Spruce Up Your Kitchen: Organising Ideas To Create Efficiency In Your Home

Kitchens are often described as the heart of the home. With today's eat-in kitchens and barstool-style breakfast counters, they can become the command centre. The place where breakfast chats happen, where counter space is cleared for homework, and the place where families gather, laugh, relax, be busy, and break bread together.

Kitchens have evolved into highly multi-functional spaces, which means we need some brilliant kitchen organisation ideas to keep things running smoothly and efficiently.

How can I create extra storage space in my existing kitchen?

This is a great question and one that has varying solutions. To begin with, it's a good idea to figure out if you've simply over-accumulated and need to declutter and purge excess.

Think about how much space certain things need. Are some items better in drawers or on shelves? Do you like your cooking utensils in a jar on the bench or in drawers? If you have the drawer space then go with this option to keep your bench tops clear.

  • A kitchen cabinet is pretty amazing for its dark corners and 'difficult-to-get-to' hidden spaces. Surprisingly large appliances or serving dishes can get quite lost, especially when not used often.

    • Shelf risers within existing cabinets do wonders to increase shelf space.

    • Consider fitting pull-out baskets to the bases of cabinets, this will create easy access to the back of cupboards.

  • If you have vertical space, use it - those upper cabinets are great for storing items that don't get used often, yet are essential on occasion.

  • Hang hooks to utilise more space on walls - the inside wall of a cabinet door is a good spot for hooks - hang aprons or a spice rack for optimum space usage.

  • Create a window seat or kitchen nook - excellent for lift-up lids in which to place seasonal items or pieces that don't get used often. Place some sheepskin chair covers or a short wool rug on top for added comfort and style.

  • Dedicate one drawer as the junk drawer or catch-all space. Sort it out regularly and use dividers and small containers to organise items neatly.

  • Floating open shelves are a nice wall fixture and a great way to display fun pieces that might be taking up valuable cabinet space best used for something else. Perhaps it's your recipe book space.

Where should things go in kitchen cabinets?

Ideally, you'll want all the kitchen essentials within easy reach. It's also a good idea to consider where your dishwasher is and how easy it is to reach cabinets and utensil drawers. Particularly if you want to pass the dishes chore to the kids!

Group items together.

  • Plastic containers should be stacked together - this can be a conundrum in itself. Find a system that works and just know that the 'container drawer' is one that will need a fairly regular sort-out.

  • A deep drawer with dividers for cutting boards and trays is an excellent way to organise these.

  • Shelves for serving dishes and heavier kitchen items work well if they're at eye level. Anything higher will possibly need a step for easy access. This is where drawers are a good option if you have the space.

  • Daily dinner sets and cutlery should be easily accessible when someone is at the sink and in fairly close proximity to the dishwasher.

  • Drinking glasses and coffee cups can go in cabinets near the fridge or again, in a pull-out drawer.

How do I declutter my kitchen cupboards?

This is one of those chores that sits in the back of your mind as you recall the platter you used to have or the serving dish you've not seen for some time. They're still somewhere, just not within easy reach

  1. Pull every item out of every cupboard.

  2. Sort out anything you're ready to pass on from the items you plan to keep.

  3. Before you return items to cabinets, be sure to separate all the essentials so they can be easily accessed.

  4. When putting your 'keep items' away, give care and thought to how you use your kitchen and which utensils, pots, pans, and other kitchen things, you use most. Figure out what needs to be near the kitchen sink or in organised sections in cupboards.

Pantry storage ideas:

Pantry items can become a jumbled mess rather easily, particularly in a busy house. To create neat, tidy, and organised pantry shelves, sort things into groups. For example, store your baking needs together, canned vegetables together, and biscuits or treats together, etc.

If your pantry cabinet has deep shelves, consider fixing pull-out baskets or replacing the shelves with curved, shallow units so items don't crawl their way to the back.

  1. Use lazy-susan turntables for sauces and bottles - group them together in size and cuisine.

  2. Store food items one row deep so things don't crawl their way to the back of the pantry.

  3. Remove items like pasta, rice, sugar, flour, and nuts from their packaging and use stackable, clear containers or glass jars.

  4. Utilise the pantry door and hang a spice rack or place hooks for aprons. Spices also work exceptionally well in drawers beside the cooktop. Allow easy access with labels facing upwards and you'll know exactly what you need to add to your shopping list with a glance.

How can I make my kitchen more functional?

A functional kitchen is one that is easy to work in, is not a cluttered mess, and is one in which everything has a place to live.

  • The kitchen triangle used to be the benchmark of a good kitchen design. However, today's lifestyles are different with more small appliances to store and our kitchens have become more multi-use.

  • Install kitchen drawers with dividers and cutlery organizers to maximize space and, well, organise things.

  • Large pull-out drawers with room for serving dishes and everyday plates are a great option and excellent use of space. They offer more visibility and items are less likely to 'walk' to the back of a cabinet and not get used.

  • Use deep drawers for pots and pans.

  • Utilise the inside of cabinet doors to hang a spice rack in the pantry or to store cleaning supplies below the sink. The idea is to have zero wasted space.

  • Use a magnetic knife strip to save valuable space in a kitchen drawer. This is a better space-saver than a knife block since it's on the wall and not taking up extra space on a bench top or in a cabinet.

How can I store my pots and pans in a small kitchen?

For a rustic, slightly industrial, yet inviting farmhouse aesthetic, hang pots from a ceiling bracket. This system works particularly well over a kitchen island.

How do I add style to my kitchen?

Kitchen storage is an important part of style and function within your kitchen. However, with style comes atmosphere and decor selections, which are also key elements of creating a welcoming 'hub-of-the-home' with inviting hygge.

A streamlined, well-organised kitchen with decluttered countertops and lots of light is a dream to work in and easy to keep in order. Bringing your own touch and personality is down to what you like and what draws you in.

  • Lighting - a stunning pendant above your kitchen table or island will do wonders.

  • Fruit Bowl - make this your centre-piece with a striking and interesting oversized bowl. A wide rustic wood or bold navy and white striped bowl will offer uniqueness to your bench or table.

  • Appliances - this might sound strange but if you have a barista-style coffee machine that will get some serious use, especially with guests, then ensure it's on display and easy to access.

Beautify with texture and sheepskin:

Transform your eat-in kitchen counter space and pop some sheepskin seat covers atop bar stools and window seat areas.

Toss some sheepskin cushions along the back of a kitchen nook bench seat.

Sheepskin is inviting and comfortable. Not only that, it's remarkably practical. If you have an open-plan kitchen, dining, and living then adorn your living space with a large sheepskin rug. Anchor the space and create zones.

Use wall space to display art or fix floating shelves to showcase favourite pieces and unique kitchen items.

In conclusion:

A well-organised, tidy, and streamlined kitchen will offer a place in which to create memories and function well as a household at the same time. One where efficiency reigns supreme and one that is not only easy to clean and keep tidy but also one that isn't too precious for the kids to get into the flour sack for some baking.

When designing a kitchen space, form and function go hand in hand. Do your research and look at many homes and kitchen design plans before diving in.

At the end of the day, the best piece of advice is to ensure that everything has a home and set aside some time once or twice per year to go through your cabinets for a sort-out. You'll find many brilliant kitchen organisation ideas on Pinterest.

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