Sunday, February 5, 2012

Design Tips: Kitchen Storage Ideas and De-Clutter Tips




Need more space in your kitchen? Of course you do. Probably one of the biggest reasons anyone wants to remodel their kitchen is to gain more storage space. All the new technologies and gadgets and time saving machines sure make life easier in the kitchen, but where do you keep it all?

Better Homes and Gardens recently published an article, "Ultimate Storage-Packed Kitchens" on line with some very clever ideas to make the most out of your storage space. Most of their suggestions will be helpful if you are redoing your cabinetry, some are ideas you could probably incorporate right away.

Here are some more handy tips:

1. Clean, edit and declutter! Many of the items you're storing I'd bet you haven't used in months, if not years. I'm guilty of this: a Belgian waffle maker that is so difficult to clean I won't use it, an electric fry pan that I used to make pancakes with, and saved "just in case," as well as numerous spare lids and plastic ware that does come in handy once in a while. But I have so many that it's difficult to sort through them all to find the one I want. Do I need more space? No. I just need to get rid of more stuff.

How to attack this project? Just one drawer or cabinet at a time. You don't have to do the whole thing, but chances are good that you might get inspired and do two drawers.

2. Build or find storage to fit your stuff. Tired of pulling out trays or cookie sheet from the bottom of a drawer? Slim vertical cabinets in leftover spaces make great and accessible cookie sheet and rack storage or are great spaces for pull-out spice racks.

3. Save only what you have room for and dedicate a space for it. Sure, those plastic containers are handy, I use them all the time. I've allowed one drawer for the lids and one for the containers. If I get more for some reason--I edit the space and keep the most useful stuff, recycling or donating the ones that don't fit.

4. Don't save broken or worn out things! Admit to yourself that you're not going to fix it. That warped plastic lid, worn-out Teflon coated pans, the hand mixer with just one good beater... they have no use except wasting space! Get rid of it! OK, here's an idea, let your kids take apart the hand mixer to see how it works... make sure it's not plugged in of course, then get rid of the parts. The good beater, too, it won't fit anything else.

5. Yes, you can have too many coffee cups. Especially the thermal ones. These seem to breed like clothing hangers. If you get a fun new one, get rid of two old ones. Same with drinking glasses, novelty dishes and kids' place mats and plastic ware.

6. Use drawer organizers but only if they fit your drawers. You have to store them elsewhere if they're too big for your drawer, and if they're too small, they'll not help much unless the leftover space is useful. Measure carefully, make a list and don't get carried away at Storables or Ikea!

7. You got it as a gift? So what! If it's useful and you can't live without it, of course keep it. If you never use it, no matter how nice a present it was or how much you love that person, it's still taking up valuable space for no good reason.

8. Don't save anything for a special occasion. Use it often! You'll get more enjoyment out of Granny's china if you pull it out for Sunday breakfast every week.

Is it too nice for you to use? Donate it or pass it along to a relative, let them use it! Save yourself the storage space.

Until next week!
--Elaine Bothe

Photos courtesy of Better Homes and Gardens website.

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posted by Jennifer Adams Design Group Blog @ 10:29 AM 

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