A look back at some of the best kitchen storage tips of last year
The year 2017 has seen many changes in the world of kitchen design. If you’re in the beginning stages of a full-scale remodel or scanning for minor ideas, last year saw loads of inspirational storage tips and tricks to organise your space.
With that in mind, we’ve compiled a comprehensive list of kitchen storage tips from 2017 to help kickstart your ideas this year. Some are simple, others aren’t. Either way, it’s a great place to start your journey towards better kitchen storage.
1. No more chairs
Chairs can be beautiful around the dining table, but they’re not always practical. While chairs seat each person separately and spaced out, benches make a great alternative to the traditional dining seating. They make the most of the space by allowing people to sit closer together, so you can have more spaces to seat people.
So many benches also boast storage underneath the seats, maximising storage space massively. Replacing chairs with benches around the dining table also creates a more social feeling. And with the right cushions and upholstery, your benches can be far more comfortable than chairs.
Many companies will make benches made to measure for you, so you can make sure they fit around the rest of your design. Not ready for benches? Take advantage of ottomans, which provide ample storage space along with comfortable seating.
2. Tackle the pantry
When the clock is ticking, you don’t want to be fumbling around your pantry, looking for that one item you “swore was there a day ago”. It wasn’t. And there’s a way to avoid this common kitchen disaster.
Bin anything older than a year. Frozen items, canned food, boxed items – if you haven’t found a use for it in 365 days, chances are you never will. If you don’t use it, you certainly won’t miss it. Do this for your fridge and freezer too.
Display your spices by date. Spices can be expensive, and often you only use certain spices once or twice. Organise your spice drawer/rack, and make use of them before they expire.
Get rid of old plastic containers. No one in a restaurant environment has the time to find lids for odd tupperware containers. Simplify your life by buying new containers – in 3 sizes for better stack-ability. You’ll thank us later.
3. Set up stations
To wrap your head around the idea of effective organisation, divide your kitchen into five distinct stations. Each station has its own purpose. There is a cleaning station, the preparation station, the cooking station, the food storage station and the non-food storage station.
The idea behind these stations, is to store everything in your kitchen in its corresponding station. Your dishwasher and sink is your cleaning zone, so your everyday dishes should be stored in close vicinity to that zone. Your prep station is the place for tools like mixing bowls, knives and chopping blocks. Perishable products go near the food storage station. Things like tupperware and lesser-used appliances should be placed in the non-food storage station. By recognising your stations and organising accordingly, you’ll be set for efficiency in your kitchen.
4. Use space above cabinets
A lot of the time, things that clutter your counters can be stored on top of your wall cabinets. If you’re not using something every day, put it on top of your cabinets. Put any decorative ornaments that were once on your counter, on there too. Now you can keep your kitchen looking pretty but with more counter space. Depending on what you put, it might also add some height to your kitchen, which makes it look a lot bigger than it is.
5. Embrace Finnish functionality
Finnish kitchen design centered around functionality . For example, Finland’s Astiankuivauskaappi cabinet is a genius idea which makes the most of limited kitchen space. Finnish people dislike drying their dishes on the side of the sink, so the Astiankuivauskaappi cabinet is set on top of the sink with open grills at the bottom. After washing dishes, they simply place them into the cabinet, and let the water drain through.
In Finnish kitchens, appliances may integrate into cabinets, and are used as storage when not in use.
6. Select the correct appliances sizes
When redoing your kitchen, try not to fall in love with any one appliance. Let the space you have available determine the size your appliances. Sometimes, getting the wrong thing can compromise your storage and preparation space. When you have a small kitchen, you need to be sensible about what you buy. Remember, smaller appliances are more economical than their larger counterparts.
Consider going with built-in appliances, as they help minimise clutter. Think hard about whether you really need that extra oven or microwave. By installing an essentials-only selection of appliances, you’ll not only save on space, but find it easier to plan your kitchen layout.
7. Kitchen Island
Try the addition of a kitchen island to double-up your appliance storage capacity. Islands can be added at any time, as long as your kitchen has the space to support it. Some pre-built island (the kind you’ll find at huge home furnishing stores) will allow you to change the configuration to suit your needs. Take a close look at your appliances, and find a spot to not only store it, but use it without moving it. One of the best additions you can make is to consider a stand mixer lift. It’s not only concealed, but pops up to counter height when you want to use it. Hello extra counter space.
8. Embrace Kitchenette Storage
It goes without saying that you need to make the most of limited storage when designing a kitchenette. You can use things like cabinet organisers, separators, corner units, and cabinet door shelves to maximise possibilities. Consider hanging items on the wall or from the ceiling – to keep your new space free from clutter. Some other helpful storage savers to think about is a pull-out garbage can, a Lazy Susan and knife blocks. Don’t overfill what space you have. Be critical in deciding what items warrant a space in your unit.