by Marica Fick
If you have a small kitchen adequate storage space is luxury. It is therefore paramount to keep your kitchen counters and cabinets organised to maximise space and minimise clutter.
Luckily this does not have to be a complicated or expensive exercise. With a bit of ingenuity and the use of few unusual repurposed items you can turn your kitchen chaos into organised calm.
Here are ten clever “hacks” to help you organise your kitchen:
source: Damernas Värld
Hack 1: Keep the Clutter Contained with a Tray
Kitchen counter clutter happens. While it would be awesome to keep everything out of sight and tucked away in a drawer or cabinet, there are certain things that will probably reside on your counter permanently.
The ideal organisational solution for these counter-top items is to group them unto a beautiful tray. Trays have this magic ability to make a jumble look like a well thought through and unified decorative feature. You are creating little kitchen “vignettes” so to speak.
source: Miss Mustard Seed
Hack 2: Beautify the Sink with Some Soap Dispensers
Keep the kitchen sink looking neat and clutter-free by storing the brightly coloured dish soap bottle and scrubbing tools under your sink.
If you however prefer to keep them close at hand you can do what Marian, aka Miss Mustard Seed, did in her lovely farmhouse kitchen. Purchase a couple of pretty soap dispensers with a pump nozzle that will compliment your kitchen decor. One dispenser can contain your dish soap the other your hand soap. The big plastic soap bottles are kept hidden under the sink allowing you to refill the dispensers as needed.
source: I Heart Organizing
Hack 3: Create More Shelf Space – Hook It
Are your coffee cup shelves overflowing with mugs, one precariously stacked upon another? That is definitely not an ideal storage solution and stacking can often lead to cracking and chips.
What your cabinet needs is some inexpensive hooks. Simply screw in a couple of rows of hooks to the underside of your cabinet shelves (side note – aren’t these copper hooks used by I Heart Organizing so pretty?). Now you can hang your cups on the hooks for quick and easy usage. Furthermore, the hooks free up some space on the shelf below. The perfect space to store your smaller cups or saucers – and no more stacking!
source: The Container Store
Hack 4: Double Cabinet Space with Shelf Risers
Are you always in search of more kitchen shelf space? Sometimes shelves are built so far apart that one has to stack and pile your various crockery and dishes on top of each other in order to get the maximum storage out of your cabinets. This often leads to quite a mess if the specific item you are looking for is at the bottom of the pile. Sigh – imagine all that staking and re-stacking.
An easy way to add more space without going through the trouble of having more wooden shelves put in is to use metal shelf-risers or under-shelf baskets. Both these items allow you to add an additional “layer” for storage inside you cabinet without directly stacking the items on top of one another.
Hack 5: Organise Those Plastic Bags
Do you also have a drawer crammed with plastic shopping bags? Or one big plastic bag stuffed with all the others? What you need is a nifty plastic bag dispenser. You can make your own using baby wipes / wet wipes dispensers or empty coffee cans (imagine how many plastic bags you can fit into one of those big Ricoffy cans). If you are using a coffee can instead of a wipe dispenser, just make some cuts in coffee can’s plastic lid to pull the bags through.
There is even a special way to roll and insert the plastic bag into your container that it will give you a continuous feed of bags (see video above).
source: Apartment Therapy | photo: Rachel Jacks
source: Modish & Main
Hack 6: Box the Junk Drawer
We all have that one kitchen drawer. You know the one – filled to the brim with a tangle of odds and ends – anything from tape to batteries. Then there is the drawer containing all the awkwardly-shaped oversized utensils and gadgets – your braai tongs, whisks, etc. Those drawers are often such a jumble one has search and scratch for what you need.
While drawer organisers would be the perfect answer to keep the mess at bay, the divisions and size of your standard cutlery trays won’t be able to cope with all the items in your jumble drawer.
The best solutions would be to make your own drawer organiser. It does not have to be overly complicated – you can use different sized boxes or containers (I find empty chocolate boxes quite handy – those plastic Ferrero Rocher boxes especially). Or, if you are handy, you can try making your own wooden drawer organiser as shown in this DIY tutorial by Apartment Therapy: here.
source: Raising Up Rubies
Hack 7: Replace the Egg Tray with a Basket
Just like the above-mentioned kitchen drawer, the inside of your fridge can often be another organisational nightmare. Jars, produce, and leftovers stacked all higgledy-piggledy and that one suspect-looking container in the back with rarely used foodstuffs that may already have expired. Yuck! Creating order with some plastic baskets is a must.
If you are a Banter or the like and regularly use a whole lot of eggs, you probably find the egg rack in your fridge on the small side. Jaime from Raising Up Rubies found a fun solution to increase her egg storage. She replaced the standard 12-egg rack in her fridge with a quirky red wire basket. Not only does it look lovely, it also allows for a great deal more eggs.
source: The Wandmaker’s Mother
Hack 8: Magazine Organiser Turned Cabinet Door Storage
Reclaim some much needed drawer and cabinet space by fixing a magazine organiser to the inside of a cabinet door. It is the perfect tool to house things like rolls of cling-film and tinfoil or your various chopping boards and smaller trays.
source: Better Homes & Gardens
Hack 9: CD Rack Turned Tupperware Storage
The Tupperware cupboard is always a mess, right? So many lids and plastic containers jumbled together. And somehow one can never find the correct container lid when you need to! Well, this clever hack will allow you to store your Tupperware lids in such a way that you will never need to scratch again.
Do you have an old CD rack lying around? Repurpose it as a handy lid organising tool. Just insert it into your Tupperware drawer or cabinet and stack your lids by size and shape.
source: A Bowl Full of Lemons
Hack 10: Basket & Label Your Pantry
A disorganised pantry can be a kitchen nightmare. Maximise the space in your pantry with labelled baskets, plastic containers and big glass jars. Group similar items together in one basket or bin. Big glass coffee or pickle jars make for excellent storage containers for baking goods like flour, sugar or grains – you can even stow your various dry pasta in them.
Not only would you pantry shelves look much neater and pretty it will also be much easier to find something in a flash.