Organizing the messy drawer

Every home needs a “messy drawer”. It is usually located in the kitchen and contains all the things that have no other defined place. This drawer is constantly messy, but it should not be. Here are several tips for organizing it.

Every home has such a drawer. It is usually in the kitchen, and you will always find a screwdriver, a marker without a cap, a key that you no longer remember what it is for, an old pacifier of the kid, recipes that you once cut out from the newspaper when you thought you would prepare and which collect dust since, and other items that have no other place around the house and are placed together in a mess in the jack of all trades drawer in the kitchen.

Have no mistake, any home needs such drawer to store all general stuff and other items that need to be kept in reach. But this drawer can be organized – against all odds. By implementing three rules and some old tricks, you will be able to obtain a neat and pleasant appearance of the drawer, and to always pull out the required object without looking for it underneath the paperwork, old kitchen tools and hundreds of keys.

Rule No. 1: paperwork – out

In many messy drawers you will find a great amount of paperwork, most of which - let us guess, being irrelevant. From junk mail, old bills and newspaper clippings or children's drawings - scatter paperwork is a sure recipe for messy appearance and it is therefore advisable to avoid storing paperwork in that drawer. It is best to invoices (or receive them by e-mail and protect the environment), use your smartphone to take a photo of the recipe you saw in the newspaper, and sort the other notes on the go to prevent them from piling up. If it is difficult for you to make sure that you regularly sort them, it is best to assign another place for the paperwork – for instance - in a cardboard folder that you can place on a shelf in the work area. By the way, if you keep the paperwork in a visible location it is easier to remember to file and sort it and it will not accumulate dust in the drawer.

Rule No. 2: keep in the drawer only what is necessary

It is difficult to define “what is necessary” in a drawer whose purpose is to store things that we do not use on a daily basis. Therefore, it is recommended to practice the elimination method to decide what is not necessary? Starting from non-functioning markers with no caps – it is better to get rid of them. Same goes for keys without a relevant lock, a clock without batteries (no, you will never replace the battery in that clock). This process requires self-discipline and assertiveness. Ask yourselves – ‘when was the last time I used this article’? if you can’t answer it yourselves, then it is best to toss it.

Rule No. 3: store in the drawer only a small amount of items of each type

What does that mean? Well, if there are at least 4 screwdrivers in the drawer, one box with nails, a hammer and a plier – then this is a working tools drawer and maybe it is best to find a different place for the other items. If you further find pastel colors in the drawer, as well as markers and crayons – then maybe it is best to store them in the children’s creating area, rather than in the general drawer. The purpose of the jack of all trades drawer is to clear space for all those items that you can’t designate an entire shelf for. A single screwdriver to be in reach for simple repairs is legit, so is the case of 2-3 pens. As soon as there are numerous items with a common denominator other than “many little things and we have no other place for”, it is recommended to find a different storage location for them. 

Tips for perfect organization

  1. Create cells inside the drawer - you will find small boxes for storage in every household store. Place in each box only objects of the same type - a box for the keys, a box for the stationary, and so on. By the way, you do not have to purchase the boxes - you can use empty baskets of fresh mushrooms that you buy in any supermarket.
  2. Adjust the box to the objects it stores - if you want to store nails or board pins, you may want to select a small box that will contain small objects. If you need to store screwdrivers, a long ruler and larger objects – find a long and narrow box that could fit them. This method saves space and even assists to maintain the order, where every item has suitable storage that fits its measurements.