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5 Ideas For How To Organize And Store Loose Paper

by Content Team 03 Nov 2022 0 Comments

“But I could use this one day” are honestly some of the most dangerous words I know. While I don’t say them about many things, paper pieces are my weak point. I find it so hard to part with off-cuts from my Archer and Olive notebooks and notepad pages that I’ve amassed quite a collection! What’s tricky though is, although I’ve kept these paper pieces of various sizes, I don’t necessarily remember the different colour and sizes of paper off-cuts I have. I need a way to store and organise them so I can easily find them when I need them. Let’s investigate!

paper piece mess

Under a paper piece pile up

Hi team! Jess or JashiiCorrin from YouTube / Instagram here talking about ways to store those paper pieces that range between almost a full notebook page and just big enough that you don’t want to throw it away. Do you have times during your crafting/creativity that you think “I swear I had something for that….”. Well that’s me with my paper pieces; knowing that I have a particular size and colour, but not being able to find it! A well-organised paper piecing stash is the aim today, so let’s have a look at the different ways we can achieve this.

paper piece piles


Each of the examples that we discuss below are intended to store off-cuts from my Archer and Olive notebooks and notepads. Remember you can use my code JASHIICORRIN10 for 10% off your orders at Archer and Olive!

Rather watch, then read? For a quick overview of the organisational methods we’ll be looking at today, check out the video below!


Pre-planning our organisation

When organising your paper pieces, what matters more? Is it colour, or size? Personally, when I go looking for a paper piece, I typically have a particular colour in mind rather than a certain size, so I’m going to try and organise my paper pieces so they’re collected by colour. Before organising your paper pieces, I encourage you to consider which will be more important to you!

Whichever way you decide to go with your organisation, it’s important to have a clear idea of how you want the papers organised before you commit to having them “put away”. It’s all good to change your mind once you’ve gotten started, but make sure any paper piece organisation fully aligns with your intended way forward by the end of your organising. An inconsistently executed organisation system doesn’t make for a helpful one!

On-desk storage

When it comes to storing your paper pieces on your desk, there are a few different considerations to make:

  • How much on-desk real estate do you have/want to use?
  • What size of storage containers do you want/need?
  • Are the storage containers easy to open/access?
  • Do you want to be able to see into the on-desk storage containers?

My personal preference for on-desk storage options is having them in clear containers so I can see what’s in them without having to open them, but some people find this to look messy. Make sure to consider this before you buy!

desk storage

My go-to storage containers include a 5-tier drawer set from MUJI, or smaller individual stackable drawers that I got from K-Mart. Both of these are also great for storing Acrylographs!

desk storage

Display folders

These can make for a great storage option as they are compact and can just be stored on a bookshelf or in a drawer. As the name suggests, display folders also allow you to see through each of the individual sleeves to what is stored within them.

My strategy with these would be to have a couple of sleeves dedicated to each colour, with one sleeve for larger paper pieces and another for smaller ones. The cut-off point for a piece being “smaller” or “bigger” is up to you!

One thing to note is that as the tops of each sleeve don’t close, you’ll want to make sure you don’t accidentally hold the folder the wrong way up. While it’s unlikely that all your paper will fall out, it could make a mess of your organisational efforts!

display folders

Accordion folders

A similar solution is to use an accordion folder or expanding file folder. These ones are slightly less compact, but also offer a great way to organise your paper pieces. Often these also come with little tabs at the top so you can easily flick to the paper colour or size you are looking for in particular.

accordion folders

Archer & Olive boxes

You may be like me and have a hard time parting with the Archer & Olive notebook boxes, but let’s put them to work! Using leftover boxes can be a great way to store your paper off-cuts, especially as they’ll be a perfect size for all full notepad pieces given that’s the box they came in.

Archer and Olive boxes

Something that can be useful for storing your paper in non-transparent storage boxes is having labels for the outside. While you can just write the labels directly onto the boxes, sometimes it’s nice to have premade ones. If you want a free set of labels, make use of the ones below!

organisation label printable

Snap-lock bags

I think we’ve found it, my paper piece organisational solution! It’s not glamorous, but it doesn’t have to be. These are a great cheap option that can be purchased from your local supermarket or office stationery store.

The way I’m using this solution is to have all of my smaller pieces of paper of one colour in a snap-lock bag together, and then keeping these individual bags and the larger papers inside an Archer and Olive notebook box. This way they’re all contained in the same spot, and then all my smaller paper pieces are contained in their colour family.

The nice part about snap-locks is that they come in a range of sizes too which makes it super easy to group your paper pieces by different sizes as well!

snap lock bags

Out from under the paper piece pile

So dang glad to have my paper pieces organised into a system that is going to make it so much easier to find what I’m looking for! These are of course just some ideas for how you can organise your paper pieces and I’d love to see how you keep yours organised! Feel free to tag both @archerandolive and @jashiicorrin on social media to share your ideas; we can’t wait to see your solutions!

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