put it in the box. Works great!

To organize the skeins of floss, I bulk purchased 3x4" ziploc jewelry bags and couple packages of 4x6 blank index cards.

I cut the index cards in half and labeled them with the brand of floss, the name, and number (if available).  Three skeins of hand-dyed floss fit into the bags.  Perfect for me since I don't have more than three skeins of any one color.

Once tagged and bagged, they're placed into the divided box.  I was able to fit all of my SSS floss in one box with room to spare.  I may make little tabbed dividers labeled with the alphabet to make it even easier to find floss by name.

If I want to see the colors, I simply start at the back of the box and slide my hand toward the front. Viola! Colors.

For the "finishing touch", I *finally* unpacked the Silhoutte Portrait I won last year.  After practicing on scrap contact paper, I made vinyl labels out of black laminate for my new floss box.


I think it really turned out well.  I'm in process of doing another box for my GAST and other specialty floss.  :)

44 comments:

Debbie said...

This looks awesome....I'll definitely be giving this idea more thought. Thanks for sharing.

*-* said...


I too have been sorting all the floss I've accumulated over the years. I've not progressed as far as you Meari, however I do love how you've recycled those boxes & they look so pretty.
Kay.

Zoe Garcia said...

Awesome! very neat and it all fits so nicely. Congratulations on a lovely result and thank you for sharing how you did it.

Helen West said...

What a great idea. Going to make me one. Thanks for sharing.

Robin said...

What a great idea! You have created a classy look box for your threads. Way to go!

Robin in Virginia

Deb said...

Outstanding!!! Love the index cards and being able to file by color and manufacturer.

Berly said...

Awesome!!! You are my hero!!

Blu said...

Wonderful! This made my overly organization heart so happy.

Loretta said...

nice box repurposing!

gosh, I miss Six Strand Sweets ~ I only have a handful of skeins left in my collection.

Vickie said...

You are so clever! Well done!

Faith... said...

Great job Meari! I love how the box is all nice and organized! And yahoo for using your Silhouette Portrait machine!! The label looks awesome!!

Anonymous said...

Wow! How much will it cost me to rent you for a week? I could use some serious organization! Very cool!

Judi
From sunny Phoenix AZ

summer said...

what a great idea :)

Donna Pheneger said...

Meari - this is an incredible idea! Good for you for re-purposing too!

Anonymous said...

Hi Meari,

What a fabulous looking box for those hand-dyed floss packets. I don't have much of a collection of those (yet) but I can see I'll be Pinning your page so I can refer back to it.

Sandie

Denise SA said...

Really great idea

Mrs Love to Stitch said...

great job on the organizing

Justine said...

Fantastic idea for recycling and it looks so pretty too!

Anonymous said...

Meari,

I love your new specialty floss box. You always create such beautiful and useful things and give great directions. I almost feel as if I could do it myself.

Tara Kimberley Torme

Anonymous said...

Meari -

Love the floss box. That is a great idea!!!

Marge

Anonymous said...

Very fancy, Meari! Mine are just put into those plastic craft storage boxes (the kind with dividers) in no particular order. :)

Karin in CA

Annie said...

It is beautiful! How clever you are:)

Anonymous said...

Nice job Meari! That's a lot of work to get it like that but I bet it will be worth it in the long run. :)So, do you like the Silhouette?

Marcy

Anonymous said...

Meari,

Your new system looks great and much easier than the one you have been using, and one I suspect a lot of us use.

Lynne

Anonymous said...

Very pretty, Meari! My specialty threads are just tossed in a small cigar box. I don't have very many. Or I didn't before I got that shipment from Chappy's. 😎

Betty W

Anonymous said...

Very cool, Meari. You are always so clever in the way you repurpose things.

Sandy in NM

Anonymous said...

this is such a great idea!! I am going to have to try it out myself.
Thanks for sharing.
Betty in AZ

Vickie said...

so cool!!! You are so crafty!

Anonymous said...

Awesome organization system, Meari! It's compact and fully functional.

Marina

Lillie said...

What a cleaver idea.
I have been storing my ODs on floss rings, not very practical either.

Anonymous said...

Ive never heard of Silhouette, but I just wanted to say, what a lovely project you created! Very, very nice!

Lynn

Carol said...

Wow, Meari, you always have the best ideas. I just love how this turned out--you would never know it began life as a humble USPS Priority Mail box :)

Mary - Lecoeurceltique said...

What a good idea. I'm just getting to the stage where I have enough speciality threads that this could work for me.

Anonymous said...

That's great! You could sell them. Sandy P.

Barbi said...

Well done!!!! It's lovely!

Anonymous said...

Nice work meari

Tinna

gominam said...

That's so cool, unique!

rosey175 said...

Those flat rate boxes are amazing aren't they? I have a pile of them 'cause they're the perfect size for so many things, plus they double as Great Cat Entertainment when they're too far gone for shipping. Great use for yours, your floss looks so tidy now!

Since this reminded me, did you ever do anything to that cute little (jewelry?) stand you had thrifted? I remember you toying with the idea of using it for floss storage.

stitcherw said...

Wow, your box turned out awesome. What a gorgeous and practical way to store your flosses. I can't believe how creative you are, I never would have thought of that. Really enjoyed your earlier post too, I've not seen the clicking highlighters, I need to go look for some. I use the old paper/highlighter method to stitch too, and on occasion have dropped a highlighter. Thankfully no permanent damage, but being able to click it shut like that would really prevent possible catastrophe. Loved your discussion on using the tablet. I have an iPad, but have never tried using it for my stitching patterns (although I have my HAED 's in PDF format back up onto it).

Kay said...

Meari, you are such a talented lady! Love how this turned out, thank you for sharing! Turned out beautifully!

Katie said...

Wow how brilliant! Great job!!! Yet another wonderful DIY post.

mbroider said...

The coolest thing i have read after a l o n g time!! Thanks for the post, reminds me LOL, (urges me is more apt) my stash needs some desperate organising!!

Thoeria said...

Wow Meari! I love this idea! I haven't found a storage method I like for my overdyes and silks and thus us such an easy clever and pretty idea! Thanks for sharing!

Akila said...

Wow lovely idea and very do-able and not time consuming too. Thanks for sharing ☺️