Sheryl Simon's Blog
Keeping a clean and reasonably organized kitchen is essential for those wanting to prepare food at home quickly. Finding your kitchen comfortable to work in and maintain will help keep you motivated to cook instead of caving to ordering in or going out to eat. It may seem simple, but many people just put things in different cupboards and don't consider how it might affect the flow of their kitchen and their ability to use the space efficiently. Here are some thoughtful ideas to consider when putting kitchen items away in your new home, or when you finally get around to reorganizing your kitchen space.
Consider the location of your large appliances. You can’t rearrange your refrigerator, stove, dishwasher or sink without a kitchen remodel. So, you’ll need to design your kitchen organization around these main appliances that you use frequently. Inspect at the cupboard and drawer space in your kitchen and consider organizing as follows.
- Prep: Put your cutting boards and knives near each other for easy access and consider keeping them near your sink or within close range of your kitchen trash for quick clean up.
- Cooking: Place pots, pans, and bakeware in a cupboard near your stovetop and oven. Put hot pads, trivets, and utensils like spatulas and cooking spoons in a drawer near the stove or hang your tools on hooks by the stovetop.
- Drinking: If possible put your coffee pot near your sink and fridge and place your glasses and mugs in a cupboard easily accessible by both.
- Dining: For the most convenience see if you can place your plates, bowls and serving dishes near your table and also near your sink and dishwasher. This arrangement will help facilitate dining as well as simplify clean up.
- Miscellaneous Appliances: Take inventory of your appliances and be honest with yourself about which ones you use the most. If you bake all the time maybe your mixer needs to be out on the counter or in the front of a lower cupboard. If you’re really into juicing or making smoothies, consider keeping these appliances out or in a place you can easily access. If you rarely use your crockpot or fondue set and are truthfully unlikely to start anytime soon you don’t need to have these items out crowding your space or taking up prime real estate at the front of your cupboards.
Organizing dry foods can also be tricky depending on the size of your kitchen, but there are several ideas you can use to help yourself out.
- Baking: Put all your baking materials in the same cupboard, on the same shelf if possible and keep these near your oven or your mixing equipment.
- Beverages: Keep all your coffees and teas together and near your coffee pot and water kettle.
- Pantry Goods: If you don’t have a pantry, designate one cupboard to house goods that are shelf-stable for a long time. Place canned items, unopened sauces, rice and pasta in this cupboard, or on a particular shelf.
- Daily Use: For items you use daily like bread, cereal and snacks find a quick access location in your kitchen. Maybe this is a cupboard right by your plates and bowls or by your fridge.
Any kitchen, no matter the size can be organized to meet your daily needs. Take inventory of what you have and what you use to help you transform your kitchen into a functional space that works for you.
A pantry is a coveted feature for many homeowners. Especially those come from small apartments or houses. No more stacking items like the Leaning Tower of Pisa or reaching back into the endless depths hoping to land on your favorite spice mix.
However, all the extra space can cause a new organizational problem - there’s so much that you don’t know what to do with it. If finding ingredients has become an aerobics exercise from searching them top to bottom each time you cook today’s article is for you.
Instead of tall jars opt for flat square stackable containers. By taking up more surface space and less height they can’t hide behind one another. Label each container so you know at a glance which is flour and which powdered sugar.
Take advantage of the space your pantry door provides. Install hooks to hang pans or lids down the length of the door. Or for a weekend craft project install a large magnet and put spices in little jars with metal lids. You’ll just want to make sure your magnet has a strong enough hold that all of your jars don’t come crashing down each time the kids inevitably slam the door shut.
For ultimate organization install a chalkboard along the inside (or outside) of your pantry door for an ongoing shopping list. Add a small lip to hold some chalk so anyone in the family can add on to the list when they finish up the last snack of the bunch. This helps cut down on time spent taking inventory of your home staples and which need to be restocked.
Take advantage of space below shelving in your pantry with crates. These are great for storing the aforementioned kid snacks, baking items and extra items you stock up on to stretch the time between shopping trips. Install wheels on the bottom to make them easier to pull in and out or into the main kitchen area.
Create zones throughout your pantry with items like under-the-shelf racks, stacking shelves, lazy susans, and clear bins. These not only help you keep like-items together but also to capitalize on the space you have. Label bins to help the rest of your family keep things tidy. Under-the-shelf racks are great for more delicate items like bread and root vegetables to stay up and out of the way from the threats of cans and jars.
