Lots of cabinet space doesn't solve your storage problems unless you can find what you want when you want it. To help you get your cooking essentials organized, here are some tips from Barry Izsak, the Austin, Texas?based president of the National Association of Professional Organizers.



1. Store like things together: dishes with dishes, utensils with utensils, food with food.

2. Store things nearest their point of use; cooking gear should be near the stove, dishes and glasses near the dishwasher, plastic wrap and bags where you are most likely to actually cover the leftovers or make the sandwiches.

3. Place things you use every day within easy reach; put less-used items at the back of shelves or in top cupboards.

4. Keep the kitchen a kitchen; if you're short on space, store lightbulbs, tools, cleaning supplies, and pet food elsewhere.

5. Install small lazy Susans in cupboards to make it easier to find jars and cans.

6. Screw in cup hooks under shelves to make use of otherwise wasted space.

7. Have a huge collection of plastic containers. They'll stay better organized nested in a drawer instead of stuck on a cabinet shelf.

8. Install racks for pot lids, spices, or canned goods on the insides of cabinet doors.

9. Equip base cabinets with pull-out shelves or bins to make the contents more accessible.

10. Pare down your kitchen possessions. If you haven't used something for a couple of years, maybe you don't need it at all.
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