Free Kim Diehl patterns: handy thread keepers and scissors fob ✂

If you’re familiar with Kim Diehl’s books, you know they’re packed with smart little tips and tricks that simplify your sewing life. If a step can be made easier, Kim will show you how it’s done!

Kim also loves to share recipes, decor ideas, and little bonus projects in her books. In Simple Harvest, she shares a quick way to create thread keepers and a cute wool-penny fob for your scissors.

Free Kim Diehl patterns

Kim’s thread keepers are a snap to make, and they’ll last longer than the paper versions. Plus, you probably already have just what you need to make a bunch: bits of template plastic.

Kim’s scissors fob will make it easy to find your scissors—sometimes doesn’t it seem like they scurry away? Instead of searching for your scissors, just look for the pretty wool pennies!

Kim DiehlFor the thread keepers, Kim says, “For a convenient way to tuck embroidery floss and pearl-cotton threads into my needle book with less bulk, I use little thread keepers, which are super quick to make and can hold a TON of thread. Simply use a rotary cutter with an old blade and an acrylic ruler to cut a ½" × 2″ rectangle from template plastic. Smooth the edges and round the corners of the rectangle with an emery board, and then cut a ¼" snip at the center of one end. Wind your keeper with thread and slide the loose end through the snip to anchor it and prevent tangles.”

For the scissors fob, Kim says: “To make a fast and easy scissors fob, stitch two large penny stacks (as shown in the photo above and outlined in the needlebook project instructions on page 30 of Simple Harvest), and use a spool or lid measuring about 1½" (give or take) as a template to add one slightly larger penny to each stack. After taking a few stitches with perle cotton to secure the ends of a folded 8½" length of ribbon to the center of one wool stack, sandwich the ribbon loop between the two glue-basted penny stacks. Use the perle cotton and a blanket stitch to join the edges, and loop the fob through the scissor handle.”

Easy-peasy, you’re done!

Kim’s thread keepers and fob pair perfectly with her Harvest Song Needle Book and Sewing Jar projects—you’ll find patterns for both in Simple Harvest.

Harvest Song Needle Book and Sewing Jar
Harvest Song Needle Book and Sewing Jar

If you’re like Kim, fall is your favorite color—so why let the current season determine your color scheme? You can stitch up Kim’s projects from Simple Harvest and use them every day of the year!

Burnished Baskets Lap Quilt
Burnished Baskets Lap Quilt

Dresden Dish Garden quilt
Dresden Dish Garden Quilt

October Twilight quilt
October Twilight Quilt

Harvest Tapestry quilt
Harvest Tapestry Quilt

See more projects from Simple Harvest here.

How do you store your embroidery threads: on template plastic like Kim, on cardboard bobbins, wrapped around clothespins . . . tangled in balls at the bottom of a Ziploc bag? Tell us in the comments!

Download Kim’s Buttercream Twist pattern when you sign in or register at our website, ShopMartingale:

Free Kim Diehl pattern
Buttercream Twist: sign in or register at ShopMartingale to download the pattern!

51 Comments (leave a comment)

  • I have always stored mine on the little flat cardboard template "thingies" you can buy, with the maker and the color number written on the end. Then those I store in "tackle box" type plastic storage boxes, in numerical order. It’s the easiest way to store them.

    —Geri on April 23, 2018
  • I am now winding my embroidery thread on plastic or cardboard holders i but at my favorite craft store. I also havd some pretty mother of pearl holders. But i love Kim’s idea to use template plastic as holders. Will be trying that!

    —Sandy Ruffino on April 23, 2018
  • Thank you. I enjoy reading what you are doing.

    —Dot Howard on April 23, 2018
  • I try to be organized with each colour group in a zip lock bag in my embroidery case. But every now and then I’m given a bin of thread that resembles a dogs breakfast and I agonize for days trying to get it sorted. I often end up with a tangled mess that I just draw on for crazy quilting. I must be really crazy!!

    —Sue Artuso on April 23, 2018
  • I wrap my threads and note their make and numbers on cardboard or plastic bobbins that fit into boxes which in turn I store by colour. However over the years I have found wooden spools for five threads that I use for a project or to store threads for which I have no provenance. If I don’t spool my threads and protect them my cat spins them together or runs off with the skeins. I like these template plastic ‘bobbins’ for projects – good for taking on a plane. Thankyou for the idea Kim and Martingale!

    —LouiseHDW on April 23, 2018
  • Most of my embroidery threads are on those cardboard holders and placed in a plastic box. I tried to be really good at storing them but a lot of them are still in the skeins as I bought them.

    Shasta on April 23, 2018
  • I keep all of my embroidery threads on cardboard bobbins (I make the color number on the cardboard), then store them in a plastic container designed for embroidery thread. This keeps everything neat and tidy.

