How Do You Organize Your Yarn?

By Rachel Choi – 39 Comments

Some people use shelves, plastics tubs, clothing or shoe organizers, or even nothing at all! What do you use?

yarn stash yarn stash 2 yarn stash

For me, I use a small bookcase. Nothing big or super impressive like the above pictures. I’ve come to accumulate more yarn over the past year, especially at the time when Michaels was cleaning out their inventory and selling skeins for 99 cents! I remember it wasn’t long ago when my entire stash could fit in a shopping bag.

I try to order my yarn by brand or the size of the skein since my shelves are different sizes. I don’t worry too much about organizing by color since I probably only have one or two of a color anyway. Plus, having it all mixed together gives ideas and color combos for what to make next!

What’s your method for organizing your yarn?

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  1. Bananas says:

    I have my yarn in canvas baskets that are in wire racks, each labled with brand and size

  2. Erin says:

    I don’t really organize my yarn..I buy yarn according to my next project. Whenever I have leftovers I keep them in a bag to use later or to get ideas for other things. I don’t have the money to buy tons of yarn, so I just kinda have to get it as I go.

  3. Molly says:

    I have all my yarn organized in two hanging shoe organizers (separated by colors because I’m that haha). Then I have a strand of each yarn attached to an index card that says the brand and other info so I can easily tell what I have.

  4. Kat says:

    I have some in a clear container, some in a shopping bag, some in a sturdy tote. I can see I need to store ALL of it in clear containers. Hopefully, that will get accomplished in 2010. 🙂

  5. Caitlin says:

    I keep all of mine in a cardboard packing box. It’s not organised in there but at least it is all in one spot. The yarn that I am using at the time stays in a beach bag I have that has now become my crochet bag.

  6. Denisse says:

    I don´t really orginize my yarns. In fact because of I don´t have too much money (13 years old) I don´t really buy too many yarns so I just keep them everywhere.

  7. Shannon says:

    I just keep what I have in a big tote bag. I also keep all my hooks in a make up bag so they do not get lost at the bottom. Shannon

  8. em says:

    I have a big blue plastic tub and shoeboxes that I have on a little bookshelf in my closet. It’s not the most organized, but it works pretty well.

  9. Naomi says:

    I put up a shelf and have it all thrown up there. I really should organize it!

  10. Anna says:

    I used to keep them in a cube bookshelf, but I needed the space for… well… books. I still have a couple of cubes for yarn, but the rest is in big re-useable shopping bags, a couple of boxes, and my Easter basket. Which is a problem when Easter rolls around (we do a big, traditional Polish Easter basket).

    I like the hanging closet organizer in the photos. I’ve been looking at those myself, but having them hang in my closets would be very inconvenient.

  11. Kelly B says:

    I recently organized my stash. I use a bookcase as well and it’s nice to be able to see all of it so I don’t go out and buy more. Red or burgundy seems to be the colour I have the most of.

  12. I have recently moved and now have a knitting room. (!!! – I know…..:0) )
    I’m organizing it but not as quickly as I want.
    Spinning, knitting, crocheting, dyeing, and soon, weaving are all passions of mine.
    I have almost everything stored in tubs of various shapes and sizes.
    I’m moving all the fabric to the “front” room so that I have a place to teach my knitting and crocheting classes.
    At this point, I’m also weeding out what I’ll never use and what I’ll make up and donate.
    Happy crocheting etc.

  13. Lorelei says:

    I am a big fan of the giant Ziploc bags. One bag is big enough for an entire afghan’s worth of yarn (15 skeins or so). They’re also great for stashing random leftovers. I have far too many of these bags in my “craft closet.” I also have a basket of yarn in the living room where I keep stuff I plan on using soon. As for projects – I have a large “work in progress” bag as well as a smaller one. These are great for keeping just what I’m working on, plus hooks, stitch markers, scissors, and whatever I need to work on a project.

  14. Sara says:

    I pretty much buy as I go, so I only have left over partial skeins that I have to worry about organizing. These I just put on my ‘craft shelf’ in my closet – where I store all my crafty stuff!

    I’m sure as I go along I’ll aquire more and need a better method, but for now this works for me!

