How to Organize Kitchen Cabinets:
Dishes, Glasses, and Serving Pieces
One very important step in how to organize kitchen cabinets involves
organizing dishes, bowls, plates,
glasses, mugs, and serving pieces so they are easy to reach, convenient
to use, and (in my opinion) look really nice on their shelves.
The first step in any area
you plan to organize (especially how to organize kitchen cabinets,
because they are often catch-alls for so much stuff!) is to declutter,
because once you have gotten rid of the items you no longer use or
love, organizing is MUCH easier.
Do you love what you
have? Taking a look at your dishes, water
glasses, bowls, wine glasses,
teacups and saucers, mugs, and serving bowls and platters, do you find
- are broken, cracked, or chipped?
- you never did love?
- have a souvenir logo on them?
- are mismatched (and not in an eclectic, fun-loving
way...they're just mismatched because you accumulated an item here, and
item there, and nothing really goes together)?
These items are a great place to start getting rid of some of this
Next, take a look at how
many of each item you truly need. Most people
rarely look at how many of anything they truly need as they figure out
how to organize kitchen cabinets, like
plates, wineglasses, mugs, sheets, towels, and so on. But if
you step back and really look at it, how many items are serving you,
and how many are just extras?
Before you decide how to organize kitchen cabinets, decide for yourself
how many of
each item you'd like to have, and then
get rid of the rest. One simple rule of thumb that may work for you is
to add up the number of people living in your household, add 2 to that
number, and that's the maximum of items like plates, cups, and so on
that you would keep.
For example, if you have a family of four, you'd add 2 to come up with
6 plates, 6 cups, 6 sets of silverware. And then you'd get rid of all
the rest. Just imagine how much kitchen cabinet space you'd have then!
Obviously, this wouldn't work if you entertain often. Or would it?
Could you rent or borrow what you needed? Or reconsider your
Decide Where To Put These Items:
For how to organize
kitchen cabinets full of dishes, plates, bowls,
glasses, and mugs, organize them in the
cupboards right above the kitchen sink and/or dishwasher, so they'll be
very easy to wash, put away, and get out again on a daily basis. (For
more details, see Zone
3: Cleanup Zone
- Plates: stack
same-sized plates together; for different sizes, either create separate
stacks or add space-saving wire racks for the next size plates to avoid
having to lift up one stack to get at a different size plate
stack same-sized bowls together; for different sizes, either
create separate stacks or add space-saving wire facks for the next size
bowls to avoid having to lift up one stack to get at a different size
for different size glasses, place them in columns from front
to back in your kitchen cabinet (tall glasses on the left and shorter
glasses on the right, for example) so that you always have easy to
access to whatever size glass you want right in front
- Wine Glasses:
can be stood on shelves or hung upside down on those racks
that hold wine glasses, either inside the cupboard or under the kitchen
cabinet. For different size wine glasses, place them in columns from
front to back in your kitchen cabinet (tall
wine glasses on the left and shorter wine glasses on the right, for
that you always have easy to access to whatever size wine glass you
right in front
can be stacked right on cabinet shelves (three high is usually the
maximum height for mugs) or hung on hooks under the cabinets
or under shelves
- Teacups and
Saucers: can be stacked on cabinet shelves, teacups in
one row of stacks, front to back in the cupboard, and saucers in
another stack next to the teacups. Teacups can also be hung from hooks
under the shelves or cabinets.
Adjust shelving, if
possible, so that you’re not wasting space in your
cabinets. For example, on one shelf stack your plates and bowls…once
you’ve seen how tall that space needs to be, see if you can lower the
shelf above to a few short inches above the highest stack…giving more
room to the shelves above.
Also, how to organize kitchen cabinets means keeping items you use on a
daily basis within each reach, and moving
used items to higher shelves or out of the kitchen entirely (for
example, move crystal glasses you only bring out for special occations
to the china hutch in the dining room).
Bowls: similar sizes can be nested inside each
other, with paper towel or napkin between bowls if they might get
scratched or damaged
Platters: similar sizes can be stacked on top of
each other, with paper towel or napkin between the platters if they
might get scratched or damaged
For more information on how to organize kitchen cabinets and drawers,
for tips on organizing
pots, pans, and bakeware.