Most apartments and homes come with an open floor plan these days; this means that instead of separate rooms, you have your living rooms, dining rooms and kitchen in the same area without any walls between them. Although you can create some boundary between your rooms with dividers, bookcases or cabinets, an open plan can also be something of beauty.
Open kitchens too can be quite stunning too if you know how to properly organize it. A disorganized kitchen can spoil the look of your entire home, very easily. The kitchen is probably the first room in your room that can get disorganized extremely quickly; every time you cook something, you’ll need a lot of ingredients from all around the kitchen. If you are not very organized in your work, your kitchen will end up becoming a mess within a few minutes.
So if you have an open kitchen in your home, here are some tips on how to keep it organized and clean at all times.
- Get as Many Closed Cabinets as you Can
There’s nothing better than cabinets to keep all your kitchen utensils, supplies and dishes inside. Even if everything inside is in chaos, you can simply close the doors and keep it all inside. No one can know by looking from the outside just what the mess is inside if you keep the doors closed.
If your open kitchen in on one side of the house or in a corner, it is easier to cover the walls with as many hanging cabinets as you need. Some kitchens have wall-to-wall closed cabinets and even full-length cabinets that you can pull out or open. These cabinets can hide everything inside them, and you won’t even have to bring out your supplies down on the cabinets to use them.
- Don’t Forget the Open Shelves
No matter how many closed-door cabinets you get for your kitchen, you’ll also need some open shelves. Everything you use regularly goes into these open shelves so that you don’t have to open the cabinets every time you need something. Coffee mugs, cereal bowls, plates, spoons, and forks – these are usually some of the utensils that are organized inside these open shelves.
When you have open shelves in your kitchen, whatever you keep inside them becomes both for practical use and for aesthetic purposes. Your open shelves need to be organized and filed with beautiful utensils if you want your kitchen to look tidy at all times.
If you plan to keep your herbs and spices, bakery and cooking supplies in the open shelves, you need to make sure they are all inside similar looking jars and containers. Nothing looks better than a neatly organized row of jars that look the same.
- Invest in a Kitchen Island
If you have space, a kitchen island is the best investment you can make for your kitchen island. With a large kitchen island, your cupboards will all remain hidden from view and you won’t have to worry about them being disorganized at any time. Besides, if you can make the outer side higher than the inside, you can easily create a mess when working and no one will be able to tell by looking from the outside.
Besides, you can store a lot of your utensils, supplies, and accessories under the kitchen island, and they won’t be seen from your living room or dining room. It will be easier to store everything under the kitchen island than to put them inside your closed cabinets.
- Get Multiple Spice Racks
Get multiple spice racks and keep them filled with different herbs and spices, and other supplies that you need for your cooking, baking, and other preparations. Each of your spice racks should be filled with everything you’ll need for a particular type of food preparation. This way, when you are cooking, baking or adding garnishes to your food, you’ll only need to bring down the spice rack you need for the purpose.
Instead of having to rummage through your entire spice collection to look for what you need, you’ll know exactly which spice rack to bring down from the cupboards. After you’re done, you can simply put the spice rack back into the cabinets without making a mess of everything.
- Make Sections in your Kitchen
If your kitchen is big enough, you can divide it into different sections for different purposes, i.e. everything you need for breakfast will remain in one section, and everything for cooking will remain somewhere else. All your utensils and supplies for making coffee will be in one part of the kitchen, whereas everything you need for baking would be in a completely different segment.
By dividing your kitchen into segments for different purposes, you’ll know exactly where everything else. When you’ve simply walked into your kitchen to make coffee, you’ll need to go to an appointed space, instead of having to rummage around all the cabinets for coffee, sugar, and mugs. Even if this means keeping some of the more common supplies in multiple jars in multiple segments of the kitchen, this process will help to eliminate a mess.
- Add Multiple Drawers to the Design
Since you need the mist utensils in the kitchen, you need to add a lot of drawers to the design of your kitchen. The drawers could be placed anywhere – under the counters, under the kitchen island, below kitchen shelves, and anywhere else you can out them. These drawers don’t have to be very large; rather, they should be shallow and wide, so that you can allocate each one for separate purposes: one for spoons, one for knives, one for straws and one for your baking trays. Having multiple drawers in your kitchen will make it easier for you to find everything you need without having to look for too long.
- Buy in Sets
If you buy your plates, cups, and bowls in sets, it’ll be easier to stack them up. On the other hand, if your plates and bowls belong to different sets, they can’t be stacked up; you’ll need more space on your shelves to stack them one over another if they don’t come from the same set.
If you don’t want to share your utensils, plates, and bowls with the other members of your family, you can always use permanent markers to write your initials under each of them. This way, you can have separate utensils and crockeries for everyone, but they’ll all belong to the same set and have the same design.
- Keep a Few Decorative Shelves
Not all your shelves should be used for practical purposes and storage; keep some of them for decorative purposes. You don’t have to allocate the larger shelves for decorative purposes. Some of the smaller ones, far away from the oven, should be the ones kept for decoration.
You can keep a few expensive items on these shelves simply for decorations. Don’t clutter these shelves because they exist for aesthetic purposes.
- Keep your Appliances Hidden
Modern kitchens need a lot of appliances, from coffee machines to blenders, mixers and rice cookers. Too many of these appliances can crowd up your counters, so they are best kept inside a counter. Most of these appliances are only needed a few times every week and can be brought out when needed. Keeping them on your kitchen counter, even when you have a large kitchen, will only add to the clutter.
These appliances shouldn’t be used in small, confined spaces. They need to be taken out of their cabinets to use, as the steam and the splatter can damage your cabinets.
- Buy Storage Jars in Sets
There’s nothing that looks better on your kitchen counters and open shelves than all your kitchen supplies in matching pretty jars and containers. Keep your oats, flour, rice, and pasta in such matching containers will only add to the aesthetic look of your kitchen.
Original packaging of everything that we eat isn’t always fit enough to keep on the kitchen counters; besides, they differ in size, color, and style. Emptying them in matching containers will make your work easier when you are cooking, and keep your kitchen clean and free from mess.
- Leave the Highest Shelves Alone
Sometimes, for design’s sake, we get open shelves and cabinets at the top, much higher than we can reach with our hands. It is important that you leave these shelves and counters alone; fill them up with decorative items, plants or pots and pans you don’t need more than once or twice a year.
It’s usually too much hassle to reach these high shelves and counters on a daily basis; you should only store items you rarely need. You can use these shelves for your fancy china as well, the ones you only need when you host a dinner party or if you have company coming over.
- Keep Everyday Items Close
The items you need every day: plates, glasses, mugs and glasses, spoons and forks, cereals and coffee, bread and cookies, sugar and salt – these are the utensils and supplies you should keep close to you. Preferably, they should all be around the oven or where you prepare your food for cooking. Similarly, your utensils and crockeries should all be placed near the sink or the dishwasher, and the herbs and spices needed for cooking should stay around the oven or the stove.
Not just for open kitchens, these ideas and tricks can be used in any kitchen plans. Following them will ensure that your kitchen will always stay organized and neat and that you won’t be able to make a mess even when you are cooking.