A reader asked me to show how I store my embroidery floss. I’m sure there are better, prettier ways to store everything but I worked with what I had on hand and, for now, it seems to be a decent system. The floss is all in the sewing room, out of sight and reach of Boots.
The overdyes come on cards in 36″ lengths. I leave them as they are and put them on rings, each dyer on separate rings and the floss is in alphabetical order and hang those rings, in alphabetical order by dyer, in a sewing room closet. I use the hooks to hang the floss that’s on book rings. There may be 10 rings of Weeks Dyeworks. Looks like there are 6 rings of Classic Colorworks. I think there are 6 rings of Gentle Arts. If there’s too much floss on the rings, it’s hard to flip the skeins around so I can get the one I need off the ring. Some are a bit crowded and I’ve ordered more rings which should be here tomorrow.
You can see the little cedar planks that Chad made for me. I’m hoping they keep bugs away.
There are rings for Weeks, Classic Colorworks, Gentle Arts, Colour & Cotton and Victorian Motto. Through several different packets of Victorian Motto, I ended up getting a lot of reds so I keep all the Victorian Motto reds/dark pinks together on one ring. Great for redwork!
As I mentioned previously, all of my DMC was on cardboard bobbins but as I use it, I put it on cardboard tags.
I write the number for the DMC floss on the back of the tag.
As I need floss for a project, I find the floss, put it on a separate ring and keep it with the project.
This is the floss ring for the pumpkin I’m making for Addie.
Once I finish this project, I have a bin in the closet where I put the floss that needs to be added to the rings and hung on the hooks, as well as the floss I’ve been working with and it all eventually gets added back to the appropriate rings in aphabetical order, or in the case of DMC, in numerical order. Anything I’ve used, I put a little mark on the corner of the tag so I know it isn’t a full skein. I could count strands of 6, or just eyeball it to see about how much floss is left on the tag. If I look at a chart that only shows it needs one skein and I see a lot of that floss is to be used and I have a partial skein, I’ll usually order another skein before starting. Often, with hand dyed floss, the dye lots do not match so before I begin stitching, I’ll see if there’s a breaking point where I could start a second floss if it isn’t a perfect match. Example: If I end up with two skeins of Ye Old Gold floss that are very different, I’ll look for how I can divide up the chart. If there’s a pretty detailed border using a lot of Ye Old Gold floss and there are a few flowers in the middle of the chart, I’ll use the full skein for the border and the partial skein for the flowers.
In that same closet I have bins that hold the linen, lugana or whatever fabric I may have.
The floss you see there is (left) floss from XJu that I ordered from Etsy. On the right is a floss ring I’ve started for a project and am waiting for a couple of colors to arrive. When I’m kitting up floss for a project, I’ll put the ones I have on a ring, order the ones I need or find substitutes, make a note on the ring which project it’s for and which flosses I’m waiting on so when new floss arrives, I look at those tags first to see if any of it goes onto any of those rings, then I’ll scratch through that floss so I know I have it. Once all the “needed flosses” are scratched through, I can put it all in a project bag and be ready to go.
The boxes behind that floss is where the linen is stored. I have large boxes for 36 count and 40 count, then smaller boxes for 32 count and 28 count. I also have one box that has lugana in it. Because, at this time, I don’t have a lot of lugana, all sizes are in there together.
There are four tubs of charts that are kitted with fabric and floss. The bags standing up are some bigger bags I had purchased before buying the tubs and they don’t fit well in the tubs. You’ll see they all have tags hanging on them that tell me which charts are in there.
There’s a tub in the previous picture that shows the charts that aren’t kitted yet. Except for 4 or 5 projects I’m working on, all the charts are in these tubs.
It seems like a lot and it is a lot but it all fits in one closet. I wish I could say the same for my yarn and quilting supplies. The only thing not in the closet are the stands, frames and lamps but I consider those more like tools of the trade than supplies.