Drawer-ganizing With Felt
I have a thing about stuff: If I can't see it, I forget about it, then I buy a duplicate, or it goes rotten, or I do a project or follow a recipe using mediocre substitutes. I've found that organizing and making things viewable in whatever way I can, saves me a lot of time and frustration.
My kitchen has a decent amount of storage but a lot of it is in the form of deep cabinets and weird nooks, which can make things really difficult to find. I've mitigated some of this with things like turntables, hooks, and clear jars for storing grains and nuts, etc., but I still work to make everything as visible as possible.
One of my very favorite recent projects was reorganizing my tea drawer (holy crap I'm gonna win Spinster of the Year for that statement). I did this project for my tea drawer but you could make this to organize all sorts of stuff like utensils, jewelry, craft supplies - really anything. Here's what I did:
- I tried a few different ideas and ended up going with an industrial felt grid. It looks nicer than plastic dividers and allowed me flexibility to use whatever measurements I wanted.
- First, I measured the height and length of my drawer. I decided that I didn't want the tea cubbies to go all the way across, in order to have a place for loose tea and various steeping accoutrements, so I measured 3/4 across for the width.
- After measuring the largest tea bags I have, I decided on 3-and-1/4 inch squares for each tea cubby.
- I cut three rectangular strips of industrial felt that measured the length of the drawer by height height of the drawer using a quilter's ruler as a guide and a rotary blade (very carefully) on a mat to score a straight line, then I used a pair of scissors to cut all the way through.
- I cut five rectangular strips that measured only 3/4 the width of the drawer (because I wanted to leave room on the side for other things) by the height height of the drawer.
- I plotted out roughly how I wanted the strips to go in the drawer to make sure my math was right.
- Using the ruler, I marked slots every 3 and 1/4" that were a little less than a 1/2 inch wide (the thickness of the felt) and were a little taller than half the height of the drawer. From the left side of the drawer I measured 3 and 1/4" then a 1/2" slot, then 3 and 1/4" then a 1/2" slot and so on. I did this starting on the left side because at this point I knew I'd be glueing the horizontal pieces (going from drawer side to drawer side) to the drawer instead of adding another vertical piece (going from back to front of drawer).
- The last slots on the width pieces (on the right side of the drawer) were about a half inch from the edge to allow for loose tea space that would span the length of the drawer.
- I created the grid putting the vertical pieces slots facing down and the width pieces slots facing up.
- The last step (unexpected because the felt wasn't quite stiff enough) was to put a dab of hot glue at the top of each end of felt to affix it to the drawer so that everything stayed in place.
The whole thing came out better than expected, particularly because of the hot glue added at the end (it was looking a little rough before that). This technique will work with any material that is stiff enough, just remember to cut the slots to match the thickness of the material.
Feel free to reach out if you have any questions about this project. I may try to add a diagram of what the pieces look like. I'd love to hear if anyone has tried this or has other ideas for organizing as I can always use more!