Paintbrush Sorting, Solved!

Today I’d love to share a cheap, color-coded system to store your paintbrushes. The system is also student-friendly and will make keeping your brushes sorted a breeze! Having already used recyclables as a storage solution in another area of my room, I began saving containers of multiple sizes. I simply spray painted each recycled container black for uniformity and added a little flare with acrylic paint. See how the matching system works in the video!

How do you store your brushes? Can you share any other tips? 

Do you have a system in place for paintbrush clean-up?


Alecia Eggers Kaczmarek


Alecia is an elementary art teacher in central Iowa who is passionate about teaching and reaching her students with an innovative and meaningful arts education.


  • Nic Hahn

    Good one! I’ll use this:)

  • Lisa

    Great advice Jessica! I so agree with you.

    • This video was actually of Alecia Eggers, one of our writers, and showcases her beautiful classroom! :)

  • Erin

    Love the idea, I could really use this since all the teachers in my school use my art materials…but I can’t view the video. Would love to see it to get further details


    I’ve done this at a previous placement only I didn’t just organize by the different brushes but the sizes too! Because of that, I created the line design on the container with the paint brush it held and then when I was deciding which brush was best for the project, I could make the decisions quickly. Or, when I had students picking the brushes they desired, they could make the decisions about what kind of detail the had without much thought.

  • Leah Keller

    You are my organizing guru!!

  • Matty Miller

    What kind of paint did you use to dip brushes and make the lines? Were they pre mixed colors, house paints, or did you mix a bunch of each color? Thanks!

    • Alecia Eggers

      Hey Matty – I just used regular acrylic paint from the craft store and then sealed it with rustoleum gloss spray…this was the hard way. I would totally tape/mask them and then use the outdoor furniture spray paint!

  • Pam Lewis

    Alicia–so happy to find this! Do you put the brushes directly in to these after they are washed? Or do you have a drying rack or something first? And if you put them in there wet, do you drill a hole in the bottom–or is water collecting in the bottom not a issue? Thank you! Also, how many containers did you end up with?

    • Alecia Eggers

      Hi Pam!

      I actually use a cheap, plastic dish drying rack to allow my water cups and brushes to dry before placing them back into the containers. I ended up with as many containers as there were different types of brushes. I believe there are 22. These were just recycled plastic containers that I inherited with the room!

      Hope that helps!

      • Pam Lewis

        Great! Yes, it does help! Thanks so much. So do you have 22 different colored brush handles–one color for each style?