21 Tips for Organizing Your Yarn Stash (and Other Knitting Supplies)


21 Tips for Organizing Your Yarn Stash (and Other Knitting Supplies)

Our best tips for keeping your yarn organized for easy knitting!


Tips for Organizing Your Yarn Stash and Other Knitting Supplies

One thing that I'm confident knitters would agree on is this: knitters love to buy yarn - and lots of it. Whether your favorite yarn is on sale or you just get carried away at a consumer yarn show, it's hard to say no to buying beautiful yarn!

But that's not the hard part; buying yarn is easy. The challenge is figuring out how to neatly store your fiber without letting it take over your home. Luckily there are some tips and tricks for doing this creatively!

Since spring is a great time to start cleaning and organizing, we asked our amazing Facebook fans for all of their best tricks and tips for yarn stash storage at home. I hope you enjoy all of their insights and wonderful ideas.

Together, we can all learn how to organize the craft room and how to finally get a handle on our ever-growing yarn stashes.

Tips for Yarn Stash Storage:

Get a grip on your yarn stash and try out some of these awesome tips for yarn stash storage below.  Learn how to keep current projects organized and accessible, and how to make your yarn collection as neat and tidy as a yarn shop display.
Keep your yarn organized by storing it in big scrap booking boxes.

  1. Use the nylon mesh netting that onions come in to store yarn.
  2. Stash your yarn in clear labeled totes, separated by color.  Contrasting colors can go together, e.g., yellows and browns in one tote, black and reds in one, blues and pinks in another, etc).
  3. Use plastic bags to group together similar color yarn and store them in large, 35-gallon totes (like Rubbermaid).  Keep any leftover yarn or scraps together in another tote, to be used for a future projects or repairs.
  4. Keep current projects organized by storing them in separate mesh bags (or produce bags) inside a larger basket.
  5. Sort by yarn type (wool, sock, cotton, etc.) and then place them in clear vacuum-sealed bags.
  6. To stay organized without sacrificing style, try keeping yarn stored in a woven basket.  For smaller supplies and books, use a wooden keepsake box.
  7. Keep WIPs (works in progress) in reusable grocery totes for easy access.
  8. If any of your stash yarn was bought for a specific project, staple a hard copy of the pattern onto the yarn label. This way, you’ll remember why you bought the yarn.
  9. Clear plastic salad boxes are great for storing yarn - they stack well, are transparent, and can easily fit underneath the bed.
  10. Decorative hat boxes, hanging sweater organizers and canvas bags are also great for storing yarn.  For works in progress, use the clear plastic casing from a comforter to keep them in order and handy.

Tips for Organizing Needles and Other Knitting Supplies:

Ever wonder how to store those smaller supplies, like scissors and double pointed needles?  This collection of tips has tons of great ideas, including homemade needle organizers, labeling ideas and more.

  1. Keep double pointed needles together with baby hairbands or small rubber bands. Tuck a post-it note underneath the band that shows the different sizes.
  2. Keep straight needles banded together, organized by size.
  3. Organize double pointed needles (DPNs) using pint-size Mason jars. For taller needles, use quart-size Mason jars. Circular needles can be stored in individual sleeves of a single disc CD case, and any smaller items, like crochet hooks, large eye needles, small scissors, measuring tape and stitch markers, can be stored separately in a smaller basket.
  4. Try storing DPNs in labeled pencil boxes. When not in use, simply keep the boxes stored in a dresser drawer for easy access.
  5. Make your own needle holder using a paper towel roll covered in contact paper.
  6. Store knitting needles in labeled Zip Lock bags.
  7. Use a small three-drawer organizer to separate straight needles, circular needles, DPNs and crochet hooks.
  8. Protect and store knitting books in a plastic container with pull out drawers.
  9. Use a three-ring binder with labeled plastic sleeves (include needle size and length) to store circular needles. Straight needles can be rubber banded together in cardboard mailing tube.
  10. Store notions in a Clinique bag or other small zippered bag, and keep smaller items like sewing needles and point protectors in transparent pill bottles.

