De-junk the Junk Drawer

Is your junk drawer full of – well – junk? Nearly everyone has one, but some are more useful than others. Here’s how to whip yours into an organized and functional space.

Take everything out and start tossing. Junk drawers are notorious for accumulating the stuff you keep “just in case” or which doesn’t have a designated “home.” Discard unidentifiable keys, screws, and nails. Out go old pens, scraps of paper with scribbled phone numbers, crumpled receipts, and expired coupons.

I de-junked my junk drawer a few years ago and am happy with the results. It’s nice to be able to find what I’m looking for. I will admit I revisit it every once in a while to get rid of stuff that doesn’t belong there!

Group what’s left into categories. Usually, you’ll end up with office supplies (pens, stickie notes, tape, glue, rubber bands, scissors); fix-it supplies (hammer, screw driver, small tin of nails); and a few other odd bits.

Purchase a drawer divider (you can find plastic or wood versions at your local discount store or online) or simply reuse some small cardboard boxes to separate and contain your junk drawer’s contents. (Check boxes work great!) Small mint tins work well to hold everything from paper clips to nails, stamps to coins. Label them for easy storage and retrieval.

Use your junk drawer with caution. When you’re about to toss in something, ask yourself if it should really go elsewhere (like the trash can or another room). If it belongs in the junk drawer, then immediately place it in the right section of the drawer so you can find it when you need it.

I am Cathy Dryden, and I started neat chic organizing to empower others to lead more fulfilling lives by helping them to become more organized through individualized coaching and training.

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