Week of Kitchen Renovations: Storage and Organization

Our kitchen is small. Not as small as some, but definitely small. We have spent some time thinking about storage and organization such that we can maximize the square footage that we do have. Here are a couple things we’ve done to help utilize our space in the best way possible.

One thing that I like to do is use plastic or wicker baskets to store similar things together. In this cabinet above the sink, we have a basket of salad fixins and other random things like our kitchen torch, one with various packages of food (salmon, popcorn, jello), and one with cupcake liners. Yes, I can fill a whole basket with just cupcake liners. The fourth basket is just a collection of random bags of stuff that have been opened. This helps to keep things organized and allows you to use the full height of a shelf.

Another thing we use are these cabinet shelves. I got them at Container Store and they provide a great solution for stacking our plates and bowls. The other one is used to hold the cutting boards suspended over the strainer. The strainer also holds all of my measuring cups and spoons.

While I have a reusable lunch bag, Hubby takes his every day in a plastic grocery bag. Although with our reusable grocery bags, we’re hoping that we won’t have many plastic bags in the house soon enough. Inevitably, we are on the way home from work and stop at the store and have no reusable bags in the car, so we bring a few home every once and a while. This bag holder fits perfectly on the inside of the cabinet door so it’s convenient and keeps the pile of bags under control.

We really wanted to keep as much off the counters as possible. An easy organizational tool is the paper towel holder. This one is a one-handed version. So you can pull off a paper towel and tear it with just one hand.

One of the only things that is allowed on the counter is this fun red colander. It’s from TJMaxx. It holds produce that is kept at room temperature as well as some random things like post it notes and a pen.

One of the last things we added was the pot rack. I love that it helped to empty the majority of our big cabinet next to the stove. Since we have really tall ceilings, it is pretty high up. Hubby and I can both reach the pots hanging there, but someone much shorter than 5’8″ might have an issue. Hubby installed it centered over the windows in the kitchen.

A couple other smalls things we added include the tilt out drawer for a sponge by the sink. It’s just nice to have a place for the sponge.

We also grabbed a couple of these stainless steel over the door hooks. They’re great for holding a hand towel or an oven mit with a hook on it. We have one on this cabinet and one on the cabinet by the sink.

Last, I wanted to show my baking cabinet. A lot of people ask about this, so I figured I’d show it. Even though we only have two full sized cabinets on top, Hubby agreed to let me have one of the full sized cabinets to myself. As you can see I have a lot crammed into my cabinet. I like to keep that bottom shelf clean because it’s the one I use most. As for the pink plastic baskets – one holds decorating items (piping bags/tips, food coloring etc), and the other holds cookie mix-ins (nuts and a variety of chocolate chips).

If anyone else has any kitchen organization tips, I would love to hear them!

Check out my Week of Kitchen Renovations here.

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19 Responses to “Week of Kitchen Renovations: Storage and Organization”

  1. #
    1
    Becca — January 6, 2010 at 2:35 pm

    Love those cabinet shelves! They look like a great space saver. I’ll have to look into those.

  2. #
    2
    Anne — January 6, 2010 at 2:55 pm

    You have so many great solutions!! I’m RUNNING to Bed Bath and Beyond for the plastic bag holder–ours are just free under the sink!!

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    3
    Jen — January 6, 2010 at 3:07 pm

    Anne – it really is great and not to $$ either!

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    4
    shadow_elan — January 6, 2010 at 4:48 pm

    I’m pretty sure you’ve talked about them before but can you please tell us where you got those neat spice bottles for your sugars? I LOVE them!!!

  5. #
    5
    Jen — January 6, 2010 at 4:51 pm

    Shadow – They are part of Pottery Barn’s Daily System. The post coming tomorrow will actually go through how we made the shelf and include a link to the spice jars themselves.

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    6
    stephchows — January 6, 2010 at 7:10 pm

    the spice jars are so cool!! Can’t wait to see more about them :) I love how vibrant all the colors are!

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    nutmegnanny — January 6, 2010 at 11:17 pm

    Great organizing! I’m always trying to figure out how I’m going to fit all my stuff in my kitchen. Thanks for the tips! BTW love those spice jars…so cute!

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    bcallegra — January 7, 2010 at 12:52 am

    I’ll add my admiration of the spice jars as well – what a great way to keep them dry and organized while adding color to your kitchen!

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    shadow_elan — January 7, 2010 at 1:47 am

    Thanks for the info about the spice jars! They’re actually $10 off right now too, so you get 15 jars for $19!!!

    …I might have bought two sets… :)

    Can’t wait to see how you guys set up your shelf.

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    Kat — January 7, 2010 at 3:05 am

    Great ideas! I also love the plastic bag holder among other items. Looking forward to the post on the spice containers.

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    Jen — January 7, 2010 at 3:06 am

    Hopefully Hubby doesn’t hear the price went down so much. He about had a heart attack when I told him I was spending $120 on spice jars!

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    12
    jenshowme — January 26, 2010 at 8:57 pm

    How is the towel made so it can hung by a loop?

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    gaga — January 27, 2010 at 1:18 am

    I love love loooove what you’ve done with your kitchen. It’s so functional and looks fantastic. I’m definitely stealing some of your ideas and incorporating them into my kitchen. Thanks!

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    Jen — January 27, 2010 at 2:21 am

    jenshowme – this is the paper towel holder. It’s a bar that gets attached on one side and has an arm sticking out that the paper towel goes onto.

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    15
    mingy — March 26, 2010 at 5:12 am

    Use tiered cosmetic cases!
    They’re absolutely great. You can compartmentalize your things easily everything stays together. =)

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