Clean out cabinets by asking yourself which items really deserve to live in your cabinets and which ones are unwelcome guests. Let go of things that have been taking up space for so long you can’t even remember acquiring them. (This includes all those cute little hotel toiletries you’ve stockpiled from every trip you’ve ever taken.)
Set limits by deciding what quantity of certain items is reasonable to have on hand (do you really need 80 grocery bags or six types of moisturizer?) and resolve to make a conscious effort to stay within those limits.
Choosing the right cabinet organizers can help you maintain orderly kitchen and bathroom cabinets.
Three types to consider:
- Slide-out or roll-out organizers, also known as pull-outs, are good options for deep cabinets since they provide easy access to supplies that might otherwise get lost in the cave-like far reaches.
- Over-door cabinet door organizers let you utilize cabinet doors for storing frequently used items.
- Shelf organizers such as the Adjustable Shelf and Basket Organizer allow you to effectively use vertical space for stacking supplies instead of piling them.
Q. I own a restaurant and we have 3 reach-in refrigeration units. They are 25 inches deep and 55 inches wide–I was looking for plastic clear bins that are like a drawer that I can put produce in etc. Do u have such a product or any ideas?
A. I think this clear plastic under-bed storage drawer could work for your needs if you put two side by side on each shelf–they measure 23.75″ deep and 27″ wide.
You can prevent clutter from creeping into drawers by using dividers to slice up the space into easy-access sections. Multi-compartment drawer organizers such as cutlery trays can be useful, but sometimes encourage cluttering by providing too many or too few sections for your needs, and/or compartments with dimensions that aren’t compatible with the shapes and sizes of items you need to store in them.
A better choice: the Expandable and Adjustable Drawer Dividers Kit lets you divide your drawers from side to side and/or front to back.
Sized for medium shallow drawers (2.5 inches high), the kit consists of two easy-to-install spring-loaded dividers that fit drawers from 17 1/2 to 21 inches long plus three slide-in dividers for additional customizing.
For smaller but deeper drawers, the 4.25-inch-high Expandable Drawer Dividers fit drawers from 12 to 16 inches long.
You can find more types of adjustable drawer organizers here.
Next week: Tips for organizing cabinets.
Kitchens and bathrooms are alike in terms of their typical clutter-collecting areas: counters, cabinets and drawers. To reorganize and keep these areas clutter-free, start with the most visible sections. Here’s how to counter your counter clutter:
1. Clear off counters by moving all items temporarily onto trays or into baskets.
2. Put back only the things that are used at least daily, and use counter-top organizers for
keeping those items handy. If your counter space is very limited, choose storage solutions designed to utilize vertical space, such as a doubledecker Lazy Susan, a make-up carousel or this clever Bathroom Storage Chest.
3. Weed whatever’s left so that you only have what you actually use, and relocate those items to drawers or cabinets.
Next week: Tips for organizing drawers.
Q. I am thinking about purchasing 4 of these file baskets. I am wondering if you sell a 2 tier shelf that they would fit on if I put 2 baskets next to each other on each tier?
A. Since the file basket dimensions are 15.5″ wide x 12.5″ deep x 13″ high, I believe
this bookcase (39″wide x 13″deep x 30″ high) should accommodate 4 file baskets.
Designed to be mounted on a vertical surface, wall file pockets – also known as hot files or wall pockets – are used in offices for storing frequently used file folders and other materials. But they can also work well for keeping various resources accessible in your kitchen and other areas of your home. Made of plastic, wire mesh or wood and available in a variety of sizes, some are magnetized so they can stick to refrigerators as well as file cabinets.
In the kitchen you can use one on the fridge as a handy home for escaped recipes, takeout menus, coupons, appliance instructions or any papers that seem to live on your counters.
In other rooms (including the bathroom), wall-mounted pockets make convenient magazine holders.
Twinkling holiday lights are a pleasure to see but can be a pain to hang, remove and store. This is especially true when snarled light strings and broken bulbs cause decorating delays and frustration. The Easy Install Christmas Light Storage system helps solve these holiday headaches with three spools that provide tangle-free storage for up to three strands of 100-foot lights. The system also makes the light installation and removal processes easier thanks to the included Versa-Clamp that attaches to your ladder or gutter to hold the spools while you decorate. A similar holiday lights storage product is made by Honey-Can-Do.
Reusable Christmas trees and wreaths offer a different type of storage challenge. Fortunately there is now a wide variety of wreath storage and Christmas tree storage solutions to choose from. The Expandable Rolling Christmas Tree Storage Bag and multi-use Rolling Storage Bag, both by TreeKeeper, are among the most versatile and efficient options.
Holiday decorations are delightful to see – except when they haven’t been put up in time for the holidays, or if they’ve been left up long past New Year’s Day.
One way to keep your decorating schedule on track is to use easy-to-access systems specifically designed for safe storage of fragile ornaments, lights and artificial greenery. Anything that can make the hanging-up and putting-away processes easier and less time-consuming is worth a try.
To prevent decoration damage and disorder, ornament storage boxes are a good investment–they have compartments for individual ornaments so you don’t need to wrap them individually (a huge timesaver). The Zippered Ornament Storage Box offers safe storage for up to 48 Christmas tree ornaments.If you need more compartments, the Ornament Keeper Ornament Storage Box has spaces for 72 and also includes a large zippered pouch on the front that’s designed to hold a tree skirt.
Next week: Organizers for holiday lights, trees and wreaths.
Q. I have no preference for any particular credit card purse, wallet, case …..I just need one that holds more than 10 credit cards. I really appreciate your help.
A. This 7-window wallet insert holds up to 14 cards and is designed to fit in most wallets. Other types of credit card cases can be found here.
Q: I live in an older home. The cabinets where I keep my spices are 7.25 inches wide × 10 inches at opening and very deep. I need a simple slide/glide for spices. Do you have anything that will work?
A. Your cabinet dimensions certainly present a challenge but I think the Pantry Roll-out Storage Baskets could work since there is one that’s 7 inches wide by x 21.5 long. The baskets are actually designed to work with a roll-out system that is too large for your cabinets, but you could use them individually without the system–even though they won’t “glide” on a rack, they’ll slide manually.