10 Essential and Inexpensive Organizing Tools

The following post is from Laura of I’m an Organizing Junkie:

source: I'm an Organizing Junkie

It’s no secret that I love organizing.  I love the high I get from turning a chaotic cluttered mess into a space that is calm and functional.  The best part of the whole process for me is that it doesn’t have to cost a lot of money to make that lovely organized transition.

It’s all about not only simplifying the spaces we live in but simplifying the steps and tools we use to get us there.  Let’s take it back to the basics with 10 essential organizing tools that won’t break the bank.


1. Drawer Dividers

Drawers without dividers are just naked.  A big jumbled mess where nothing can be found.  Adding some simple dividers or dollar store baskets make a huge difference to the space.

Tea boxes and cracker boxes with their tops and/or sides cut off also work just as well.

junk drawer

source: I'm an Organizing Junkie

2. Notebook

I find a simple lined notebook is essential for keeping track of to-do’s and batching tasks.  Consider your list notebook a container for your sanity.

3. A Family Calendar

The entire family needs one central calendar they can all update and refer to on a daily basis.  In order for everyone to take some responsibility for their activities they need to have some responsibility in maintaining and organizing the schedule as well.

4. Labels

If we don’t label our closed containers we waste valuable time searching for what we need.  Shorten that search by labeling your containers. They certainly don’t need to come from a fancy label maker either…simple paper taped to the side will work as will masking tape and permanent marker.  These ones below I printed off the computer and laminated.  Download free printable toy labels here.

labeled toys

source: I'm an Organizing Junkie

5. Clear Resealable Bags

Baggies work well for many organizing projects.  For example, use them to contain “like with like” to organize your purse, your beach bag or your office supplies.  They’re inexpensive and you can easily see what’s inside.

6. Boundary Containers

Similar to drawer dividers, containers are essential for creating some limits and boundaries with your stuff to keep it from spreading out all over the place.  Again dollar store baskets are one of my favorite tools for this purpose.

7. 3M Command Hooks

I would be absolutely lost without these hooks because of the versatility they provide.  These cost a little more to build your supply but they can be used and re-used over and over again.

If you are hesitant to set up an organizing system because you aren’t 100% sure if it’s going to work out for you, then give 3M Command Hooks a try.  They aren’t permanent and you can change your mind as many times as you need to.

3M Hooks

source: I'm an Organizing Junkie

8. Binders

Perfect for home management notebooks, organizing recipes, and kid’s keepsakes.  Where would we be without this clever little product?

9. Wire Shelves

Wire shelves can help you literally double the space in your cupboards.  You can read a post I did about them with more examples here.

wire shelves

source: I'm an Organizing Junkie

10. File Folders

Paper, paper, paper.  It just keeps coming, it never stops.  File folders will help you locate what you need when you need it. It just doesn’t get any easier than that.

file folders

source: I'm an Organizing Junkie

What inexpensive organizing tools would you add to this list?

Laura is a wife and mother to three great kids, lives in Alberta, Canada and is an addict of all things organizing. You can find her blogging regularly at I’m an Organizing Junkie, and her organizing book, Clutter Rehab: 101 Organizing Tips & Tricks to Become an Organization Junkie and Love It!, is in bookstores now.