It’s all too true how tough it is to stay on top of the mess. The mess of papers, of homework, magazines, bills, important documents; the mess of life. It’s a chore and it’s a on going one at that. Systems, methods and designated places are all friends of the cause. One of my favorite things about my job is the inner workings of well designed spaces. Here’s one such example that took a little measuring and a little planning which all paid off:



before and after organization







As a child, my dad’s top dresser drawer was a place of happy mystery.  This was not a messy mystery, rather this mystery was neatly organized into a multitude of small boxes. There was a small box for coins, a small box for buttons, one for stamps, another for handkerchiefs. The neatly nestled boxes and their individualized contents delighted me.


When visiting my dad’s father in California, my grandpa was standing at his top dresser drawer as I walked by.  There it was – the original top dresser drawer!  My grandfather took things farther in the whole pursuit of perfection thing. He made his own boxes to size, cutting and joining, sanding and measuring to make the perfect sized box for the contents in mind. He glued green felt on the bottom of those boxes so they slid around in graceful felt-y ease.


Without a dresser in my bedroom, I am currently failing the family legacy of a top dresser drawers filled with nested boxes; but some day it will be my long awaited joy to arrange little boxes and fill them with the odds and ends that make up each person’s own top dresser drawer mystery.


If you haven’t experienced it, you might be amazed at how good it feels to organize small things in small boxes, top dresser drawer or elsewhere.  Here are some boxes for perusal. I think Grandpa would smile if he could see the careful addition of green felt circles.




top left: organizer  on etsy; top right: bamboo boxes from the container store; bottom: handmade valet on etsy


If you are a do-it-yourselfer, here is a great tutorial for making your own organized drawer over on Ana White’s blog!