is reader-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more

How to Organize Colored Pencils

how to organize colored pencils
I hold dear the idea that art is all about the freedom of expressing oneself self without strict bounds or rigid rules. But still, I like to keep my art supplies organized. It helps me find what I need when inspiration and motivation strike me. I will share with you my tips and tricks on how to organize colored pencils.

These tips and tricks are just general guidelines, however. You can still use your freedom to organize your colored pencils however your desire.

Tips and Tricks on How to Organize Colored Pencils

These tips on how to organize your colored pencils will ensure that you spend more time drawing instead of looking for the right pencil. I have dual goals when organizing my colored pencils. The first goal is to maintain cleanliness, and the second is for efficiency. If my colored pencils are organized, I know where each color is. I don’t have to look for every color I need.

Get Containers

The very first step is to prepare containers for your colored pencils. The options for containers are practically limitless. Popular choices among non-picky artists I know are mason jars, coffee cups, or plastic containers.

However, I prefer using containers that suit allow separation among the pencils. What I mean by separation is that the container segregates the colored pencils individually or, at the very least, into small groups.

Pencil Wrap

My primary preference is a pencil wrap. It is a convenient stretch of fabric or leather with small pouches that can accommodate pencils, erasers, or sharpeners. Pencil wraps are portable cases that you can roll then secure with a tier snap. You can bring it anywhere. Additionally, it protects the pencils individually. You can get pencil wraps with varying carrying capabilities of 12, 24, 36, or up to 72 pencils.

Pencil Caddy

Aside from pencil wraps, I also like pencil caddies. Like a golf caddy bag, a pencil caddy has sections in which you can store your pencils. Because of the sections, you can group your pencils according to your preferences. The designs for pencil caddies are very diverse. My favorite ones are wooden cases with holes in which you can stick your pencils.

Pencil Carousel

Another favorite option is a pencil carousel. If you have no idea what a pencil carousel is, you’re missing out on a lot. It is basically a circular pencil stand with holes in which you can stick pencils. The circles are layered, with each inner layer more elevated than the last. So, when you fill all the individual pencil holders, you have a beautiful spire of colored pencils.

Some pencil carousels are like actual carousels that rotate. The idea behind that rotating function is to make it easier for you to find the pencil you need.

No matter what container you choose, as long as it helps you keep your colored pencils organized, it will suffice.

Group the Pencils

group the pencils

The next thing you need to do is group your colored pencils. Again, there are many ways to group colored pencils.

By Color Family

If you have no idea where to start, I suggest following the manufacturer’s guide on grouping the pencils. You can easily find color swatch charts that group the pencils by their color family on the internet.

Following the manufacturer’s guide on grouping colored pencils by their color family works, I strongly suggest doing the grouping independently. One of the dual goals of organizing colored pencils is to know where each is. Personally choosing where each color is placed helps achieve that goal.

You can group the pencils by their color family on your own; without the manufacturers’ guidance. Doing this step on your own gets you more acquainted with your colored pencil set. Additionally, it will help you better familiarize yourself with which colors belong to a family.

Create a group for your red tones, then for your blue shades, and so forth. You can also group your metallics and neutral colors.

By Temperature

If grouping by color family does not work for you, perhaps grouping by color temperature suits you. Warm colors include red, orange, and yellow hues. Blue, green, and purple shades belong to the cool category.

By Rainbow Spectrum

Another grouping option is following the rainbow spectrum. This type of organization pattern works best in a linear case, such as a pencil wrap. The pattern starts with the red hues, then moves to orange, yellow, green, blue, purple, and neutrals.

Brights, Neutrals, and Pastels

A creative grouping option is separating colors in brights, neutrals, and pastels. I find that this option works particularly well when I’m inclined to abstract drawings where color patterns are not rigid.

Your Artistic Preference

Alternatively, you can group your colored pencils according to your favorite colors or the colors you use most. This kind of grouping is ideal if you have already developed an art style and you already know what colors you work with the most.

Final Word

Hopefully, this basic post on how to organize colored pencils tips and tricks is helpful for you. Remember, there is no one way to organize your art supplies. As long as you keep them tidy and easily accessible, they are organized. And if your organizing method satisfies your artistic quirks, then good for you!

Leave a Comment