They See Me Rollin’: A DIY Rollup Organizer for Back to School (in 15 minutes)

DIY Rollup Organizer for Back to School (in 15 minutes)

I’ve been working on getting the studio organized (and ‘finished’ to the point of sharing an official studio tour) this last month and a half. And it’s led me to some organizational project stuff that I’ve been wanting to share. Some projects are large (can’t wait to show you what I’m talking about – very soon) and some are small. Today happens to be on the small side…

It’s a 15 minute project that is almost too easy (and functional) not to take the time to make, for a DIY rollup organizer. All you need is a tea towel and a sewing machine (and thread). That’s it!

We made a couple and I’ve been using them to keep small items like pencils, scissors, paint brushes, etc handy at the studio. But it also totally works for back to school, if you have any little ones. Click through for the step by step instructions.

Supplies for a DIY Rollup Organizer

Materials / Tools

  • tea towel with an interesting design*
  • sewing machine / thread
  • (optional) thin leather strip 8-12 inches long

*In case you’re curious, the pink pattern tea towel I used for this DIY is vintage. But the green tea towel can be found right here.


1. Lay your tea towel flat and using a pencil to measure fold up the bottom section, pin on each side and sew.

2. Continuing to use your pencil to measure decide how wide you would like for each section to be, pin and then sew.

3. Fold over your top section and decide how far you would like the fold to come. If your towel is just the right length you can skip this step. But if not, cut off excess fabric and hem.

4. To finish, iron your fabric at the fold and sew a seam from side to side to make a flap that will lay flat.

5. (Optional) To keep the rollup secure, you can add a leather strip, tied in a knot. I didn’t attach mine to the actual rollup – just wrapped it around and knotted it after everything was rolled. But you can sew the two pieces together, if it makes more sense to have that piece connected.

DIY Rollup Organizer for Back to School (in 15 minutes)

I love how these little guys turned out because I am always, ALWAYS losing things (pens, pencils, etc). And these organizers are a lot harder to lose track of than a pencil. 🙂 Hope you like ’em too.

They See Me Rollin': A DIY Rollup Organizer for Back to School (in 15 minutes)

DIY Rollup Organizer for Back to School (in 15 minutes)

DIY Rollup Organizer for Back to School (in 15 minutes)

They See Me Rollin': A DIY Rollup Organizer for Back to School (in 15 minutes)

Sewing Rachel Brewer
Photography Amelia Tatnall and Brittni Mehlhoff

Question of the day… Are you always losing track of craft supplies like I am? Think you’ll give this DIY organizer a try?

17 comments | Click here to reply

I love this organizer; it will help to keep my different types of pens and pencils organized. Do you have a solution for clips? I can’t wait to see your studio makeover to get ideas for other tips. My office is a slam hot mess right now. Oh, and I always love your titles. You have that song stuck in my head now. 🙂


Haha Kimberly. That song has been stuck in my head for two days for some reason. For clips, you could create kind of a pouch within the rollup that can be sewn directly to the inside. And if they’re binder clips, like mine, you can also just attach them to the outer edges (probably no more than couple would fit, but that could still work). Hope that helps!


Love this! I’ve wanted to figure out how to make one for a while so this will definitely help. I’ve saved it to use later. Love the title!

Tina x


I love this!! It reminds me a lot of knitting needle organizers!



Awesome tutorial. This would work for knitting needles and makeup/nail art brushes too. My knitting needles come in something similar.

Laura [Merkitty]

Omg, love this. Perfect! Thank you for sharing. Off I go to find a cute tea towel.. x


What a wonderful idea!! : D



Favorite colors! Also I love this simple sewing project for a problem I always have… too many great pencils and pen and not enough places to put them!

Amy | Delineate Your Dwelling

I love this idea, it is a great organiser for pencils. I made a bag for my blog once too, it can also be used for pencils:
Check it out, maybe you like my idea of how to make a simple pouch:-)


Definitely want to try this for some of my art supplies – even despite my hatred of sewing 🙂

Krista | The Illustrai

What a perfect idea, not only for school supplies!


Wow! This doesn’t look too hard but very pretty! I love the cloth you have used, it looks stunning! Will have to try this!


Your fabric choices are so charming, I might have to find the same exact ones haha! Thank you for sharing such a simple and useful DIY for back to school!

Eden Passante

This is absolutely amazing! I’ve always looked for a simple way to organize my stuff. It’s so cute and easy to create. Thanks for this nice introduction 🙂


So cute!
im a newbie blogger so come along and visit my blog 🙂


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