Free Knitting Patterns to Help You Get Organized:

In addition to the great tips shared above, this collection of free knitting patterns is also a wonderful way to keep things tidy.  You'll find patterns for needle holders, zippered pouches and more! 

17 Stashbuster Knitting Patterns

Up Next:

61 Ways to Store Your Knitting Needles

How do you organize your yarn?
Let us know in the comments below!

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When storing stash, or rediscovering yarn/half knitted items - as happened with me this weekend - weigh all the yarn together and write the weight ozs/grams ply of wool, colour and if it looks like it was being made for a particular member of the family. Wool does not go as far as acrylic yarn, or most yarn mixes, unless it is moth proof, ad one cedar ball to the bag of wool. If you really want to be super organised, keep a notebook of the information too so that when you find a pattern which takes - say 200g of wool, then you know you have that amount in blue, or you can combine two smaller amounts to make a larger piece.

I use empty Tic Tacs boxes for storing bodkins, press fasteners, safety pins, hooks/eyes/bars etc. Also useful for small quantities of beads.

I keep some of my yarn in a chest of drawers and the rest in boxes or plastic tubs, with like colors together. I stand the yarn upright so the colors show easier and also keep a list in a spiral notebook showing which container different yarns are in.

My unused skeins of yarn are kept in a rolling suitcase in the closet. Easy access when I want to start a new project. I use large tote bags to organize my half-used skeins by yarn weight. WIP's are in gallon sized ziploc bags with the pattern. And all the fist-sized balls of scraps are in another tote... ready for a quick project or letting grand-kids help themselves!

I store my acrylic yarn in Rubbermaid containers, separated by weight, cotton yarn in under-the-bed shoe keepers, and sock yarn in soft lunchboxes.

I keep my yarn in a cardboard boxes with lavender sprigs to keep the moths away.

I store my yarn, by type and/or color, in medium-sized plastic stacking drawers. The drawers are opaque in front, so that I can see generally what is inside each one. I have many of these drawers which stack up in rows along one wall.

I use food saver bags to keep my yarn in and then store them in Rubbermaid bins.

So far I have not found a good way to store my yarn as I like it close by so I can get to it easily and have it near me all the time. Trying to figure out a good way to store the yarn. Right now it's still in the shopping bags from the stores I purchased the yarns.

I sort yarn by color to know if I have something in a certain palette, regardless of weight because with my patterns being mostly non-clothing items weight is usually not an issue. I keep the yarn in cloth bins/drawers that can be stacked on a book shelf or in a cubby cube. I keep my knitting needles and related supplies in one Art Bin tote and my crochet hooks and supplies in another. Whether I am on the go or at home, I can grab either bag (usually with a WIP or UFO already in it) and be ready to go!

I keep my natural-fiber yarns in clear plastic "sweater box"-size lidded tubs, sorted by weight and superwash vs. handwash. My synthetic stash (mostly acrylics, and much larger) is in several clear plastic drawers (some stacking, some as rolling carts), sorted by weight and used vs. unused skeins.

I really like to see all of my yarn all of the time. So I keep it in various size pretty baskets that I group and scatter in my living room. Everybody seems to love seeing my colorful yarn. And of course they can always hope I'm about to make something for them from my stash.

I use a large plastic storage container for most of my yarn, and a smaller one under the table by my chair-that one has mostly cotton yarn for dishcloths-and I use a craft tote for small knitting projects.

I purchased some of those clear bags, which a vacuum cleaner sucks out the air. I put the project yarn into a bag, along with the pattern I want to make. I store these at the back of my clothes closet because they stack evenly. Too many times I've pulled out a bag of yarn, and wondered, "why did I buy this" or "what in the heck was I thinking when I got this yarn." Now, I have no questions or searching for a pattern to use up the yarn!

I am brand new to knitting, so I really don't have a way to sort my yarn and supplies.

With so many skeins of yarn, a collapsible shoe storage container for under my bed worked very well.

