Whether you just have a music locker or a full room dedicated to practice, you need to keep it organized. You need to be able to find pieces and exercise books when you need them. So, I’m sharing my tips for how to organize your practice space.
Currently, I have a whole wall in my bedroom that is dedicated to my music stuff. And that doesn’t include a bookshelf for music and books that I’m not using at the moment.
In college, however, I only had a small music locker to store and organize my stuff.
I’ve had both ends of the spectrum in terms of space, and here are my top tips for organizing your practice space.
Please note: this post contains affiliate links. Click here for my full disclosure policy.
How Big is Your Space?
Do you have all or part of a room? Or do you just have a small locker? The size of your space will determine how much you can store and how you can organize it all.
When all I had was a locker, I kept my older materials in my dorm or at my parents’ house. The last thing I needed was to take up space with unnecessary materials.
Now that I am living at my parents’ house, I have more space. I have a bookshelf where I can store old music textbooks and method books. My “music corner” as I call it is where I store everything else.
If you’re a pianist or vocalist and all you have is a bag, you’ll have to be even more picky about what you include. You will also probably need somewhere to store your excess music elsewhere.
Prioritize Your Music and Instruments
If you know me, you know that I am a musical instrument hoarder. I have 3 C flutes, 2 piccolos, an alto flute, 2 alto saxophones, a clarinet, 2 recorders, 2 penny whistles, 4 ocarinas, and a lot of other instruments.
I know that I don’t need all of those instruments to be in my music corner. Flute, piccolo, and alto flute are my primary instruments, so I keep (my best models of) those instruments on my desk.
The rest of my instruments are scattered throughout my room and the house.
If you only play one instrument on a regular basis, you just need to store that one instrument. You vocalists don’t have to worry about storing instruments, unless you also play another instrument.
Storing your ever increasing music library can get a bit more complex. If you’re like me, you won’t have space to store all of your music together. When that’s the case, make sure your current and standard music is as close to your practice space as possible.
Don’t Forget Accessories
Most instruments have some sort of accessory to go with them. You will also probably want to have a music stand. So don’t forget to include some space for your various music accessories.
If you’re limited on space, get a music stand that can collapse down. That way you can store the stand when it’s not in use. I’d still recommend getting a sturdy music stand. Avoid those cheap wire ones. Peak has some good music stands that fold up easily for storage and transport.
Flutists, you will want a flute stand, a cleaning cloth and rod, and a polishing cloth. If you play piccolo, you should also have a good pair of ear plugs, a piccolo stand, and cork grease (for plastic and wood piccolos).
Other instruments will require their own accessories. Reed players will need enough good reeds, cork grease, swabbing cloths, etc. Brass players will need to have valve oil. String players need rosin.
All musicians need a tuner and a metronome (could be an app on your phone). And of course, you can’t forget a pencil.
Set Up Your Space
Music stand. Unless you’re at music school or a vocalist, you will want space for your music stand. Most music school practice rooms will have at least one stand available, so students can pass on this one. For at home practice, you’ll want one.
Instrument stand. Keep your instrument safe and use a stand for it. You *can* haphazardly set it on a chair or desk, but that’s risky. Give yourself the peace of mind. You can find compact stands (meant for travel) if space is a huge concern. This flute stand is perfect, and it even fits in your footjoint.
Your instrument. The next (and most important) thing you need is your instrument(s). You can’t practice without your instrument. So be sure there’s space in your locker or room to properly store your instrument.
Sheet music. If you’re a music student or otherwise serious about music, you will want ample space to store your sheet music. You will at least want enough space to store your current music.
Your choice. How I organize my practice space is going to be different than how you want to organize yours. That’s okay. Just make sure you know where everything is. If you want to see how I organize my practice space, follow me on Instagram. This week, I’ll be sharing a tour of my practice space on IGTV.
How do you organize your practice space? Do you have a dedicated room? A locker? Something in between? Let me know in the comments! And be sure to subscribe below for your free sample of my ebook Become a Musician!