Friday, August 28, 2015

30 Four Days & Four Drawers Mini Organizing Challenge: DIY Kitchen Utensil Drawer Dividers

Welcome to the end of Four Days & Four Drawers week.  This week I was dedicated to accomplish four organized drawers within four days, and once again, I am sliding in just under the mini-challenge wire.  The cool thing is I almost accomplished six drawers in four days.  The not-so-cool thing is that when I was complete with the DIY portion of two of those drawers, I wasn't 100% satisfied with my work.  So although I am not quite ready to share the final two drawers yet, fingers crossed I will get those finished up this weekend.


But today is not about what I didn't get done, and all about celebrating what I did accomplish.  The final two drawers this week were both kitchen messes that I have been meaning to deal with for quite awhile now.  Next to our range we have two drawers that are dedicated to our cooking utensils and kitchen gadgets.  We have never been ones to keep an abundance of random kitchen tools on hand, but we do have a few favorites that we find quite beneficial to our daily cooking and meal preparation.

When we unpacked our kitchen boxes, we did it quickly to clear our guest room for visitors.  Everything was tossed into the specific cabinets and drawers as planned, yet not in any organized fashion.  Although the drawers and cabinets are not extremely messy, they definitely need a little love and attention.

The top drawer holds our spatulas, slotted spoons, pastry brush, can opener, masher and salad tongs, as well as our herb chopper and pizza slicer.


I had started trying to organize the next drawer down with some organizers I picked up at the Container Store awhile back, but I wasn't 100% happy with the result. 


After looking for a few options that would fit our spatulas and drawer measurements, I found myself coming up short.  And when I can't find exactly what I am looking for, I turn directly to DIY options.

We have created wooden drawer dividers in the past, but with all of the odd shapes and cuts for our kitchen tools, we decided that we needed an easier solution than the one we used previously.


For the dividers themselves, I picked up a five pieces of 3" oak hobby boards from Home Depot.  After I added a few of our unused tools to our donate box, I arranged the remaining items in the drawer.


Then we just measured and cut each drawer piece one at a time (straight and simple cuts).  We placed them into the drawer at the approximate location that fit our layout and worked our way from front to back. 


While each of the divider pieces were in their planned location, we used a pencil to mark each board to keep track of our template/layout.


After everything was measured and temped out inside of the drawer, it was time to make them stick.  We didn't want to do anything permanent to our new drawers, so we had to find a way to affix them together while keeping them removable as well.  I considered using wood glue and small nails or staples, but I didn't want the visual messiness of those options.  I found this tutorial and decided our best bet was to go with construction adhesive.


It is important to select an adhesive that will dry clear/transparent because the glue is placed along each divider seam.

Prior to gluing, we placed down a layer of parchment paper to protect our drawer.


We then put our drawer dividers back together based on our pencil markings, using the drawer as a guide to hold all of the pieces together while they dried.


We first placed glue on the edge of each board with our finger.  When the board was pressed against another board, the glue would squirt out through the seams.  I used a cotton swab to clean up any drips or chunks and occasionally also added in a bit more glue to be sure everything was going to dry solid.  Above you can see the adhesive initially comes out white, but below you can see it clearing up as it dries.


Once the dividers were dry (I waited a couple of hours), I removed them from the drawer so that I could line the drawer with true drawer liner (the same liner I used for our pantry and our essential drawer).


Although I typically use anything from cardstock to gift wrap when it comes to lining drawers, this stuff is the "real deal" and has held up quite well in the other kitchen drawers.  Plus, I appreciate keeping the lining consistent throughout the entire kitchen space.

Top drawer done and filled:


And the next drawer down also completed and filled:


Prior to this drawer project we had already purged the majority of our utensils and tools down to our very favorites, however, I did go ahead and purchase a new set of matching measuring spoons since we only had a few miscellaneous sizes of previous sets remaining (which also ended up in the donate box).  Above you may have also noticed that we had a spatula that was slightly too long to be placed in our drawer sideways, but being that it is made of wood, we were able to easily take a small portion off of the handle to make it fit where we wanted. #victory 


The entire cost of the project came down to the pieces of hobby wood and some glue.  To achieve beautiful wooden dividers that fit our exact tools and needs, I think it was $20 and time well spent.



As much as I love (LOVE) acrylic dividers, I also appreciate trying something new.  By mixing things up from our "go to" option, I was able to maximize how we utilize the drawers and create a clean look with wood that blends in seamlessly with the drawers.  Double win.




Have a great weekend everyone and cheers organizing our homes one fabulous drawer at a time!


** Catch up on the remainder of the mini series with our home office drawer here and our school supply drawer here. **

30 comments:

  1. I'm one of those anti-gadget weirdos so I have to ask... What is the green thing in with the scissors, the blue thing top left and the green thing top right? And the little metal things in the other drawer?! Thanks!! Im so inspired. I have a house thats a blank slate but was left nearly uninhabitable by the previous owners so it may be awhile before I get to my own drawers.

