Studio Organizing, Week 11

Posted on March 12, 2015 by prairiemoonquilts in Organizing, Studio Organizing Challenge

Well, I don’t know about you, but I needed last week’s re-do. I kept working on paper, and I have really made some progress.

I also spent a lot of time just putting things away. I’ve unearthed a lot of items that need a home during all this organizing, so I worked on vanquishing some of the random piles that are laying all over the place. While they’re not all gone, some of them are a lot smaller — maybe I can really get completely organized after all?!

Here’s this week’s task:

Organize your thread

If there’s one thing I can say I do keep organized, it’s my thread. I have a system. I have places for all the various kinds. But still . . . when I get busy working on a project, I pull it out, and then it never seems to get put back, and this is what I end up with:


My longarm thread stays organized. It has to. I keep most of it on this pegboard on my wall. What doesn’t fit there, goes in a drawer for now, but when I get my longarm room remodel all finished, I’ll add another pegboard so that it can all be on the wall.


My embroidery floss goes into these 4 cartons:


My applique thread goes in these two:


And the thread I use at the sewing machine goes on this rack right beside the machine:


The larger cones reside in one of the drawers in the sewing machine cabinet, right at hand.

I must say, since getting my thread all organized, I’ve managed to use up a lot of little partial spools, odds and ends, and go from three thread racks on the wall, down to only one, which frees up lots of wall space for other things.

I find I mainly use only 3 colors for piecing, anyway: white, tan, and gray. What about you? Do you find that you only use one main color for most of your machine piecing?

My job for this week is to finish gathering up all the stray spools, skeins, and bobbins, and get them all back to where they belong. The bowl I showed you is not all of it. I have a pile just as messy by my sewing chair downstairs, and I’m sure I can find some wayward spools in some of my sewing boxes.

How about you?

Does your thread get out of control?

Do you have spools stashed in various places all over your house?

Do you have some odds and ends you could gather up and use up to make room for other things?

I’d love to hear about it, and I’d also like to hear about how you keep your thread organized.


0 responses to “Studio Organizing, Week 11”

  1. Kathy says:

    I am fairly organized with my thread, however once in a while I find some/a lot that have had a party while I was not looking. That’s when I get my scissors and clip them apart. Especially my bobbins. Even though I keep them in a case they mingle together. My sewing room is SMALL at best, and I have a lot in there. So I have to maintain some semblance of order for my sanity. but you are so right. Things do get out of control sometimes. And try as we might, it will always be that way as long as we sew. And thank the Lord for quilter’s. They cover the world in warmth and love.

  2. Pam in KC says:

    My thread is organized. Since I started quilting, I’ve used up odds and ends of spools to the point when I stitch my bindings down by machine I frequently have to go buy thread! A couple of weeks ago I sorted through my bobbins. I primarily piece w/gray thread and I only had 2 bobbins of gray- the others were full of other colors. So I pulled the bobbins that matched the color of my brights on my current quilt and pieced those pieces with those bobbins, emptying a few.

  3. Rose Marie says:

    I need to put my floss in a nice storage case. I just have it all in a basket wallowing around. I am trying to use up random colors of thread also. Got some free ones just last month and picked out some oddly pinky beiges and greenish grays. I use mostly three shades of beige and ecru for piecing. I did find recently a big spool of purple in my stash- why and where did I get that? I am using it in places where a dark brown or charcoal or navy would have worked. From looking at your stash, I am guessing that thread is something to hoard as well as fabric!!

  4. Deanna says:

    You may remember that I organized thread as part of my 2014 Final Countdown:

    At that time I set aside many spools of thread that only had a little on them to use while piecing scrap projects. So far, even though I am only sewing a little, I have emptied 12 spools and have several more waiting. How long had that thread just sat there waiting to be used?

    You can’t really tell a difference in the thread drawer visually, but it is shutting easier. I hope to use 20-30 partial spools up by the end of they year and be in a much better situation. After all, this isn’t a thread museum. If I am not going to use it, why do I have it?

  5. Judy Smith says:

    Mine really needs organized too. I have it in about five different places. Yours is looking very organized. I commend you for sticking with it.

  6. Sue H says:

    My thread is fairly organized. My longarm thread is always in its place – I have a standing spool peg like your wall board. I am very good at putting it away when I finish a quilt. My embroidery floss is in boxes like yours so they stay in their proper place. My sewing thread is not as neat they tend to wander some because I alway hand sewing while watching TV. But I must say I could use more thread because I probably only have 10 spools of which 3 are white. I just piece my quilts with any color. I only match thread when I make clothes.

    • Sue H says:

      I forgot my update from last week. I did straighten out my shelf but I also straightened a couple of fabric bins. I put all of my large peices together and all of the small scrappy peices together. I actually ended up with one bin half empty.

  7. Bridget says:

    Thankfully all my thread fits into a couple of old matchbox car boxes. I only use it for small repairs to clothes etc. Otherwise I piece with only beige or grey thread. If I do decide to machine my own quilt I buy the thread…I can’t believe there is a problem I have avoided!!!

  8. Barb B says:

    Wow, compared to you, I have very little thread. I use beige, gray, and white. I have a several types of thread for bobbin work and embellishments in various colors. I’m even pretty limited in my long arm threads.

    Thread is something I probably should learn more about. Recently, my thread kept breaking on my new Bernina 750 and the dealer said it was the thread–I used Aurifil and it was too thin. If I went slowly, it was fine, but anything considered “normal” speed on that machine was too fast and it broke. I changed the thread and it will fly! No breakage!! I just need to remember to go more slowly with the Aurifil.

    I do have a few spools and bobbins that need to find their way home… Good challenge, Shelly.

  9. Meloney says:

    I have lots of thread, so this might be a real challenge.
    I posted a blog post about it here
    Every time I organize my thread, I see a better way of handling it. So, I’m hopeful that is what will happen here.
    Good challenge.

  10. Carol Smith says:

    I am in need of thread organization too. I have lots of organizing to do my ceiling came down in my dining room so I haven’t got to organize as much as I wanted to

  11. Cindy says:

    Last week I worked on papers again. Still have a lot to go through and I haven’t even started with trying to put all the patterns on a flash drive yet.

    I just organized my embroidery floss by putting it in the floss away bags with the corresponding number written on the bag. A 3 x 5 index card is included in each bag for support. They are then organized in three antique wooden drawers (library card type)by color and then numerically within that color

    Regular thread is not so organized. Have lots of misc cones of thread that was gifted to me. Currently piecing scrappy quilt with misc thread to use it up.

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