Organization Tips: The Kitchen

The kitchen. It’s one of the most used rooms of the house, yet somehow becomes one of the most disorganized. If you’re tired of digging past ten spatulas to find the potato peeler keep reading. Below are some tips on how to organize your kitchen and keep it that way!

Start by making a bigger mess. Yes, clean everything out of the drawers and cupboards. You may want to include clearing out pantry items as well if it’s been awhile since you’ve done so. Check expiration dates on everything as sometimes items have a way of getting pushed to the back of a cupboard to be forgotten for years. Sort through your items and determine what can be kept, donated or tossed out.

Create categories for the items you are keeping. Think baking, cooking, seasonal, often used, least used, etc. By sorting everything out into categories now, you will know what type of storage solutions and where the best place to store them is later.

Find storage solutions that work. Whether you have items laying around the house you can use or need to invest in some, the best way to stay organized is to create a system that assigns a home for every single item you own. Junk drawers are born from items not having a dedicated place. Be proactive in preventing the dreaded junk drawer by finding an organization solution that includes a spot for everything. Some organization items to consider are lazy susans for spices and other pantry items, hooks to hang mugs, a stemware rack for wine glasses, a rack hang pots and pans from the ceiling, hooks on the insides of cabinet doors for pot holders or measuring cups, a spice rack installed on a cabinet door, and drawer dividers for utensils.

Keep your most used items within reach. Avoid digging through cupboards and drawers on a daily basis by keeping your most used items front and center. In cabinets store your most used items on lower shelves while placing the ones you use less often on top shelves. Place your go-to cooking utensils in a vase or other type of decorative container on the counter next to the stove. You should also consider keeping pots, pans, and other cooking items close to the stove to keep them within arms reach when you are cooking.

Extra Tips for the Go-Getters. Organize plastic ware with their lids. Better yet invest in a set that comes with snap-together lids or a large matching set so you aren’t left trying to cram the wrong lid on a bowl for leftovers. Make the most of the empty space over your cabinets by adding shelves for extra storage. Add a lazy susan in your fridge to avoid items being pushed to the back and becoming long forgotten. Set up a station to sort typical kitchen papers like coupons, menus, and notepads.

While we use our kitchen almost every day the clutter can build up and become overwhelming. With an action plan in hand and a few days dedicated to organizing the chaos you can have a cleaner, more organized kitchen before you know it!

The Psychological Benefits of Reduced Household Clutter

Imagine an area of your home that’s particularly cluttered now, and then picture in your mind’s eye how nice it would look if it was cleaned and organized. If you take a few seconds to visualize this scenario, it will feel like a breath of fresh air! For many people, a cluttered, disorganized living space or working environment tends to create mental clutter — and that makes it nearly impossible to be at your best.

On the other hand, when you create a plan to organize your storage space and get rid of household clutter, you’re taking a major step toward enhancing your home and the way you feel about it. Although you may have a dozen or more areas that need to be organized, if you create a methodical plan to tackle one small area at a time, then the project is much more achievable and less overwhelming.

The Outcome Is Worth The Effort

If you’ve ever undertaken a task like this, you know how rewarding it can be to see the results. You’ll also enjoy the feeling of pride that accompanies improving the look and feel of your home. When you’ve transformed chaos into a semblance of order, it can have a positive effect on your attitude and your self esteem. Although taking charge of household clutter is not a panacea for stress, it can be one of several improvements that make a big difference.

Where to Begin

You can infuse a feeling of fresh energy into your home by organizing and cleaning the following ten areas:

  1. Closets: Most homes have a ton of them and they’re probably in a major state of disarray!
  2. Book shelves: If you have a library of books, then organizing them can dramatically improve the appearance of any room — from living rooms and family rooms to bedrooms and home offices.
  3. Kitchen cabinets (Check expiration dates while you’re organizing.)
  4. Bathroom cabinets and drawers (Refer to note in item #3.)
  5. Junk drawers: Virtually every home has them, and they usually consist of a combination of junk and treasures. In most cases, it’s obvious what should be thrown away and what’s worth saving.
  6. Garage and tool sheds: These areas are typically in desperate need of cleaning and organizing.
  7. Work bench: If tools, hardware, and supplies are haphazardly piled on top of each other or randomly strewn on your work bench, then finding what you need when you need it becomes increasingly frustrating and time consuming. Taking an hour or so to organize your work bench can make life a lot simpler and more productive.
  8. Spare bedrooms: In many people’s homes, that area tends to become a repository for things that either need to be put away, given away, or thrown away.
  9. File cabinets: Being able to find important documents, information, and receipts depends on well organized and clearly labeled files. Ideally, that takes place on an ongoing basis, but if that’s not happening, a semi-annual review of your filing system can help keep things in good order.
  10. Basements: Depending on how long you’ve lived in your house, this might be a project that needs to be spread out over a few days!

