Kitchen Space Savers
Decorate Your Countertop
For kitchens with sufficient counter space but few cabinets, decorative countertop storage can bring charm and organization to your kitchen. Put dry goods like pasta, spices, flour, sugar, and coffee beans in clear glass or plastic containers on the counter. Little bouquets of forks, knives, and spoons can stand in sturdy jars or in decorative, oversized mugs on the table. Larger cooking utensils, like whisks, spatulas, and spoons, can go in large crocks on the counter near the stove for easy access. Not storing eating and cooking utensils in drawers also means you can put them away wet and they can still dry, which helps contribute to a more tidy, organized look in your kitchen.
Cut Across the Sink
On the flip side, if your kitchen lacks counter space, try using an over-the-sink cutting board. This extends your space for chopping and cutting, yet can be easily moved. Be careful about using regular cutting boards across the sink; the lack of support can make a smooth board slip while in use.
Who says shelves have to be horizontal? Storing some kitchen tools vertically can make for better storage with easier access. Vertical shelves can act like bookends, keeping vertically-stacked items like cookie sheets, cutting boards, muffin tins, frying pans, and baking dishes from falling over.
Tame the Tupperware
If your containers for leftovers have a habit of taking over your entire tiny kitchen, try storing the lids separately. Tension rods, book bins, napkin holders, or other drawer dividers can keep the lids stored vertically while the containers can sit stacked inside one another in the cabinet or drawer nearby.
Cabinets and shelves sometimes fall short of their full potential—they don’t go all the way up to the ceiling. Although harder to access, this is usable space for storage! Consider installing shelves that allow you to store items you do not use frequently in the higher reaches of your kitchen.
An empty wall can certainly hold a pretty painting or family photograph, but it can also be put to work as storage. Install free-standing shelves, wall stands, or hooks on the walls in your kitchen. Some wall stands have specially-carved grooves for hanging stemware upside down—a handy storage technique for those unwieldy, space-hogging wine glasses. Other wall stands or hooks can hold even heavy pots and pans, saving you from having to stack and unstack pans every time you want to fry an egg.
Many cupboards have extra space between the door and the shelves in the wall. By installing narrow shelves on inside of the doors themselves, you can use this space to store a surprising number of small items that otherwise take up a lot of real estate in your pantry, like spices, canned food, drinks, and other small packages. If you have a door that swings into your kitchen or pantry, measure the length of your door-stopper—usually about four inches from the wall. By adding shelves that are only about three inches deep behind the door, you will significantly extend your storage space. And, as an added bonus, these small shelves make it easy to find what you’re looking for, since they cannot be stacked too deep.