help me declutter my kitchen - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 7 Old 02-28-2005, 04:11 PM - Thread Starter
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Sorry if this question has been asked already...
but I need some suggestions for maximizing kitchen space. My kitchen's not tiny, but it's not very big either. I do lots of cooking and baking, so I usually have my kitchen stocked pretty full. We are renting, so aren't willing to invest any significant amount of $ but I would like ideas of cheap and simple ways for storing and organising. Thanks.
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#2 of 7 Old 02-28-2005, 04:23 PM
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I am in the process of doing that righ t now, too. My MIL is coming for 5 weeks starting at the end of March. : She takes over the kitchen every visit and I don't want to be so embarrassed this time with the clutter.

I just decluttered the pantry and threw out a bunch of stuff that has been there since her last visit. : That was 2 years ago. I also finally tamed the food storage containers cabinet. Lids, containers. What a mess! We have a collection of glass containers that are bigger in size, and a bunch of little plastic ones. I just got rid of most of the plastic ones because they are stained and many are missing lids.

I just bought 12 cheap 1 qt storage containers with lids. They all are the same size and stack into each other. I have put the big glass ones up for now, to use for serving dishes or freezing large batches of things. We are just going to use the small qt. size containers from now on. No more trying to find a matching lid, or feeling like I'm doing a 3D puzzle when I put all the containers in the cabinet after washing. I made a big batch of stew last night and we put it away in 2 containers. That way there is more room in the fridge as we finish it, rather than storing a large container with 1 cup of soup left in it.

Happy cleaning!

7yo: "Mom,I know which man is on a quarter and which on is on a nickel. They both have ponytails, but one man has a collar and the other man is naked. The naked man was our first president."
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#3 of 7 Old 02-28-2005, 04:58 PM
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I decluttered the kitchen fairly recently, here's what worked for me.

First, go through the cabinets and countertops and pull out everything that you don't use. Be honest with yourself. If the cappucino machine hasn't been used in three years, you're never going to use it. If you have a can of cream of mushroom soup that you bought by accident and nobody in the house likes mushrooms, let it go. You'll never turn it into a crock pot meal for company. Food that's been up there so long it kind of frightens you? Toss it.

Second, go through again and pull out all appliances and gadgets that you honestly do use, but rarely. Pizzele iron that only gets used at Christmas? Deep fat fryer that you use every three or four months for fish and chips? Collect it all and put it in far-away storage, like attic or basement. For how rarely you use those things, it's not that tough to go retrieve them when you need them.

Now, decide what you want on your counter tops. Don't leave out anything you don't use almost daily. If you use your George Foreman Grill about once a week, put it in a cabinet. (There may be some exceptions based on size. I leave out my Kitchenaid mixer and large crock pot because they don't fit in any cabinet and I use them too often to go into the attic for them, even though I don't use them daily. However, they're also two of my most attractive appliances, and I do use them quite frequently.) Anything you don't want living on the countertops, find space for it in a cabinet. If you can't find enough space there, review your appliances again and banish a few more to the attic, or at least the hall closet. Don't leave a lot of small items out on the counter tops - you'll be constantly moving them out of the way to clean crumbs out from behind them.

Permanent residents of my countertops:
Large jar with a betta fish
Cup full of teaspoons
Stand for hanging bananas
Decorative bowl for catching odds and ends
Lazy susan with 4 glass jars full of flour, sugar, etc.
Dish drainer
Crock pot
Toaster oven
Basket full of spice jars that don't fit on shelves
Microwave (really only used as a breadbox. I never use the thing, I'd gladly get rid of it but dh likes it...)
Two cans full of loose tea
Jar of honey
Salt and pepper shakers
Knife blocks
Crock full of utensils that I use regularly at the stove
Turkey roaster (soon to go into the hall closet, I just don't use it often enough to justify the space. To be replaced with a fruit bowl that used to live in that spot, and did get used.)
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#4 of 7 Old 03-01-2005, 12:30 AM
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When you go through your stuff, try to think "multi task" and get rid of things that only do 1 thing. Also, empty on cabinet and as you use stuff, put it away in the empty cabinet (making more empty cabinets as time goes on). At the end of a month you will have a good sense of what is used.

Miriam , mom to jumpers.gif
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#5 of 7 Old 03-01-2005, 02:20 AM
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I so need this thread! I have a very small kitchen, a galley kitchen with practically no cupboard space. We don't have a pantry. There's barely enough room for food and dishes let alone small appliances. Right now we have stuff stacked in various areas of the house because there is just no place to put it! We do plan to renovate in the future but right now it just isn't an option. My problem is I use everything (crock pot, food processer, mixmaster, veggie/rice steamer, blender, bread machine, you get the idea!). I really need to get this mess organized. It's to the point where I can't even prepare food in there. There's just no room.

. : Jill, mama to 5 kiddos, soon to be 6 in June 2013 : .

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#6 of 7 Old 03-01-2005, 04:02 AM
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I need this thread too. You would die if you knew how little cupboard space I have. To give you an idea - I don't have a bottom cupboard wider than 8" (not counting under-the-sink). Seriously. I actually DO NOT have any cupboard that I can fit either the breadmaker OR my saute pan in.
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#7 of 7 Old 03-01-2005, 12:57 PM
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Originally Posted by boingo82
I need this thread too. You would die if you knew how little cupboard space I have. To give you an idea - I don't have a bottom cupboard wider than 8" (not counting under-the-sink). Seriously. I actually DO NOT have any cupboard that I can fit either the breadmaker OR my saute pan in.
That sounds just like my kitchen. I have a shelf in my laundry room in the basement where I keep the crock pot, breadmaker, and large stock pots. I keep my largest saute pan and sauce pans in the drawer under our oven (we have a drawer instead of a broiler). My frying pans are hanging on hooks on the wall of our basement stairs (the stairs go from the kitchen to the basement). It's certainly not ideal, and I still feel cramped, but it works. Oh, I also bought a hutch that has a pull-out wood "cutting board" that I use for additional counterspace when I need it. The hutch is against the one, empty (small) wall. We don't have a table in our kitchen, but have a very informal dining room instead.

What I need help with is our lack of an "entryway". We enter through the door from the garage into the kitchen & it is barely wide enough to walk through. There's no place to take off boots, hang coats, put mittens, etc. Ugh!
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