Scrapbook Paper Storage Solutions

stacking paper trays

When it comes to organizing your scrapbooking supplies, paper can be one of the most difficult things to store. Because scrapbook paper is expensive, it's important to keep this delicate supply from getting wrinkled or torn. 12-inch by 12-inch scrapbook paper is also an odd size for storing in standard file cabinets or binders, so many scrapbookers find that specialized storage systems are the best way to go.

Seven Scrapbook Paper Storage Solutions and Ideas

Ready to turn your jumbled mess of scrapbook paper into an easy-to-use, organized system? Try one of these ideas:

Drawer Storage Units

scrapbook cart
Iris scrapbook cart

Most craft stores and hobby shops offer clear drawer units perfectly sized for 12-inch by 12-inch scrapbook paper. Depending on how much paper you need to store, these units may be a great solution. The advantage of storing your paper in drawers is that you can reduce the piles to manageable chunks. Be sure to sort the paper by type, theme, or color. Use a label maker to create a tag for each drawer. Another advantage of this system is that you can completely remove the drawer and take the whole thing to your crafting space. However, if you need to store a lot of paper, these drawer units may be impractical due to cost and space constraints. If you have a limited storage space or smaller budget, consider a different paper storage method.

The following drawer units are popular:

Scrapbook Filing System

While scrapbook paper is often too large for a traditional office filing system, you can find folders and filing cabinets sized for standard 12-inch by 12-inch scrapbook paper sheets. These filing systems are available in most craft stores, but they can be somewhat expensive. If you do a lot of scrapbooking and have a large collection of paper, it may be worth investing in a system like this. Another advantage of a filing system is that it allows you to organize odd-shaped pieces of paper. Since the paper is stored in folders, you won't need to worry about its uneven shape.

The Iris System, available from Amazon, offers hanging file folders and a convenient storage box to hold them.

Horizontal Shelf Unit

Another great paper storage idea is a horizontal shelf unit. These storage devices, similar to the racks for storing your child's puzzles, keep your paper flat and at your fingertips. The downside of this type of system is that it can be difficult to see your paper unless you pull it off the shelf. If you choose this type of storage unit, be sure to sort the paper in a way that makes sense for you. Don't forget to label each shelf so you know where to find your supplies.

Large Magazine Storage Bins

Darice Vertical Paper Holder
Darice Vertical Paper Holder

You've probably seen the vertical storage bins that can help you organize magazines, but some stores carry larger versions of these bins for use in scrapbooking. These can be an excellent way to organize your papers, but they do have a few disadvantages:

  • When papers are stored vertically they are more likely to wrinkle or tear along the edges. Keep a piece of cardboard with them to help provide support.
  • Storing papers in the open can make them prone to dustiness. If you don't use your supplies often, consider keeping papers in sheet protectors to keep the dust off.
  • While these bins look very tidy on the shelf, they can make it hard to see what you have. Be sure to label the outside of the bin.

The Darice Vertical Paper Holder from Amazon also offers a handy option.

Binders for Small Scraps

While most binders accommodate only office-sized paper, you can use these items to keep track of your odd-shaped scraps. You'll need to use another storage device to organize full sheets of paper, but a binder is perfect for those scraps that can mess up an otherwise neat stack. To store your scraps in a binder you can use plastic sleeves to organize your scraps by color or theme. A single binder can store several sleeves of scraps but be sure to label the outside of the binder with the contents. Alternatively, you can use a hole punch to punch a small hole in the paper scraps and then slip them onto the rings in the binder. Either way, your scrap paper will be protected and organized.

Staples has a number of great binders as well as pockets and sleeves. OfficeDepot also offers zippered pouches that work well for smaller paper scraps.

Tackle Boxes and Photo Boxes for Small Scraps

photo storage box
Photo storage box

This idea is strictly for those small scrap pieces of paper that every scrapbooker seems to wind up with but can't bear to throw away. Fishing tackle boxes are generally inexpensive and contain compartments of various sizes, perfect for precious scraps that won't fit neatly in another filing system. You can find all kinds of tackle boxes at sporting goods stores like Gander Mountain.

Another option for scrap pieces is photo boxes. While not as organized as a tackle box, this inexpensive solution will hold quite a collection of pieces that you need to keep flat. These boxes are available at the Container Store and other storage supply stores.


Because many scrapbook enthusiasts are crafty in several areas, you may find yourself building your own storage solution. One way to do this is to follow these steps:

  1. Purchase 12-inch deep shelves with a slight upturned lip.
  2. Purchase inexpensive metal bookends to use as shelf dividers.
  3. Drill holes in the bases of the bookends and attach them to the shelf at intervals perfect for storing paper.
  4. Mount the shelf on the wall above your workstation, and place scrapbook paper in each section.

Encourage Your Creativity

Regardless of which scrapbook paper storage solution you choose, you'll thank yourself next time you try to find a piece of paper amongst your supplies. Having your paper handy and easy to access will encourage your creativity and save you money on duplicate supplies.

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