The junk drawer. I still don’t understand why we even have one. It gets filled with the most random things like, you know, junk. Yet we still feel like we need one to hold items that we do use either occasionally or daily. It took me years to figure out how to organize a junk drawer, but I think I may have found the secret formula.
Empty It Out
Instead of rummaging through the drawer, trying to figure out which items to toss or keep, empty all the contents on your kitchen table. You’ll need to spread everything out so you can get a good look of what’s been hiding in the drawer.
Section Your Items
To help you decide what needs to be put back in the drawer and what can be tossed, you’ll need to create sections or groups. Decide if an item is useful, useless, nostalgic, or nonsense.
The useful items are things that have a purpose in your home, like pens, craft items, scissors, matches, etc.
Useless items are things that you may have collected for a reason, but they just ended up taking up space. These could be things that you have multiples of, which makes them useless, like extra lighters, or half empty bottles of essential oils. Keep in mind, these items may not be thrown away, but they may need to be placed in a new home, rather than the junk drawer.
Nostalgic items are things like souvenirs, old pictures, or maybe even the key to your old home that you would like to keep. These can be placed back in the junk drawer if you don’t have any other space for them, but they really should be put in a fire box or another special place for mementos.
Nonsense items are those little bits of randomness that make you tilt your head when you seen them. Some of ours were expired coupons, old receipts, a piece of gum, cat toys, and Chuck E. Cheese tokens. See? Nonsense.
For the most part, the nonsense items should be thrown away immediately. The Nostalgic items can be put in their new home, and the useful items can be put right back into the drawer, neatly. The Useless items will have to be decided on bit by bit. For example, we don’t drink soda but we had tons of coke rewards codes from past parties we’ve hosted. These were kept so we could add the codes to get coupons for more free drinks for our next event. We never added the codes and they just built up. I started adding codes once I was done organizing the drawer. These were eventually put back into the junk drawer in it’s own compartment, so I can continue to add the codes until they are gone. We also had the same issue with box tops for education, so we put those in a zip top bag and sent them to school with our little girl. Give yourself time to decide what “useless” items need to stay, go, or need immediate action.
Use Compartments Properly
Having compartments in your drawer will help you keep it as organized as possible. The key is to allot each compartment to something specific. One compartment for craft items, one for coupons, one for emergency items like matchboxes and tea lights, etc. By being discriminate about what goes in the compartments, you’re less likely to make the mistake of bombarding the drawer with unnecessary items again.
Create White Space
Yes, your junk drawer shouldn’t be full of junk. Revolutionary, I know. If you keep some open space in your drawer, you’ll know when things are getting out of hand when that space is no longer present. As soon as you don’t see your open space, you should take at least 15 minutes to review everything in the drawer and get things back to normal.
Stay Firm In The Future
This will be easy to do if you follow that last two steps, but it’s going to be so important to be firm with every single item that you think should be in that drawer. Give yourself a second or two to think if you really love it, need it, and will use it.
I hope this helps you tackle your junk drawer. Do you have any tricks you can share when it comes to how to clean or how to organize a junk drawer? Share in the comments down below.