Whether you've intended to or not, you probably have a junk drawer in your home. And that might not be a bad thing.
"Junk drawers are the perfect resting place for the random assortment of items that you want quick access to and use often," says organizing expert Tova Weinstock. But she cautions, there's a fine line between a junk drawer and a dumping ground for items you're not putting away properly.
So what does belong in a junk drawer? "Think: 'active' papers (those which you're currently using/needing to refer to), tools that you use all of the time, various writing utensils, coupons or rubber bands," she says. Weinstock suggests that you take a moment to think through when you'll need an item next and how regularly you use it, before you throw it into a drawer. "If you're throwing in belongings that should be stored in a more permanent home, you'll end up with a messy and nonsensical junk drawer."
Case in point: HuffPost Home editor Jessica Cumberbatch Anderson's own junk drawer shown here:
After trashing some items that proved to be largely unused...
Weinstock put a few organizing tricks to work.
"Drawer dividers are key for junk drawer tidiness," she says. "Separate the items by size and contain the various categories separately." Weinstock suggests keeping all of the smaller trinkets together and away from the larger items to avoid items getting lost. You can also use the space in between the dividers and drawer walls for loose papers or coupons.
Now, how do we keep it that way? "DO NOT let your junk drawer become a home for items that you're too lazy to put away," she says. "Also, your junk drawer is not a purgatory for new purchases that you haven't created a permanent home for yet."
The other important thing to keep in mind: The drawer you chose to store your "junk" in. "An extra large junk drawer will end up swallowing everything that's in there so keep it small and shallow," Weinstock recommends. "This will allow full view of whatever you're storing inside as soon as you open the drawer. And that means maximum efficiency and ease."
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