Sunday, September 2, 2012

Divide and conquer

Just a quick little post to show you Brian's latest little project: a divider insert for my socks-and-underwear drawer. My dresser has one large top drawer instead of two small ones, and I'd been frustrated for a while with the difficulty of keeping everything organized in there. The bras wouldn't sit neatly lined up, but would go flopping over into the socks; the individual pairs of underpants I'd tried to line up in a neat row were likely to slip under the stack and disappear. I'd seen drawer inserts designed to address this problem, such as these from the Container Store, but $10 apiece seemed too much to spend, and my own jury-rigged solutions (shoebox lids and the like) didn't use the drawer space very efficiently.

Eventually, I got frustrated enough to ask Brian if he'd custom-make an insert to fit the drawer. He originally considered making a divided frame to fit inside the drawer, similar to this one that he made for our silverware drawer in the kitchen, but he concluded that, since the insert would have to be smaller than the drawer itself, it would reduce the available space too much. So instead, he cut a base of 1/4-inch plywood to the size of the drawer bottom, made the dividers themselves from lengths of a 1/2-inch board (neatly rounded on the top with a router so they wouldn't tear my unmentionables), and affixed them with glue and screws. (The decision to use more secure screws rather than teeny-weeny nails forced him into using the thicker wood for the dividers, even though they eat up a bit more of the drawer space than skinny 1/4-inch boards would.)

Unfortunately, this little project wasn't as cheap as I originally expected. As regular readers will know, we do a fair number of projects around the house using scrap wood and other materials we have on hand. Last week, however, Brian discovered the drawback of this approach; eventually, you run out of scrap wood, and you actually have to go buy some. So we had to shell out about 10 bucks at the Home Depot for the materials to make the drawer inserts. However, we now have some leftovers again, which will surely come in handy for future projects.
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