Monday, May 3, 2021

Salad Bin Fabric Storage

Today I am sharing a tip today that is:
  1. good for your fabric
  2. good for your health
  3. good for the environment
What is this amazing tip?  Using empty salad tubs for fabric storage.  These tubs will organize for fabric, be great for your heath (from all of the salad you will eat), and save the environment by reusing the container.

When I started building up a fabric stash, I would stack my fabrics on shelves and in various containers, which was very messy and disorganized.  My lack of organization made finding the fabric I wanted very difficult and even harder to put away neatly.

I started searching out options for better organizing my growing fabric collection, quickly dismissing plastic storage bins from Target due to the cost.  Making mini-bolts using magazine boards looked interesting, but a good chunk of my stash was fat quarters and quarter yard cuts which do not lend themselves well to mini-bolts. (I do store my cuts greater than 1/2 yard cuts on the boards).

The solution came to me as I was serving my family salad one evening.  The salad bin was the perfect size...and it was free!  I decided to collect enough bins to have one bin per color for folded fabric and one bin per color for scraps.  That is a lot of bins which is where the health benefit of the fabric storage plan comes family ate a lot a salad!

The salad bins I used were from Costco (shown above), but they have similar salad bins at Sam's Club, Publix and other larger grocery stores.

Now take a look at my organized shelves :) Each bin is clear making it easy to see all of the fabric. When I want to go through my pink fabrics (for example), I can just pull out the bin, take out the fabric I want, and put the bin back on my shelf.

Here is how I fold my fabric to fit well into the bins (the pictures below show a half yard cut)...

1.  Begin by laying out your yardage folded like it comes off the bolt, with the two salvages on the right side and the fold on the left side.  For fat quarters, orient your fabric so that the salvage is on right side.

2.  Bring the fold (or the cut edge in the case of a fat quarter) to the savages.

3.  Repeat  #2 again, bringing the folded edge to the salvages.  You should now have a fabric folded to approximately the width of the storage bin.  The length of the folded fabrics will depend on size of the fabric cut.

4.  Now fold the fabric along its length so that the bundle matches the depth of the bin.  I have found folding a half yard cut into fourths works best for my bin size.

What are your best fabric storage tips?


  1. Such a great storage solution; and I love that you have even figured out the best way to fold your fabrics for the bins, too.

  2. I have been doing this for years! Good tip!

  3. I do save my salad bins for lots of storage. Not as many as you have collected and unfortunately mine seem to be various sizes so they don't match. However, recycling is something I try to be diligent about and I like using the bins. I keep types of scraps in them. One is full of the bonus HST's that come from certain projects. Some are used to hold scraps that need to be trimmed into other shapes. One is full of my 2 1/2" and 3" squares I have cut. You get the idea.
    Great post Cheryl.

  4. Brilliant! I've saved them for other purposes but never thought of fabric. Thanks for sharing the idea.

  5. They look so pretty on your shelves!!

    1. Thanks Rose! They really keep me organized.

  6. Great idea! I think I need to start eating more salad!
    Kathleen - kakingsbury at verizon dot net

  7. I love this idea although I don't usually buy my salad in a container. Costco soups are in these wonder plastic containers that I've saved and used to freeze my own soups or to pass along leftovers to family and friends. Always a way to reuse these items that clutter our environment.

  8. Great idea Cheryl! I love reusing things as much as possible. I buy lettuce by the head, just spinach in the container, so might contemplate using those for something in the sewing room. I bought plastic drawers many years ago for this size of fabric and being clear, it's so simple to see which drawer I need, and they come right out too! Organization is key to using our leftovers.

  9. Love getting storage ideas. I've been using these and other grocery containers all over the house. Years ago I got a CD cabinet ($20 from WM) that has 14 compartments that will each hold about 20 FQ, is about 4'tall, 20" wide, and 4" deep with a flat base so it will stand on its own.

  10. Excellent idea. Thank you for sharing and inspiring.

  11. Dynamite suggestion! I already have a few upcycled containers on my shelves, but none of these. They are perfect!

  12. Perfect size on those tubs. I put my fabrics in a drawer.

  13. Great idea Cheryl & I have used similar tubs for a variety of things, but never fabric, though the ones I buy with food in them are smaller due to only 2 of us at home now. Small ones are good for odds'n'ends needed on a quilt retreat (of course none of that happening now). Thanks for sharing, take care & hugs from down under.

  14. What a great idea. Thanks for sharing.

  15. I have been doing this for a long time now. It works well. I fold mine where the lids fit back on so that I can stack them on top of each other. I don't have the room for the shelves like you do. I also use the larger plastic containers that a bunch of croissants come in from my local grocery store. I can get a lot of fat quarters or fabric scraps in those croissant containers which also work great for blocks and fabrics for a particular project I am working on. They make great project boxes. I store the croissant containers upside down leaving the black bottom as a lid on top. They stack great this way. Love to see others recycling instead of going out and buying storage containers just to store their stuff.

  16. SO AWESOME! I use ones that are a little smaller, but I realized there are some collections I want to keep together. This may be the perfect solution!

  17. Great to be able to re-use plastic! Here in the UK our washed salad tends to be packed in bags. But I've found the plastic tubs used for washing machine tablets make great storage pots. I have several next to my sewing machine filled with notions I like to keep nearby - rotary cutters, marking pens, tape measure etc. The tubs are great for transporting these items to sewing days & workshops too.


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