Do you have a drawer in your kitchen that’s full of miscellaneous stuff? Here are some simple easy tips to organize a junk drawer.
Does anyone else relate to those Progressive commercials?
The ones where the people are always turning into their parents and the class instructor tries to save them and gives them strict instructions about parking lot commentaries and clearance sale aisles and price comparisons.
I literally laughed out loud at one yesterday.
Because I can relate.
Because I said EXACTLY what the instructor told them not to.
Because I am turning into my mother every single day.
Starting with this junk drawer.
That’s what my mother called the drawer in the kitchen where all the random odds and ends of life congregate together because they don’t really have another home. She’d open the drawer and sigh and complain because she couldn’t find what she needed to open a package.
And then she’d look at me and ask me if the scissors had grown feet.
At the risk of completely morphing into my mother, I started 2022 by organizing the drawer.
And getting rid of the junk with the BEST new drawer organizer I just found.
If befores and afters make you happy?
Here’s a little drawer comparison to get us started.
This is the drawer before picture.
And this is the after.
Please tell me you sighed.
Me, myself, and I have scrolled back and forth between the two pictures at least five times.
And it all started with these drawer organizers.
I’ve tried several different iterations of this product and these are by far the best value for the money. They come in a set of 25 and there are four different sizes of containers so you have so many combinations and ways to set them up to fit any drawer. They have these little rubber feet on the bottom that completely hold them in place and prevent them from moving around and they even fit inside each other (you can see the small chalk bin and the small thumbtack bin actually fit inside the larger square bin).
You can see the drawer organizers here.
Here’s the step-by-step on how I organized the junk drawer.
Here’s how I organized the miscellaneous drawer.
Is that better? 🙂
How to Organize a Junk Drawer
Step 1: Clear the drawer
It’s SO MUCH easier if everything is out of the drawer and on the counter in a big pile.
Don’t even try and organize as you go.
You can get sidetracked with old gift cards and notes from friends and coupons.
Just take it all out and put it on the counter.
Step 2: Wipe it down
That drawer needs a good wipedown. There is extra gunk in the drawer leftover from all the junk.
Wipe it down and let it dry.
Step 3: Apply contact paper
I think this is another instance of me turning into my mother.
I love contact paper.
They sell drawer liners that you just cut and fit and don’t stick them. Those don’t work for me. They bunch up and never stay where they are supposed to and end up becoming part of the junk instead of part of the solution.
Please give me some contact paper.
I’m using some old contact paper leftover from the twins’ bathroom that I got at Target several years ago. I found this really cute gold and white contact paper with more of a geometric pattern, but it’s so pretty.
Step 4: Add the organizers
See what I mean?
I know I already sang their praises, but these drawer organizers are PERFECTION.
They fill up every bit of the drawer and I could add them in any different combination depending on what I needed to organize.
And they fit any drawer.
You can see them here.
Take these organizers (or any that you want to use) and arrange them in the drawer.
Step 5: Group similar items together and place them into the containers
I think it’s easier if you sort as you go.
For example, I started with my giant piles of junk on the counters and kept going until I had put everything that I thought should go into the drawer back inside.
Here’s what I organized in my junk drawer:
- A container for pencils
- A container for pens
- A container for markers
- A container for stain markers for the floor and chalk markers for the chalkboard
- A container for post-its
- A container for rub-n-buff
- A container for scotch tape
- A container for zip drives
- A container for chalk
- A container for push pins
- A container for scissors
- A container for utilitarian tape
- A container for measuring tape
- A container for paper clips
I kept typing container in this list to make a point and share an organizing secret.
If you have a container for everything? IT WILL STAY IN PLACE.
Step 6: Toss or donate or find a place for everything else
After you put everything in the drawer, there will still be some stuff left in the pile on the counter.
Just make a few decisions.
Toss everything that should be tossed.
Donate anything that you don’t need anymore.
Find a new home in another drawer in your house for everything else.
Here are some close-ups of the stuff in the drawer so you can see all the containers.
Aren’t they amazing?
There are so many containers in this drawer that keep it all organized perfectly (and I love that they are clear so I can see the contact paper through them).
My mother used to say, “A place for everything will keep everything in its place.”
She is brilliant and it is true.
With all the individual containers and compartments in the drawer, you can use something and put it right back in its own little container so it all stays neat.
Earlier today a package showed up.
I opened up the drawer and took out the scissors, cut the package, and put the scissors right back where they belong.
I need to report back to my mother and let her know….
….scissors are no longer growing feet. 🙂
disclosure: affiliate links are used in this post.