©2009 Professional Organizer -
Lea Schneider is the author of
A Mom to Mom Guide available at
one-on-one organizing advice via phone and email through Organize Online
division at her company website,
Organize Right Now.
Her advice is featured
here at What's Cooking America in a monthly column. You may have read her
expert organizing ideas in Woman’s Day, Natural Health, College News, and
Better Homes and Gardens Kids’ Rooms magazines and newspapers. She is a member of the National Association of Professional
Organizers and the Association of Food Journalists.
Organize Right Now LLC
Member National Association of Professional Organizers
Organize Right Now
They’d gathered around the stove in lines like troops awaiting their
orders. Still others marched along the countertop, pressed against
the decorative back splash. There were vinegars - from balsamic to
fig-infused to the pedestrian white vinegar. There were oils - from
canola to sesame to peanut. Salts from around the world nestled with
marinades, and staples such as soy sauce and Worcestershire.
What an amazing cook, you might think. Or, what a mess, you might think.
Both are right.
As cooking staples grow and recipes are tried, storage seems to shrink.
One day, you decide to just leave out the oil, salt and pepper
grinder since you use them so often. Soon they are joined by this
bottle and that bottle until you’ve a countertop of clutter - tasty
clutter but still clutter never-the-less.
Recently, I organized a kitchen with just such a dilemma. Every
cabinet seemed full of dishes and much-loved cooking gadgets. Things
seemed to get lost in the deep pantry shelves and the home chef got
frustrated and had dishes burn while he hunted in it for this or that.
That’s when I opened the door to a new idea. How about using the
inside of the pantry door? This unused space added just the storage
needed. Using a pantry door organizer not added easily visible
storage but it was convenient to find items in mid-recipe.
If you are in a small kitchen, or even a large one, but have lots of things
to store, then you might want to consider what you can organize with
the inside of a cabinet or pantry door.
Improved technology in adhesives means you can easily add and remove
hooks from the inside of cabinet doors without drilling holes. They
even make hooks (like the one pictured) to look like high-end
stainless steel. Hooks can be handy to hang measuring cups,
measuring spoons, pot holders, and/or long-handle utensils which don’t fit in drawers and more.
Over-the-door hooks can be handy to hold aprons, placemats, and
tablecloths. You can drape tablecloths over hangers and clip-type
hangers hold placemats. In this kitchen, we solved the ever-present
issue of what to do with reusable grocery bags between trips.
Manufacturers make a wide-variety of organizers that attach to the
inside of the door. Pictured below are organizers to hold boxes of
plastic bags, foil, and plastic wrap.
Other types organizers for inside the cabinet door (that you can hunt for
online), include lid racks (useful for pot and pan lids) or even
plastic tub lids, plastic grocery bag storage, paper bag organizer,
spice racks, a pantry caddy or cabinet rack (both holds anything you
wish), paper towel holder, magnetic knife holder, small trash can,
dish towel bar, and a wide variety of baskets that attach to the door.
On that longer pantry door, you can add a rack (often called a pantry
door rack or food storage rack), such as the one pictured, or
over-the-door hooks. You can also use a broom and mop organizer to
hold those items inside the door. A clear-pocket shoe organizer
works great on the inside of pantry doors to hold small items that
disappear on shelves such as tack seasoning packets, spice mixes,
cake decorations and pudding mixes.