As the heart of the home, the kitchen is where we gather with friends and family to cook, eat, celebrate, and socialize. Spending so much time in the kitchen also means it can quickly become messy and disorganized. Fortunately, you can design your space so that it’s easy to find what you need — and return items to their rightful places. Read today’s featured article of the week for ways to create a tidy, clutter-free kitchen.
1. Create Adequate Storage Space
Open-concept kitchens, which open up to the main living and dining spaces, are popular in many new and renovated kitchens. When considering removing walls in your kitchen, keep in mind that you’ll also be eliminating storage space. Be sure there’s adequate storage elsewhere for all of your kitchen items and food.
2. Think About Island Storage
Many of our clients prefer generous-sized kitchen islands with bar seating because they entertain frequently and enjoy chatting with guests while preparing food. That means they may have to move bar stools to access island storage, depending on the design, which can be cumbersome.
Consider where your bar stools will be if you plan on incorporating storage into an island with lots of seating. Or try to store infrequently used items in the cabinets where there will be seating. (Also consider if your kitchen has the square footage necessary to accommodate an expansive island. In some cases, a large island can impede traffic flow.)
3. Opt for Large Drawers Instead of Lower Cabinets
I recommend using large drawers beneath countertops instead of conventional lower cabinets with shelves. I like this option because access is so much easier. With drawers, you won’t need to stoop down to search for something hiding in the back of a lower cabinet. Also, items can be more easily organized and stored. Keep in mind that drawers are more expensive than cabinets because of the additional internal hardware. Depending on your budget, the added functionality may be worth the splurge.
4. Reconsider Open Shelving
As a professional organizer, I recommend investing in traditional upper cabinets with doors for most of your upper storage. Unless everyone in your family is extremely organized, open shelves can quickly become cluttered and messy. Also, the items on shelves can become magnets for dust, grime and grease from cooking oil.
5. Choose Solid Doors for Upper Cabinets
Glass-front cabinets can be tempting, especially if you have beautiful glasses or dinnerware you want to display. However, cabinets can easily look cluttered if everything isn’t organized. If you love this look, perhaps consider installing only a few glass-front cabinets to display standout decor or kitchen items that aren’t used frequently.
6. Place Your Dishwasher for Easy Access to Storage
In most kitchens, the dishwasher is conveniently located next to the sink to simplify loading. When laying out your space, also think about the ease of unloading clean dishes and flatware. Consider where you’ll be standing when the dishwasher door is open and how easily you’ll be able to access drawers and storage.
Since emptying the dishwasher is a frequent task, convenient access to storage should be a priority. I have seen several kitchens where an open dishwasher door blocks access to storage for dinnerware and flatware. Other kitchen layouts require walking across the room to put away dishes. Also, make sure there’s plenty of space to stand at the sink when loading the dishwasher.
There are so many decisions to make when remodeling a kitchen. I recommend selecting a pro team that listens and collaborates with you during the design process so all of your needs are addressed. An experienced team should be able to create a new kitchen that is both beautiful and functional.