You’ve probably landed on this page because you’re trying to untangle and organize a massive pile of thread. We’ve all been there, but the good news is that there are some great ways that you can prevent a tangled mess from occurring. Here’s how to store embroidery floss that will make it easy for you to find the color you need AND keep it neat and organized.
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How To Store Embroidery Floss
When you purchase embroidery thread, it comes banded together in a skein. The paper bands on the floss are bound to eventually slip off once you’re thread gets low, which means the thread will get tangled and you may lose the label for which thread color it is.
This is where plastic bobbins come in! I like to wrap my thread around these bobbins and write the thread color number on the edge of the bobbin. I prefer the plastic bobbins over the paper bobbins because the paper bobbins eventually get damaged or worn out.
If you’re not into labeling all of the individual bobbins yourself and you want them to look even nicer, I found these printed number acrylic bobbins by Pip and Chip and these number sticker labels by Orderly Stitching on Etsy.
Plastic Storage Bin
You can purchase small embroidery floss storage bins that have cubbies that are the perfect size for all your thread. These bins store a good amount of thread in them, but if you’re like me and you have almost all of the DMC’s 400+ colors, you’ll want to purchase a larger storage bin. I personally use one that is similar to the bin pictured above that opens up on the top and the bottom. That way, you don’t have to keep track of several of the smaller bins and you can keep all of your thread together!
You can find some really nice wood thread drawers online if you’re looking for something that looks a bit better than a plastic organizer. I’ve had my eye on these wood drawers and this incredible vintage style chest from DMC (which comes with 500 skeins of thread!)
Organizing Embroidery Thread
The way you organize your thread is purely up to preference. I’ve seen people group their embroidery threads by shades of colors or you can keep your most frequently used color palette grouped together.
You may not care too much about how you organize your embroidery thread, but if you thread paint, it is super helpful to have the colors organized in a way that you will easily be able to find a different shade of the color you are using.
If you’re using DMC embroidery floss, the colors are for the most part randomly assigned a number. This means that, unfortunately, like colors will not all be grouped together if you sort the colors in numerical order.
Personally, I use a DMC color card and sort the colors according to the order they are in on the card. The DMC color cards are just one way to sort colors, but the order in which they are on the card will at least put similar shades of colors together so you don’t have to sort through all of them yourself.
I hoped this helped to give you some ideas of how to store your embroidery floss! It can be a task to wind all the bobbins and get everything organized, but once you get it done it’s super easy to maintain. I promise you won’t regret doing it!
Amanda is a hand embroidery artist and teacher. With over 15 years of experience in the craft industry and embroidery, she owns and runs Crewel Ghoul, sharing tutorials and patterns to help inspire fellow crafters to get inspired and creative. In addition to running this website, she teaches on Skillshare and Youtube.