Build some under the sink storage

By Pinktoesandpowertools | Home Organization

Happy Valentine’s Day!

This post was originally a guest post for Brittany over at Pretty Handy Girl a little over two weeks ago. I so appreciate that she featured me over there! If you didn’t catch it then, here is the Pink Toe version 🙂


Based on today’s post, I’m going to predict that 2012 is going to involve some embarrassing photos. Embarrassing to me specifically. But the “after” results are so worth the embarrassment that I’m going to show you some of the messy areas of our my house. That cannot read “our” because no part of My Man is messy. Been with him 18 years and the man hasn’t made a mess yet. Me? I’m the fertility goddess for messes-they breed all around me. So I decided to tackle one mess at a time in 2012 and my latest project is organizing under the sink in the master bath.

I mean look at this (if you are male and uncomfortable looking at feminine products, you can just skip on ahead here…if you can even find it in this mess. This photo could be a page in an I Spy book).

Before photo--messy under the sinkAck! I swear it looks worse in the picture! You can now understand that when I saw this on Pinterest I got pretty excited.

image.pngsource: Pregnant…with power tools

Actually I got a LOT excited…dollar store bins! Scrap wood! Cheap and easy DIY-what’s not to love??

So I went off and I built some stuff and now it looks like so:

AAAHHH! I love it so much now!

First thing you need to do is go get yourself some bins. This project cost me $4 because all I had to buy were the bins and I got 2 for $1 at Dollar Tree. You need to know also that bins vary in quality and usability for this project. Look for rigid bins with side edges that are uniform with no obstructions like these:

Mine looked decent in the 2 pack

but revealed their true colors when I separated them.

Oh well, no worries. I decided to make these work because they were the only options at Dollar Tree that were the right size (these are about 6.25×10) . I modified my runners from the inspiration photo by using two for each side. You would want to do that if your bins are wonky like mine, or you want the bin to not tilt forward as you pull it toward you to open it.

I’ll give you the instructions using my dimensions–modify yours to work with your bins and cabinet space or to use up the scraps that you have available.

You need:

3/4″ plywood–2 @ 9.5 x 19.75 (sides)

1/2″ plywood–2 @ 8 9/16 x 9.5 (top and bottom–I pieces together mine with multiple scraps for each)

1/2″ mdf/ply–16 @ 2 x 9.5 (runners)

1/4″ ply–8 9/16 x 20 11/16

8 bins 6.25 x 10

First you attach the runners. I did this one by one using a bin to space them and make sure it didn’t bind at any point. Turns out as I measure them now, they are all almost exactly 1/4″ wide. Glue and nail with 1″ 18 gauge nails or countersink some screws.


Here I am figuring out how wide to cut the top and bottom. I think these would slide better if I had put them a little closer together, but I didn’t want to risk them binding. Glue and nail/screw on your top and bottom piece. I just put one nail on each corner of the top and bottom at this point (makes it easier to square it up). Put it on its face, square it up, nail on the back, and add some more nails or screws to the top and bottom.



The drawers do not slide perfectly–if you want drawers that do, you have got to get rigid bins with a decent lip on the side like I said before. For $4, I am more than thrilled with these.

The other components for this project are super easy but you’ve got to be careful. This whole unit won’t fit in the cabinet wall to wall if it is all attached together. If you are strategic you can get them in there and remove them later.

Add a scrap wood bin with felt on the bottom for easy gliding so you can reach into the back recesses and you are good to go!

DIY under sink storage unit

It looks like I threw out a lot of stuff, but honestly what I got rid of would have fit in half of one of the plastic drawers. Ok, maybe three-quarters of one if you count half empty boxes and miscellaneous plastic bags.

**Update** Since I’ve had this up for a few weeks now, I’ve had to take the heavy nail polish out of the top drawer and move it to the bottom. The weight of the polish was pulling the sides out of their rails. The rest of the drawers have lighter things in them, so they still work like they originally did. Still advising that you use sturdy bins with a rigid lip for these and you won’t be disappointed!

After I built it, I actually considered using a larger version of this in the DIY closet organizer in Pip’s room. A row of plastic bins in the middle instead of the drawers. If you like the closet organizer but don’t want to mess with drawers and drawer glides, this might be another option!

What do you think of it?

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