After organizing our linen closets and craft storage, we’re moving on to kitchens. Laine Hardman from Tidy Up Professional Organization offers some great ideas and insider tips to help you save space, money, and aggravation.
We all spend a lot of time in our kitchens – preparing meals, packing lunches, baking for bake sales. So, having an organized kitchen can truly improve your daily life. Getting organized takes a little work up front. But, with a little know-how and the right products, you can have that organized kitchen you’ve always wanted. Here are my top five favorite kitchen organizing products to help you tidy up your kitchen.
1. Clear Drawer Organizers
Messy kitchen drawers can only lead to frustration and time lost looking for that favorite wooden spoon. To solve this, first, remove everything from the drawer. Only keep the items that you use often. Then, measure the entire drawer: depth, width, and height before shopping for products. (If a drawer organizer is too tall, you won’t be able to close the drawer – been there, done that.)
Purchase clear drawer organizers that will fit the items that you are keeping and your drawer. The photos below show a drawer before and after tidying up. It took about 10 minutes of sorting, 10 -15 minutes of shopping, and about $25 in product cost.
Insider’s Tip: If you are a highly visual person, cut out a piece of newspaper to match the size of your drawer. Bring this, along with the height of the drawer, with you when shopping. Place the newspaper on the floor of the store and arrange drawer organizers on top of it to help you visualize what the drawer will look like.
Divided drawer organizers aren’t just for pull-out drawers. One Mom uses two of them side by side in her pantry to hold granola bars. She stores full boxes of the bars behind them. The kids can easily help themselves and she can tell at a glance if she is running low on any of their favorite snacks.
Insider’s Tip: If you are looking for tall drawer organizers, check the bathroom section of the store. Often, taller organizers that are designed for hairbrushes are displayed there.
2. Lazy Susans
Lazy Susans are inexpensive way to keep lots of items at your fingertips in a small amount of space. Some are tiered, making it easier to reach the items in the center. Consider using them for spices, vitamins, and cleaning supplies under the sink.
Insider’s Tip: When shopping remove the lazy susan from the packaging and give it a spin. If it doesn’t spin smoothly in the store, it won’t spin smoothly at home. (Again, been there, done that!)
3. Cupboard Shelves
A cupboard shelf can literally double the usable space of your cabinet. The possibilities here are endless. They can be used for plates, food, cups, mugs, bowls, etc. They eliminate the need for stacking similar items, which often causes toppling and clutter. And they are available in tiered, corner, and expandable designs to fit all your needs. Measure the area where you’ll be putting the shelves to ensure a good fit.
Undershelf baskets also serve this purpose. Store whatever works for you there. One Mom I know stores her tea and reusable napkins in hers.
Insider’s Tip: If the height of the cabinet allows for it, place a lazy susan on top of a cupboard shelf. This is a great idea for under the sink. All your cleaning supplies can go on top and you can store trash bags or sponges underneath.
4. Tiered Shelf-Organizer
Consider a tiered shelf-organizer for your canned goods and spices. This allows you to see what you have and avoid unnecessary purchases. And remember a three-tiered unit allows for four levels of storage because you can store items in front of the unit, too. Some shelf-organizers are expandable, allowing you to make it as wide as you’d like. Again, measure the width, depth, and height of your cabinet before shopping.
Insider’s Tip: After purchasing and installing a kitchen organizing product, leave the labels on and keep the receipts. Live with it for a while. If you like it, remove the labels and keep it. If it doesn’t work for you, return it!
5. Rollout Cabinet Drawers
Rollout drawers are an easy way to make use of the back of deep cabinets. Custom rollouts can be pricey so consider non-custom rollouts that you install yourself. Measure the cabinet before shopping. You most likely won’t find a perfect fit. But the side of the rollout doesn’t have to be wasted space. Cereal can be stored there in a food cabinet or baking sheets can slide right into that spot in your pots and pans cabinet. No more stale, opened boxes of graham crackers lost in the back of the dark cabinet.
Insider’s Tip: Check the clearance rack of organizing stores. I found two rollout cabinet drawers there that were display units. They work just fine and saved me a good deal of money.
Everyone has different ideas on how to tidy up their kitchen! The most important thing to remember is: Do what works for you! (And measure before you go shopping!)
Do you have a favorite space-saving tool? Share in the comments.