I finally have gotten around to organizing my junk drawer. It was really in need of some love, but I have been putting it off for awhile now, trying to focus on other more pressing projects. I have justified my procrastination by telling myself that it is just a junk drawer and by definition should not be organized. I mean, it’s right there in the title, “junk!” But, that line of thinking can only satisfy my obsessive need for order for so long. It would appear that the time was finally up. Luckily, I found these AMAAAAZING, easy DIY custom drawer dividers from Rockler.*
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Easy DIY Custom Drawer Dividers…
So, as you may or may not know, I am very big on organizing my drawers. Over the years, I have completed several projects to achieve the sense of order that I like to have with my drawers. Sometimes I just want a particular custom look, like I did with my dish drawer organizer and my utensil drawer. Other times, I just like to make things more efficient, like I did with my chest of drawers. Well, these Drawer Divider Tabs* by Rockler have made this latest project super simple!
To start with, my junk drawer is where I keep all of the odd, but necessary, things that one might need to have quick and easy access to do a quick repair. This is where I store my batteries, fuses, a hammer, a few small screw drivers (the kind that you might need for eye glasses or computer screws) extra remotes, etc. As you can see, with out dividers these type of things just turn into a jumbled up mess.
Luckily, I discovered Rockler’s Drawer Divider Tabs* and decided to buy a few just to try them out. They are these neat strips of hard plastic slots that allow you to place any 1/4″ width wood divider into them. I bought 3 strips for my drawer, but you could get way with much less if your drawer is smaller and/or you better utilize your usage. Since I was going to use my drawer as a demonstration, I thought that I should show you how to use them both ways – liberal and conservative usage. So, I ended up using more than I would have otherwise. (more on that in a bit).
The great thing about these divider tabs is that any DIYer can do it – from a basic beginner to a more advanced. All you have to do is cut them to size. Then, peel and stick them in place. You could even have the hardware store cut your wood dividers for you. I took the middle of the road route and bought 1/4″ x 24″ sections. Then, cut these sections to fit the space that I needed.
Easy DIY Custom Drawer Dividers – Instructions…
So, let’s take look at my junk drawer conversion and the steps that I took to create it, beginning with step 1. The first thing that I did was to place the tabs around the perimeter of the inside of the drawer. Note: your drawer interior needs to be clean of all surface dirt to ensure correct adhesion. You can do that with TSP or Mineral Spirits.
In order to make everything line up exact, I first make sure that the starting edge is cut right against the side of the first tab. This is one of two crucial steps in getting your dividers to align properly. So, make sure that you do this.
The next crucial step is to use some sort of a spacer to use as a guide for placement. (unless you plan to to go the super liberal route and begin each strip at the corner). I did not see the point in starting all the way at each corner, because I know that I will never place a divider that far back. So, I used a 4″ piece of scrap wood to block the corners. This places the beginning strip 4″ away from the edge.
I continued to run a strip on all sides of the drawer, starting and ending 4″ away from each edge, until I had the entire drawer sides covered. (Note – to ensure that you do not inadvertantly pull away the adhesive, rub the adhesive firmly before removing the covering.)
I continued the process on my wood dividers. Here, you can either run a strip down the entire length, as shown above, or you can place the tabs just where you need them. If you choose to cover the entire divider, there is no need to go all the way to each end, unless you plan to place a cross divider in that location. In this case, I would use spacers at the ends as a guide.
However, on this particular drawer, I decided to be even more conservative in my usage. I cut my tabs after every four tabs. Then used the spacer in between. This way, I was only using half the amount that I would have used to cover the entire divider.
Which every way you decide, repeat the process on the opposite side of each divider. Just be sure that all your tabs line up with the tabs that you just placed, and that those tabs line up with the next set, and so on. (see arrows) This keeps everything aligned for the cross dividers.
Next, I tested my dividers with a few cross sections to get an idea on the size that I needed. I just played around with different sizes to see what worked for me. Then, I would head out to the saw to make the cuts.
And this is my drawer after I finished placing my dividers and organizing all my junk! The best part for me is that I no longer have to riffle through the mess to locate a battery. Amazingly, I still have several empty sections for future junk!
I have to say that this is one of the easiest custom drawer products that I have ever come across. You literally just peel and stick. My favorite feature, however, is the ease with which I can change the layout. If you want to give these divider tabs a try, you can check them out at Rockler’s.* And if you have never shopped at Rockler’s, let me just say that it is a woodworker’s dream store!
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