  15. Gaz says:

    Right now I’m still living at home and have a pretty small cluttered room. For now, I have one of those plastic chest of drawers type of organizers and whatever doesn’t fit in there is kinda just piled in the corner behind it either in bags or just loose. Whatever skeins, hooks and patterns I’m using for current projects as well as everyday tools like scissors, sewing needles and stitch markers in my tote bag that I use to carry around my projects. I usually don’t buy yarn unless I need it for a specific project, but I accrued a bit more than what I really need when I “took over” a lot of my mom’s yarn that she doesn’t use anymore and my friend gave me a ton when she moved. I also make jewelry but I got this carrying case w/5 divided bead boxes for half off at Michael’s last year and that and a couple shoeboxes of beading wire and hemp are in another corner.
    Once I get my own place with my fiancee I’m hoping I can have a dedicated craft room or at least a craft closet and I can get some tubs or a closet organizer for everything. Until then, I make do with my cramped quarters. Can’t complain, it’s rent-free…

  16. Beth Ham says:

    Organized?! Me?! LOL! Well if I kept it that way… I put my personal stash in stacking baskets . It’s sorted into types. I also have stacking drawers for my baby yarn. Below the shelf where I have stacking baskets, there are shoe storage boxes with cotton and mohair. Then below that is a large open shelf with my large cones of yarn. But I also have giant pretzel jars full of my novelty yarns and scraps.these pictures are old, but you can get an idea.

  17. coline says:

    In my old house I have yarn in an antique trunk at the foot of my bed. In a bedroom that’s now a craft room, I have yarn in a gun chest ( no guns), in plastic see-through bins, and in large thrift store baskets.

  18. Nancy says:

    I use those big zippered bags that sheets and comforters come in to store yarn. Then I stash it under the bed. I am loving Coline’s idea above about a trunk. I think I have one in storage. Of course that would give me more room to stash. So under the bed and in a trunk….LOL!!!!!!

  19. Juli says:

    I desperately need to organize mine. I started to, but the task is rather daunting. I recently lost some of my yarn to mold 🙁 so I need to get moving. Right now it’s stored in those cloth clothes hampers (I have 3 of them) and about 4 plastic tubs. I’m trying to organize them by weight/type and hopefully it will be easier to find what I need to work with since I have so many projects I’d love to do.

  20. gatyamgal says:

    I currently have yarn in plastic totes, reusable grocery tote bags, regular plastic grocery bags, large zip lock bags, large zippered blanket bags, plastic clothes baskets, and a mesh clothes basket. For leftover yarn, I am now trying to firm up one of those seen on TV under bed shoe storage bags. They are very flimsy. I put a board from a boardgame in the bottom but the sections still flop. I might take the time and sew the sections down. I haven’t had looked that close. I am also considering using space saver suction bags to store yarns that I am not planning on using in the near future.

  21. Denise says:

    I’m very new to crocheting, so for now I keep my yarn in two re-usable grocery-type bags. I grab them from my laundry room and they have all of my supplies in them. However I’m getting more and more excited with each project I do and therefore want to buy more and more yarn so I need to consider this very topic! Thanks for posting this because I need to find a new way to organize my “growing” hobby!

  22. Danielle says:

    I have this paper shelf that I got from my sister. I took out couple of the shelves, and started the task! ORGANIZING………… now I can see what I have. I seperate the different textures so when I do a project I can go right where I need to go. I also have a large basket I got from the market, I just take with me to the living room or to knitting group on tuesdays. I have an old popcorn tin that I have all the extra balls in. I also have one of those OLD fashon, I guess it would be a bag. you set down and it sits OPEN and you can pick it up and it closes. ( do you know what it’s called) I’d like to know. maybe it’s just called a knitting bag?? The great thing about organized area’s is when I do a project for someone I can show them what I have and they can pick there color’s out. I have extra’s, from garage saling!! and estate sales.

  23. cindy says:

    i use plastic top with lock tops on them if not my cats decorate the house with all my projects

  24. Amber says:

    I keep mine in a plastic tub under my bed and these black little shelves that look like milk crates, but I never have enough room!!! I have a really small room and my boyfriend and I are living with his parents until we find a place, so we have limited space. To those of you that said you don’t have much yarn, I have found that yard sales/garage sales, goodwill, thrift stores, salvation army, etc. sometimes have a few random skeins of yarn that you can get for like 50 cents a skein! It’s really cool and you can use them for appliques, or random stripes in a project, or baby stuff, etc. Plus is really cheap!! Also craigslist is a good place too. I was once in Michael’s when this woman came up to me while I was looking at yarn, and she asked me if I wanted some. I was like “Yeah sure! I do a lot with it!”. She was a church goer, and a wealthy woman that had knitted for a long time, but stopped and just had like two huge trashbags full of used and unused skeins of yarn that she just gave to me!! It was awesome!

