Saturday, December 17, 2011

Boxing Day (the other kind)

Ooooo, clothespins...they are so handy for everything. I love them in that way you love totally simple and basic things.

But what am I using them for here? Well, let me tell you...

Some time ago I read someone's blog wherein she described making boxes out of cardstock to organize things in her drawers, etc. I'm sorry I don't have a link. I thought it was in my bookmarks but it's not and I have already spent more time than you would believe looking for it, with no success. :(

Anyway, reading her post planted the idea in my mind. In case you haven't heard, I am in the middle of a kitchen remodel. (By remodel I mean new foundation, new floor, new walls, new layout, new plumbing, new wiring, new cabinets, new lighting, new everything...you get the idea.) Anyway, we are getting very close to the point of putting things into the new kitchen and I will want to keep stuff organized. And I am unhappy with the "one size fits none" sort of options you get for drawer organizers in stores.

So I decided to give her idea a try. I figured it was a pretty low-risk option--easily replaced if it doesn't work out; easily completed if it does.

First things first: evaluate what you need to organize. Here is my old silverware container, which has been sitting on an open shelf in a closet for the last year:
It's ok but too wide for my drawer and doesn't really give enough slots.

I took the new drawer and tried different arrangements with the loose silverware:
From that, I took some measurements and laid out a plan:
The first time I just drew in the boxes, but I would recommend writing in what's going in the box. I don't know how many times I make a plan, don't write it down and then can't remember the plan by the time I get to the end. Maybe you are better than me, but my current policy is to write it all down. (In case you're wondering, "loseables" was the term I made up on the spot for the cutlery that Troy is permitted to take out of the house when he has to eat breakfast on the run. This will hopefully cut down on the number of pieces lost from my set.)

Second, gather up some cardstock:
I started with a number of pudding packages and added bean and peach boxes before I was done. Cereal boxes would be great too. (The pudding box was great because it was the exact width I needed for most of the boxes!)

I cut out very simple boxes like so:
(Cut on the black lines, fold on orange lines, and glue flaps marked with green "x"s.)

I originally had the sides go up the full height of the drawer, but that was way too tall. 1.5" seem to work pretty well.
You can see I used the clothespins to clamp the glue joints while they dried. As I made boxes, I fit them into place. I learned that you need to make the boxes slightly smaller than the exact measurements or they won't all fit.

By the end of the day, I had the drawer filled with divided storage:
The drawers are all full-extend, so we should have no problem reaching the items in the very back.

Here it is filled and put to service:
Only time will tell how the boxes hold up to use. If we really like the layout, Troy could make a more permanent divider out of thin plywood. If we don't like it, it's fairly easy to change at this point.

I know the bright packaging in the boxes may seem distracting or even tacky to some, but I kind of like the straight forward honesty of it. We'll see if the opinion lasts.

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