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How to Organize Embellishments

Updated on June 30, 2017
linfcor profile image

Professional scrapbook artist, paper crafter, and author, I have taught people how to make family memories into legacies for 20 years.

How To Organize Your Craft Embellishments

Do you have little embellishments, do dads, brads, rhinestones, chipboard, and more scattered around your craft space? Do you have all kinds of little odds and ends here, there and everywhere? Take heart my friend. You can get from outside that clutter in your space and get organized. Step by step, it is possible to get your craft supplies organized and stay organized. The reward for an hour or so of your time ? More time to craft and more fun doing it.

What are we tackling today? Brads, flowers, stickers, words, rhinestones, glitter, chipboard and all those lovely we like to add on our cards, paper crafts and scrapbook pages

So where do you start? The first thing to think about is how you think about things. Everyone processes their creativity differently. I tend to think about the supplies that I need in catagories. I think brads, flowers, rhinestones. Other people tend to think in colors. Others think about specific products like Jolee stickers. You can also make a choice to store them by type of material or theme. It's up to you to decide which way works best for you.Chose the method to organize according to the way you tend to think about things.

The system that will work for you best is the way that you will look for that button, brad, ribbon ect.

Find What Works For You

Remember, you need to find a system that is comfortable for you ! What might work for me, might not be right for you. So consider your space and your budget. And look at a storage system to see if it is workable for you.

Signs That You Need To Organize Your Embellishments

If You Fit This Profile, You Know It's Time To Get Organized !

I know that before I tackled this project, I had a pretty disorganized craft room. I mean it was a mess. Once I tackled the main parts of the room, I started getting all the side projects done. One of them was what to do with the odds and ends of my vast collection of embellishments. So my question for you is.......

"Do you find that you know that you have something you want to add to a project, but just can't put your finger on it?

"Do you find yourself buying something, only to go home and find that you already had it?"

"Do you find yourself searching for just the right touch for a project more than 5 minutes?"

"Do you have a box filled with leftovers sitting around?'

"Are you sometimes frustrated looking for stuff that you know you have?"

Well, if you can answer yes to one or more of these questions, it might be time to get all your embellishments organized !

Ribbon Idea

if you already have ribbon and fibers already on rolls, all you need to do is find a product to store those rolls in. If you have loose bits of fibers or ribbons, wrap them around a piece of chipboard. Use a paper clip or a repositionable glue dot to keep the ends in place

Decide What System Works Best For You

Everyone thinks differently on their creative process. I tend to think in categories. I like to have all my brads in one location. But lots of people think in colors and like to be able to go to a location where they can find everything that is blue. It doesn't matter how you set it up. Chose whatever works for you. I actually use a combination storage system. I have brads in one location and then I store them by size and color. That's what works best for me.

  1. Store By Type Store each by what they are, brads, eyelets, ribbons, ect. Take them out of their original packaging to save space. You can subdivide them by color as I do, which for me saves time. I go to the eyelet container and find the blue ones-easy
  2. Sort By Theme y For some folks, sorting by themes makes more sense. You can sort by themes such as school, sports, holidays, children ect. When you use this system, you may want to add flat embellishments like stickers , die cuts and themed paper all together. That way when you are working on a project like a wedding page, you will be able to find everything in one place.
  3. Sort by Color In addition to the standard colors, you will want to be very specific in this category. You might have blue for example, but break it down into light blue, dark blue, blue violet, ect. Get as specific as you can, depending on what you have in your stash and the amount of space that you have.
  4. Sort By Manufacturer Some folks like to sort by manufacturer. This makes sense, because so many have their product lines coordinated. Sorting this way makes sense because in essence, you have created little kits. You will be able to get through projects quickly

Choose the system that works in the way you tend to think about things ! I store my buttons in several see thrAgain, choose ough, clear plastic boxes by color. For me. that makes sense. I always know where to go to get buttons

Do Not Limit Yourself

Check out the jewelery section of your craft store for other options to store your embellishments

The Scraprack totally organizes embellisshments
The Scraprack totally organizes embellisshments

Using A Scraprack

My favorite storage tool is a Scraprack. The Scraprack is a tool that is basically like an open binder system. It is a 12 inch by 12 inch system where there are pages with attached little flapped sections where you can store your tiny embellishments.

You can store all those little pieces by color or by element. I keep all my ribbons, half beads and sequins together. Some folks like to place their embellishments with like colors. It's up to you how you use the system. You can't imagine how much these pages will actually store ! Now all my embellishments are located in one place. No more hunting around for all those little bottles or envelopes. I can find exactly what I need !

