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Optimizing your kitchen space with form and function


Missing container lids, disorganized spices and boxes of plastic wrap. Does this sound familiar?

Cleaning up clutter in the kitchen can be a daunting task, but interior designer Shirlee Engel provided some tips to CTV Morning Live this week that both functional and fun to look at.

"The thing about an organized kitchen is it's not just aesthetics. It's not just about looking nice, it's also about your mental wellbeing," Engel says. "You're running around, you're cooking dinner for the family, you don't want to be looking for things... and you don't have to totally rip up your kitchen to have this kind of functionality."

Here are some of the design tips and products Engel recommends for optimizing your kitchen space without needing to renovate.


"How many of us have those awful drawers full of tons of Tupperware, one on top of the other?" Engel said.

She recommends small standing racks to line up your containers and lids together. These can be placed on a countertop or stored in a drawer or cabinet.

"It's so easy to find the lids... it's really a great solution, especially for all of that kids' Tupperware."

Engel showed off the Simple Houseware kitchen cabinet organizer.

For spices, a drawer organizer can be both presentable and convenient.

"This is a simple thing that I bought at a hardware store," she said. "You can have really nice looking storage, in addition to something functional. This is nice way to lay it all out in a way that you can find everything, but it also looks great."

Engel recommends the KitHero Spice Drawer Organizer, which comes with 24 jars.

Racks to store plastic containers and spice jars can be placed in a drawer to help save kitchen space. (CTV Morning Live)

Plastic bags and wrap

"You know all the Ziploc bags, that drawer of tin foil and baking stuff?" Engel said. "Look at how nicely organized this is."

The item she showed off is the Cozee Bay bag organizer, which can hold gallon, quart, sandwich and snack-sized bags in separate sleeves. Next to it was the Cozee Bay wrap dispenser, labelled with wax, foil and plastic. Each comes not only with a way to hold rolls of wrap and foil, but cutting edges as well.

"So, you open the drawer, you're not digging for the foil, it's all there, it's organized and it saves space," she said.

These products can keep your plastic bags and wrap organized and out of the way. (CTV Morning Live)

Cutting boards

"How many people have baking sheets and cutting boards all on top of each other?" Engel asks.

Much like the plastic containers, countertop stands can be used to hold and display cutting boards.

"This isn't just about being able to access them, it's also ergonomic considerations. Are you bending over? Is your back sore when looking for this cutting board or that cutting board? These are ways to optimize the configuration of your kitchen to make your cooking experience more enjoyable."

Standing up your cutting boards is a way to save space and even display nicer wooden boards. (CTV Morning Live) Top Stories

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