How to organize your junk drawer

Get that abyss of odds and ends in order once and for all -- and create a useful space for daily supplies.


Photo, Roberto Caruso

1. Divide and conquer

Dump the clutter and categorize your everyday items into groups. Make room for each of them using small partitions and boxes.

2. Receipts

Make a couple of fabric envelopes to keep receipts in check. (If you don’t sew, try hemming tape or fabric glue.) Keep one for consumables and one for returnable purchases, or one for business and one for personal receipts. Empty once a month.

3. Take-out menus

Expandable folders are great for delivery or takeout menus. Sort them by cuisine or proximity and label the dividers.

4. Bits and pieces

A clear-plastic drawer organizer doubles your space and shallow boxes make use of extra room underneath. A lidded box is ideal for storing other items you don’t want your kids to get their hands on.