CB21-007 - how to organize colored pencils

How to organize colored pencils?

Creative geniuses are inspired by messy spaces, but when it comes to art supplies most don’t mess around. Being able to reach the right color at the right time is important. So when it comes to your art supplies if you’re not the neatest person don’t sweat: here’s how to organize colored pencils. 

The best way to organize colored pencils is by color. Labeling those colors help make it easier to find the right color for your artwork. To take organization even further, you can organize those colors into groups or swatches based on the project.

Sometimes organization is more than simply putting all the colors in order. Making swatches and choosing the right container for your style of drawing will help you focus on the art and not the art supplies. 

Luckily for you, I’ll show you how to organize and store your pencils. I’ll show you some of the best pencil organizers available and help you get organized. At the end of this article, you’ll be able to get organized so you can focus on your art.

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How to organize colored pencils

To organize colored pencils, separate and label the colors in order of the rainbow. Create themed color groups based on the projects you commonly work on. Once you’re organized, place your pencils in easy to reach containers that work well, either on the go or in your art space. 

To start, organize your pencils by color, size, and type. The first thing you will want to do is organize your pencils into the right color family (i.e all the reds in one place). Next put them in order of the colors of the rainbow. 

  • Red
  • Orange
  • Yellow
  • Green
  • Blue
  • Indigo
  • Violet

If you’re unsure about organizing every color use your manufacturer color wheel or chart to put the colors in order. You can then get more creative once you have your rainbow organized. 

Organize colored pencils using swatches

Consider how and what you draw, then organize your pencils based on that. For example, If you plan on working in a park and drawing greenery in spring, plan around that. In a park, you’ll need to put your pencils in an easy-to-carry container. Since it’s spring you’ll need a lot of green pencils to get the color of the trees and the grass just right. 

Organize a chart with swatches that work for nature, so you can take the right pencils with you. Always be sure to also have the basic primary colors, so you have every color you need. 

Coloring in the park is one example, you may need something that works better in a studio rather than a park bench. It’s best to start organizing all of your pencils in order by color before you start creating swatches that have themes. 

If all of your pencils are in order and labeled, you can pull the colors you need and put them back in their place. Use color swatch cards with the color numbers on them to create your themes. This way you know which colored pencils to pull when you’re ready to work on a specific project. 

Where do you store colored pencils?

You can store colored pencils in drawers, mason jars, tins, plastic pencil boxes, canvases, and leather pencil cases. A good pencil case should hold an assortment of colors and have room for labels. Use containers that make it easy to see the colors you need when you need them.

The best place to store colored pencils depends on your space. In an art studio, you may want your pencils to stand tall, but in a small space or on the go you may want to tuck your pencils away.

You can choose to purchase drawers or rotating pencil holders that sit on desktops to store your pencils. Storage for desks makes it easy to grab a pencil and put it back quickly, but it doesn’t always help you label and organize. 

You can use old mason jars or tins to keep them all in place if you don’t want to purchase a desk topper. However, it’s best to store your pencils in foldable canvases or cases with slots for labels if you have a lot of pencils. 

What are the best colored pencil organizers?

The best colored pencil organizers are cases that make it easy to see every pencil you have in one place. A good container will have a place for labels and hold a lot of colored pencils. 

You’ll need an organizer that can hold the entire color wheel if you’ve got hundreds of pencils. The best colored pencil organizers are leather cases and canvases with slots. They fold and zip away providing layers of colored pencils that can be labeled and held securely. 

Prismacolor colored pencils come in an entire rainbow of colors. As a result, their pencils come in containers and organizers designed to be labeled by their color wheel. The professional wooden box has three levels that open like steps so you can see every pencil clearly. 

There are dozens of fancy and simple ways to store and organize your pencils. The best containers work for the way you use your pencils. Consider whether you will be drawing on the go or working in a quiet space or studio then choose the container for you.

Choose an organizer that:

  • Is easy to access
  • Protects your pencils
  • Is the right size for your space
  • Fits your style
  • And holds all of your pencils 

A leather case with a handle will work best if you work on the go. Be sure your case is secure. You don’t want to lose a pencil while capturing your live subjects.

A canvas that unrolls, so you can see every pencil, will work better if you plan on working at your desk or moving around a large table in an art studio.

Here are some of the best colored pencil organizers:

Prismacolor Premier Colored Pencil Wooden Box Set

Deluxe Leather Pencil Case

Wood Art Storage Box for Pencils

250 Slot Colored Pencil Case Organizer with Handle

Bamboo Pen Organizer for Desk

Colored Pencil Wrap

300 Slots Pencil Case

Once you have your colored pencils in their cases you can label them and make swatches that help you keep up to date with all the pencils you have. 

How do you make colored pencil swatches?

To make colored pencil swatches, use a color wheel and the manufacturer numbers to organize your colored pencils. Write down every name and number you have, leaving a space for a color square. Once you have the list in order color in your swatches next to the corresponding color name and number. 

Prismacolor Premier Colored Pencils come with their own color-coded list. Use the numbers to create your own swatch chart in a notebook or on cards with rings. You can leave a space for each pencil you don’t have or you can include only the colors you have. 

You can also make swatches based on what you need for a particular project, so you always know which colors you used. 

To make swatches on a piece of paper or card, label which pencil set you are using, the color name, and the color number. Once you are done, color in a square next to the names, so you have an example. Use a hole punch at the top of your card and add rings, so you have an easy-to-use system for your swatches.

If you want a shortcut you can also find templates on Pinterest. After you’ve created swatches you’ll be able to find the right color when you need to replace a pencil. 

Take a look at this video to see how to make a color chart and why they are important.

Summary: How to organize colored pencils

At this point, you have an idea of how to organize your pencils and where you can store them. To organize your pencils it’s best to separate them by color, size, and type. Once you can see everything, organize your pencils in the way that works best for you. 

Think about where you draw and how you use your colored pencils. It may be best to use homemade swatches to help you create themes to take your pencils with you on the go. 

What you store your pencils in depends on if you need to place them on a desk or take them with you to a park bench. 

The best organizers will hold all your colored pencils and make it easy for you to see each, no matter where you are. 

Whether you need your pencils to stand tall or fold away there’s an organizer out there for you. Choose one of our favorites, head to your favorite spot, and draw something beautiful today.