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View Full Version : DESPERATELY need some Organization


GinnyG
04-28-2009, 05:15 PM
Jan's post and pics abouther well organized yarn stash really got me thinking, I NEED HELP!!

I live in a very tiny house (about 1300 square feet), my yarn room doubles as my office, computer room and storage space. It's a 10 x10 room (with no room to breathe).

Who is the guy on Oprah that goes around helping Folks organize? I wish he'd pay a visit to my house. Between work and ambulance duty I just don't seem to find the time to get it "together".

I'm very ashamed to show you these pics but here goes... (there is also yarn in the guest room in bins. I would love to find a shelving unit that would contain my stash as well as keep it from getting dusty. Right now I depend on plastic bags.

Ingrid
04-28-2009, 06:09 PM
Last summer I invested in some metal shelving from Target. They come disassembled, but go together easily and are very sturdy and strong. Even if the cats decide to jump up on the top (they are about 6 feet tall) the shelves don't budge.

I also invested in zip-up sweater bags and stack them on the shelves. They keep the yarn clean and I can see what's in them. I love having all my yarn in one place where I can see it.

http://www.target.com/Seville-Classics-Chrome-Mobile-Storage/dp/B001A0VYZY/sr=1-4/qid=1240956629/ref=sr_1_4/175-9711742-1830317?ie=UTF8&frombrowse=0&index=target&rh=k%3Ametal%20shelving%20units&page=1

GinnyG
04-28-2009, 07:25 PM
Where did you get the sweater bags? Don't know if you can tell but alot of my yarn is stored in those plastic zip bags that blankets come in.

Ingrid
04-28-2009, 07:50 PM
I got them from Target, too. I did get some on line, but Target turned out to be cheaper. They are available in a couple of sizes, as well.

globaltraveler
04-29-2009, 07:09 AM
You can also get giant ziplock bags (http://www.amazon.com/Ziploc-Pack-Heavy-Duty-65644/dp/B000HM893G) at WalMart or Target. They're difficult to stack, though, and tend to always be spilling off the shelves.

If you want to be able to see all of your stash, clear plastic tubs are good and can be stacked quite high if you find ones with tops that are made to have the bins nested into them. (Try dollar stores first!) That means you won't need shelves so much, although eventually you'll want them, as unstacking bins starts getting to be a bit of a pain after a while. (And for some reason, the color you want is always near the bottom.)

In my studio, I have those Sterilite plastic tub storage "units" (http://www.sterilite.com/Category.html?Section=Storage&ProductCategory=151#) lining the walls (model 2830 are the ones I have) -- I only ever bought them on sale, or I couldn't have afforded to fill the room with them. You can usually stack one on top of the other, so long as what you put in them is fairly light. My advice is to leave the rollers off, as I found that this was where the things usually broke from the strain on the wheels.

I've seen entire walls of these Sterilite products in people's workspaces, with various products jigsawed onto the wall as needs called for.

For long term storage of fibers, though, you'll need to pick archive safe products -- storing delicate fibers in plastic long-term can be a recipe for disaster.

AH1OZ
04-29-2009, 08:21 AM
i wish i could help with organization

but my yarn stash is litterally under 30 skeins

and 8 of those are in use right now with a blanket

so i am jealous of needing to organize it (mine all fit in a tote box)

Mulderknitter
04-29-2009, 08:57 AM
i have those plastic sterlite bins as well, and like them because you can get different sizes and stack them. I left off the rollers too. I have a walk in closet lined with them.
You could measure your shelves and get the drawers that fit on them, then you just stack them in there.
I buy them on sale at Target also!:roflhard:

Sunshine's Mom
04-29-2009, 09:42 AM
You look pretty organized to me, Ginny. I have a closet that has yarn stuffed into knitting bags, paper bags, plastic bags. My current "in use" stash is in a gigantic Christmas present box (like for a coat or something else large). When I get some time I think I'll make that whole closet into a nice storage area.

Lisa R.
04-29-2009, 10:02 AM
I think the solution is to knit it all up!:teehee:

GinnyG
04-29-2009, 10:09 AM
While I like the plastic bin idea, to keep the dust out. I don't want to stack and unstack to get too the yarn. So I think it's going to be some kind of shelf and bin combination.

Right now the upper half is shelves, I may remove the counter top and continue the shelves right down, spacing them to allow for bins.

I would LOVE to have a honeycomb of bins and leave the yarn right out but I don't want the yarn to get dusty, so it really needs to be in a container.

ArtLady1981
04-29-2009, 10:09 AM
I use zippered STORAGE BAGS (http://www.woolworks.com/Shop/Storage-Bags?q=storage+bags&x=0&y=0&match=all&min=&max=) found at Woodland Woolworks website.

