Sorting Out Your Kitchen Containers
If you want to sort out your kitchen plastic storage, this is an copy of an article on Howard Storage World’s page. Go on….you’ll get many tips on saving time and the planet.
Set your timer – Sort your plastics
So, you want to sort your kitchen plastics in double quick time? Below are some tried and tested ways to organise them for good.
10 minutes matter. Don’t wait until you have a whole day free to start and finish a big project! Start in just one section of your cupboard, so if you get interrupted, it will be easy to put that one section away again. Set a timer for 10 minutes, put on some music or a podcast and see how long you can keep going. You’ll be surprised what you can achieve!
Work out your organising style
Some people love plain, uncluttered visuals and can be overwhelmed by busy patterns. Go for simple, opaque coloured containers with minimal decorations. Try to keep all labels to the same style.
An alternative organising style loves colour and patterns. This is the style that I prefer and I love seeing what I have on hand immediately. Transparent plastic comes into its own for this, keeping your food items organised while having the contents visible adds colour and interest to your pantry or kitchen. Look for containers with clear lids if you store items down low, in drawers. The Felli Loc-Tite Containers are the perfect food containers, sturdy, clean design and with a clear lid which allow you to grab what you need in an instant.
Hot Tip: If you want to find out your organisational style, do an internet search for “organisational style quiz.
How big is your space?
Measure, measure, measure before you buy your plastic containers. Take everything out of the drawer or shelf and get out your tape measure for accuracy. Record all width, depth and height measurements to take to the shops.
Never guess the size when you are out shopping. You may waste valuable time having to take things back when they don’t fit.
Hot Tip: There are some excellent phone apps to note down measurements on photos.
Move containers around to fit them efficiently into drawers or into cupboard shelves. Look for storage sets that are designed to work together to optimise your space by stacking neatly on top of each other like the OXO 2.0 Pantry Container Set.
Make your space easy to use
Declutter any containers that are broken or are missing lids, have the wrong shape or are not fitting into your vision for the space. If they are in good order, plastic containers can be repurposed in other parts of the house (garage or bathroom cabinets). A donation to an Op Shop is a wonderfully sustainable way to declutter plastics in good condition.
Hot Tip: Use a big container to store leftovers in the fridge. You are unlikely to miss a large container behind the usual fridge items and it will get eaten sooner. Less waste!
Try to leave enough space around each container to make access easy. Prising out containers can lead to increased likelihood of frustration and spills. Arrange your products with frequently used food at the front and at a height that is easy to reach. Squared off shapes are more efficient if space is at a premium. Round containers are easier to grab and can be more visually appealing. Use a labelled plastic basket to hold your small packets of snacks.
Have a system to record the use-by dates of food on the outside of their containers. The cardboard outers of packets of food sometimes carry the eggs of insects, so are best discarded.
Hot Tip: You can use a chalk board pen on the underside of the container. Chalkboard pen lettering is durable and easily washed off in the dishwasher once the contents are changed over.
Turntables on shelves and shelf risers in deep cupboards are a great way to instantly see and access all your ingredients.
Sorting for a greener planet
Recently it has become easier to drop off a big bag of soft, scrunchy plastic at the local supermarket REDcycle bin. Because of this many households have allocated a larger space to store soft plastics in their rubbish bin drawer.
Many councils now collect compostable waste, so in the future you may need to find space to fit multiple bins for multiple waste types. Check with your local council to see what can be recycled in your area. There is a fantastic range of Recycling Station Bins available at Howards Storage like the Simplehuman 58L Pedal Dual Compartment Recycling Rubbish Bin or the Joseph Joseph Totem Max Recycling Kitchen Bin 60L.
I’ve finished organising! What now?
As a household’s taste in food changes, new foods can be added to the pantry. There will always be a storage solution out there to keep new food items organised and together. Keep in the loop with new innovations that will make your life easier by following your favourites on social media. The options in storage and decluttering are endless and ever changing!