How do I organise my stuff in my dresser?
September 29, 2011 3:09 PM   Subscribe

I'm now the proud owner of a proper grownup bedroom set, with a dresser that has a mirror and everything. What are your best tips for organising all my stuff so I can ready most efficiently?

I've spent most of my life bouncing out of bed, into my trousers and out of the house. I just realised that I'd be a lot more likely to put some effort into dressing nicely and accessorising and maybe wearing makeup and jewellery occasionally, if all my stuff was well organised and easy to find.

I also have a lovely (but badly lit) old dresser in my bay window. It has a little mirror, a wide shallow drawer, four small but deep drawers, and a double power socket behind it. I'd love to turn it into my super ergonomic morning dressing station, although I don't want it covered in clutter when I'm not using it.

Do you have handy tips and tricks I could use to help organise clothes, accessories, makeup, and jewellery to maximise the efficiency of getting up and out in the morning? Or any other wisdom on the subject of getting ready?
posted by emilyw to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (5 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
Lucky you! I've been doing this and there's something so nice about it, like drinking tea in an actual china cup and saucer.

What I've done so far is put all my perfume in a little silver tray like this, and my post earrings in a dish similar to this. Then I have something kind of like this: I took a vintage picture frame, took out its guts, put chicken wire where the picture would be, and screwed in drawer pulls on the corners. The wire is good for dangly earrings and headbands/hairpins, and the knobs are perfect for necklaces. My biggest time waster in the morning was always searching for the other half of a pair of earrings; YMMV.

The shallow drawer is perfect for makeup! I've been using baby vintage jam or mason jars for qtips, makeup sponges, and the like. Same with my brushes. Lipsticks/glosses go in a little vintage soap dish (I bet a china saucer would work too). These are all on the top of the dresser, and then I keep my more common-looking things (you know, like my Revlon hairbrush, drugstore mascara, WetnWild blush) in the shallow drawer. So it still looks nice on top, but you have everything you need at hand.

Good luck!
posted by stellaluna at 4:01 PM on September 29, 2011 [1 favorite]

What sort of things do you visualize having in your dresser? Is it big enough to hold all your panties, bras, and slips in the bottom four drawers? Then you could put makeup in the top drawer, as suggested, along with hair supplies, if there's enough room. Curling irons and other larger items could go in a cute basket on the floor. A lidded basket would be more decorative than cluttered.

The best way to organize earrings means they're easy to select and just as easy to put away. Stellaluna's cute screen, or something like this or this makes it easy to hang and retrieve hooked earrings, but studded earrings can be a pain. I use one of these med organizers. It's ugly, but it fits in a nice wooden box I have. They're great because you can open just the one unit you want and dump the earrings into your hand without having to dig for them or dumping the rest. Leave it open, take earrings off in evening, put back in container and put the whole thing away.

You say the spot is badly lit--if you want to use the mirror as a makeup mirror, this will be a problem--perhaps you need a make up mirror.

So, undies, putting on makeup, doing hair, selecting accessories--then going to the closet for blouse, skirt or pants, and shoes--would this make things easier?
posted by BlueHorse at 8:29 PM on September 29, 2011

All you need to do is put everything in its proper place.

Earrings in one spot, necklaces in another. Makeup, cosmetics and hair product in the middle. Scarves and handbags hanging up. Hair accessories all together. In your drawers you need undies and bras in one drawer, stockings, socks and foundation garments in another, tops that don't require ironing in one drawer, bottoms in the next, nightclothes further down. If you have another drawer, put your winter clothes there.

If you keep everything segregated, it makes it easy.
posted by h00py at 6:02 AM on September 30, 2011

Second h00py, and you can use smaller containers within a drawer to separate and categorize further. If you have an Ikea near you, they have all sorts of boxes that are designed to fit within a drawer. If not, you can use pieces of cardboard, or any kind of container. That way you can keep underwear and bras apart, or dark socks and light socks, or whatever it is that you need to keep separate.
posted by chickenmagazine at 7:51 AM on September 30, 2011

I find I'm more likely to wear jewelry if it's sitting out, rather than tucked away, so I really like stellaluna's suggestions. Unfortunately, I don't have the space to have all my jewelry displayed, so I use a small jewelry box with three compartments: chain necklaces, bracelets, and earrings (rings I keep in their own boxes, since I don't wear them often). Larger/chunkier necklaces I hang on the wall, cuff bracelets and bangles sit beside the jewelry box.

I keep each chain necklace (or pendant) and pair of earrings in a separate small clear plastic bag, which cuts down on scratching/tarnishing/tangling/losses. Every so often, I stop by the local beading store and pick up some spare earring backs - both the butterfly-style for post earrings and the clear rounds for ear wires - so that I never have to scrounge for earring backs.

If you're using the wide shallow drawer for stuff that's liable to slide around (jewelry boxes, makeup brushes/containers, etc) when you're opening or closing it, putting down a non-slip liner will help keep things more or less in the same place every time.
posted by EvaDestruction at 7:53 AM on September 30, 2011

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