How To Store Fabric: File It!

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Here's a great idea from a reader, Tracy, showing how to store fabric. She files it.


This method is really simple to implement. All you need are some empty file cabinet drawers and some hanging files, and of course your fabric stash.

Just drape the pieces of fabric across the file folders and voila, you've organized your fabric pile.

I like this method because one, it's simple. And two, when you place the fabric on the file folders all of a sudden you're really able to see what pieces you've got, and can retrieve the piece you want without sorting through a big stack.

This is what Tracy had to say about this method:

"I thought I'd send this picture as it's a great idea to try and store fabric. It won't fade as no direct sunlight and is all protected from little creatures and easy to find the fabric you are after!!"

Brilliant! In fact, this idea was so popular my friend Emily saw it on my Facebook page and immediately implemented it for herself. You can see her pictures below as well, as well as another readers file folders of fabric that was inspired by the same Facebook post!

How to organize and store fabric by filing it in a file drawer {on Home Storage Solutions 101} #StorageSolutions #HomeOrganization #FabricStorageuse this Pin it button to save to Pinterest

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Sewing Fabric Storage Solution: I Love Filing It!

Here's my friend Emily's pictures as well. This took her very little time, at least as compared to some organizing projects.

She explained, "Stole this idea from my friend Taylor! Now all my fabric for sewing is neat and organized!!"

It looks great Em!

Idea for organizing and storing fabric for craft and sewing projects: File it in file drawers! {featured on Home Storage Solutions 101}

Further, the photo collage above is from another reader, Donna. She said, "I organized my material pieces once, then I saw someone used their file cabinet to store them. I had a file cabinet that I first had to sort through. I went through it this morning. I only got stuck once. . . . Now I have all my fabric organized so that I can go in the drawers and pick out material for piecing a quilt rather quickly. What a great day. Think I'll go sew a quilt."

Great job Donna! You can get ideas for how to declutter file drawers here, if you need to clear one or two drawers out before you can use them for this storage idea.

So has anyone else utilized this method for organizing their fabric? If so, I'd love to see your results.

You can submit your photos here for this or any craft organization project, and I'll add the best ones to the site.

More Home Storage Solutions

{A-Z} Storage Solutions & Ideas
I hope you enjoyed this idea for how to organize and store fabric pieves.

There are even more ideas for storage and organizing on the site in the {A-Z} Storage Solutions & Ideas round up page. Go check it out if you'd like to see even more ideas.

In addition, if these ideas have inspired you to organize even more things in your craft room make sure to read the Craft Organization Challenge, which is part of the 52 Week Organized Home Challenge I run on the site!


How to organize and store fabric by filing it in a file drawer {on Home Storage Solutions 101} #StorageSolutions #Fabric #HomeOrganization #FabricStorageuse this Pin it button to save to Pinterest

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Go From How To Store Fabric To Home Page

Comments for Sewing Fabric Storage Solution: I Love Filing It!

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Great idea!
by: Anonymous

Also, as you are hanging it over folders, you can put a note in the folder as to what you planned it for, or even a pattern, notions etc. Organized sewing stuff .. what would I do?

Wonderful Idea
by: Renee

My mother and I have LOTS of fabric. I grew up with piles of fabric and her searching for just the right one for sewing. We both have relatively unused file cabinets, problem solved. Thanks.

use a shirt-folding board
by: Anonymous

To keep my fabrics orderly, I use a shirt-folding board. It works great for me. Try it, it will work for you. In addition, you can make your own with cardboard.

Love this
by: Marialce

I'm going to try this I have an empty cabinet from purging.

won't work for serious sewists and crafters
by: Anonymous

For most quilters this would not work! It looks like there might be room to organize the fabric for one or two projects, but most of us have two or three (at least) big storage totes full of just projects in progress! One friend had a huge tote of JUST threads for her crazy quilting!