    Sandy on April 23, 2018
  • I store mine on cardboard cut to fit a 3-ring notebook. I took a hole punch and punched the holes along the side and threaded the thread through the hole with a slip knot. Then I wrote the color’s number beside the hole. Keeps them from getting tangled and I have the color’s number available if I get close to running out. Easy to store.

    —Cheryl L Buchanan on April 23, 2018
  • I store mine on cardboard bobbins. I have some plastic boxes that they fit in nicely. They are stored with the numbers so it is easy to locate what I need.

    —Rilla Burnham on April 23, 2018
  • I keep my threads sorted my color in plastic organizing bins. Then these bins set on their sides in a storage cube. All my threads are accessible at a glance. Love Kim Diehl’s books and projects. I have all of her books except one.

    —Debbie on April 23, 2018
  • I have stored them in a clear plastic box, as orderly as I can. It’s not great but I had not seen an organization system that interested me. But Kim’s strategy looks like a long term solution that I could do gradually as I use the threads without a huge investment.

    —Cathy Cavagnaro on April 23, 2018
  • My threads are stored on purchased plastic or cardboard bobbins that have been punched to use on a ring. They are labeled with the thread color and stored in a large two-sided tackle box.

    —Lisa Zook on April 23, 2018
  • I separate the threads by color,(coral, light pink, pink, hot pink, etc) and put them in plastic bags placed on a large ring. When there are just a few threads I will put them with another color (light pink and hot pink) in the same bag. The pearl cotton balls go into the bags also. There is a hole in the bag where I can pull the thread out and cut a length of thread from the ball without taking the ball out. Love the scissors fob.

    —Judy on April 23, 2018
  • My embroidery threads are either in big plaits (colour co-cordinated) or on specialist plastic cards which fit in their own box with number on the top of the card for easy identification and storage. Didn’t find the free patterns, where are they hidden😉

    Hi Liz, if you go to our Freebies page you’ll find a free quilt pattern called Buttercream Twist by Kim Diehl – just sign in or register to download it here: Thanks for your question! –Jenny

    —Liz on April 23, 2018
  • I use all of the methods mentioned to store thread. Some are wound on template plastic, some are stored by color in small plastic bags. All of them are stored in a large project box.

    —Joel Sellers on April 23, 2018
  • I store mine on cardboard bobbins. I have them numbered and try to keep them in a container in numerical order.

    —Jill on April 23, 2018
  • I have a cookie tin that I keep my threads in when I’m not using them. The ones I need for my current project are in a plastic baggie with everything else I need handy to grab and go.

    —Fran Bianchi on April 23, 2018
  • around plastic templates–in an organizing bin, in numerical order

    —MS Barb on April 23, 2018
  • I have many wound around cardboard bobbins in a nice neat box. But I must admit that some are just thrown in an old metal lunchbox.

    —Barb W on April 23, 2018
  • Mine are all on the cardboard bobbins in a plastic case. From my days of cross stitch.

    —Jody on April 23, 2018
  • I keep my embroidery threads on the cardboard pieces sold at Michael’s or JoAnne’s. I love everything Kim Diehl.

    —Frances Claassens on April 23, 2018
  • I keep my embroidery threads on cardboard tabs that go into a plastic box. But love the idea of a glass jar!

    —Linda Tucker on April 23, 2018
  • I use little cardboard bobbins numerically arranged in a plastic container

    —Carol on April 23, 2018
  • I use purchase plastic bobbins that I keep in a plastic floss organizer as well as a bobbin that holds the whole skein. I attach the color label to the skein holder or white on the plastic bobbin the color and brand. I like the the plastic bobbins that have a hole punched in them so I can keep all my colors for a project on a key ring. I keep all of the skeins that I haven’t transferred to bobbins or skein holder in bins by color hues, ie: oranges, reds, blues, greens, yellows and neutrals.

    —Kathy on April 23, 2018
  • I store my embroidery threads on template plastic and write the color number of the thread on the plastic with permanent ink. No muss, no fuss.

    —Teri Gailey on April 23, 2018
  • Definitely wrapped around plastic floss cards and stored in a plastic case!

    —Nancy on April 23, 2018
  • I’ve graduated from a plastic baggie, to floss cards on a ring. But to be honest I have a lot more embroidery floss now and it’s better that it’s organized.

    —Toni Anne on April 23, 2018
  • Kim’s fabric is beautiful and her patterns are fantastic….she is one very talented lady….

    —Linda Berwaldt on April 23, 2018
  • I lay the skeins side by side on a long piece of fabric, organizing them by color. I fold the two long edges in over the top of the skeins and then roll it up from end to end and secure with a rubber band.

