Easy Ways to Organize Your Art Supplies

For artists, whether professional or hobbyist, the organization of art supplies can significantly impact creativity and efficiency. A well-organized workspace fosters inspiration and ensures that you have everything you need at your fingertips. In this article, we will explore easy ways to organize your art supplies to create a more productive and enjoyable artistic environment.

Why Organizing Your Art Supplies Matters

Before diving into the methods, it’s important to understand why organizing your art supplies is crucial. An orderly workspace:

  • Enhances Creativity: A clutter-free environment can help clear your mind, allowing for more creativity.
  • Saves Time: With everything in its place, you spend less time searching for materials and more time creating.
  • Protects Supplies: Proper storage helps in maintaining the quality and longevity of your art materials.
  • Increases Productivity: An organized space can reduce stress and improve your workflow.

Assessing Your Art Supplies

The first step in organizing your art supplies is to take inventory. Assess what you have and what you need. This process involves:

1. Decluttering

Go through all your supplies and separate them into three categories: keep, donate, and discard. Be honest about what you actually use. If you haven’t used certain items in the past year, consider donating them to a local school or community center.

2. Categorizing

Sort your supplies by type. For example, group all your paints together, all your brushes together, and so on. This makes it easier to find what you need when you need it.


3. Evaluating Storage Needs

Once you have categorized your supplies, evaluate your storage needs. Do you need more shelves, bins, or drawers? This will help you determine what organizational tools you need to invest in.

Practical Storage Solutions

4. Clear Containers

Using clear containers allows you to see what’s inside without having to open each one. They are perfect for storing items like beads, buttons, and other small supplies. Label each container to make identification even easier.

5. Drawer Organizers

Drawer organizers can be a lifesaver for keeping small items like pencils, erasers, and pens in order. They come in various sizes and can be customized to fit your needs.

6. Pegboards

Pegboards are a versatile solution for organizing tools and supplies. They can be mounted on the wall and customized with hooks, baskets, and shelves. This keeps your most-used items within easy reach and frees up valuable workspace.

7. Shelving Units

Invest in sturdy shelving units to store larger items like sketchbooks, canvases, and storage bins. Adjustable shelves are ideal because they can be customized to fit different heights of items.

8. Rolling Carts

Rolling carts are great for mobile storage. You can easily move them around your workspace, and they often come with multiple tiers, providing ample storage for various supplies.

Creative Storage Ideas

9. Mason Jars

Mason jars are not only aesthetically pleasing but also functional. Use them to store brushes, pencils, and other tools. You can keep them on your desk or mount a row of jars on a wooden plank for a stylish storage solution.

10. Magazine Holders

Magazine holders are perfect for storing paper, sketchbooks, and notebooks. They can be easily labeled and stacked on shelves for efficient storage.

11. Hanging Storage

Utilize wall space with hanging storage solutions. Install a rod with hooks to hang baskets or containers for holding supplies. This keeps your workspace clear and your supplies accessible.

12. Repurpose Household Items

Look around your home for items that can be repurposed for storage. For example, an old cutlery tray can be used to organize small items, or a spice rack can hold bottles of paint.

Maintaining Organization

13. Regular Cleaning

Make it a habit to regularly clean and organize your workspace. Set aside time each week to put away supplies and tidy up your area. This will prevent clutter from building up and keep your space functional.

14. Label Everything

Labeling is key to maintaining organization. Clearly label all containers, drawers, and shelves. This makes it easy to find and return items to their designated spots.

15. Keep a Inventory List

Maintain an inventory list of your supplies. This helps you keep track of what you have and what you need to replenish. It can also prevent you from purchasing duplicates.

Specialized Storage for Different Art Supplies

16. Paints and Brushes

Store paints upright in a container to prevent leaks and ensure easy access. Brushes should be stored bristle-side up in a jar or brush holder to maintain their shape.

17. Pencils and Markers

Use a tiered organizer or a pencil case with multiple compartments to keep pencils and markers sorted by color or type. This makes it easy to find the right tool for your project.

18. Paper and Canvas

Store paper and canvases flat to prevent bending and damage. Use a flat file cabinet or a large drawer to keep them organized and protected.

19. Fabric and Textiles

For those who work with fabric, use clear bins or drawers to store different types of fabric. Roll the fabric to save space and prevent wrinkles. Label each bin with the type of fabric inside.

Digital Organization for Artists

20. Digital Files and References

In today’s digital age, many artists also work with digital files and references. Organize your digital workspace by:

  • Creating Folders: Sort your files into folders based on project, type, or date.
  • Using Cloud Storage: Store your files in the cloud for easy access from any device.
  • Regular Backups: Regularly back up your files to prevent data loss.

21. Managing Digital Tools

If you use digital drawing tools or software, keep your digital brushes, textures, and assets organized. Create folders or libraries within the software to easily find and use your digital tools.

Tips for Staying Organized

22. Develop a Routine

Develop a routine for organizing your supplies. Whether it’s a weekly cleanup or a monthly reorganization, having a routine helps maintain order.

23. Be Consistent

Consistency is key to staying organized. Always return items to their designated spots after use. This simple habit can make a big difference in keeping your workspace tidy.

24. Adapt and Improve

As your collection of art supplies grows or your needs change, be willing to adapt your organizational system. Regularly assess what’s working and what’s not, and make adjustments as needed.


Organizing your art supplies doesn’t have to be a daunting task. With a bit of planning and the right storage solutions, you can create a workspace that is both functional and inspiring. By keeping your supplies organized, you can focus more on your creative process and less on searching for the tools you need.

Remember, a well-organized space is not just about aesthetics; it’s about creating an environment that supports your artistic endeavors. Happy organizing!

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