I jumped aboard the adult coloring book craze last June. I loved coloring as a kid and I love it now. It’s so wonderful that so many interesting types of coloring books are available. And the coloring supplies! When I was a kid, I used Crayola crayons. Now, I use pencils, pens, markers…it feels like the sky’s the limit.
As with many new hobbies, part of the fun is acquiring the supplies. I now feel like a kid in a candy shop in an art store, which is a new feeling. (I’m not particularly artistic.) But with the acquisition of supplies comes organizing challenges. I worked out a great organizing system for my colored pencils that I thought I’d share here. (I also color with colored Sharpies and I’m still working on a system for storing those.)
My first purchase was a single coloring book and a tin of 36 Prismacolor Premier colored pencils. Those were great—I loved the quality of the pencils and the blending I could do with them. They were contained, so all I had was a book and a tin, which I kept on the end table by the couch, along with a clipboard used while coloring a single page. Easy peasy.
But soon 36 colors wasn’t enough. So I went to locally owned Art Mart and bought more individual Prismacolor pencils. That’s when I started having a storage challenge. Then I bought more pencils and books (I asked for Art Mart gift cards for my birthday) and I had not only a storage challenge, but an organizing one. I love this kind of challenge!
Enter these lovely acrylic pencil trays from the Container Store. They’re high quality and hold two dozen pencils. I bought three. So I have space to store 72 pencils plus the 36 in the original tin.
So here’s how I worked it out. I sorted the pens by color category that made sense to me. In the acrylic trays I have:
In my tin, I have three trays of 12. I’ve divided them into:
There’s a little overlap—some oranges could go in either the red or the yellow tray and some blue-purple pencils could go either way. Pinks go with the reds, but I put some with the purples. It’s all about how I think of them.
Here are some photos.
I store all the pencils in a Bigso Letter Box from the Container Store, along with my pencil sharpener and a box cutter for cutting pages out of a coloring book whose pages aren’t perforated. (I prefer to color a single page on a clipboard.)
See how nicely they fit?
(Incidentally, all these photos were taken using the SHOTBOX tabletop photo light studio.)
I used to store my coloring books in a second Bigso box, but after my friend Patti gave me six books for Christmas, my books outgrew the box. So I now keep them in magazine holders on a bookshelf in an adjacent room and keep my not-yet-organized collection of Sharpies in that second box, along with the current page I’m coloring on its clipboard. (I’ll post again when I figure out my Sharpies and other markers!)
The two boxes reside stacked on the end table, because I typically color while watching TV (though sometimes I color on the dining room table nearby). If we have visitors, it’s easy for me to move them out of the way.
If you’re a colorer, how do you store your supplies?