Divide and Conquer (your drawers): DIY dividers for $1


** NOTE: While I'm specifically creating dividers for my nursery, these certainly work for any drawers in need of some attention (Think jewelry drawer, makeup drawer, unmentionables drawer, junk drawer...)
With just over a month to go til our little one appears (yikes! Is that possible?), we're currently in the final scramble to finish the nursery, collect all the necessities and create some sort of order out of the chaos.  One thing I'm learning throughout the process is that babies come with a lot of stuff.  I mean, a lot.  Books, toys, bottles, blankets, sheet sets, bath paraphernalia, diapers, things to keep them well, things to make them laugh, things to keep them quiet... like I said, stuff.  But by far, the biggest accumulation so far has been the clothes. 

Don't get me wrong - I LOVE them.  Seriously.  It's like being six and able to dress a doll again.  However, when I was six, I also wasn't too worried about keeping things organized and readily accessible for nights of "SWEET MOSES, HOW MANY OUTFITS CAN THIS KID GO THROUGH?!"  The times, they are a-changin'. 

Initially, I thought, "How hard can it be? They're baby clothes! You just fold them once and pile them up!"  Oh, sweet, naive Emily-Grace. 

The thing is, they have this annoying tendency to topple over on each other.  Add to that the fact that  there are about a zillion types of baby clothes (short sleeve onesies, long sleeve onesies, pajamas, dresses, outfits, bloomers...) in a zillion different sizes (newborn, 0-3 months, 3  months, 3-6 months, etc.), and it complicates matters tremendously.  I don't even HAVE the kid yet, and my drawers look like a pink and white explosion.  Clearly, this was not going to work for me (is there a song about OCD?  If so, it should be my theme song. If not, someone should write it).

Believe it or not, these were STACKED when I put them in...

Considering options, dividers seemed the order of the day.  I looked around and was blown away at the ridiculous prices.  $20 for 2?  Yeah, how about "no."  So mama had to get a little creative (and in the process, save some serious cash).  Below is the process. The only thing you NEED to purchase is *foam core, which you can get at your local dollar store.  Everything else is optional (and may already be in your craft supplies). 

DIY Drawer Dividers

What you'll need: 
 Foam Core (from the dollar store)
Fabric Washi Tape - OR- ribbon and spray adhesive (optional)
Craft knife
Ruler/Measuring Tape

The Process 

1. I measured the drawer and wrote down the numbers (I ALWAYS write down measurements. It's much safer than trusting myself to remember something). I recorded the width (side to side), the length (front to back), and the depth (top of the drawer to the bottom.) 

Looking at this, I feel the urge to break into the Dixie Chicks "Wide Open Spaces." Don't worry - I'll refrain. 
(BTW, isn't that liner gorgeous?)
 2.  Next I had to determine how many sections I wanted. I settled on six.  This meant I needed to cut the drawer in half length-wise once, and twice width wise.  I also had to decide how deep I wanted the dividers to be.  My drawers are about 5 1/4 inches deep, so I decided 4 1/2 inches would be a good depth for the dividers.

3.  I started by creating the longest divider - the one that would go from left to right, cutting the drawer space in half.  Measuring carefully, I marked out a rectangle that was 22 inches by 4 1/2 inches (length and depth).  Using a craft knife I cut out the form and set it aside. 

4.  Next, I repeated the process to create two dividers that would run from the back of the drawer to the front.  These rectangles were 16 1/2 inches by 4 1/2 inches (length and depth).  To ensure all of the cuts were accurate, I tested each piece in the drawer. 

5.  In order to get the proper placement, I had to figure out where the three dividers would intersect.  Using the width measurement (22 inches), I divided it by three (for the three sections I would be creating).  I'm not a fan of ridiculously complicated numbers, and 3 doesn't divide neatly into 22 so I decided to make it easy on myself.  The dividers would be placed 7 1/4 inches from the left and the right (giving the center section an extra 1/4 inch width-wise.)  On the 22 inch piece, I used a pencil to mark 7 1/4 inches from each side.  Because the shorter pieces (the ones that run from back to front) would have to bisect the long piece, I also marked their half way point. 

6.  Due to the width of the foam core itself (about 2 cm),  each of the slots needed to be more than a simple slice.  I measured one centimeter out on either side of each of the cut lines I had just created and marked my lines. 

7.  Starting with the 22 inch long piece, I cut out 2 1/2 inches from the top down, creating notches where the shorter pieces would fit. 

8. Working with the  16 1/2 inch pieces, I started from the bottom and cut up, creating similar notches.  

9. Once all my pieces were cut, I wedged them into the drawer, making any adjustments as necessary.  

10.  This is the point where I COULD'VE stopped and say "Done!"  Alas, I need to make things pretty, not just functional. 

11.  I wanted to cover all of the edges and give the dividers a more finished feel, so I grabbed some coordinating fabric Washi tape out of my supply cabinet.  (If you don't have washi tape, you can always use a pretty ribbon and some spray adhesive to achieve the same affect). 

12.  Measuring and cutting each piece carefully, I peeled the backing off of the tape and centered it on each of the dividers edges.  Once I wrapped them around and secured them, I pieced the dividers back together and fit them back into the drawer. 

And boy, am I a happy camper!  

The dividers have allowed me to separate the clothes into size and type and keep everything MUCH neater.  Will they last me forever?  No, but that's okay.  I can change them out anytime I need to or replace them as the baby (and the size of the clothing) grows.  And at a dollar?  These are absolutely perfect!

Additional Notes:
Foam core comes in a bunch of different colors and the black worked perfectly for me considering the drawer liner I had already chosen.  But if you want something different, you can always give the foam core a quick coat of paint OR cover it with fabric and spray adhesive (which will also add a bit of strength to your dividers).  I may do that in the future (probably with my jewelry drawer), but with the baby drawers it simply wasn't necessary.  

*The amount of foam core you'll need completely depends on the size and number of your drawers.  I am working with a triple dresser (and, therefore, very wide drawers) and still needed less than one piece per drawer (which technically means it cost less than $1 a drawer).  
Before running out to purchase the foam core, it's a good idea to get some measurements and a rough estimate of how many pieces you'll need.

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