2011 Organizing Guide: Increase Your Kitchen Storage

Maximize your kitchen storage spacesAre your kitchen cupboards and pantry feeling crowded? Are you having daydreams about remodeling to get even more kitchen space? Hold that thought – if it’s just space you’re looking for you may not have to do the remodel.

Every kitchen has wasted space in the hard to reach corners of cupboards and between shelves unless you stack your dishes and Jello┬« boxes into leaning towers. Here’s how you can make the most of those spaces:

Lower cupboards:
Use vertical space when storing cookie sheets, pizza pans, muffin tins, and large cutting boards by adding a chrome wire divider rack. This will make it easier to find what you’re looking for than when they’re stacked horizontally, plus it will be easier to grab what you want, no need to sort through a pile.
If you have deep cupboards you might have enough clearance to mount a pot lid organizer to the interior of the door and reduce cabinet clutter. This is a great solution for cabinets where you store lidded bowls and large plastic food storage too.
Keep trash or recycling right at hand (and hidden from sight) with either an over the cabinet door hanging trash basket or a sliding trash can. Under the sink there’s often space around the drain pipes to fit one of these in.
Another great way to maximize deep cupboards, or a cupboard that you have to work to reach because access is minimized by an appliance or table, is to install roll out shelves and drawers. No more need to get on your hands and knees reach into the back of the cupboard, with a smooth glide everything comes to you.
Upper cabinets:
When you stack dishes to save space in your cupboards it always seems that you want the one that’s on the bottom of the pile. Wire storage shelves come in many shapes and sizes to give you extra surfaces so everything is within easy reach without taking up extra room.
Cupboards seem very inefficient when you have lots of small containers stored in them. Use storage solutions like tiered storage shelves to make sure nothing ever gets lost at the back of the shelf. Clear acrylic organizers keep everything visible while corralling spice packets, drink mixes and powdered soups.
Stick a turntable on a shelf and eliminate the need to reach over items to get to what’s in the back – just spin to find the item you need. Works great if you have a collection of cooking oils and vinegars – no more clinking glass bottles.
Make use of the handles on your mugs and cups to free up shelf surfaces by installing an under the shelf holder.
Pantry or Closet:
Get rid of excess packaging as soon as you get home from the store by creating a snack center with organizer bins that make fruit and small snack size portions easy to grab, plus you’ll know at a glance when it’s time to stock up again.
If you’ve modified a standard closet into a pantry the height between shelves rarely makes the most of your space. Sturdy wire organizer shelves can double storage for cans and boxed foodstuffs and make use of otherwise empty air.
Even if your shelves seem full, there’s still space for more – gain another set of 7″ deep shelves by adding a storage rack with adjustable shelves to the back of the door.
Bonus – that space between the refrigerator and the wall can become a hidden storage space for cleaning supplies with a sliding wall organizer.

Additional Resources:
End the Cabinet Chaos
The Utility Closet

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