Involving members of your family in the cleanup plan can also make it move along faster and feel more like a team effort, rather than a solo undertaking. To avoid procrastination, start small and branch out from there. As the ancient Chinese philosopher Lao Tzu once said: “A journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.”

How To Organize A Closet And Make More Space

Keeping your Closet organized can be a huge headache. There’s so many components to a closet that it can be hard to tell where to start in the space to create that sense of organization that you’re looking for. With a few of these tips, you can become an organizational wizard! The problem is that we need to know how to organize. If we’re not taught how to organize our own space, we have to learn it somehow! Keep that messy closet at bay and try these suggestions for a well-equipped and organized closet:

Use The Spaces You Have

The backs of doors are brilliant places to maximize your storage. By using simple pieces that you can purchase at the hardware store, you can make a closet space of your own on the back of a door. You can attach containers and hooks for storage on the door, ensuring enough room for clearance. This is a great place to keep all of your things that you may need to get ready for the next day like outfits, makeup and other essential items for your morning routine.

Use The Floor

The floor is a great place to store all of your shoes. Since dirt and mud often accumulate on your shoes, the floor of the closet is a great place for them to keep the rest of the house clean and free of mud. Use a tray to keep the dirt at bay inside the closet and keep your shoes organized.

Color Code And Label

You can actually color code your hangers to group your clothing by season or occasion, the choice is up to you. This can help you to always be able to find that piece of clothing that gets lost in the abyss of your closet. You’ll also always know what you have. You’ll also be able to see what you don’t wear more easily so you’ll be able to get rid of those pieces of clothing.

By labeling bins that are stored in your closet, you’ll always know what’s in them and never have to rummage through a bunch of bins to find what you’re looking for. When it comes to using plastic containers, the see-through versions are often best. Even when you’re labeling boxes, being able to physically see what is in each container is an added bonus.

Consider Using A Dresser

In order to maximize your storage space and organization, consider keeping a dresser inside of the closet. You can label the drawers and have the ability to know what each drawer holds. Even shelving or a bookcase can be helpful in maximizing your storage space inside of an otherwise small closet.

Hooks Are Your Friend

Although we already talked about placing hooks on the backs of doors, hooks really can be useful anywhere when it comes to closet storage. Place hooks on the inside walls of the closet for additional hanging space for items like purses and bags.

How To Create A Pantry When There’s No Room For It

Chefs need their organization in order to cook good meals for everyone. Everything from ingredients to utensils to small appliances must be organized and within reach for a stress-free preparation of meals. This is where a pantry comes in handy. A pantry is a place off of your kitchen where ingredients can be stored and utensils are tucked away. You can keep your small appliances there as well. The problem is that not all homes have a pantry. You may not even think that you have space for a pantry. If your home doesn’t have a a dedicated pantry, there are plenty of ways that you can create your own pantry. Here, we’ll give you some tips on how to create your own pantry easily and cost effectively.

Add Shelving To Become Your Pantry

There are shelving pieces available designed specifically for kitchens. Some of these shelves are even designed for commercial kitchens. You can mount them to wall space that you have available near the kitchen. The good news is that these shelving units are incredibly affordable. You can place them anywhere from the kitchen itself to a laundry room, or any other room that connects with the kitchen.

Buy Readymade Shelves

This is one of the simpler methods to create your own pantry. It could be as easy as buying a bookcase and repurposing it. The great part about bookshelves is that the shelves get wider as you move towards the bottom of the unit. The smaller shelves on the top can be used for smaller jars, spices and even cookbooks. The larger shelves can be used for oils and large containers.

Dedicate A Shelving Area As Your Pantry

If you have an unused nook, certain unused cabinets, or any other space close to your kitchen, you can make it into a pantry. Any sort of vertical cabinet that’s open provides you with a generous amount of pantry storage.

Maximize Your Storage

By labeling things, organizing items by type and putting pantry items into baskets, you’ll create more room in your dedicated pantry space. You can even make your pantry mobile by adding wheels to the bottom of the bookcase or shelving unit that you choose. When you’re more organized, life becomes easier.

Use Drawers As Your Pantry

Many cabinet retailers have drawers available that you can use to organize your pantry items. You could install these easily into your existing kitchen cabinet units. Store items in these spaces and keep them organized for simple and effective pantry storage.

Organization Tips: The Kitchen

The kitchen. It’s one of the most used rooms of the house, yet somehow becomes one of the most disorganized. If you’re tired of digging past ten spatulas to find the potato peeler keep reading. Below are some tips on how to organize your kitchen and keep it that way!

Start by making a bigger mess. Yes, clean everything out of the drawers and cupboards. You may want to include clearing out pantry items as well if it’s been awhile since you’ve done so. Check expiration dates on everything as sometimes items have a way of getting pushed to the back of a cupboard to be forgotten for years. Sort through your items and determine what can be kept, donated or tossed out.

