How to Organize the Junk Drawer Plus Six Products to Help You Get Started

Mebbay Expandable Drawer Organizer

The junk drawer, we all have one. It contains the extra stuff that life brings us. In other words, tiny screws, random rubber gaskets, buttons, flashlights, and oven lightbulbs. Yes, that stuff. It all goes into the junk drawer. However, despite its name, the junk drawer also contains often-used items like scissors (because Amazon packages), pens, paper, take-out menus, a screwdriver, you know what I mean! After all, that’s why you’re here. If you’re handy and want to make your own, check out my post on how I made our custom junk drawer dividers (with sliding trays). If not, here’s how to organize the junk drawer, plus six products to help you get started!

Step 1: Remove the Junk Drawer and its Contents

Start by selecting your favorite playlist; because great music may help make the endeavor enjoyable.

Remove everything from the drawer and grab the trash can and recycling bin; you’re going to need them. Toss or donate anything you don’t use. Set aside any items you have questions about; you can discuss them with your family or housemates later.

Tip: Now that the drawer is empty, clean it thoroughly using a damp sponge or an all-purpose cleaner and microfiber cloth.

Step 2: Group Like Items Together

Group similar items (that are going back into the drawer) like pens, paperclips, post-it notes, and rubber bands. Try to return only the things you use most often. If something requires a new storage solution, let everyone know where to find it.

Tip: What goes back into the drawer is entirely up to you. Your junk drawer needs to work for you and your lifestyle.

Step 3: Divide and Conquer

Measure the width and depth of the drawer. Then purchase a drawer organizing system, reuse dividers that you already have on hand, or make your own.

How to Organize the Junk Drawer + Six Products to Help Get You There - Our custom junk drawer DIY
The completed custom junk drawer.

You’ll be happy to know that there’s no need to spend a small fortune to organize the junk drawer. Organizing solutions are available everywhere to fit every budget. Chances are you already own what you need to get that drawer organized in less than 30 minutes. But if you need a few recommendations, I’ve compiled six products to help you get started; all are expandable or configurable, an absolute must for organizing the junk drawer.

Step 4: Dedicate a Storage Zone for Paperwork

Attach clear plastic folders to the inside of an upper cabinet door with command strips to stash menus, important school papers, and sports calendars.

Step 5: Refresh it

If your drawer is scratched or stained, consider lining the drawer with contact paper to give it new life; lining the drawer with a pattern you love may inspire you keep it organized.

Step 6: Have an Organization Plan

Most importantly, once organized, it makes sense to have a plan to keep the junk drawer organized. Like a house plant, your junk drawer will need regular attention. Go through it weekly and purge as needed because the mail, tiny screws, paperclips, and take-out menus will keep coming.

Happy junk drawer organizing!!!

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