Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Ribbon Organization

Good evening! Today on Twitter, one of my Tweeps (stampinlibby) was cleaning her craft space (I KNOW!) and mentioned she'd rolled up her ribbon onto wooden clothes pins. I commented back that I did the same thing, and people started demanding photos of how we stored the wooden clothespins. I was at the Day Job, so I promised I'd do a short piece tonight about my own solution(s).

Some of you have seen this before in various posts when I've attempted my own reorgs over the years, but tonight we are just focusing on ribbon.

Let us begin.

First, this is how I store my smaller pieces of ribbon (less than 5 yards):

Most of the ribbon you get at Mike's and similar Big Box craft outlets are under 5 yards. These are shoe-box size storage containers from The Container Store. I think I deserve a Frequent Shopper program for the amount of cash I drop in that store. Please notice the boxes are sitting on Elfa shelving. Mmm-hmmm.

These boxes, my dear readers, are what I refer to as my "Every Color {color} Ribbon But The One I Need" boxes. For example, here is the Every-color-blue-but-the-one-I-need box:

You can see each one lovingly wrapped around a wooden clothespin and secured with a tiny straight pin.

The other boxes contain Greens, Yellows & Purples, Reds & Oranges & Pinks, Blacks & Browns & Whites & Creams, and the "junk drawer" of ribbons - a box of Miscellaneous:

Let's do the numbers:

1. One of my "this will go with everything" ribbons that, in reality, goes with nothing.
2. Alphabet/baby ribbon on the spool, and some patriotic ribbon.
3. Another one of my "this will go with everything" ribbons that, in reality, goes with nothing.
4. St. Patty's Day ribbon. I don't make St. Patty's Day cards.
5. Don't ask. I don't know why I have that. Must have been a polka dot phase.
6. Christmas ribbon. I've actually used a lot of this one.
7. Empty clothespins. Evidence, dear readers, that I have actually used up a few of them.
8. The box of pins I use to secure the ribbons on the clothespins. I kept losing it, and opted to finally put it with the empty spools.
9. OMG, Halloween ribbon! Never used. I don't make too many Halloween cards, either.

Moving on: To the right of those 6 boxes on the shelf are two more boxes. This top box contains spools of ribbon I purchased in a mindless, frenzied field trip to the Offray Ribbon Outlet several years ago:

Each one of these spools holds 100 yards of ribbon, so they stayed on their original spools. This is why I say I will never, ever, ever run out of ribbon.

That's it for that shelf. Let's move on to the next section. What? You thought I was done? HAHAHAHAHAHA!

This is my PTI storage area:

I have selected card stocks, patterned papers ... oh, crap. I see here I have more White and Cream already. I just ordered some, too. Oh, well, guess I'll not run out of THAT any time soon.

The top two boxes to the left hold my PTI ribbons:

(Sorry about the flash, but it was getting dark when I took these.) These are 5-yard lengths, and at one point you can see I decided to stop rolling them up and left them on the spools (over to the left.)

But then PTI came out with more colors I needed to own, so I have an overflow box:

... which also contains inks and reinkers.

Moving on, here is my SU ribbon storage section #1:

There IS some order here! All the Every Color Grosgrain Ever Made is on the left, grouped by color (Neutrals, Greens, Blues, etc.). On the right are the In Color ribbons from this year and 1 or 2 past years, and some of the other newer ribbons. This is my go-to drawer about 80% of the time I need ribbon.

The rest of my SU ribbons are stored in here:

This is 2/3 of my Library Card Catalog I purchased last year. The bottom section still holds the paper library card catalog cards. The top section holds all my satin, 5/8" grosgrain, taffeta, etc. Here's some of the 5/8" Satins:

There are also a few drawers with contraband (non-SU ribbons from my pre-SU days.) And that missing third section of the card catalog? It's in the Living Room. When I moved this cabinet for what I hope was the last time, I stopped with the two sections because it came level to my existing storage, and I wanted to use the top of it for my inks, etc. Some day I'll add that third section back on top. Maybe.

The last storage area of SU ribbons is here:

The bottom rail of my Bygel storage system holds all my Ribbon Originals and any of the SU embellishment packages like the crocheted flowers, felt flowers, canvas tags, etc. I figured if I can see them, I might actually use them.

That's it for the ribbon. Yes, I have a little hoarding problem, so what's your point? One of my Tweeps said I was a Ribbon "Connoisseur" dahling, connoisseur :-) Heh heh - I like that!

Please let me know if you have any questions. Or special requests. Need another expose? I'm sure I can do that! Just leave me a comment and I'll add it to the list of things to post about when I haven't made a card! :)

Thanks for stopping by!


  1. I think I have No Comment, or is it I am speechless...
    No wait, its coming to me: This is just an insane amount of ribbon, and I am going to send you ALL the ribbon card ideas I can find,
    and/or you might consider going into the Taggy Blanket industry.

    <3 and you have earned the Ribbon Connoisseur Extraordinaire title in my book (which could be aka Ribbon Queen :-)

  2. wow. i am in serious awe.

    that's like, my heaven.

    just wow.

  3. Repeat after me...Hi, I'm Leslie and I have a ribbon addiction. Everyone....Hi, Leslie. :-) Nah, that won't work, we would all be swapping ribbon shopping websites. I don't feel so bad now, though, you have a way awesomer(word?) ribbon stash than I do!

  4. You weren't kidding when you said you had a lot of ribbon. Now I see why you said you didn't need the raphia... LOL


    ps..I wish my ribbon fit nicely on to a clothespin! But alas..no...*sigh*

  5. ...... ah .... ....... um ..... ............ um .....ahhh... .............um..................

  6. i feel positively minimalist now! i mean, granted, this is probably the only category i will feel this way about... (ok, except stamps!) ...but still...it's refreshing! thank you!!!

    (ps: ribbon #5 would look GREAT on xmas card!!!!) :) (just sayin')

  7. I am green with envy over your library card catalog. I LOVE it. Brings back wonderful memories of the library.You have a large collection of ribbon!
    Kathy T in SW IN

  8. As much ribbon as you use on cards, these photos should not surprise me. BUT THEY DO!

    Wow. Shock & Awe.

    (And well done, my friend!)


I'd love to hear what you really think! :-)

PS: I've had to disable Anonymous comments, because the spammers were killing me. If you are unable to comment, please email me your comment and I'll get it posted for you. Sorry. (stoopid spammers)