Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Is there hope for my tupperware cabinet?

Tupperware.  A household name. A name that stands for plasticware or "to go" containers.  We all have them.  We all love them.  We all need them.  Especially when we need something quick to put in for left overs or for sending food to someone. We all need them.  We all love them.  But what happens whens the "Tupperware" gets costly and we thrive on the generic containers that our lunch meat comes in. We wash it up and keep it, right?  Well maybe not for you but for the rest of us we have to do this because we are busy and don't have the time (or sometimes the money) to just go out and buy a sophisticated set of "to go" containers of all sizes for multipurposes with a turn table and matching lids, not to mention having the room for all of it. However; I'm not really here to talk about the cost of this stuff.  I am here to talk about the storage of these said items. 

Here is my "plasticware" cabinet.
I have organized it and organized it and it always ends up looking like this. I am finding out that a lot of people are experiencing this problem.  Yes we laugh about it.  But really, it's a headache.  Especially since we have those moments where we are fixing our kids lunches in the mornings and we can't find that one container that actually fits inside their lunch box.  Or those embarrassing moments where there is company over and you hope that they are not paying attention to you while you reach in this cabinet and then once you open the door you are really hoping everying doesn't fall out!  Yes. These things have actually happened to me.  The lids that don't match up to the containers and vice versa.  Or you find the perfect container for the lunch box and then wonder "where did the lid go??"  Well, I am here to tell you there is hope!  Hope for your plasticware cabinet! Hope for you to find peace with it. No more surprises when you open the cabinet doors and they don't come jumping out at you like they are happy to see you and want to give you a hug.  No more of getting it organizing and then a month later it all ends up the same way.  NO. MORE.  I am going to show you how to organize this type of cabinet.  This will be especially helpful to those with smaller spaces/smaller cabinets.  So stayed tuned! 
Here is all of the stuff out of the cabinet. What a mess! What am I going to do with all of this stuff???
Oh yeah, and since it doubles as a coffee mug cabinet (again, small spaces - not a lot of storage here) what am I going to do with all of this?
This is an Expandable Pantry Shelf from Clever Container. I have had it for awhile and it's main purpose is for your dish cupboard. However, my cupboards are fairly small and it never worked before with putting dishes underneath while storing dishes on the rack.  There was never enough space.  I have tried this shelf everywhere in my home. I tried to use it for my kitchen table for various things, the living room to add height to decor and these ideas didn't seem to work for me. So, I thought I would try it in the plastic/coffee mug cupboard. 
The great thing about this stand is that it is adjustable.  You can use just part of the stand or add the second half and make it as big as you need it to be.  See the picture below that shows how to adjust.
Also, here it is in my cupboard...
...and here is how you extend it.  You just lift up on the second part of the stand like so...
...and here it is extended inside the cabinet!  Let's see if this is going to work for me...
As I went through all the stuff I started to see that there were a lot more lids than there were containers so I started a collection of stuff that I either never used and probably never will, containers that didn't even belong to me (oops) and lids and containers that did not match each other.  Here is my collection:
Oh, and the collection of tea bags...they are going somewhere else in the kitchen...I will show you that in a minute.
Voila!!  This little thingamajig is also from Clever Container.  I have used this for a plethora (I love that word) of things and now it is holding my tea bags and some other packets I never know where to put in my cupboard.  This is called the Bin Sweetner. 
Are you ready to see the finished product?!  Drum roll please..........TA-DA!!
It looks amazing, right??!! Why thank you!  What was my secret you ask?  Well let me tell you!  Instead of doing what I always did, which was stack the containers together and stack the lids together, I put the lids on the containers and stacked them that way as you can see in the picture.  Also, by getting rid of stuff I never use (if you haven't used it in 6 months, let's face're probably never going to use it...this is true with most things) and also getting rid of all the "extra's" that were in there (i.e. the lids with no homes...containers without lids, etc) this made it possible to have plenty of space for all of the items worthy of making the "cut". So what do you think?  I think the expandable pantry shelf is really working in there for this little project, don't you?  I was able to stack thinner containers on top so that it looks a lot neater.  Oh, and the reason the mugs are in there is because this really is the best place for them in the kitchen since there isn't any room in any other cupboard and plus the coffee pot and tea kettle are right below the cupboard. 
I know sometimes organizing is not fun. Especially if you have tried it over and over again and it ends up in a mess.  Try these tips: 
1. Throw out what you know you deep down within your soul you will never use.
2. If you know it doesn't belong to anything (i.e. lids that don't have a container and vice versa) don't save it "just in case" know this usually never happens.
3. Try the Expandable Panty Shelf from Clever Container.  It will help with seperating your items in a neat and orderly fashion.
4. Don't stack lids with lids and containers with containers.  They mate for life so keep them together.
For other ideas on help with kitchen cabinet organization visit my website at and look through the catalog.  You never know...organizing just might turn into...FUN!!

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