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Library Card Drawers to Organize a Craft Room

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Tell me that I’m not the only one who fondly remembers using the library card catalog as a kid. Yes, it was overwhelming. Yes, it was cumbersome. Yes, it was a pain in the neck. But oh, it was so much more satisfying than just searching something on the internet. It was a treasure hunt that involved multiple senses and a cunning mind. Please tell me that I’m not the only one that  finds library card drawers beyond charming. As the ecstatic owner of my own new old library card drawers, of course, I put them to use to organize my craft room. Come drool over these refreshed industrial library card drawers with me.

top image - beat up brown industrial library card drawers, bottom image - sleek light blue library card drawers with library card pockets, pencil and accessories

My youngest “baby” has discovered a love of records (vinyl is what the cool kids are calling records these days, but rebel that I am, I still call them records).  That means that we spend lots of time in thrift stores and at yard sales. Twist my arm. As you know, I adore repurposing items for organizing and crafting, so I’m happy to look around thrift stores with my baby. Imagine my sheer I-can’t-catch-my-breath thrill when I found these beat up old ugly industrial library drawers for just $7!

brown industrial library card drawers covered with tape and a sticker

Moral of the story – look in every nook and cranny of the thrift store. They had stashed these library card drawers in the technology room. Huh? Yea, for me!

Library Card Drawers

close up of light blue drawers with library card pockets, pink pencil and accessories

First, I peeled all that tape off. Next I used my trick to remove sticky label reside naturally to get all the leftover sticky stuff off. I then taped off the chrome parts and used spray paint to make the ugly brown industrial library card drawers sing like an angel in this beautiful retro 50’s blue color. 

spray paint for metal (similar), library card pockets, library cards free printable, decorated clothespin tutorialsKool-Aid Dyed Yarn Tutorial, mini alarm clock

white desk by window with light blue library card drawers and open journal

Look at how nostalgic and inspirational my gorgeous library card drawers are. They beckon me to sit down and get to work (after several minutes of admiring them!). 

light blue library card drawers styled with library card pockets and accessories

Can you believe that these are the same ugly brown beat up industrial library card drawers?

library card pockets, library cards free printable, Kool-Aid Dyed Yarn Tutorial, mini alarm clock, decorated clothespin tutorials

overhead view of open drawers of light blue library card drawers with labels and label makers in the drawers

I told you I was using the library card drawers to organize my craft room. They’re perfect for holding my label makers (yes, plural, don’t judge) and my labeling supplies. Everything fits perfectly and are easily accessible for me.

Martha Stewart Note TabsMartha Stewart Metal Book Plates, DYMO Label Maker,  Brother Label Maker (similar)

6 different colors of blank library cards

Of course, if you have a stash of library cards that you need to organize… then check out my free printable library cards and then you can make as many as you want in six different colors.

light blue sleek library card drawers with library card pockets on the table and one sticking out of open drawer

How many different areas of your craft room and family could you organize with your very own upcycled library card drawer

top image - brown beat up library card drawers, bottom image - clean, light blue library card drawers styled with colorful desk items

If you see me in the thrift store when I spot another set of these library card drawers, move outta my way or risk being run over. I don’t know what I ne-eeed to organize, but I’m sure that I can find something else to organize in my craft room with a whole new refreshed set of library card drawers.

More craft room organizing ideas

Tips to Organize a Craft Room

white desk and book shelf with piles of items on the desk and floor

Washi Tape Organizing

colorful rolls of washi tape organized in tray on white wood table

 Ink Pad Storage Idea

neatly organized shelves with colorful craft supplies

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10 Comments

  1. What a find! I love the color you chose. It looks like a totally different piece. I can think of many things that would be a good fit for those drawers:) Hope you had a good Mother’s Day, Susan!

    1. I smile every single time I see these drawers in my craft room. Every single time. Hope you had a happy weekend, too, Seana.

  2. That is a very pretty blue color! I actually used to love looking for books in those library drawers! I loved reading, so I loved hunting for books to read. What a fun find!

    1. Thank you, Brenda. I dream of having a huge set of vintage wood library card catalog drawers some day. Like you, I enjoy reading and always loved looking through the cards.

  3. What a blast from the past! This brings back fond memories. My Mom was a Librarian and I spent a lot of time “helping” and organizing these drawers. Love the blue color!

    1. Oh, Monica, what a lovely childhood! I don’t know what it is about those library card catalogs, but they still make me so happy.

  4. I love this idea. I need to run out and see if I can find something like this. I can see my office getting organized as I write this!

    1. It was certainly my lucky day when I stumble across these library drawers! Good luck in your search, Cynthia.

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