Tidying Up, Loose Threads

Thread organization by April Sproule

What a Mess!

   When I do hand stitching, I like to have EVERYTHING all spread out around me in what looks like a disorganized disaster to everyone but me. I had to find a way to deal with this mess other than tossing most of it into the garbage.

   I usually clean up my stitching area when I finish a project, so I"m not buried up to my neck in thread and debris. That means I toss all my leftover threads, half-used skeins, and whatever else, into a little container to organize later. The problem is, I usually put this task off until much later when I think I will have more time. That means I end up with half a dozen of these little messes to sort out, and in the meantime I keep opening another skein of thread in a color I already have multiples of partially used.

Tangled threads by April Sproule

    Does this look familiar? Here is the process I came up with to stop being so wasteful, and lazy. After pulling out the still intact skeins of floss, I am left with a snarly mess of threads that I am usually tempted to just toss. Thread cards by April Sproule

   I took a piece of cardboard from an old notepad, cut it into strips about 1 1/2 “ wide and 5” long. I cut  a ¼” deep slit in the top of the cardboard. I secured the first end in the slit, wound on the thread, and then pulled the tail end back into the slit again.

Thread organization by April Sproule

    I organized my scrappy mess by color before winding them on the cards, and then stuck the cards in the tray with the corresponding colors of embroidery floss. I spent a couple of hours reorganizing everything from my last few stitch projects, and now I can actually find what I am looking for!

Embroidery threads organized by April Sproule

   Below is how I store all my skeins for embroidery floss. Those trays holding my floss are the tops of plastic containers that hold lettuce and greens from the grocery store. I don't have the time nor desire to wind all my threads on those little bitty thread holders, so this works great for me. The trays stack together neatly and I secure them with another empty tray on top and a couple of rubber bands on the ends. Perfecto!

Embroidery floss organization by April Sproule