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Do You Really Need Three Rolling Pins? (and Other Musings On Clearing Kitchen Clutter)

Too many gadgets can lead to kitchen clutter

Got Kitchen Clutter?

Throughout my childhood, my step-mom sold Pampered Chef. If you can imagine, our kitchen was stocked with every gadget and cooking tool imaginable! Need a serrated peeler? Check. How about a vegetable peeler? Got that one too. What if I now need to make strips out of that nicely peeled vegetable? Well, we had a veggie strip maker. We had five sizes of spatulas (multiples of each, of course), an avocado peeler, and a tart shaper. Our kitchen was a wealth of convenience….until you tried opening a drawer! We had kitchen clutter.

After I married and began to stock my own (tiny) kitchen, I realized how much stuff I actually DIDN’T need. I learned that an avocado can be scooped out with a spoon and a knife is a lovely tool that will also cut veggies into strips. Nonetheless, through the years, we acquired some fun gadgets. After years of acquiring, my own kitchen, though now larger, was starting to feel cluttered and overwhelming – despite all the things that were supposed to make cooking easier. One distinct memory I have is trying to find a place for the two rolling pins I got for Christmas, in addition to one I already owned. Rolling pins are an awkward shape, pretty big … and I don’t even like baking. They were gifts given out of love from important family members, so I felt an obligation to keep them – just in case. Fast forward ten years and I decided to minimize the impact all this ‘stuff’ was having on my stress level. As I was removing everything from our pantry, I found those three dusty rolling pins. One was still in the box, seal never broken. Only one had been used – twice – and not happily (I mentioned my dislike for baking, right?).

As in any part of your home, the kitchen can quickly become overwhelmed with toys, tools, gadgets, and gizmos promising to make life easier. In my experience, too many of those conveniences can make life seem much more inconvenient. What is taking up space in your kitchen that doesn’t need to be there? Do you really need two rolling pins, 10 spatulas, and three types of peelers? Are you really using the tart shaper? If you really are making tarts and that is a useful tool, by all means keep it (and visit us if you need someone to taste those tarts)! Too often though, we keep those gadgets and tools because they ‘might’ get used someday, or they may have sentimental meaning behind them. If you can evaluate what you have and balance that inventory against what you really use, you can start to make choices about what to eliminate.

Here are 5 things to consider getting rid of today to minimize kitchen clutter:

1. Glasses/mugs: Keep only what you frequently use.
2. Ladles: Unless you’re running a soup kitchen, it’s likely one ladle will serve you well.
3. Spatulas: Again, keep what you use and have space to store.
4. Special use items: Yes, they are cute and fun. But it’s not cute and fun when they are taking up space in your cupboard. Consider if for the one time a year you might need something, does a neighbor have one you could borrow, or could you use something else to achieve the same result in a pinch.
5. Appliances: Do you really need an InstaPot, a rice cooker, and a crockpot? How many times a year do you use that George Foreman grill?   Appliances can take up valuable counter or storage space. If it’s not a frequent use item, consider how useful or important it really is to own ,or if an appliance can be used in multiple ways so that you can pare down.

A clutter free kitchen is a happy kitchen and a more efficient kitchen. You will be happier when those drawers open easily and you can see and access all your tools.  You’ll save time when you can easily find, access and use the tools and pieces that are important to you. So – if you’re like me and rarely bake, ask yourself: ‘Self, do you really need three rolling pins’? After decluttering my own kitchen, I ended up with a perfect spot to keep just one – and I volunteered to bake a pie (with a handmade crust of course!) for our next family gathering.

What now?

As always, the Simply Placed team is here to help if you need help decluttering and organizing your kitchen, or any other room in your life! Please let us know if we can support you in your personal organization needs. It is amazing how much of a positive impact home organization can have in both your personal and professional life!

(Thank you to Simply Placed employee Nicole Switzer for this post on kitchen clutter!)

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