Originally published September 11, 2019 and updated January 16, 2023.
Let’s be honest, if you’re a crafter, hearing “declutter craft stash” makes your heart sink and pound at the same time. As a crafter and professional organizer, I have put together my best craft room declutter tips for you.
Even if you’ve crafted for just a short amount of time, chances are you need to edit and declutter your craft supplies and equipment. It’s almost never just a case of needing new storage containers. First you need to declutter and then you can find the best storage ideas for you. Grab the free printable Declutter Craft Stash Checklist below and let’s do this together.
Before we get started, you should know that I’m both a crafter and a professional organizer. Those two parts of me battle it out in my craft room. I truly understand how difficult it can be for us crafters to declutter a craft stash.
Let’s be honest. “I just don’t have enough craft supplies,” is rarely heard spoken by a crafter. Usually you hear:
- “Oh, those are on sale! I want them.”
- “Oh, don’t get rid of that, I’ll take it.”
- “I can’t get rid of that, I might need it some day.”
- “I don’t know what I’m going to do with that, but it’s so cute/interesting/pretty that I’ll think of something.”
- “I never know when I might need that.”
- “No, I don’t have time now, but I hope to start crafting again some day.”
- “I know it’s broken, but it was expensive. I can’t just throw it away.”
- “Gosh, I have too much stuff in here! I need to get rid of something. But not today.”
Craft Room Declutter Steps
So then how do we start decluttering our craft supplies? Follow these steps for the best way that has worked for my clients and myself.
Gather All Craft Supplies and Equipment
Hopefully, you’ve already gathered everything together in one place in the previous How to Plan Craft Room Organization article. But if you haven’t now is the time.
Sort Them into Categories
The first step is to sort craft items into craft categories. Choose the categories that work for how you think about your craft supplies and how you use them.
- Do you think of supplies as the type of supply first and then the category of craft?
- First decorative paper then paper for decoupage or scrapbooking or junk journals
- Do you think of the craft category and then the type of supply?
- First painting then oil paint or acrylic paint or glass paint
The second step is to sort everything into your categories.
- Put all the sewing items together. All the scrapbooking items together. Continue until you can identify your major craft categories.
- Then group like items together into smaller categories within each broader category. Group all the scrapbook paper together, by size and or color. Group all the scrapbook adhesives together. Group all the scrapbook stickers together, and so on.
Edit the Categories
Look at the categories of different types of craft supplies you have. Do you still do each of those types of crafts or have you given some of them up?
Do you still have the space of each type of craft? If the craft requires equipment that you don’t have the space for, that would be a good candidate for editing out (getting rid of).
Look at each category honestly and critically. Ask yourself if that craft type is something you will do in the next year, preferable more than once.
By looking at each category individually, it makes it easier to identify entire categories that you are ready to let go and either sell or donate.
Edit the Items within the Categories
Now look at each grouping of items within the categories remaining.
Use the Declutter Craft Stash Checklist to help you decide which items and how many you should keep.
Be critical in deciding which items to keep. Make every single item earn its place in your newly organized craft space.
Consider Your Space and Budget
Be realistic about how much space you have for craft storage and organization. If you don’t have the space to store items so that they’re easy to access and use, then you should edit them out.
Also, be realistic about your budget. If you don’t have the budget to organize and store your craft supplies, then edit them out and keep only what you can afford to organize and store.
How to Make the Tough Decisions
It can be difficult to let some items go. Whether they were given to you by someone special or the items represent some special memory to you.
Use the Declutter Craft Stash Checklist below for ideas on how to handle letting sentimental items go.
Where to Donate
It can be easier to let special craft supplies and equipment go when you know that they are going to be put to good use.
Nonprofits organizations are on limited budgets and often greatly appreciate donations of usable items. Please always check with organizations first to see what equipment and supplies from your decluttered craft stash they can use. You can also consider donating to:
- Local schools, childcare centers and preschools
- Senior citizen activity centers
- Homeschooling groups
- Afterschool programs
- Children’s hospitals
- Activity centers for special needs adults
- Art cooperatives
I’ve included ideas of places to contact about donating craft items on the Declutter Craft Stash Checklist.
Get your free Declutter Craft Stash Tips Checklist when you sign up for our free newsletter and get started on your craft room. When you sign up, you’ll promptly receive an email with a link to the pdf.
Be sure to checkout all the rooms, tips and checklists involved in the Organized Home Challenge – 5 Rooms in 5 Weeks.
FAQ about Organizing Your Craft Space
How do you declutter a crafter?
It can be difficult for creative people to declutter because they see beauty and potential use in craft projects for almost every item. Simple tips to declutter a craft stash:
- Stop buying new craft items immediately so that no additional items are added until all the old craft supplies are sorted and decluttered.
- Remove empty boxes and bags first.
- Remove items that belong in a different room or space.
- Go through unfinished projects and determine if it’s realistic that the project will be completed in a reasonable amount of time (the next few months). If not, then remove the project.
- Clear the work surface. The work area should be open so that work can be done. Critically examine the items that were removed and keep only the best supplies and ones that will be used in the next year.
- Next clear the floor. Floors are not meant for storage, they’re meant for movement. Either find storage solutions for those items or they need to be decluttered.
- The remainder of the entire room should be sorted by categories of supplies. This can be done in two ways, depending on what makes the most sense to the crafter
- By types of hobby supplies, for example, paints, papers, stamps, etc.
- By the type of craft, for example, sewing, wood burning, oil painting, etc.
How do you stop hoarding crafts?
- Stop buying more crafting supplies now.
- Stop visiting the thrift store and local craft store as an activity.
- Stop scrolling through art supplies, scrapbooking supplies or your weakness online when you’re bored.
- Don’t start new projects until you’ve completed existing half-finished projects.
- Start examining everything in your craft area with an eye for only keeping the best items, the ones that work best and the ones you absolutely love.
- Keep reminding yourself how creative you’ll be able to be with a blank slate, an open work space and all the supplies you need are easy to access. This will help you make the tough decisions of what to keep and what to let go.
- Only buy new supplies for a current project or specific project you’ll be starting very soon.
How do you organize a craft room checklist?
Using a checklist created by a professional organizer to organize your craft space or hobby room is a great idea. You can get my free craft room checklists when you sign up for our free newsletter:
More Craft Room Organization Ideas
Craft Room Storage Ideas – These craft room storage ideas from a crafter and professional organizer make it easy to organize your craft room for optimal creativity.
How to Plan Craft Room Organization – To create the perfect space for crafting, you first need to plan craft room organization for a functional space you love – includes free planning checklist.
Organizing a Craft Room with Labels – Simple tips for organizing a craft room with labels. Keeping a craft room organized gives you space to be creative by making it easy to find craft supplies.
Find all my decluttering tips, printables and challenges in the table below.. You can scroll though the table and look for ideas or search for specific ideas with the magnifying glass in the upper right-hand corner (on desktop). Click on the topic and then click through the specific article.
I’m a mom of 3, a veteran and military spouse. I’ve moved into 20+ homes all around the world. My passion is helping busy people make the space and time for what’s really important to them.