Create categories for the items you are keeping. Think baking, cooking, seasonal, often used, least used, etc. By sorting everything out into categories now, you will know what type of storage solutions and where the best place to store them is later.

Find storage solutions that work. Whether you have items laying around the house you can use or need to invest in some, the best way to stay organized is to create a system that assigns a home for every single item you own. Junk drawers are born from items not having a dedicated place. Be proactive in preventing the dreaded junk drawer by finding an organization solution that includes a spot for everything. Some organization items to consider are lazy susans for spices and other pantry items, hooks to hang mugs, a stemware rack for wine glasses, a rack hang pots and pans from the ceiling, hooks on the insides of cabinet doors for pot holders or measuring cups, a spice rack installed on a cabinet door, and drawer dividers for utensils.

Keep your most used items within reach. Avoid digging through cupboards and drawers on a daily basis by keeping your most used items front and center. In cabinets store your most used items on lower shelves while placing the ones you use less often on top shelves. Place your go-to cooking utensils in a vase or other type of decorative container on the counter next to the stove. You should also consider keeping pots, pans, and other cooking items close to the stove to keep them within arms reach when you are cooking.

Extra Tips for the Go-Getters. Organize plastic ware with their lids. Better yet invest in a set that comes with snap-together lids or a large matching set so you aren’t left trying to cram the wrong lid on a bowl for leftovers. Make the most of the empty space over your cabinets by adding shelves for extra storage. Add a lazy susan in your fridge to avoid items being pushed to the back and becoming long forgotten. Set up a station to sort typical kitchen papers like coupons, menus, and notepads.

While we use our kitchen almost every day the clutter can build up and become overwhelming. With an action plan in hand and a few days dedicated to organizing the chaos you can have a cleaner, more organized kitchen before you know it!

How to Find Space in Your Closet

Closet space is one thing that you never seem to have enough of. Especially is you live in a smaller or older home.

If your belongings are spilling out everywhere, then you most likely need a closet makeover. Some planning and a few changes will net you some prime storage real estate and help you finally get organized.

Think vertically

Stand in your closet and look up. If you see empty space, you have an opportunity to take advantage of it with hanging racks, pegs or hooks.

Use adjustable shelving

Why use a tall shelf when a shorter one will do just fine? When you have shelves that you can customize, you might be able to salvage enough wall space for a whole new shelf.

Separate the seasons

If you live in an area that experiences cold winters, you may be able to split your wardrobe and store items in another location when you’re not using them.

Declutter and purge

If you don’t have enough room, something may have to go. Just think of it this way, if you haven’t used that bowling ball, pair of mittens or electric blanket in a while, it may be time to share the bounty by donating to Goodwill or your local shelter. Someone will benefit from your generosity, and you can console yourself with the tax write-off.

Go with baskets

Wicker baskets are an inspired storage solution that will corral your small items and organize your larger ones. They’ll streamline your shelves and liberate your floor space, too. If you don’t remember the color of the carpet in your closet and your shelves are prone to occasional accessory avalanches, baskets will save the day.

Organize

You knew this part was inevitable: having to pull everything out, sort it into piles and put stuff into some logical order. Organization will help you maximize a small closet by encouraging you to keep like items together.

Shoe Storage

Over the door, on the floor, on hangers or under the bed, shoe racks can be lifesavers. Properly stored shoes will look better longer and you won’t be wasting time with one shoe in your hand and the other, well, who knows where.

Specialized hangers

When you use creative hanger solutions, like tiered hangers that let you stack clothes conveniently, you can sometimes double or even triple your useful space.

Eliminating Clutter

Clutter often takes many years to accumulate and will take some time to eliminate. Just remember that de-cluttering is an ongoing lifestyle not a finite project. Many people feel overwhelmed and fear just the thought of de-cluttering the home. It doesn’t have to be that excruciating, there are actually some creative ways to get started.

Getting started can be the hardest part. You have to begin your war against clutter one draw or cabinet at a time. Just pick one area of the house and focus on that. It is best to start a de-cluttering session by designating one hour a day to it. If that still seems over whelming for you, start with five minutes a day. You will be surprised what you can accomplish in the clutter war in just five minutes. Remember that any type of progress is better than none. The important thing is to make sure to stick with it each day, or even every other day. Avoid planning an all day de-cluttering session that involves your whole house, as you will never get around to it.

Donate or dispose of items you no longer have any use for. Look at items that you feel an attachment to and ask yourself the following three questions: Do I love it? Will I have a need for it again within 3 months? Will I miss it if I throw it away? If you answered no to the questions then you can safely dispose of the item. If you answered a definite yes to these questions, take those items and put them into an organizational bin. Once the bin is full place it in an out of way place in your home and revisit it in about 6 months. If you were able to go that long without needing anything from the bin, chances are it is time to donate or dispose of the items. Don’t forget charitable donations to the Salvation Army and Goodwill, etc. are tax deductible.

Probably one of the best ways to let your junk go is to watch an episode of Hoarders on television.