  25. Marianne says:

    I just moved a few months ago, in the old house I kept everything in tote boxes, not see through. Now that I moved I have a craft room (very cool) but it’s not organized. So it’s still in tote boxes and cardboard boxes cuz a neighbor gave me a bunch a yarn designed for a knitting machine and it had to be packed. I have a lot of yarn but also buy as I go, buying yarn is very adicting. I also have lots of small balls of yarn, ziplock bags work the best for me. I recently found a way to use them, I make saltines (granny’s daughters) and yo-yo’s for an online charity group I belong to. We make a bunch and then mail them to one member who assembles them into blankets to give away to anyone in need.

  26. Samira says:

    I use laundry baskets, large plastic clear shoe bins, and gallon sized ziplocs for the little bits. Some baskets for the extra soft stuff. I also have a few filing boxes labeled just b/c I have so much but no wall space. One of these days I’d like to get a diamond wine rack to keep some of the full skeins in for easy viewing.

  27. Chris says:

    Right now (since I just started learning to crochet – and probably since I’m a guy) I keep my yarn (and my work) in a shoe box next to the bed. I’m only on my first project …. but I’ve got plans to do alot more! So I guess I better start thinking about how to store my yarn.

  28. Amanda says:

    I have one of those 6 shelf canvas sweater hangers and its full of yarn and then I have 3 plastic tubs with lids and two of those are filled and the other is almost. My organization really is just fuzzy yarns go in one tub and one tub is just for yarn that I’ve used for a project and the other is for whatever else. The hanger thing has yarn with colors alike for the most part because its yarn that I have a plan for like afghans. Thats about as far as organization goes.

  29. Megan says:

    I have all the little yarn I have in a little straw basket. It’s actually makes for a good picture if you think about it ^^

  30. Rachel says:

    I used to have a nice organized stash but when i re-did my room i packed it all up in boxes and now its all in my closet (its dark in there) and every time i get yarn i have to pull EVERYTHING out and it is such a pain in the butt!! I like having it out of sight (i have a small room) in the closet and i want to re-organize it, so if anyone has any good ideas for re-organizing…let me know 😀

  31. I’ve been crocheting since 1973 & still love it. I try to keep my yarn organized in plastic like milk crates, stacked on top of each other, in my bedroom. bit still some in the store bags in closet. I use left over yarn like my mon, and make afghans or nap robes with them. Everyone always wnats one of those for the home or car. My son drives semi over the road and he keeps 2 in his truck. He says their the best blankets in the winter. I make all kinds of things from clowns to afghans, to flowers.

  32. Lorene says:

    I would like to know what a Polish Easter basket is. Someone by the name of Anna talked about it in her email. If it is possible would Anna share the pattern. Can she send me an email please.

    Blessings to all

  33. Anna says:

    Hi, Lorene. I’m the one that mentioned a Polish Easter basket. I’m not sure what you’re asking for, though, as I didn’t mention a pattern. The basket we used for Easter was used for yarn in between – in fact, this year I just bought a new Easter basket, rather then try to find someplace to put the yarn in the old one. There’s no pattern involved. Our baskets are just really full of things like bread, sausage, ham, cheese, butter, horseradish and LOTS of eggs, plus a few token chocolates.

  34. Lorene says:


    Thank you for your response. I thought you made the baskets. I use to make Easter baskets the old fashion way. I cannot make them anymore because I don’t have the strenght in my hands. I guess I will have to maybe make a basket and felt it. I made baskets for all my children and grandchildren. Now I have many more grandchildren and wanted to make baskets for them. We always saved the baskets and used them year to year. My children have kept the tradition.


  35. Anna says:


    Ah, basketmaking is a craft I haven’t had a chance to figure out yet! Definitely want to, though.

    Felted baskets sounds like a great idea! And it’s a lovely tradition to pass on. I hope my own kids will do the same. 🙂

  36. Allyson says:

    I have a craft dresser. I have sewing stuff, patterns, fabric, and yarn all in seperate drawers

  37. Sonja says:

    To Lorene on baskets. My mom & I make small baskets that a pound butter dish fits into.
    Then you cut strips from plastic milk jugs for the handle, and crochet a handle cover. They are
    really cute, and you can really use them for anything.

  38. Molly Kade says:

    Well i don’t have much yarn, so I just keep it in a cardboard box and straw tote.

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