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Organizing Paper Clutter

Updated on March 24, 2010

Kitchen counter - Before

Where does all this junk mail come from?
Where does all this junk mail come from?

My goal - Conquer clutter

I have always been envious of organized people. You know who I am talking about. Their kitchen cabinets are neatly organized, and all their plastic containers have matching lids. I have boxes of plastic containers, but usually cover them with wrap, because I can't find the right lid.

My goal is to conquer all clutter. I started with paper because it is so visible, and gets worse with each trip to the mailbox.

My tools

My tools were two 3-ring binder notebooks, dividers for the notebooks, and some bright colored paper folders.
My tools were two 3-ring binder notebooks, dividers for the notebooks, and some bright colored paper folders.

Getting it done

I started by stapling the sides of the paper folders, leaving them open only at the top. Then I labeled each one with a different category of mail, and papers. Mine are labeled as follows: Bills, Insurance, Magazine offers, Business, Coupons, Pets, Misc. You could label yours with whatever you have most of. Then I went through my mail, threw away the trash, and put what I wanted to save in the folders. My plan now is to do this each day as soon as I come in from the mailbox.

The two binders were for the other type of paper I have tons of: recipes torn from magazines; and home projects, arts and crafts ideas, etc., that I wanted to save from magazines.

The first binder I reserved just for recipes. I labeled my dividers with the usual categories: Casseroles, Vegetables, Appetizers, Soup and Bread, Desserts, Misc. I glued the recipes to heavy paper, and punched holes to fit the binder, and filed them. It was fun going through these recipes. I found a lot of favorites that I had forgotten about.

The second binder was for various articles I wanted to save from magazines and fliers. The dividers in this binder were labeled as follows: Organizing, Decorating, Kitchen, Arts and Crafts, Sewing, Pets. In this binder I used a combination of heavy paper to glue articles on, and magnetic photo pages. You could use whatever works for you that you have on hand.

Finally done!

It is great to have a clear counter.  Now on to my cabinet of plastic containers!
It is great to have a clear counter. Now on to my cabinet of plastic containers!


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    • profile image


      9 years ago

      Hmmm, spirit of excellence.

    • susansisk profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Sisk 

      9 years ago from Georgia, USA

      I envy you Lori. My kitchen is much neater now, but it takes work to keep it that way.

    • profile image


      10 years ago


      My husband and I must be OCD because all of the plastic containers in our kitchen cabinets are neatly stacked in size order, as are the contents of our pantry -- all arrange in height order! :-)



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