Thursday, February 26, 2015

project sewing room: storage bins and totes

Were you curious to know if this was still an topic with me or that I ditched the subject? Although I haven't posted in a looong time, it is still a part of my ongoing series called project sewing room - "rund ums Nähzimmer." My other posts are about sorting your fabric and making a cutting/project table from an Ikea bookshelf. Today I want to talk about organization in storage boxes and totes.

Free tutorial from Forth Worth Fabric Studio
I recently re-organized my fabric cabinet and bought some plastic totes to store my fabrics. I wasn't totally happen with my fabrics flying around in my cabinet. I get pretty lazy sometimes when it comes to putting fabric back to the right spot. I thought a plastic basket or tote would be a good solution for storing my fabrics away in the cabinet, not getting dusty but could be pulled out easily when I wanted to rummage through a set of colors. I bought a few different sizes and am giving them a try. I should buy about three more, but we'll see how this goes for now.
As you can see, It looks like I have almost no fabric!! Do you believe that? I do, because my stash is slowly getting smaller and smaller. I am finding projects to help me de-stash. Of course, I did get rid of a lot of more "country" or traditional fabrics last fall by donating to another patchwork friend. She really appreciated them too. Now I am generally working in fabric collections and rarely pull from my own stash.

Colder colors are on the top shelf and warmer colors on the second shelf. My larger pieces of fabric are located on the bottom shelf. I keep most of my pre-cuts in other totes where I can grab at them easier for quick projects.

One option to get more organized is simply to buy cheap plastic totes. My new ones are stackable without lids. Since they are hidden in the cabinet, I thought that would be an overkill. I just wanted more of a quick in/out solution.

Another creative way to organize is to make your own totes or boxes. I have always loved the Ikea boxes and wanted to make them for the top shelf of my bookshelf/cabinet. I had this really great modern fabric in my stash which is a heavy woven made in England. I thought my shelf could use a bit of color and pulled it out. I managed to make my box with the dimensions 9 x 9 x 15 inches. It should have been 9 x 15 x 15, but the designer screwed up!!

It didn't seem as stable as it should have been, so I looked around the house and found my milk container box that holds 12 cartons of milk. It fit perfectly for more stability! I completely winged this pattern "freie Schnauze." But there are loads of great patterns out there!

If you are looking for some storage for holding your different types of fleece, wadding or batting, you can make this upright basket! We made it in our patchowrk group meeting this past month. You can find free directions with pattern here. The directions are in GERMAN! Die Anleitung ist in deutsch geschrieben, juhu!

I found this great little tutorial from the Forth Worth Fabric Studio for portable fabric tote.. I have honestly never made a basket tote, so this was very exciting for me! I did a pretty good job too, if I am allowed to say that.

I think if I make another one, I will either put the handles on the ends, or sew them down in the top stitching seam. I don't really like how they flap around. Check out my perfect side seam! ;-) Don't look at the quilting lines, just the green part. ;-)

I thought this could come in handy when a new baby is around...maybe for diapers, wipes, talcum powder/creme, etc. It matches the quilt in the background that I have been working on. The top is finished, I just have to quilt it. I am looking forward to that next week.

Have you made any good storage totes or boxes that you would like to share with us? If you have please drop us a note so we all can profit! Thanks for stopping by.

What did I learn this week? Making boxes and totes can be a lot of fun!


  1. Oh, das ist jetzt aber schön ordentlich bei Dir! Und Du hast wirklich nicht so viel Stoff :-))) Ich habe meine verschiedenen WIPs auch immer in durchsichtigen IKEA Boxen sicher und ordentlich verstaut... Dein Basket ist super, der sieht fantastisch und perfekt aus!
    LG, Sandra

  2. I make a similar little basket, and yes, I prefer the handles on the ends. I use them in my sewing area, my daughter uses them in her paper crafting room, and I make them for gifts. For new moms, I make matching bins and burp cloths to fill the baskets.

  3. Ein bisschen Ordnung ist immer gut, und beim Aufräumen sieht man wieder mal was man alles an Stoff hat.
    Und das Du ungeliebte Stoffe weiter gibst ist super, so kannst Du wenigstens noch beobachten was daraus entsteht. Es sind übrigens gleich 2 neue Projekte damit in Arbeit!

  4. Dein Stoffkörbchen ist sehr hübsch liebe Karen! Ich habe noch nie so ein Stoffkörbchen genäht, obwohl sie mir sooooooo gefallen! In Deinem Nähzimmer sieht's sehr ordentlich aus! Meine Stoffe sind alle auf einem offenen Regal ausser meine "Scraps", die tue ich in Schubladen. Die Schubladen sind alle mit der jeweiligen Farbe beschriftet... so finde ich sie auch schneller.
    GLG, Deborah

  5. Your room looks nice and clean! Thank you for joining to my blog, card blog ... :)

  6. Klasse,
    ich habe ja auch viel mehr Stoffe, obwohl ich weniger nähe... mmhhh... ;-)
    Aber deine Boxen sind toll. Ich habe so als Super-Langzeit-Projekt vor, dass ich meine Scraps in genähten - und farbig unterschiedlichen - Scrap-Utensilos sammle...
    Der "Mülleimer" ist auch sehr cool, meine Stehsammler mit den ganzen, unterschiedlichen Fliesen quillen über... nicht so die richtige Idee gewesen, man lernt nie aus ;-)
    LG, Eva


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