Junk Cupboard Organization

I had time for a little organizational project over this long weekend. It didn’t cost a lot of money and was quick to do, which is just how I like it!

I don’t have a junk drawer – I only have four small drawers in my whole kitchen, so they are too precious to use for junk! But when we moved in I did designate one cupboard to hold all our miscellaneous items – batteries, pens/pencils, matches, flashlights etc. I used small white bins from the dollar store and threw some labels on them. The inside of the cupboard door had a whiteboard sticker and a small adhesive envelope for coupons etc. It was functional but it wasn’t very pretty!

So when I was at Dollarama (a Canadian Dollar Store) last week and saw some cute chalkboard labels (which were $1.25 packet) and chalkboard paint (which was also only $1.25 and came in several colors), I was inspired to re-do the cupboard. It was quite simple and only took about an hour – in fact I pretty much did it all while I was making and cleaning up after lunch one day!

First, I took out all the bins, sorted and de-junked them. I wiped down the interior of the cabinet and all the shelves while I was at it. Then added the new chalkboard stickers. I used a chalk pen I got at Michael’s to label the contents. So much cuter! (And I de-cluttered so much I even have an empty bin – BONUS!)

Then I pulled the whiteboard stickers and envelope off from the inside of the door and started painting it with the chalkboard paint. I just poured a little bit of the paint onto an old plastic container lid and used a foam brush to apply it.

I won’t lie…I was a bit apprehensive about making such a permanent change to my cupboard! Here’s how it looked after one coat. Yikes!

But here it is after three quick coats. The paint covered beautifully and I was so pleased with the transformation! Nice!

I “seasoned” the chalkboard by rubbing the broad side of a piece of regular chalk all over the surface and then wiping it off. This ensures that you don’t leave noticeable chalk lines behind when you go to erase something.

It will be a great place to jot down my grocery list, important dates that are coming up and even a fun quote or two. I used a velcro dot on the raised side panel to keep my chalk pen handy. (I also rehung our extra keys from the hooks at the top of the cupboard door…we’ve kept them there since we moved in and I can’t tell you how handy that has been!)

Then I decided to clean up the side of the fridge beside this cupboard where I had always haphazardly stuck receipts and notes on with random magnets…it was pretty junky looking!

I finally got to use one of the Thirty-One Gifts products that I think is brilliant to corral the clutter…the Oh Snap Pocket has two hooks at the top for hanging, and a chalkboard panel on the front of the pocket. It’s a great piece and reasonably priced at $18.00. I purchased it for my Thirty-One kit to show customers, so I’ve actually had it for quite a few months. And if you don’t like chalkboard panels, you can also get them without,  and personalize them with embroidery as shown in this photo:

Back at my place, I simply used two 3-M Command Hooks to hang the Oh Snap Pocket on the side of my fridge and wrote “Receipts & Coupons” on the panel with the chalk pen. Because of the snaps on the back of these pockets you can actually hang another pocket from the pocket, so I think I will get another one and have one for receipts and one for coupons! I love how this looks and functions, and I am kicking myself for waiting this long to hang it up!

What an improvement on this area of the kitchen! It functions even better than before, looks great and really works with the rest of the decor and “feel” of the room. I love it!

Now I already had most of these items in my home and only purchased the labels and chalkboard paint new, so it was a very economical project. Here’s a cost breakdown of all the items if you were purchasing them from scratch:

From the dollar store:
9 small plastic bins = $11.25
2 packages chalkboard labels = $2.50
1 bottle chalkboard paint = $1.25

From Michael’s:
Chalkboard pen = approx $4.00

From Thirty-One Gifts:
Oh Snap Pocket = $18.00

Total $37.00. Not bad for less than an hour and less that $40 bucks!

I hope you can use a few of these ideas to improve an area in your home. I’d love to hear about it, or answer any questions you may have, so please leave a comment below!

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