Love #9-keeping circular needles in plastic pocketed sleeves in a 3-ring binder. I already keep all my patterns in sleeves in a binder, don't know why I didn't think of this myself. Great idea!

I told my family they were all hoarders. We're moving and this stuff is not all coming with us. I'm a cosmetics formulator by trade, so they cannot say, "Boo," about me colors and chemicals. However, my eldest pointed the finger of shame and said one word, "Yarn!" He's right. I hoard yarn for, "one day." Well, the day is here and I'm crocheting and learning to knit as well as felt. It's time I de-stashed and started making room. There is more yarn I want and oh, a spinning wheel.

I use a shoe holder that hangs from the clothes rod. It has 10 vinyl, flexible "loops" to hold shoes on either side of the holder. I sewed down one end of each loop and put velcro on the other end, making a kind of pocket out of each loop. I then labeled the loops with needle sizes, using US sizes, British sizes, and MM, since I travel alot and buy needles all over. All size 5 needles are in one loop, Straight, circular, and DP. VERY convenient. A few of the larger sizes stick out of the velcro openings, but it works and I can live with it.

Great ideas! I use an old computer armoire for my yarn stash and needle storage. The pullout keyboard tray/shelf makes a great needle storage. I use Rubbermaid cutlery dividers for organizing the tray.

I use round hard cardboard wine totes (craft store purchase) to store my straight knitting needles, points down so that I can see the size for ease of choice. For my double -ended knitting needles, I group by mm. size, (ie. 3.00, 3.25. 3.5, 3.75 are one size), wrap an elastic around all of them with a notation of the size attached and store in another of these decorated cardboard wine totes. Different designs on the the totes makes it easy to find what I need quickly and they look great if I choose to leave them out in my aerie instead of the cupboard.

Some great ideas here both in the article and comments! Right now I keep all my dpns in a cloth pencil case that has the grommets for going into a binder. Once upon a time all the dpns smaller than some size went into the front pocket, and the larger ones went into the back, but now it's just one big mess with the needle sizer missing of course! I do keep things like small scissors, tapestry needle, and stitch markers in an altoid tin. It's taken so much abuse and is still going strong!

Some good tips - also see the link in today's newsletter to Pintrest. I have made the no-sew circular needle holder and it was quick and easy, I had the components, so it used up some old wooden spools. I have found it to be good, because it is visual you can see all the needles at a glance.

Hi Martyr3, Could you lease forward me the link that was on Pintrest back last yr. I just started seeing these and would love to see the needle case for circular needles. thanks Diana ladydi265@charter.net

I showed this to my husband--he made me 15 wooden spools on his lathe and drilled them for me. I ran the flower wire and painted the center part of each pool a pretty blue. I marked the sizes with a silver metallic marker and hung it in the storage area with my yarn totes. quick, easy and no tangles. super easy to find the needles i need

I'm lucky enough to have a walk in closet in my spare bedroom and that has become my crafts closet, chock full of...yarn! I've separated my yarns by weight: worsted, sport, baby, etc and keep much of it in clear plastic bins of varying sizes. I also use an old shoe organizer to keep needlepoint and sewing supplies within easy reach. Thanks for some great suggestions I'm going to add to my closet!

I took over our second bedroom/office and created my workspace. My husband bought me a 4 shelf wire rack and my yarn sits on the shelves. I separated my yarn my brand name on each shelf and keep like items together. On top of the shelves, I placed boxes sideways to add more yarn to it so the stash goes all the way to the ceiling. I have a step stool to get to the yarn on top. Also my knitting needles sit in a tall vase, while my crochet hooks sit in a smaller vase on another bookcase. My patterns/books are together next to the needles. My office is complete with a tv, dvd player and a comfy chair for me to be entertained while working. Any WIPs(work in progress) projects are in clear plastic bags with instructions so I know what I am working on.

Great ideas! I use storage boxes and have a master list of all my stash. I keep my needles in two plastic storage boxes. I love the other ideas I have seen here.

