When you’re well-organized, you’re more productive. “A place for everything and everything in its place,” says the dictionary, means that “the best way to stay well-organized is to store things in their correct positions.” And, if you like to cook -- and eat -- the kitchen is the best place to be productive…and organized.
Check out these 15 top tips gathered from Professional Organizers to improve kitchen storage and organization:
1. “Before you begin to organize your kitchen, remove everything from the cabinets, drawers and pantry. Seeing a space empty allows you to reimagine what the space should look like.” -- Anna Bauer, professional organizer with Sorted by Anna.
2. Once you've pulled everything out everything from your pantry, cabinets and drawers, it's time purge: toss outdated food and spices, recycle unused bags, consider donating duplicate items and any small appliances or cooking tools that you haven't used in a year...or ever (pasta maker, anyone?).
3. Many organizers recommend that you can increase your storage space by going vertical: adjust pantry or cabinet shelving to better accommodate dishes or different-sized packaging. Add wire mesh shelves and stepped racks in the pantry or under the sink.
4. “The trick is to maximize the space you do have: use wire baskets attached to the back of the door and tiered canned food holders to use shelf space more efficiently.” -- Professional Organizer, Nialya Suarez from Organized Simplicity
5. Professional Organizers TideeLiving recommend using a lazy susan in a cabinet or pantry to conserve space and make it easier to find items that might otherwise be buried at the back.
6. Chip Cordelli, in Real Simple, says to think about the hierarchy or “lowerarchy” in your kitchen: lower shelves should hold everyday items while infrequently-used items, like serving pieces, pitchers, large bowls or platters, should be stored on high shelves.
7. “Consider labeling the correct storage area for a specific item like a blender, mixer, utensils or snacks. This assures that if multiple people use your kitchen, things are put back in place,” advises professional organizer Anna Bauer.
8. Clearing the clutter goes a long way towards improving productivity. You can do this by keeping kitchen counters clear. Regularly-used appliances like a toaster or coffee maker can stay out. A blender, mixer or slow cooker should be stowed.
9. Store like items together: pots and pans in one area, mixing bowls together, baking materials in one area, etc. Store pans with lids. This type of organized storage assures that you’re not wasting time searching when it comes time to bake and cook.
10. Keep items used most frequently near your cooking or work area: pots and pans near the stove, knives near food preparation area and utensils where they are most commonly used.
11. Aaarggh…storing food storage containers! Known as the “Scourge of Tupperware,” keeping food containers organized and easy-to-use is often a kitchen storage challenge. Professional organizers recommend you keep bottoms and tops together and consider purchasing a matched “set” of storage containers so that tops and bottoms are interchangeable.
12. Spices should be stored on a lazy susan or in alphabetical order on a tiered shelf.
13. Consider labeling clear canisters that contain pasta, cereal, grains, etc. This makes it simpler to find necessary ingredients and easily determine what you still have in stock.
14. Use baskets, lid organizer racks, clear canisters, bins, tiered shelves, trays, door racks, hooks and other storage and organization products to put your kitchen in order.
15. Neatness counts – use Packbands to manage small appliance cords or hold rolled plastic bags and trash bags. Keep opened snack bags, frozen foods or pet foods fresh by sealing with Packbands.
Packbands silicone straps can handle many storage and organization tasks in your home, garage, workshop, office and vehicle. Just Stretch, Wrap and Snap: Packbands are 100% silicone, reusable, washable and have no moving parts to break, rust or snag.