How to Organize Pens and Pencils in a Drawer

It’s not that hard to organize your pens and pencils in a drawer. Follow these tips and you’re good to go!

how to organize pens and pencils in a drawer

Do you have a huge collection of pens and pencils? Are those all over the place and you have to spend a few minutes looking for what you need?

In a previous post, we have shown you various ways you can organize your pens, pencils and markers. If you haven’t seen that yet, here’s the post – How to Organize Pens, Pencils and Markers

Now here’s another post about organizing pens and pencils. But this time, it’s specifically about organizing them in a drawer. Because when you have a huge collection, a pencil holder on your desk is usually not enough. It will just make your desk look cluttered.

Hence, you should hide your pens and pencils in a drawer. Doing so will make your workspace neat. But don’t just dump everything in there and turn your drawer into a junk drawer!

Here are the best tips on how to organize your pens and pencils in a drawer!

Declutter first.

In every organization project, the first thing you should do is a thorough decluttering session. Decluttering is important because it helps you deal with less by getting rid of the things that no longer work or you do not really need.

As the name puts it, decluttering lessens the clutter. This way, you only have to work with the pens and pencils that still work.

The first step in decluttering is to divide the items you have into categories. This is especially useful if you are an artist, or you’re starting out a new hobby like bullet journaling, and you have different kinds of pens and pencils.

Once you have divided your items, go through them one by one and test them out on a piece of paper to see if they are working. Throw away those that no longer work. Set aside those that you can still save with a refill.

Next, see if they are still in good condition. If you are the type who chews on the ends of your pens and pencils you probably want to get rid of the items that are all chewed out. Also, some pens and pencils may look too beaten up or pencils that are too short to be useful anymore.

Once you have “weeded out” the ones that no longer work, you are left with the items that are still of good use to you. You now can start organizing your pens and pencils.

How to Organize Pens and Pencils in a Drawer

No matter what organizing style you choose, the important thing to remember is to group your pens and pencils into categories and keep them together. This way, when you need something, you immediately know where to find it.

Read on to see great ways to keep your pens and pencils organized inside a drawer.

1. Use acrylic trays.

One of the easiest drawer organization solutions is plastic trays like these ones. They come in different sizes so you should measure your drawer first before you start buying them to ensure that they will be a perfect fit. This is important when you have other things to store in your drawers aside from pens and pencils.

Organize pens and pencils in a drawer with acrylic trays.
Image from: Kelleynan

2. Alternatively, you can use wood dividers.

If you do not want acrylic trays, you can also get wood dividers like this one. Take note of how all the pens and pencils are grouped together.

The Sharpies are even separated by colors and the highlighters are grouped together. Also, the blue and black pens are separated as well. If you also have several of each color, follow this method. Group your pens, pencils, including markers according to color.

Then all you have to do is grab what you need and get back to work in seconds!

 Organize pens and pencils in a drawer with wood dividers.
Imagae from: Mr. and Mrs. Howe

3. Make a cardboard drawer organizer.

Some desk drawers can go deep. Using flat trays will be a waste of space and can still mess up the contents if you draw out your drawer hard or quickly. Here, the drawer dividers are made of cardboard. They are tall enough for you to make use of the vertical space and also ensure that items stay in place no matter how hard you pull the drawer out.

 Cardboard drawer organizer
Image from: Songbird Blog

4. Invest in acrylic boxes.

Another great way to keep everything organized in your drawer is to categorize what you have and keep each category together in acrylic boxes.

This is extra helpful when you also share art supplies with your kids. When one of you needs to use something, just take out the box and you have the whole set.

This works if you also like working somewhere else aside from your desk. Simply take out the acrylic box with you and return it to the drawer when you are done.

5. Make drawer dividers using cardstock.

Another way to make your own drawer dividers that custom fit your drawers is to use cardstock. Cardstock is a hard material that is just as good as cardboard boxes.

They are not as thick, but they do the job, especially for pens and pencils. Plus, card stock also comes with patterns and designs so you can get one that suits your taste or home office theme.

 Cardstock drawer dividers
Image from: Craftsy Hacks

6. Use a clear pencil case for each category.

Another great and affordable way to keep your pens and pencils in place inside your drawer is to place each category you have in a clear pencil case. You can line up the pencil case side by side inside your drawer and they stay together no matter how hard you pull the drawer out.

Plus, when you need to use a set, just pull out the pencil case and you will have everything you need. The fact that it is transparent makes it easier for you to just grab and go.

7. Make a drawer organizer using scrap wood.

This is a DIY drawer organizer made of scrap wood. As you can see, the pens and Sharpies have their own space and are separated by the scrap wood. Since this is a DIY solution, you could measure your drawer and put the dividers in a way that each item has its own space.

 Scrap wood organizer
Image from: Butterfly House

8. Invest in an art supply pouch.

If you are an artist, you probably need to bring your collection of pens and pencils with you out of the house. This organization solution allows you to have everything in one place and the pouch is just the right size to fit in most drawers. So, when you are at home, you can keep the pouch in the drawer.

If you need to work somewhere else, just grab the pouch and you are good to go. Here’s a product that can carry up to 300 pens and pencils!

9. Use a silverware tray organizer.

You can also use a silverware tray organizer to organize your pens and pencils inside a drawer.

Silverware trays are used to keep spoons, forks, knives, and sometimes ladles in place in a kitchen drawer. These trays have just the right amount of space that your pens and pencils would need. Plus, it can also accommodate other office supplies you are storing in the drawer.

You can use an old one from your kitchen or buy a new one. It’s not as expensive as you may think!

10. Use adjustable drawer dividers.

If the contents of your drawer change from time to time or you simply have a lot of drawer space for just your pens and pencils, you can make use of adjustable drawer dividers. As you can see, this organizing solution allows you to adjust where the wooden dividers can go to accommodate the space you need.

 Adjustable drawer dividers
Image from: I Heart Organizing

11. Use plastic containers.

Another affordable option to help organize your pens, pencils, art supplies, and other office supplies is to get these plastic containers or bins. They are available in dollar stores and container stores anywhere and they are very cheap so you can buy in bulk for the rest of your drawers at home as well.

At first glance, it does not look that pretty since the pens can move once the drawers are open, but it works enough to keep everything in place and gathered in their own categories. The important thing is that you know where to look when you need something.

12. Repurpose old food containers.

Do you have food containers in the house that no longer have their lids? You can use them to help organize your pens, pencils, and other office supplies in your drawer as well. That is if you do not mind that things may not match, and the containers won’t be a custom fit.

Nevertheless, it is a cheap and easy solution and you do not have to spend a single cent!

It’s time to organize your pens and pencils in a drawer and keep your desk neat.

The drawer organization ideas above will have all your pens and pencils out of sight but still in reach. We’re sure you will be able to pick out a solution that suits your budget and your needs.

Once you have tried out the organization ideas we gave you, you will end up with a neater and more functional working space. Every time you need to use a particular pen or pencil, you immediately know where to look!

Looking for more ideas to organize your workspace? Check these out!

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Organize your pens and pencils in a drawer and keep your workspace neat. And every time you need a pen or a pencil, you know where to look. Here's how!

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