I can’t stand cord clutter

I tend to be very good at keeping cord clutter at bay.  One key element to that is to make sure that cords don't twist with other cords.  Having a laptop for your desktop machine also helps :)  Typically I store all my gadget cords in this cute metal lunchbox.

However with the new office and desk set-up the lunchbox cannot be stored right above the desk on pretty shelves.  So when I get out the cell phone cord it lays around all messy (and sometimes disappears under other piles of stuff), same for the palm cord and the camera cord and… Within the last month I saw a fabulous "hide all your gadget charging tools" idea in Blueprint (or was it Martha Stewart Living or Real Simple?).  They took two fabric covered document boxes, storing the power strip and plug-ins in the bottom box and feeding the cords through the grommet and storing the chargeable (cell phone, palm, ipod, etc) in the top box (imagine the boxes on their sides, stacked on top of each other, the grommets facing the wall).  I looked around town for similar boxes but didn't see anything that caught my eye.  Then I decided that I could convert the bottom tray of my tray stack for this purpose.  Due to bulking plugins I only fit three items on my powerstrip, but they are the three I need to charge the most.

I tied the powerstrip to the back of the tray with some spare clear elastic (meant for beading) that I already owned (can you see the clear elastic strips?).

I did need a second set of hands to help with this since the weight of the powerstrip cord kept trying to pull the powerstrip out of the tray and the tray was sliding all over my desk (scratching the top).  See the little white dots, I added felt to the bottom of the tray to keep more scratches from happening.

I plugged everything in (using twist ties to keep the length of cord not needed from tangling) leaving just enough cord to peek out of the tray and stacked the other trays back on top of the first.  I used velco cord bundling straps to keep the power strips cord bundled and off the floor (this took two strips since they weren't long enough to go around the desk leg and extra 6 ft of cord length.

Now when I look under my desk I don't see any cords collecting dust bunnies on the floor, just one plugged into the outlet and going towards the desk leg.

My desk "inbox" trays now look like this when I need to charge something and I still have an extra outlet for the less used chargers (like the camera):

Now I just need to tackle this cordkeeping dilemma (sorry honey, I know you worked at keeping the cords neat, now we just need to figure out how to keep them off the floor)

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October 1, 2006. Tags: , . former Vox Blog, Organization, Problems. 2 comments.