Here is a photo of them, form the website:
http://www.woolworks.com/tools_v2/resources/f82d08a07f74bd5694dd896a52ba66de/upload_images/300;300;103560.jpg.jpg
They are $1.75 (holds 12 balls) and $2.25 (holds 30 balls)

And here is how they 'stack up' in a storage closet at my house:
http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3612/3357003774_77cb861cf0.jpg?v=0

http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3586/3357003022_a32b77de40.jpg?v=0

They are the greatest, and I swear by them!

cftwo
04-29-2009, 10:17 AM
Artlady - I love your system! I use ziploc bags (to keep like yarns together) inside of large plastic bins (to keep all the yarns contained in a small area. I have shelves set up in a closet which is where I keep my plastic bins. I have 2 bins of yarn, and 2 smaller bins of sewing/fabric stuff. I use organizer drawers (you can find them at WalMart near the plastic bins) to take care of the little things. I have 1 for my "sewing basics", one for crochet hooks and yarn needles, one for beads I use in my cross-stitch, etc. The drawers are stackable and are great for little things like that. I use them in my linen closet to hold overflow from the medicine cabinet and things like nail polish.

Arielluria
04-29-2009, 10:34 AM
I see nothing to be ashamed about. It's fairly organized for what you have. I love the modular clear plastic drawers as you have at the bottom. I totally organized my sewing room with several of those (only deeper) from Walmart. The other stuff I put into canvas bins (also from Walmart), the ones that have a little window for a label on the outside. That way I could also know what I have and where without having to have it all visible. So I separated into such as: sock yarn, sweater amounts (keep all my sweaters' worth of yarn in one or two bins), notions, etc.

The canvas ones also come in two sizes as Wallyworld, so check them out. You gotta work with what you have and what you have isn't so bad, you just need to hide it in plain sight ;). Don't forget a labelmaker makes ALL the difference. I'm on my 2nd one ;).

ALSO: I just finished reading a booklet I bought at the checkout counter at the supermarket (organization for dummies type thing).....the author recommended separating things on shelves with sweater separators that look like the pic below. I thought it was a great idea. She recommended the wooden ones, which you might prefer to the wire one in the pic. That would help keep your like items together without falling all around and look and feel better organized. I got this pic from www.organize.com (http://www.organize.com) or try something like the Containerstore.com (http://www.containerstore.com/)

http://us.st12.yimg.com/us.st.yimg.com/I/organizeeverything1_2050_466668145
:muah:

Sunni
04-29-2009, 10:58 AM
I found some small blanket bags at cleanersupply.com under the packaging tab. Very inexpensive, they are $6.48 for 12 until the end of April, I ordered them on Wednesday and had them by Friday! they are awesome!! and they have mesh sides to keep critters out and let air in. They are perfect size for an entire chunky fair isle sweater project with pattern. In another I have almost 2 pounds of various fibers and they are clear so you can see what the heck is where :)

ETA: They stack great as well :)

Jan in CA
04-29-2009, 12:38 PM
I think that's an ideal place for those plastic drawers you can get at Target. Maybe not cheap, but they would last a long time and it would be EASY to get to your stash. No pulling out bins.

GinnyG
04-29-2009, 12:51 PM
Thanks for so many GREAT ideas. I did not realize you could buy the clear zipped bags for such a reasonable price. I think I'm going to go with the ceiling to fllor shelving plan and use the clear pouches to seperate the yarn.

My "dream wall" has the yarn seperated by weight with the wall going from lightest to bulkiest. I'll take out the counter and cabinets and go with open shelves.

Leaving for 10 days on Sat, THAT will be my project when I get home!!!

stisdale
04-29-2009, 11:03 PM
All I can say is HOLY CRAP THAT'S A LOT OF YARN! My goodness! :P Man, I thought I had a lot of yarn, I realize its small compared to some of the other knitters on this forum! Not that it's a good or bad thing, I just think it's so interesting! I have 1 1/2 drawers full of yarn and I thought "Geez I better start knitting some stuff ASAP to use up all this yarn." You guys take the cake!

Jan in CA
04-30-2009, 11:24 AM
All I can say is HOLY CRAP THAT'S A LOT OF YARN! My goodness! :P Man, I thought I had a lot of yarn, I realize its small compared to some of the other knitters on this forum! Not that it's a good or bad thing, I just think it's so interesting! I have 1 1/2 drawers full of yarn and I thought "Geez I better start knitting some stuff ASAP to use up all this yarn." You guys take the cake!

