September 9, 2021

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Everything but the kitchen sink…

If you’re like me, then under your kitchen sink lives numerous cleaning supplies, paper towels, extra dish soap, and a mass of other things that add up to a chaotic mess. I am tired of trying to juggle the paper towels while reaching for the right cleaner, so let’s build in our organization on a BUDGET!


Looking at the before you know that a cleanout needs to happen before we even start. I always go through the cabinet contents before I begin building so I’m able to visually see how many things will go back into the cabinet when I’m finished.

Things to consider:

  • What is outdated?
  • What has never been used?
  • Do you have mulitples of a certain product?
  • Can things that are used less frequently be placed somewhere else?

Once I’ve edited my cabinet contents, I can see how many items will need to be stored at the end of the project.


Before you can begin adding the drawer slides into your cabinet, you’ll need to build up the base. I measured the area excluding the pipes and cut 1/2″ plywood to mount along the bottom of the cabinet. I used wood screws that were countersunk to attach my base which will allow the drawer slides to slide easily over the face frame of your cabinet.

Building a base and using underneath mounted drawer slides eliminated the need for a center support to attach the drawer slides to and, in turn, gave us extra storage space. Every inch counts right?


Following Ana White’s Easiest Drawer Install Guide AGAIN, I created two pull out shelves at the bottom of the cabinet. Building these custom to our space allowed me to utilize the entire area versus purchasing premade inserts which would only have allowed for the use of half of the space. Undernreath our sink there are several pipes that I had to work around along with our garbage disposal that sits low. I knew on the left side I would only have about 16 inches in depth to work with but on the right side I am able to use the full 22″ on the far right. I built the left side drawer 16″ by 16″ but on the right hand side, I built a “J” shaped drawer with varying depths of 11″ to 22″ to accommodate drainage pipes.

Measure the depth of your cabinet from inside the face frame to the drainage pipes at the back. I subtract at least 1.5″ to allow for the drawer to fit snuggly inside the cabinet and no bump the cabinet door when closed. Remember your drawer slides will be inset about 1/8-1/4″ from the face frame.

If you have pipes in the center of your cabinet, build you drawers with staggering depths to use ALL the available space under your cabinet.


Remember to use vertical space for extra storage. Most under-the-sink cabinets only utilize the bottom of the cabinet for a single shelf, but you can always use the vertical space between your garbage disposal and the cabinet wall.

Here I built two smaller drawers to house our dog necessities and the other to hold extra sponges and trash bags!

Since there would only be one side for drawer slides, I mounted both drawer slides to the drawer for extra support and used my 1×4 for the corresponding side of the drawer instead of a 1×2. Using this method will keep your drawer from sagging over time and putting stress in the screws holding the drawer slide in place.


To make your DIY cabinet inserts look professional follow these few tips:

  • after cutting each piece, sand all edges for a smooth finish
  • use pocket hole screws when you can to eliminate seeing the screws on your finished drawers
  • secure sides + bottom using screws on the inside of drawers or underneath
  • iron on edge banding to unfinished plywood edges

Once the building is complete, adding all your cleaning supplies back into your cabinet is such a joy. I have thoroughly enjoyed using this cabinet since its makeover and often wonder what took me so long! HA!

If you would prefer to purchase the premade cabinet inserts I’m listing a few below!

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