Clutter Busting Ideas to Free Up Kitchen Bench Space

For kitchen benchtops to fulfil their role as surfaces on which to prepare food, they need to be uncluttered. Yet all too often they become crowded out with everything from utensil pots to knife blocks and bread bins.

So what to do? Take a look at the clever ways these homeowners have tackled some of the most common clutter culprits, whether by devising alternative storage methods or carving out space in a cupboard for bulky equipment.

Hang up your washing-up 

CLUTTER CULPRITS: Brushes, cloths and scourers, which can litter the benchtop around a sink.

SOLUTION: A storage caddy large enough to hold them all will still take up surface space, so hang them up instead. Simple hooks fitted into a wall will do the job neatly and minimally. For sponges, find a suitable small wall-hangable basket to contain them – a vintage one would look lovely in this kitchen.

Tidy away that toaster

CLUTTER CULPRIT: The toaster. It turns bread into a thing of extreme deliciousness, but they don’t half take up space too!

SOLUTION: Tuck it in a cupboard. If you’re about to redesign your kitchen, consider having a small appliance cupboard created that can hold your toaster and kettle. Or get creative: this genius solution stashes the toaster away in the dead space behind a built-in oven, so it can simply be wheeled out come breakfast time.

Find another space for fruit

CLUTTER CULPRIT: The fruit bowl. Or, if you are particularly focused on getting your five-a-day, fruit bowls. The fruit may be nourishing you, but the bowls are eating up bench space.

SOLUTION: Fruit baskets hung from the wall. Why not? We are used to keeping potatoes and onions in basket storage inside a kitchen cupboard, so why not bring this idea out into the open and keep fruit in baskets attached to a free wall?

Tuck away your loaves

CLUTTER CULPRIT: The bread bin. It needs to be able to hold several loaves and, for that reason, a bread bin is far from compact. With one of these big kitchen beasts sitting on your benchtop, you’re sacrificing a huge portion of space.

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SOLUTION: A bread drawer. Contemporary kitchens often include these, but what’s to stop you dedicating a regular kitchen drawer to bread storage duty?

Ditch the kettle

CLUTTER CULPRIT: The kettle. It’s a classic feature of a kitchen benchtop, but there are other options…

SOLUTION: A boiling-water tap. This genius innovation is not a budget option, but it will make your life easier and your benchtop clearer by delivering boiling water on tap. Some designs can deliver hot, cold and boiling water all from one spout, helping to streamline the look of your sink area and surrounding work surface.

Minimise the mixer

CLUTTER CULPRIT: The food processor. It may be invaluable, but a food mixer can be heavy and bulky too.

SOLUTION: Install a lifting shelf. The clever jointed arms of this shelf allow the mixer to be pulled up and out when needed. Fit one in an existing cupboard, ideally with access to an electrical socket inside, so the mixer can remain plugged in and ready for use.

by Joanna Simmons, journalist for Houzz.

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