And actually..some people have a lot more than that. Not me mind you, but I've heard stories of sheds and entire bedrooms taken up. I've got a fair amount now so I'm good in the event of a catastrophe. :teehee:

Arielluria
04-30-2009, 11:26 AM
And actually..some people have a lot more than that. Not me mind you, but I've heard stories of sheds and entire bedrooms taken up. I've got a fair amount now so I'm good in the event of a catastrophe. :teehee:Made me think of this blog post, don't know the person or if he/she is on KH, but it's labelled The World's Biggest Stash? (http://mochimochiland.com/weblog/2007/07/the-worlds-biggest-stash/)

Jan in CA
04-30-2009, 11:39 AM
Made me think of this blog post, don't know the person or if he/she is on KH, but it's labelled The World's Biggest Stash? (http://mochimochiland.com/weblog/2007/07/the-worlds-biggest-stash/)

That's not a stash..that's a yarn store! :passedout:

GinnyG
04-30-2009, 11:48 AM
:passedout: wow, I'm impressed.

I love my yarn. Sometimes I just spend time looking and touching it. My monthly budget has a line item for "knitting" and if the end of the month comes and I haven't spent my budgeted amount I star shopping the sales. I pack my lunch everyday, don't spend money on entertainment and rarely eat out. So I feel like the money I spend on knitting is the same that most people spend on those extra "pleasures" they enjoy (smoking, drinking, eating out, movies, clubbing etc).

ArtLady1981
04-30-2009, 03:46 PM
Made me think of this blog post, don't know the person or if he/she is on KH, but it's labelled The World's Biggest Stash? (http://mochimochiland.com/weblog/2007/07/the-worlds-biggest-stash/)

I saw this about a year or so ago. I think it was her daughter that took the photos, and posted them for the world to see how 'nuts' her mother is.

Well, I say, live and let live! :cheering: The lady is happy, and I hope her daughter loves her to pieces!

The LYS's in her area must love to see her a'comin' in the door! :thumbsup:

Arielluria
04-30-2009, 04:03 PM
I think 'nuts' is a relative term.......:teehee: I have several dogs and that might be 'nuts' to a cat person. So the daughter shouldn't cast stones! :teehee:

ArtLady1981
04-30-2009, 06:14 PM
:teehee: I could almost fit myself into the 'nuts' category!

In yarn, in kids, in pets! I have too much/too many on all counts! :teehee:

I always wondered why the daughter would do such a thing, publish photos to the world about her mother's horde of yarn. Never made much sense to me.

Not unless the mom wanted to SELL IT, or unless the daughter wanted to draw comments from the world at large to prove to her mom that she has enough yarn already!

Mother-Daughter dynamics are a mystery. :eyes:

Arielluria
04-30-2009, 06:19 PM
Mother-Daughter dynamics are a mystery. :eyes:Now there's a topic I can comment on! ;) Might make a thread of it.
:whistle:

ArtLady1981
04-30-2009, 09:50 PM
Yeah, I have 3 daughters. 'Nuff said! :teehee:

I oughta write a book, entitled:
"I Have Three Daughters Who Have No Sisters."

Does that tell you something about Sister-Sister dynamics?
And of course, how does a mother remain unaffected? :think:

Does getting "hit by Friendly Fire" paint a word picture?
How about getting "caught in the crossfire"?

Arielluria
05-01-2009, 10:37 AM
I started the mother/daughter dynamics (http://www.knittinghelp.com/forum/showthread.php?p=1227100#post1227100) thread.
:muah:

GinnyG
06-15-2009, 08:53 AM
Well, I finally was able to get the plastic zip bags Artlady recommended. They are wonderful and hold an amazing amount of yarn. My organizational efforts have only just started; I still am pondering what kind of shelving system I want to use.

But my yarn is better contained. Here are some pics of my stash using the bags. MUCH more orderly than the first pics. There is actually ALOT more yarn than it would appear as I was able to integrate yarn from other places in the house into these bags. The yarn itself takes up much less room. I tried to put "like yarn" together so when I actually do get around to new shelving it will be easier to organize.

The biggest remaining problem is that, especially in the bottom section the yarn is 2-3 bags deep so it's still hunt and search to find anything. But at least I know it's safely stored.

I need another 10 or 15 bags and still need to figure out a way to protect my cones, maybe just clear plastic garbage bags...... But I have at least gotten started and feel much better about my mess.

One important thing that has come out of this. I have decided to go on a yarn diet for awhile....... I realized in the sorting that I have reached the "SABLE" level of stashing (Stash Acquisition Beyond Life Expectancy) and perhaps should use some before I buy more:whistle:

dairywife
06-15-2009, 12:01 PM
You have done a very nice job. You have inspired me to organize my stash. hmmmm, I should say thanks......right?

Vertigo1414
06-15-2009, 06:16 PM
i've been organizing lately too since the DBF finally convinced me to paint my room, i though i had a lot of yarn when i couldn't close my one plastic bin...i should show him this post.

azgirl314
06-19-2009, 05:44 PM
In my craft loft area, we have built-in cabinets (from Lowe's, installed by hubby) and the drawers are all deep enough to stand a skein upright (like a row of soldiers). Of course, the yarn has to share with the fabric. There isn't enough room for everyone, so there are countertop piles as well. I keep telling hubby that stacks of yarn are 'decoration' and a thing of beauty.