    —Chris on April 23, 2018
  • I store my embroidery thread on little plastic cards (some are on the original cardboard ones) and stored in a case colour coded with numbers written on them

    —ELIZAJANE on April 23, 2018
  • I use plastic bobbins/reels which are stored in a plastic carrying case. Each bobbin has a number, and they are filed by color progression.

    —Sandy May on April 24, 2018
  • I use the cardboard or plastic cards to wrap the floss, then put the number on it. They are stored by number. I break them down in separate boxes by DMC, Rayon, DMC flower Thread, Variegated, Metallic,then ones I use a lot of are in several boxes labeled extras. So far I have 23 floss boxes full. My Pearl Cotton I have stored in 3 big drawers of a rolling unit. I love my thread. There is also wool thread, silk thread, ribbons, oh my the list goes on and on. People laugh, I have a lot of stuff but if they ask for something I can put my hands on it within minutes.

    —connie b on April 24, 2018
  • Some are in a plastic box on cardboard holders with the info on it and the full skeins are in a baggie.

    —Barbara H on April 24, 2018
  • I use the cardboard or plastic bobbins with the color numbers written on them in large thread boxes – but when I’m working on a project, I store all the threads needed for that project in a smaller thread box. Makes sorting and finding a lot easier, and I can easily take it with me.

    —Karen D on April 24, 2018
  • Mine are stored in ziplocks, but at least they are sorted by color. LOL

    Same here, Melanie! –Jenny

    —Melanie on April 24, 2018
  • Mine are stored on embroidery thread bobbins. I have cardboard ones and plastic ones.

    —Marsha Nelson on April 24, 2018
  • I have several needle keeper small books I’ve made. I have them in cross stitch projects, cross stitch of course! Several in wool appliqué projects with cute stithing on the front. Even 1 in the drawer of my sewing machine table with a few quilting & appliqué needles! 💟

    —Tammi Williams on April 24, 2018
  • I try to store my embroidery thread around little cardboard pieces, with color number noted and then put them into little plastic craft boxes, in numerical order.

    —Geri on April 25, 2018
  • I am very particular in storing my threads. When I want to embroider I don’t want a tangled mess. I wrap all my embroidery threads on plastic bobbins and then sort them by color in a plastic box. Thanks.

    —Doreen Gabe on April 26, 2018
  • Love Kim Diehl!!! Her fabrics are beautiful and I have several of her books! My favorite designer!

    —Carolyn Block on April 27, 2018
  • I use the thick paper ones that come with the clear box, but I’ll be doing Kim’s way for small projects. Love the book, love anything Kim does!

    —debby on April 27, 2018
  • Mine are wrapped around plastic with the color number on the tab and stored in a plastic box for that purpose.

    —Sylvia on April 27, 2018
  • Wow just love the book and all the good ideas!!!!!!!!!!!! love the idea with the small wooden pins and that is a great idea. I am going to have to look for some little pins like that. I put my embroidery thread on the white paper spools and a few years ago I got a wood cabinet with drawers and they are in them and use them when needed. There is times that the thread does not get all use and so think the wooden pins would come in good then.Great ideas!!!!!!!!!!!!

    —Louise on April 27, 2018
  • Cardboard thimbles….for thirty years!

    —Welton Renee on April 27, 2018
  • I wind them on flat cardboard or plastic thingies, then have them stored by DMC numerically, in a large fishing thingy with drawers.

    —Piroska on April 27, 2018
  • I have them wound around the little cardboard things and then kept in a plastic organizer box. Love all thing Kim Diehl. I just about have all her books but I do not have this one yet.

    —Renea on April 27, 2018
  • I use plastic winders that have a hole on one end so they can be kept together on a metal ring for each project. When not in use, they are kept in order in a clear plastic box.

    —Linda Towers on April 28, 2018
  • I usually store my skeins of embroidery thread in acid free decorative box which is labeled. I love her idea about wrapping a variety of threads around clothes pins and transporting them in the cute jar with the pin cushion on top.

    —Rebecca on April 28, 2018
  • As I have very little embroidery threads, mine are just kept in a small tin that was given to me. dquilterguy48329 (at) prodigy (dot) net

    —Darrell H on April 29, 2018
  • I have a large ring that holds many small plastic bags from Floss-A-Way. You write the color # of the floss on the bag. I’ve had it for years and have lots of floss and I love it.

    —Judy Miller on May 3, 2018
  • I wrap mine around plastic designed for floss with tabs you write the number and manufacturer. Kept in a huge tackle box and in numerical order. Tackle box was so for this, it us double sided. Also gave a single sided one. Had this for about 25 yrs. I still can buy the plastic for winding.

    barb h on May 10, 2018

Leave a comment

*Indicates required field