Organize your Car Console: 5 easy steps

Recently I was renewing my driver’s license and came to a question on the form that made me laugh – and cringe. It went something like:

“While driving is there anything that causes emotional distress?” Basically, do you suffer from something that could make it dangerous to be behind the wheel.

I wanted to answer, “YES!  The little passengers that I cart around every day!”

While they aren’t so little anymore, there are times I think, “OMG having fussing, whining kids in car surely is more dangerous than texting and driving!” If you have kids, I bet you can relate!

Something else that can cause “emotional distress?” Frantically searching for something you need – ASAP – in your center console.

If your console is in distress, here are five steps to have yours organized in no time!


Center console BEFORE pic

STEP 1:  Know your end goal. Before jumping into organizing any project, figure out what the problem is. I know this sounds unnecessary, “Well, it’s a mess and I want to have it organized!” But it’s an important step. Ask yourself, “How can I organize this so it works best for me?”

For this project, the answer was:  Be able to easily access what I may need (and nothing else!) while in the driver’s seat.

STEP 2:  Remove everything.

Console Stuff

STEP 3:  Sort. You’ll see the categories below included charger / cords, mini office supplies, receipts, gift / member / punch cards, registration, beauty / grooming, trash …  

Console Sort

STEP 4: Toss (and add to if necessary), then containerize.  Think about what you really need to have access to and toss out everything else. Is there anything that’d be really helpful to have at your fingertips?  If so, add in.

Place smaller items in “smart containers” so they are easy to grab and put away. When it makes sense, I’ll even have small containers (for example, extra small zip locks) that hold items within a bigger container.

A few “containers” I love:

Console pouch

Heavy duty, transparent zipper pouches like this one from Alvin (purchased from an art store) are wonderful for holding smaller items.

Console Organizer

This little organizer ($1 at Target) is an easy way to hold stuff like gift cards, coupons, receipts and car registration info.

STEP 5: Place (organized!) items back into console.

Console After 2

All items are now easy to get to. Smaller items are contained, the (working!) cord is tamed with a twisty tie and items that aren’t needed aren’t there. Bye Bye clutter!

If your car needs more help, check out these other posts:

10 ways to turn your car into your HAVEN

Stock your car! This is what I keep in mine

Now, if only someone could invent a soundproof barrier that can go between the front and back seats!


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