I love all the hints for storing yarn, needles, and projects! I have a huge stash of all of those things. I have several old bureaus in my craft room, and I store each color yarn in a different drawer. On the front of each drawer, I have a small label, with the color in the drawer.

I use those shoe storage containers that fit under the bed. they are zippered and have dividers that work out great for all kinds of yarns. I use one for all the little left overs of yarn.

I use decorative wine bottle holders, to store many of my staight needles. Sturdy cardboard, and can store quite a few in one bottle holder. samiebird@roadrunner.com

I loved all those tips for organizing yarn & needles. Right now I have mine in paper bags, cloth bags, etc. I keep my needles in a zip pocket in a cloth bag, but need to get something else, as I cannot see what is in there, etc. Will put some of the ideas in the Tips article to good use.

I keep my straight knitting needles in a nice vase on top of the bookcase that holds my knitting books. It's decorative and it keeps me inspired to start that new project!

I keep my yarn inventoried on 3x5 cards with all possible info on each plus a ball band and snippet. I can then organize them by type of yarn, spi, recommended needles, tote-box location in storage, # of available skeins - makes it so easy to choose a yarn from stash! Cuts down on purchases - a teeny bit! :-)

I have an old hutch that I use to store my yarn. I save the green box bottoms from shipments from Omaha Steaks. They are the perfect size to put two on a shelf and stack three high. They are also the perfect size for yarn that comes in skeins. They have holes in the sides so you can see what is inside with out having to pull the box out.

I sort yarn by colors and fiber, and store it in the large clear plastic bags that blankets or pillows come in, some even have zippers! I store my WIP in smaller bags, so I can pick up one to take in my tote bag, or to keep in a decorative basket by my chair.

My husband bought me a plastic fan-out section business envelope size folder at an office supply store to place my circular needles. I leave the needles in their original package and put them in their perspective file with the size of needle numbered on top of each file sleeve. It is neat and convenient especially if I need a certain size needle for a new project. I can easily check in my envelope folder if I have it or need to purchase a new size.

I would LOVE to have my yarn collection look like that. I have mine in clear bins right now and stored in several places. Great idea!

I have most of my yarn in large see thru totes. Projects are in wooden/cloth knitting bags for home use and cloth totes for taking with me for car rides or working on projects at classes I teach. Thanks for the additional ideas for storage.

I will be moving to another home soon and would love to have a closet like the one shown for my stash - yarn, quilting and art supplies. I keep my smaller WIP in the plastic zipped containers that sheets or pillowcases come in. It is handy to drop in my tote with a snack and bottled drink to go and my projects and yarn stay clean and dry. Sharon, Satsuma, FL

I use large "Space Saver" bags by yarn color(s). For smaller amounts just use any zip lock bag (size determined by amount of yarn). These allows air removal and, therefore, less space used. Bags can go under the bed as well as other "unused" spaces.

Hi Oinkie! Thanks for your awesome comment. You were chosen as the winner of our little organizational challenge! Please contact us with your address (link below) so we can send you your free tote. :) http://www.allfreeknitting.com/index.php/hct/contact_us_page

I keep my yarn sorted by projects I bought it for in small clear plastic bins and other yarn with no project in mind in larger clear plastic bins sorted by yarn weight so I can see what I have on hand. Loved some of the other ideas.

Great ideas. I store my circular needles in zip lock baggies ( 3sizes per bag) and use marker to write size 1-3, 4-7 etc. on them. Also keep my DPN's in the same bags so I will have same size if needed for say a hat worked in the round as you need DPN's for the last few rounds or the first few rounds. Maybe use multiple shirt hanger for our bags of yarn in the closet, 5 or 6 bags per hanger.

I wish all my yarn was organized this way! Much of mine is in those clear plastic drawer units available at Walmart, etc. However, sadly, I still have a big amount that needs help. I am eager to try some of the ideas presented here. Thanks for organizing the ideas the ideas and providing them for us!


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