Alternatively get creative and use a shower caddy or magazine rack hung from the inside of the door for your root vegetables and bread. Measure the space between the door and shelf when closed to ensure the correct depth or match the spacing between each so the height of bins matches that of shelf spacing.
The kitchen is the center of the home. It’s where families ultimately end up gathering throughout the day. Whether for breakfast, dinner, to chat over tea or wine it’s a place for connection with those we care about.
And as a room that we spend so much of our time in why shouldn’t it be the best room in the house? Here are five kitchen features to look for while house hunting for your dream home.
Custom cabinetry promises quality, natural wood that has been hand designed by a craftsman. No out of the box carbon copies here. Since time and resources were allocated towards adding custom cabinetry you can also be sure careful planning was as well. The cabinetry should enhance and fit artfully within the kitchen and around architecture capitalizing on space.
A large kitchen island is quickly becoming a necessity for homeowners upgrading their spaces. Providing more than just extra prep space it allows for the family to gather while cooking, working on homework or socializing over cocktails. Look for options that can comfortably seat six to eight people especially if you love hosting others often.
Depending on your preferences you may find your countertops more important than counter space. Quartz and marble countertops are quickly replacing granite. And rightly so, they make for a stunning centerpiece of the room. They are slightly more high maintenance but well worth the effort. If you are so lucky to have these countertops in your new home be sure to pick up some trivets with padded feet and Bar Keepers Friend to preserve their natural beauty.
Natural stone tiling is forever a classic. If you’re seeking a home that is timelessly elegant natural stone is a must-have. Marble is the most coveted. And if radiant heat flooring is on your wishlist for those early Sunday mornings cooking pancakes natural stone makes for a perfect duo.
A walk-in pantry for the home chef is akin to a shoe closet for the fashion forward. Allowing plenty of storage space, a walk-in pantry begs to be filled with cookbooks, specialty ingredients and you’re most prized appliances to be put neatly on display. Consider the proximity of each pantry to your cooking space. You’ll want one that feels like a natural extension to the kitchen and not like you’re going out of your way each time you need to gather necessary ingredients and supplies.
If you have your heart set on any of these features but find an almost perfect home without them leave room in your budget to upgrade after the sale. This way you will not only have upscale features but ones that are completely customized to your exact preferences. You’ll have plenty of time to make these decisions without the rush of balancing out the pros and cons before placing a bid.
If you’re in a space with a small kitchen, you know that you face a lot of problems including not enough storage, minuscule amounts of prep space, and barely enough room for more than one person in the kitchen at a time. The layout of the room along with the design is what you must work with when you have a small kitchen. There are a few storage solutions that you can use to make your kitchen into a workable space.
Clear The Clutter
Do you have a lot of gadgets hanging around your kitchen that you aren’t using on a regular basis? If there’s no space to store them, perhaps you should consider getting rid of them. That ice cream maker that you may have thought was a good idea to purchase may sit unused, taking up space. You should store only the things you need, and get rid of any items that are just collecting dust.
Use An Armoire Or Other Shelving Unit
Small kitchens often lack cabinet space. You can use items like armories and bookshelves to give yourself more storage space. Whether you need to store dishes, food items, or pots and pans, these unusual items can help to provide you big amounts of storage. You can even add your own shelves to kitchen walls. All of these ideas provide inexpensive, yet practical solutions to your kitchen storage woes.
Find An Island
There are carts and other portable kitchen island units that exist to provide additional storage and prep space fro you. Many of these have fold-out counter space and drawers and cabinets. If you have some floor space in your small kitchen, this could be a great use of that space.
Hang Your Things
No matter how small your kitchen is, you have some room to hang things. You can use hooks in various places in the kitchen whether it’s on a wall or under a shelf. All of your utensils and pots and pans have the ability to hang up somewhere. Give yourself some more storage room and maximize the space that you do have in the kitchen. There are various designs that you can make use of to hang pots and pans using hooks, racks, or even a hanging shelf. Hang your utensils strategically so they are within reach of your cooking area.
Remember that you have a lot of space available over your head in most cases in a small kitchen. The more you can maximize vertical space, the better off you’ll be. You can place your least used items the highest up and work your way down.
With the right techniques, storage space doesn’t have to be a huge issue in a small kitchen.