With this system, you can even get specialty embellishment pages, which I am eager to get for myself. These are 72 sectioned pockets made especially for embellishments

The Scraprack

Totally-Tiffany B1109 Scrap Rack Multi Craft Base Unit, 15 by 13 by 7-Inch
Totally-Tiffany B1109 Scrap Rack Multi Craft Base Unit, 15 by 13 by 7-Inch

Scraprack with free shipping. I could not be without this 4.2 star organizer. You can create your own system by adding the Scraprack pagers and dividers. Will totally organize your craft space


Use What You Have

Recycled Embellishment Storage Ideas

Look around you in your home and you may find lots of storage solutions right in your home for your embellishments. I save prescription bottles.(Always wash the inside and remove the labels).

1.Baby food jars are great to store buttons and small items.

2.I never throw away Altoid tins. They are another great storage item. Plus decorating them is fun.

3.Ziplock bags make perfect storage units for all your embellishments. I use the little snack bags for small items, I use the quart bags for larger collections.

4. Spice racks are perfect with their little jars. If you find one that spins, all the better

5. Paper towel holders are devine holders for spools of ribbon

6. I use leftover blueberry and strawberry containers to hold lots of things. They are see through plastic and hold all kinds of things

Every Crafter Needs A Label Maker - Wouldn't Be Without it

A label maker makes your crafty life so much easier. This is a must have tool for every crafter. The unit doesn't cost much and you will use it for years to come. Not only can you label all your containers, but you can also make titles and sayings for your scrapbook pages and cards. I keep mine handy in a drawer in my desk.

Step One-Defining What You Have

And Sorting Them Out

The first step in getting your embellishments organized is to gather them up and see what you have. That means going through your space or room and pulling them all out. That means all the loose pieces of all the embellishments that you own. Just lay them out on a table or bed.

Next, get rid of anything that is not usable. May be it is ripped, stained, or just not something you might consider using in the future.

Finally, put like things together. Put your buttons, rhinestones, flowers, ect in piles, by what they are.

You can categorize what you have by color or by item. For example, you may place all things blue in one storage section, so that when you are working on something blue, you go to your blue container.

Or you can categorize by item.....all rhinestones in one container, all buttons in another, ect

Again, it's whatever works for you !

Store Them In Drawers

There are many drawer options for anywhere from small units to very large units. You need to decide what you have, how much space that you have, and what your needs are. For example, it you just have a little, a small three drawer desk type system would be perfect for you. If you are a real craft hoarder with a large collection, you may want a floor drawer larger option.

You will also decide the actual space that you have available. If you have a craft room than your options are different then someone who may only have a small desk or a closet area.

Look in your local craft store and online for options that may be available. Then plan out your craft space. You will be pleased at the results

My Favorite Storage Units

Everyone needs at least one storage unit for all their embellishments. The one that makes sense for you depends on your space and your needs. These are the ones that I use and are my personal favorites. I like to be able to see what is inside of my containers, so plastic makes sense. Plus all of these containers are durable

Darice Storage Unit

Darice EWC0511 82-Piece Elizabeth Ward Bead Storage Solutions Tiny Container Storage Tray
Darice EWC0511 82-Piece Elizabeth Ward Bead Storage Solutions Tiny Container Storage Tray

Darice makes a wonderful try unit that comes with 82 pieces including labels for those with lots of embellishments. They have a great line for crafters for storage. Their units are well made. You could essentially store all your embellishments in one unit or you could separate them by type or color


Find or purchase a basket or plastic basket. Buy more than one if your collection is large.

Look around your home to see if you have anything you can use

Step 2-Sort By Color

Makes Life So Much Easier

For each pile of your embellishments, you now sort by color. If your category is limited, then you can just group them together.. I love to color code things, cause it makes it so much easier to find say a blue flower. So for me, each of my Categories is in a separate small bags inside the bigger bag. So, for example I might have a large quart size ziplock bag with stars. Then I would have smaller bags for each of the colors of stars that I own. Sub-sorting by color makes it so much easier to find exactly what I need

No organization system is a good system unless you can use it everyday

How Are You Doing With Your Embellishment Organizing? - Did You Find This Page Helpful?

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    • linfcor profile image

      Linda F Correa 4 years ago from Spring Hill Florida

      @Craftymarie: Everyone thinks differently. You just need to chose a system that works for you. I use the plastic storage boxes and also some jars stored in photo boxes. Always trying to improve my process

    • Craftymarie profile image

      Marie 4 years ago

      I usually prefer to sort by colors and I use a number of those plastic storage boxes with multiple compartments for small embellishments. They're just really handy, inexpensive and easy to stack :) Great page on organizing your crafty bits.