Stardust

Writings from my little corner of modern domesticity.

The Before and After in the Kitchen: Part 1, Drawers

I promised photos, so here they are. The drawers I’d still like to get pretty paper on the bottom of, like in the job IHeart Organizing did (see previous post for the link). The cupboards are awaiting Christmas to see how the list turns out (and, well, because I spent my current organizing budget already, pretty much, and can’t buy as much as I’d really like to for the cupboards just yet).

I’m pretty pleased with the process so far. There’s space in the cupboards I didn’t know existed. Of course, I threw a lot of things out (list at the end if you’re curious), and decided I needed to give away a few things, but the majority of stuff I kept.

Let’s start with the drawers, since I did. The photo on the left side is the drawer before, and the right side is after.

This is the drawer by the stove. It previously contained all the silverware, all the various cooking utensils, measuring cups, whisks, the can opener, a bottle opener, an extra set of 4 steak knives, an extra bread knife, and spatulas, etc. You can’t see everything in there (and I assure you, everything that’s in the ‘after’ is in the ‘before,’ plus quite a bit more) and I couldn’t, either, when I was trying to use the stuff in it.
Now, it contains only the things I use either on the stove next to the drawer or on the counter above it, where I usually do my mixing and assembling. I’m especially happy with this redo because the previous incarnation was, as you can see, a scramble-and-search sort of operation.

This is the square drawer, previously under-used, and formerly home to (oh hey, there’s the bottle opener I thought was in the other drawer…see why I needed the redo?!) take-out menus, instruction manuals for kitchen electronics, an apple slicer, pizza slicer, potato masher, twisty straws, a cookie cutter, four sets of playing cards, a travel chess/checkers game, and a mills game, as well as a set of Uno cards and the heating element to our electric griddle.
I moved the silverware over from the stove drawer, removed the non-kitchen items and paper, and sorted. The bread knife and can opener also migrated, into their own “sharps” bin, which is shared with the pizza cutter. The heating element is still in there, with a lack of another good place to put it, I’m afraid, but…well…you do what you can with what you’ve got.

Ah…the junk and/or miscellaneous drawer. Everyone’s got one. Everyone’s embarrassed by it. Well, mine wasn’t quite embarrassing; I’m quite proud of the job I did with what I had in there. But I knew it could be neater, and so I made it so.
I also wanted to get my stash of reusable shopping bags out of there. I want them closer to the front door so I remember to take them when I go shopping. Also needed it reorganized in terms of frequency of use, with the more-used items more in the front of the drawer and in the center or left side, since I open drawers with my right hand and grab with my left. My markers and the tape were particularly important, as I use tape for lots of things (who doesn’t?) and I use the markers for labeling things in the fridge and freezer, and a new system I’ll talk more about during the cupboards.

Things didn’t work out quite how I planned. And- I almost hate to admit -I planned hardcore. I measured the drawers and then drew to-scale rectangles in my little blog/planning notebook. In these rectangles, I plotted out bin sizes and placement, also to scale. I made totals of each size necessary and estimated cost.

Then, I went out, bought all the stuff, and came home to install. Only to find out that some of the containers are exact at 6″ x 12″, for example, but that others are 3.2″ x 6.8″ or something equally dumb. So there was at least one bin that didn’t fit in each drawer. Which meant I had to remap them somewhat and exclude some bins. But it’s all still pretty peachy. I’m pleased, overall.

‘Till next time, when you get to see my shiny-clean cupboards, just ripe for some organizing accessories!

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