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    Replies
    1. Hi Nicole,

      The green slicer is for avocados (yum!) and the blue rings are egg molds and the small green item is a juicer. And the small metal claw like pieces are for our toaster oven which can also do rotisserie.

      Have fun with your blank slate! <3

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    2. THANK YOU Nicole!! I was wondering the same thing about the metal claws!!!!

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  2. Love this so much! I have been wanting/needing to do something like this for a while and this tutorial is the best I have seen!

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  3. This is so so so great!! I'm definitely pinning it for later, but do you mind sharing what you used to cut the wood?

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    Replies
    1. Hi Sarah,

      We used our miter saw but a small handheld saw and sandpaper could also work ok with the thinness of the hobby wood. :)

      Delete
  4. Love it! I've been wanting to do that, but just don't know how. Thanks for the tutorial.

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  5. Awesome! I'm doing this for sure. What a great idea.

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  6. I did this exact same thing years ago. We discovered (the hard way) that over time something will shift and get barely underneath the organizer, then making the organizer move out of place. This causes you to have to take put all the contents and organize it again. So, we remedied the situation by putting a piece of thin plywood down on the bottom of the drawer and used construction adhesive to attach it to it. Just thought I would throw that solution out if someone needs it. Love the blog!

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  7. Looks great Jen, I love the wooden dividers :)
    Xx

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  8. love this little series! so helpful for organised freaks!!xxx

    https://justthatdiy.wordpress.com

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  9. OMG i love this!
    XO Ellen from Ask Away
    www.askawayblog.com

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  10. Love the idea! The premade dividers never fit where I need them to, or it's twice the price for adjustable ones! Thanks for the inspiration!
    Now.... what in the world is that metal robot-leg looking thing to the left of the can opener? :-)

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    Replies
    1. Hi Holly,

      The small metal robot pieces are for our toaster oven, which can also do rotisserie foods. :)

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    2. Aha! Thanks! I've been an avid cook/baker all my life, and I had NO idea what those could be! :-)

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  11. I have no pictures to share, but this challenge was just what I needed this week. We're coming off a death in the family and trying to get back into a regular routine was overwhelming. Tidying up some drawers gave a few little victories and a sense of "I really did accomplish something this week". :) I rearranged a couple of kitchen drawers, and now I have a much needed extra utensil drawer and I've had everything sitting on the counter this weekend as I pondered the best way to organize it. So, this tutorial comes at the perfect time for me!

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    Replies

    1. I am so sorry to hear of your recent loss Kellie, yet it is great to hear you were able to find something positive to celebrate during a challenging time. Thanks for sharing your story. <3

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  12. I love this! I have struggled with simple and customize-able solutions for so many of my drawers. With a relatively small galley kitchen like the one in our house it's important to utilize every little bit of space and all of the ready made options have come up short! You have inspired me to get my kitchen and bathroom drawers organized properly once and for all!

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  13. This is so great! I have two kitchen drawers like this and this method looks so easy.

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  14. Aaaah, looks amazing! (what is that round green tool with two handles and a grid that looks like it has peas poking out of each cell? do I need one of those? hahaha)

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    Replies
    1. That is one of my husbands favorite tools, he uses it for potatoes (hash browns and homemade french fries). :D

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  15. Such a great project again! You definitely have a way with drawers jen, it looks wonderful and so much more functional. #winning

    Lauren Baxter | Lovely Decor
    www.lovelydecor.co
    xx

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  16. This was a great little series! I just uploaded a few of my projects relating to organized drawers. I never grow tired of pictures of tidy drawers! I love acrylic organizers but in this case, the wood made everything look like it was meant to be there.

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  17. Now, I love those clear drawer organizers from the Container Store...but yours turned out so much better! Gorgeous!

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  18. Same here! I have always loved when you organize with acrylic (your photos are amaaaaazing) but this. looks. awesome!

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  19. This is fantastic, and I'm getting ready to conquer our new kitchen (we just moved a month ago), so it's also extremely well-timed. Thank you!!

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  20. Jen, once again, thanks for the inspiration to get 'er done! After transitioning from summer back to school routine, I was ready to tackle some things around the house but hadn't found the motivation yet! I LOVE your DIY wooden dividers! Looking for a place to incorporate that idea in my own home... :)

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  21. May I ask where you got the avocado tool, measuring spoons, juicer and the hash brown/french fry tool. Also on the drawer liner what type did you get the matte etc?

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    Replies
    1. Hi Dianna,

      The avocado tool is from Amazon: http://amzn.to/1KKqRZw (similar), the measuring spoons from Target: http://www.target.com/p/kitchenaid-5-piece-plastic-measuring-spoon-set-assorted-color/-/A-14550268#prodSlot=medium_1_2&term=measuring+spoons, the juicer from Crate & Barrel: http://www.crateandbarrel.com/mini-citrus-juicer/s220805 (similar), and the French Fry tool from HomeGoods. The drawer liner is the laminated vinyl option, which should last for many years to come. :)

      Delete

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