I have a four drawer file cabinet of just clothing patterns. Since I am working on packing things for storage in order to list my house, I have seven 12 X 12 X 12 boxes from Walmart with quilting books, jewelry making books, polymer clay books, beading books, painting books and a couple with other mixed crafts like book binding and mixed media/ paper crafting art.

Serious sewists and crafters need MUCH larger storage areas for all kinds of materials and tools.

Although the filing is OK for the person who may make a throw pillow now and then for home dec, or a Halloween costume each year, just not enough for those of us who spend most of their day (or free time) sewing and crafting.

response re won't work for serious sewists and crafters
by: Taylor

As always, there is no one size fits all ideas out there. The beauty of organization is there are lots of potential solutions, you just have to find the one that works for you. That's cool if this won't fit your needs. I hope to add more to the site that can give even more fabric storage ideas in the future, which can work for larger fabric stashes. :)

Another solution to storing fabric
by: Vanessa

I had an old spare hutch with glass doors. I folded/stacked the fabrics by color (like a rainbow) on those shelves. Then I put the books and notions in the drawers below. Organized and actually kind of pretty.

works but not enough for serious quilters
by: momschoolma

I use a modified and upgraded version of this - something I learned from a book - sewing spaces.

All my fabrics are color coded - mostly by background color or by predominant color according to the primary and secondary colors of the color wheel - red, orange, yellow, green, blue, purple, then brown, gray, black, and white (here with this last by pure white and white with other colors. Then ALL of my fabrics were re-folded and placed on my 6 foot high by 6 foot wide shelves - 3 of them though the last is different. The yardage fabrics I refolded with the use of a long plastic 6" x 36" ruler - refolding my fabric in half so that the selvages meet - and winding it carefully around the ruler, then carefully slipping it halfway off the ruler, folding it in half before slipping it the rest of the way off. This then is placed on my shelving and can be stacked into a neat pile.

My fat quarters are also sorted by predominant color, but placed inside clear plastic bins (shoebox size) and as such are put then on the shelves next to my piles of color coded and refolded yardage.

My daughter and I do a lot of scrap piecing - and so I have bins full of scraps which I am SLOWLY (VERY slowly) cutting into strips of different useable sizes (3.5 inch, 3 inch, 2.5 inch, 2 inch, 1.5 inch and strings - which are anything long and less than 1.5 inch and which last need not be straight) with each size having its own bin and drawer in those 3 drawer cabinets that Walmart has - and each size labeled accordingly on the outside of the drawer.

Those scraps that are smaller than 12" are cut into squares (3.5 inch, etc. - same size as the widths above) and placed in clear shoebox bins - according to size of the squares and are stored on the third set of shelves (taking up most of one of the shelves - unsorted scraps, being still left in the bins until I eventually get around to them on quilt cleanup day).

(The above system is from Bonnie Hunter's Scrap Saver system - which I LOVE!)

Projects - both current and unfinished - are also stored in clear shoeboxes and labeled with the project and project book or project directions (which last are in report folders and labeled and on my sewing room bookshelves. These are located on the bottom 2 of my shelves and are being worked on (I'm behind from when I used to NOT be organized and when I also was in too many sewing classes) The top 2 shelves contain bins with completed quilt tops - from before I learned how to do my own quilting.

Each of my projects appears on 2 lists - one on my blog and the other on paper which is on the wall next to my shelving - stating which is at what stage, etc.

Obviously I love to sidetrack and start new projects - HOWEVER for the last 2 years - I have a new policy which works - BEFORE starting anything new - I MUST complete piecing for one flimsy (unquilted top) and quilt and bind one top into a quilt - and yes, I have lists - flimsies to be quilted, and those to be finished piecing. This allows me to both finish as well as to venture into something new - and means I am getting done - slowly but surely with scraps to be sized and distributed according along with some of those from the bins upon completion. All of this along with daily quilting sessions with my daughter (who lives in Canada with her dh) motivates me to working on my projects.

Sewing fabrics
by: Anonymous

For the ladies that submitted additional ideas, can they please submit pictures? That would be helpful. Thanks

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