Kitchen counters tend to be where we drop the mail, set the grocery bags, stash our cookbooks, pile laundry, and stack up dishes. Plus, we have things like cooking utensils, fresh fruit, and small appliances taking up space as well.
But, having an organized place for all of those items means that your counters can be clear to do what they are designed to: prep a meal (and to look beautiful, of course!)! Let’s tackle 5 items that tend to clutter our kitchen counters and made a decision on how to reorganize that item. Then we will be left with an organized and beautified kitchen!
Mail & Papers
As the joke goes, “Bill is the most unwanted visitor in everyone’s home.” So, what to do with Bill and all of those letters and magazines? Create an organized basket or filer for your mail. This can either be hung on the wall or the side of your cabinet, or it can be set on the counter. Since mail is not an essential element in the kitchen, it’s best to place this in a lesser-used area, such as the end of the counter or in a corner. It may be helpful to place this nearest to the door so that it’s conveniently located once you walk through the door.
Tip: Create an organized basket or filer for your mail.
I don’t know about your utensils, but it seems like mine multiply every week! What’s a cook to do? Try this: keep out one of each type, plus your favorites, and then put the rest away in the back of a cupboard. For example, I keep out: 2 silicone spoons (my favorites), 1 slim silicone spatula, 1 plastic slotted spoon, 1 bamboo spatula, 1 plastic spatula, 1 whisk, and 1 pasta spoon. Everything else gets rubber-banded together and placed in the back of the cupboard above my refrigerator. If I need another spoon (like a wide slotted spoon for frying, or a two pronged fork for a roasted turkey), I simply grab it. But, since I don’t personally use those often, I don’t keep them within reach.
My counter boasts a pretty porcelain jar on a small lazy-Susan which houses my utensils. Some people prefer to hang their utensils on a rod with S-hooks. And if you are really low on counter space, there is nothing wrong with placing them in a drawer, just be sure to keep them organized!
Tip: Only keep out one of each kind, plus your favorites.
Kind of like the utensils, I seem to gather knives in all lengths and styles. So, as before, pick your favorites and most used, then store the rest in the back of a drawer. I do believe that keeping a set of steak knives handy if helpful though! The most beautiful way to store knives is in a wood block. Mine holds a set of steak knives plus 5 chopping knives and a sharpener. Although I love this wooden beauty, it is huge! I’d keep it if it was slimmer. I’m considering a knife magnet instead. Imagine a shiny magnetic strip hanging above your counter with each knife blade attached to the strip. It’s shiny, and most importantly, keeps a clunky knife block off of your counters!
Tip: Hang knives on a magnetic knife strip.
I love having a kitchen overflowing with fresh fruits and vegetables, except for when they are sprawled out across my counter. I try to contain them in a pretty bowl, but my bowl never seems large enough. That slim about of room at the edge of cabinets is often wasted, but it’s the perfect space for storing your produce! Hang small metal baskets on the side of your cabinets, or create a free-standing basket tower for beside your cabinets. Also, some produce baskets hang from the ceiling, another bonus because it keeps your counters cleared.
Tip: Store produce beside your cabinets.
Dish Soap & Sponges
Every house gets dirty dishes, so everyone has sponges, washcloths, and dish soap. Where do they hide it? The best place is to find a spot in the cabinet directly beneath your sink. But, if you’re like me, it’s just convenient to leave it on the counter since I seem to wash 102 dishes every day. I poured my dish soap into a pretty bottle and store my sponge in a colorful small dish. And why not keep those on a small pedestal? The beauty of a pedestal is that it is up from your counter, and it just looks nicer that way!
Bonus: You could also do this with the oils and spices next to your stove.
Tip: Use a pretty bottle for soap, a cute dish for your sponge, and store those on a pedestal.
Organizing a kitchen can be an overwhelming job, but start by tackling these 5 things, and your kitchen will already look and feel more organized! Now you’re on the road to simplicity!