I had a dilemma - what to do with all these ribbons and tapes. And this was not the only box of them I had lurking in my craft room. What I really wanted was a nice way of organising them. Some way of creating order out of chaos, so I could actually see what I had and to stop myself going out and buying yet more!!
I used some stiff card and a lever-arch file and made pages to fit. Each page has three sections notched so that ribbon and tape can be wrapped around easily. Finding ribbons is now so easy. I just flip up a section and I can see exactly what I have. If you want to try this you will need:
Draw a line down the length of the card approximately an inch away from the edge. Score down this line using a scoring tool or a butter knife. You can use the edge of the scissors if you're careful.
Punch holes in this one inch section and fold along the scored line. This will enable you to flip up the various sections back and forth when you want to find something.
Mark the lines for the three sections. Start by finding the centre of the sheet (i.e. between the holes) and mark. I then measured and drew lines so each section was approximately 3.5" wide. That left a 0.5" gap in between. It really doesn't matter what width the sections are, as long as there's a gap between them.
Decide on the width of the ribbon or tape you are going to wrap and add about 1/8th inch extra. I started measuring about an inch away from the fold, but again, it doesn't really matter. I also left about 0.5" in between the slots. You can draw additional lines to mark the depth of the notches. I used a 0.5" depth. Or you can cut them by eye. Again, it's up to you. Make sure you mark the sections to be cut out. I shaded mine in slightly. You don't want to cut off the tabs by mistake!
Cut out the sections and notches. Start by cutting down the shaded bits to separate out the three sections. Then carefully cut out the notches. Try not to bend the tabs. They will bend a bit, but they won't keep the ribbon apart if they are bent completely.
Now wrap each of your ribbons or tapes around each notched section. They should fit neatly into the gaps. I measured the length of each piece before I wound them. Then when they were complete, I secured them with a piece of masking tape and wrote on the length carefully so as not to mark the ribbon.
Wrap all your ribbons and tapes in the same way.
I found this worked nicely for ribbons and binding, but long pieces of cord tended to be too bulky.
I hope this works for your ribbon stash as it has for mine! Feel free to leave me some feedback. I'd love to know if there's a better way or an adaptation!
Organizing Fat Quarters
Over the years, I've built up a large stock of fat quarter and half-metre pieces of fabric (haven't we all?), which seems to migrate from one box and shelf to another. I am always finding myself up to my elbows in scrunched up fabric with no idea if I have anything else coordinating, or even how much fabric I actually have. So, here's what I came up with ...!
Here's how I did it ...
You will need a storage box, some card (or postcards), scissors, masking tape and a pencil.
Take a piece of A4 (or letter) size card and cut it into four equal pieces. You should find the longest edge is approximately 5.5" (14 cm).
Alternatively, use some blank postcards. The larger ones are ideal for this!
Fold the fat quarter (or half-metre) piece together matching selvedges, then again to form a narrow and neat strip approximately the same height at the card. Place the card across the fabric and wind the fabric around, keeping it taught, but not so taught that the card starts to curve.
Secure on the back with a piece of masking tape. I have written on (in pencil) how much fabric is on the card. This is because I found I had a couple of fat quarters for some fabrics, so wound them on the same card. I also included half-metre pieces if I had them and noted this on the tape.
Repeat and arrange the wound fabric in a box of your choice!
I didn't include any small pieces in the "wind", but I did wind anything that looked like a fat eighth in size.
To do this, cut the fat quarter card in half again and fold the fat eighth once more to match the smaller sized card. Wind and secure in the same way.
You can see my fat eighths nestling in between my fat quarters!