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do I need to leave room to expand in my junk drawer?

Posted by talley_sue_nyc (My Page) on
Fri, Mar 30, 12 at 7:38

I'm working on the "junk drawer" section of my triangular closet, and I've pared WAY down, and organized well.

I even fit the P-touch labeler in one of the drawers!!!

But doing so means that I have 2 drawers, and they're really pretty full. So I don't really have a place to put anything else. You know, like those random plastic pieces that you hold onto until you're sure they don't go with something.

I'm pretty good with the idea that I've put in the stuff that's most needed, and will be most likely to show up.

But should I leave a little room for that stuff? (**What kind of stuff do you end up randomly putting into your junk drawer?**)

Or should I not, and then I'll be forced to do something ELSE with it because it won't fit? That's what I did with my night-stand drawer--I reduced the size with a false bottom, and it has made a HUGE difference in how useful that drawer is.

Any insights or recommendations?

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: do I need to leave room to expand in my junk drawer?

I think you should start by changing the name of the junk drawer to the convenience drawer.

At my house, the random plastic pieces go in a plastic box that I call the parts box. It contains random parts for things that I can't throw away but won't need anytime soon and pieces of plastic and metal that I can't quite figure out what they are.

junk drawers

Oh, and I have been meaning to say that I have been enjoying your recent threads - there are some marvelous ideas in them. I love the idea of using magnets.

And speaking of marvelous ideas, I was reading the HGTV forums the other day and someone there pointed out a blog called diy home sweet home. I don't read blogs routinely, but this lady has collected some wonderful (and some strange) diy tips. Oh shoot, if i link to it here, I will screw up this thread. I will post about it separately.

RE: do I need to leave room to expand in my junk drawer?

oh, oh, oh I just found a great idea for magnets!! Use them to keep the parchment paper from curling up on the cookie sheet or roasting pan until you have laid out your dough or vegetables. Put a little round magnet in each corner. And, of course, I keep them in my Altoids box--actually attached to the side. This isn't my idea, I read it somewhere.

Graywings, I too have a random pieces box/container, I just didn't know what it was called :) When I come across an unidentified screw, cap, clip, etc, I put it in the "random pieces" container until the aha moment arrives. Thanks for the official name!!

RE: do I need to leave room to expand in my junk drawer?

your altoids box sticks to the side of your stove via the magnets inside it? That's way cool.

I like the idea of the name change.

and some of the things in that drawer may go away; I'm wondering why I still have upholstery screw tacks, for example. Or why I *ever* had them. Oh, wait, I think I was using them for the bedskirt eons ago.

RE: do I need to leave room to expand in my junk drawer?


This is a bit off topic, but since you mentioned your P-Touch, I thought I would ask you a question.

Just today my good old Martha Stewart P-Touch stopped working. It has been at my side for nearly 8 years (is that right? Or have I had it for longer). Today, when I needed to make labels for various Nerf guns, it would not turn on.

So my question is this: can Brother p-touches be repaired? This one is so well-made and I know how to use it. Newer ones have far too many options for me. I would just like to fix the p-touch I have and move forward. I can't last long without one (dramatic emphasis yes, but I really rely on that p-touch).

Any ideas, Talley Sue? Either way, thanks!


RE: do I need to leave room to expand in my junk drawer?

cup, that's amazing!! Every now and then I remember those labelers.
One of the good deed i remind myself when my depression hits.

I don't know if they can be repaired or not. Probably the cost of repair is equal to the cost of a new one.

I got a new, more advanced one, and while I like the ability to do two lines AND two different fonts (I think the serif font looks dressier), I feel like I don't have quite as many middle options for sizes.

The newer one works mostly the same (though I haven't figured out how to stop it from wasting so much space at the end of the tapes. Martha was so incensed at the waste that at least for a while she insisted they print a special slip to pack in with the ones sold under her label telling you how to save tape. And I can't find that in my new one's directions.)

RE: do I need to leave room to expand in my junk drawer?


I'm embarrassed to say that I plugged my labeler into one of those GFI outlets and the safety switch was triggered so the outlet was shut off. I found this out because it shut off half of the outlets in the kitchen as well (another effect of a bad remodel!). I don't know why this happened since I had just used the outlet earlier that day, but it is a reminder to reset the outlet before running to the fuse box.

So my faithful MS p-touch is ready to label whatever Nerf guns require it. But just in case, can you link the model you have now? (I agree that a dressier font would be a great option to have). If you could post a link showing the model you have now, I would be so grateful!

A final thank you for procuring my labeler. It was $35 which seemed like so much money at the time. That was before we sent kids to college. Now anything under $20K seems like such a deal!

Check out this link which offers a suggestion on how to save excess tape at either side of the label. I plan to do this if my MS labeler will allow the change.

Here is a link that might be useful: Adjusting P-Touch Label Margins

RE: do I need to leave room to expand in my junk drawer?

Yay!! I'm so glad. We label Nerf guns as well. In fact, we hosted a Nerf-gun activity day at my church, and I took my P-touch along to label each kid's gun as he (or she) came in the door.

I'm about to pay for college--and suddenly the $8 for the wall stickies in my other thread seems like WAY too much.

I looked on the P-touch website and I couldn't find one like mine. They have a much smaller selection right now.

RE: do I need to leave room to expand in my junk drawer?

Gosh, I'm so glad to read that I'm not the only one that keeps odd "parts" for fear of someday finding out that I really needed them! LOL

RE: do I need to leave room to expand in my junk drawer?

I don't think you need to leave room to expand a junk drawer. The sorts of little odds and ends that wind up in a junk drawer are rather self-limiting, unless you want to store 5 sizes of paper clips or different types of scissors, or lots of hardware, etc. I am glad to say that we've never outgrown our junkdrawer, but if it was bigger, it would probably be just as full as it is today!

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