It has been so long since we gave any attention to the kitchen – will it ever be done?! Prior to the kitchen hiatus, I did a little project to keep our kitchen organized. And us organized. I mean, what is with all the stuff piling up on the kitchen counters? Mail, lunchboxes, school papers, ads that were hanging on your front door handle, receipts, and more. Some people are cool with this. I, however, am not. So one of my goals in planning our kitchen was to avoid the tons-o-daily-junk-piled-on-the-counter situation. Enter my mini organization station in the kitchen. Aka command center. Maybe it’s called that because the inherent structure commands all members of my house to avoid the impulse of just throwing their stuff on the counter. Whatever – here’s what we’ve got:
You’ll note it is complete with classy tape handles, because I still haven’t decided between black or brass hardware (ugh!). Moving on. Two of our three end-cabinet edges are waterfall edges. And I love them.
But I kept one little area on the far side of our island waterfall-free for organization.
I planned to add something like a bookshelf with cubbies, mail slots, or something fancy I’d build to keep us organized. Once school started, things started piling up on the counters. Not. Cool. To solve the counter-crap problem quickly, I figured I could create something that will work well now and leave my options open to create a permanent, built-in solution in the future. Seriously, how do other people deal with the kid lunchbox thing? I need to keep the lunchboxes out and about so I don’t forget to make lunch but I don’t want these garish rectangles to be the primary things I see in the kitchen. So I need a spot where they are readily accessible but not front and center. Time to hook it up. I looked at a few options and ended up with a couple of basic black robe hooks from Home Depot. They hold the lunchbags but don’t stick out too far. And they are subtle enough that even without the lunchboxes they still look a-okay. And to organize all the mail and paper that comes into our house on a daily basis, I went for an organizer from Ikea.
Discreet and functional. Less discreet, but definitely functional, are the folders and labels to make the area a little neater. I picked some Martha Stewart supplies from Staples because they were the least expensive and the least ugly of the options I saw that day (although turquoise scrolls and flowers aren’t my usual deal).
These folders are getting the job done for now and sure look a lot better than stacks on the countertops.
Even without the lunchboxes things look neat and organized. Nothing sticks out beyond the neighboring post, so everything is tucked in yet easily accessible and super organized.
Best of all, the typical kitchen clutter is contained – finally.
We are only a month or so into this organization station and so far it is working great. The kids know where to put their stuff and instead of mail, the primary thing on our counters are crumbs. I’d say that’s progress. (Ignore the lack of baseboards – that is the opposite of progress.) Maybe someday I’ll create a more permanent solution, but for now we’ve got a mini organization station that cost less than $30 total and makes me pretty happy. Fingers crossed that I can come up with a solution for the crumbs…