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Organizing and Purging Your Kitchen 101

I don’t know about you, but I feel like I am decluttering my kitchen counters daily; and it is draining! How can we reduce the mess to eliminate the stress of an overstimulated kitchen?

For clutter to stop accumulating, we must designate a spot for items that you use daily. Each item having its place, leaves no excuse for excess items scattered on the counter. 

In order to make space for all of your items, we have to purge the unnecessary items first. 

Follow these easy steps to purge your kitchen and keep it organized!

Step 1. The 80/20 Rule

We use 20% of our things 80% of the time. The other 80% of your items can either be donated, tossed, or stored away until they are needed.

Step 2. The Five-Second Rule

An easy way to know what items fall into the 20% category and what falls into the unused 80% category is with the five-second rule. If you can’t remember the last time you used an item within five seconds, it probably falls into the 80% category. There is an exception to items such as party platters, utensils, and serving ware that you only use during the holidays. This leads us to our next step.

Step 3. Store Away for Another Day

Many of us have kitchen items that we only use during the holiday seasons or for gatherings. Even though you will eventually use those items, they are taking up space for things you use daily. You can get a bin and store those pieces away in your garage, attic, or wherever you store other holiday decor. 

Step 4: Reduce the Excess

Anything broken or incomplete should be thrown away. Everyone has that one cabinet full of containers and lids. Go through your containers and check if they all have their matching lid. Throw out any that are incomplete. Some containers get stained by foods like spaghetti, and some become warped over time. Think about throwing those ones out!

Go through any duplicate items and consolidate them into one, such as several sets of measuring cups. Maybe think about reducing your mug collection, and so on.

Step 5: Implementing a System

Now, you should be down to only items you use daily. It is time to organize them into a system that makes sense for you. Having organizers to keep things in one place is a helpful way to keep items organized. YellowGate Designs posts our go-to organization pieces on our website every week. Check out our go-to kitchen organizers here! Once you have your kitchen organizers, you can create an organized system or have YellowGate Designs Professional Organizers create a system for you. 

When selecting designated spaces for your items, think where each item is in relation to their use. Put pots and pans in a cupboard or drawer near the oven. Put seasonings near your cooking area. Put cutting boards and knives near your prep station, and so on. 

Step 6: Keeping it organized

Now that you have organized your space, you must learn how to keep it organized so all your hard work doesn’t go to waste! You or YellowGate Designs can create a daily checklist of things to do to keep a clean kitchen. Some basics are doing dishes every night before bed and picking up any items left on the counter throughout the day, like bags, mail, etc. You can eliminate extra clutter like bags and mail by creating a drop zone outside the kitchen, such as a bench by the door. 


Organizing a home can be stressful, time-consuming, and sometimes impossible when it comes to your own belongings. If you don't have the time or need help organizing your space, call the experts at YellowGate Designs to organize your space for you!

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