Streamline and De-Clutter Your Kitchen

With so many gadgets, it's easy for the kitchen to turn into chaos. Learn how to de-clutter your kitchen and streamline the space.

Problem: Multiuse mess

Your kitchen is a high-traffic room that has a lot of purposes: food storage and preparation, casual dining, bill paying and homework. It's no wonder your counters are messy and your cabinets are overflowing with gear you use only when company's coming over.

Solution 1: Unclutter your countertops
Liberate cupboard space by stowing bulky, awkward items you use once or twice a year, like large roasting pans, lobster pots or fancy dishes, somewhere else in the house. Try finding space in your garage, attic or basement. A good rule: Leave out only what you use at least twice a week. You'll make the kitchen look bigger and free up space.

Solution 2: Clean out the drawers
Toss or store any cutlery or gadgets you use less than once a month. Get rid of duplicate vegetable peelers, can openers and garlic presses. Make sure the objects you need daily or weekly are near where you use them and are readily available. Pots and pans should be near the stove, plastic wrap, foil and zipper-lock bags near the refrigerator.

Solution 3: Create an office area
Household paperwork, bills, envelopes and stamps can take over the kitchen table if you let them. Keep them under control: Mount a corkboard on the wall. Pin all bills or paperwork that requires action onto it. File bills right after you've paid them, and throw away (or shred!) any paperwork that you don't need to keep.