The Dreaded Junk Drawer

The Dreaded Junk Drawer

How to Take Back One of the Messiest Places in Your Home

Listen, we all have one.

You don’t have to be embarrassed about the two paper clips too much thorn in your side, known more commonly as the “junk drawer.” Ah yes, the “catch-all” is home to the all the odds and ends, residing somewhere between the spice drawer and office desk, and is seen as a necessary evil to most homeowners. After all, everyone has one, right? While yes, most people do a have a junk drawer, that does not mean you have to have one, too. Kind of like when your kids come home and said everyone failed the test, and your rebuttal is something like “well you’re not everyone.” Oh, how the tables have turned.

Let’s walk through the steps you should take to finally tackle the all mighty junk drawer, showing you that it’s easier than you think, but still just as rewarding as a complete pantry makeover or a fridge overhaul. (Disclaimer: if I type “drunk jawer, blame it on my editor, not me).

1 Purge 2 Arrange
Okay, so you probably saw this one coming, but it still reigns true. The first step in any organizing project is to take everything, yes even that spilled soy sauce packet, out of the space and purge what you don’t need. The best part about purging the junk drawer is just how much you can get rid of. Expired coupons, broken mechanical pencils, dried out pens, burnt out lightbulbs, a toothbrush that’s having a bad hair day, a bendy straw with one too many bends, sticky rubber bands that you are perfectly okay with not finding out how they got sticky, all get thrown/recycled. This feels so good. The junk drawer has the highest space -to-purge ratio in the house (yes, I just made that up) and you would be amazed by just how much clutter is in your junk drawer. Well, maybe not, it is the junk drawer after all. Alright, so once you’ve taken “junk” out of the “junk” drawer, it’s time to prioritize and pile. Arrange what you have left into appropriate groups that coincide with your junk drawer’s location. If you have a kitchen junk drawer, there are specific items that should be there such as scissors, recipes, coupons, etc. If it’s an office junk drawer, then things such as a label maker, gum, stapler, and hand sanitizers all have a right to be there. Everything that doesn’t belong should be moved to its appropriate location. If you can’t find a good place for something, don’t be afraid to throw it out, but if you want to keep it, this is still technically a junk drawer, so everything doesn’t have to be perfect. What really matters is...
mDESIGN TIP: Once everything is out, give your drawer a deep clean. We don’t know how that chewed up piece of bubble gum got in there either, but now is the best time to get it out
3 Storage Solutions 4 Maintenance
Now that you have purged and piled up your items, it’s time to finally transform your space. A drawer is a drawer is a drawer, but a drawer with some storage solutions is a completely different animal. An amazing storage option that is too perfect for a junk drawer makeover is this home office drawer organizer. If your junk drawer is in the kitchen, use these bamboo drawer organizers that come in varied sizes for complete control and customization over your storage solution while also providing a more natural finish. Drawer dividers are also super handy for the kitchen or office and help keep your items separated. Like any other organizing project, it’s not a one-time event but more of an on-going procedure. Drawers are designed to keep messes “out of sight, out of mind” but you must make sure you stay on top of your junk drawer. Even with perfect storage solutions in place, things can get mixed up, misplaced and messy in a hurry, especially if you have kids. Set aside some time each week to provide some much-needed maintenance to your junk drawers, that way your drawers stay organized and your home stays harmonized.

Even spaces as small as junk drawers can have a huge impact on your home and your peace of mind. All too often, we write off these thorns in our sides because of their ubiquity, saying to ourselves, “well, everyone has a junk drawer” but it’s time to start realizing we aren’t everyone. And if we don’t allow our kids to use that excuse, then we shouldn’t use it either…even if everyone does have a junk drawer, that doesn’t mean your junk drawer has to be like everyone else’s.

Nathan Ray is a Content Assistant at mDesign.
He is really, really good at catching the little pieces of eggs that they throw at you at Hibachi restaurants.

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Posted: Jul 18, 2019