15 Effective Tips for Nightstand Organization (That Really Work)

Nightstand Organization

Nightstand organization is possibly not the first thing that comes to mind when you’re looking to declutter your home. Or even your bedroom. But it’s an important part of cultivating a restful environment (and a good night’s sleep).

Here are the best tips I’ve found for organizing your nightstand that will reduce clutter, save time and promote peaceful, blissful rest.

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Try These 15 Tips for Better Nightstand Organization:

1. Declutter the Nightstand First

Step one in any organizing project (before you buy all of those cute baskets and bins) is to declutter first. It won’t take as long as you think!

Start by removing all trash and anything that doesn’t belong (like dirty dishes). Books you’ve finished should be moved to a bookshelf somewhere else or donated.

Toss old newspapers and magazines. If there’s an article you really want to keep, cut it out and store it in a binder for future reference, or see if it exists online where you can save it to your computer or the cloud.

Aim to keep only items that create a restful environment.

2. Keep the Essentials on Top

To reduce clutter, store only the items you may need in the middle of the night on top of the nightstand:

  • Eyeglasses
  • Phone and charging cable
  • Clock
  • Light
  • Only the book you’re currently reading
  • Journal & pen to jot down those “2am to-do list items”
  • Cup for water
  • Lip balm and small hand cream

If it’s not essential, but you feel it should be near the bed, store an item in your nightstand drawer or cabinet, on the floor next to the bed (in a decorative basket or tote) or tucked away beneath the bed.

3. Use Your Phone as an Alarm Clock

Your phone (or tablet) can do double-duty as an alarm clock and help free up space on top of the nightstand. Plus, you can choose from a variety of music or peaceful sounds to be awakened to. (I like soft chimes.)

Use a small cradle to hold it upright for easy access and viewing:

4. Try a Tray to Prevent Nighttime Knock-Overs

There’s nothing worse than waking up to the crashing sound of something falling off the nightstand. If you’re a restless sleeper like me, this can happen a lot! This is also another reason to keep only the essentials on top of your bedside table (see tip #2).

A simple decorative tray is a really effective way to prevent nighttime knock-overs. You can take it one step further and secure the tray to the table with Command strips.

5. Clip Your Charging Cable to the Nightstand

It used to drive me bonkers when my charging cable would fall off the nightstand. I’d contort myself into all kinds of strange positions trying to reach it without having to get out of bed.

A stick-on cable clip will keep your phone charging cable close at hand and save you from the acrobatics. I clipped mine to the side of the nightstand closest to my bed:

Nightstand organization: cable clip for charging cables

Related Cord and Cable Organizing Articles:

6. Consider Different Lamp Options

Lighting is important in the bedroom, either for reading and tasks or for ambiance. However, bedside lamps don’t have to be big and bulky (it’s not the 1970s!). Try a low-profile minimalist lamp on your nightstand, or consider a floor lamp or wall sconce instead to free up space.

7. Keep Knitting and Needlework in a Basket by the Bed

Knitting is a beautiful hobby that can really relax you before bedtime or while watching TV. It can also take up a lot of space. Rather than cluttering your nightstand at night with your current knitting projects, keep your needlework close at hand in a decorative tote on the floor OR in an under-bed storage bin.

8. Use a Drawer Organizer for Small Nightstand Items

If your nightstand has a drawer, you’re in luck! This is a great place to store less-essential items you might need on a regular basis: lip balm, tissues, hand cream, brush and hair ties, a sleep mask.

The nightstand drawer can also easily become a dumping zone for all kinds of junk. To combat clutter, use a drawer organizer to corral just the items you need, and consider small travel-sized products instead of full-sized bottles.

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9. Add a Drawer Beneath a Bedside Table

Some nightstands are bedside tables rather than cabinets, lacking drawers and shelves. Storage solution: add your own nightstand drawer with handy under desk storage:

10. Set Up a Valet Charging Station

The old-school valet has been upgraded in a big way to accommodate today’s technology. If you have multiple devices you like to charge on your nightstand, you can keep them and your other essentials organized with an all-in-one valet charging station.

11. Use Bins to Organize Nightstand Shelves

A bin or two never hurts when it comes to nightstand organization. Find one or two (I love the look of woven baskets) that will fit neatly on your shelves, and it’ll be that much easier to take everything down to dust.

To ensure everything stays neatly organized, consider labels for the bins as well. Check out my post 17 Sensational Ways to Make Labels for inspiration!

Organizing Ideas For Bedrooms - Nightstand Organization

12. Add Decorative Storage Beneath Your Bedside Table

Empty space is an opportunity! Make the most of extra space beneath a bedside table with decorative baskets or totes. Use them to store blankets, pillows, slippers, linens, etc.

Nightstand Organization: under table storage

13. Store Extra Pillowcases in Your Nightstand

If you have room in your nightstand, I recommend storing an extra pillowcase or two on a shelf or in a bin. Even if you wash your sheets weekly, it’s really nice to slip on a fresh pillowcase every couple of days.

14. Use Adhesive Hooks and Shelves Inside Your Nightstand Cabinet

Maximize space in your nightstand by utilizing the inside of the door. Use a Command hook to hang a sleep mask, or try small adhesive shelves to store your TV remote, glasses, hand creams and other small items.

15. Consider Nesting Tables For More Bedside Storage

Thinking beyond the small boxy nightstand, you might consider adding bedside storage space with nesting tables. Although they’re traditionally thought of as end tables for the living room, why not put them in the bedroom?

They’re both pretty and functional, and can be easily moved into a variety of configurations to fit your space.

More Bedroom Organizing Articles

I hope you found some inspiration for your nightstand organization project! But don’t stop there…I’ve got lots of tips for every area of your bedroom in the links below:

Easy DIY Bedroom Organization Tips & Tricks

15 Bedroom and Bathroom Makeup Storage Tips

5 Amazing Tips For Organizing a Bedroom Armoire

How To Organize A Teen’s Bedroom