Minimalist Hack: Keep a Lid on it!

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We all have faced the same problem: the dreaded container lid drawer. Or shelf. Or bucket. Or something that, no matter how you try to keep your lids organized – even if you buy the ones that snap to the bottom of your containers – things always get rearranged, go missing, or are just plain annoying.

In my kitchen, I finally invested in my first complete sets of glasses, plates, and silverware (FYI I’m obsessed with my dishes, it’s beautiful set, you can find it here). I had two dedicated drawers to “throw” the lids in from tupperware, shaker tops, thermoses, reusable cups,  and the tupperware and other things sat dispersed across shelves up above. I wanted to free up some of that space so I could store my pretty new kitchen pieces in a more organized fashion.

I went searching for some solutions that a) wouldn’t break the bank and b) would fit the items I already had. I found two incredible pieces that completely met all my needs!

Enter stage left, the Food Storage Lid Organizer!

This organizer helps keep things nice and neat and you can clearly see what you have.

Now, I still had to deal with the shaker tops and other odds and ends.

Enter stage right, the Under Shelf Wire Basket!

This let me utilize some of the cabinet space for the smaller pieces that never really had a home.

The end result? I moved the contents of two drawers and three shelves down to JUST two shelves with these affordable and quick fixes.

The view from the top – all different brands and sizes fit easily into this organizer.

Here is the relationship to minimalism:

I can see what I have.

I can easily access the things I have.

I can clearly see that I do not need to buy anything more than what I already own. 

That’s the ticket. To know what you have, realize that what you have is enough, so you don’t accumulate more than what you need.

My cabinet – two shelves with all of my food storage needs met.

 

So what is your trick to keep a lid on things in the kitchen? Comment below and let me know! 🙂

Minimalist Hack: Take out the Trash

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read disclosures here.

As I’m stumbling along this journey of minimalism, one of the newest (and smartest) trends in the kitchen world is hiding your trash and recycle bin out of sight.

When my parents remodeled their kitchen they installed one of the cabinets specifically for this. It’s fantastic! Super fancy! But if you aren’t remodeling your kitchen and want the benefit of a hidden waste receptacle, there are a few other cost-effective and easy fixes for you to take out the trash.

#1 Simple Human Pull Out Trash

This one is fantastic – easy to install, and it glides out SO smoothly. If you read the reviews people rave about it. The width on this one sits at 10″ so it’s moderately sized, and potentially the easiest to fit two side-by-side.

#2 Simple Human Trash-Recycle Combo

This one is perfect if you do not have room for two bins side-by-side under your cabinets. This one also installs easily, and slides out smoothly. At 9.8″ width, it’s conveniently sized especially for smaller spaces like under the sink.

#3 Rev-A-Shelf Under Sink Roll Out 

This one is great if you need two bins, but be advised this that is a bit wider than the Simple Human options at 14.38″ width. If you have a wider cabinet and can manage this, it is a very comparable option.

Measure, measure, measure! 

One of the biggest tips I can give is measure, measure, measure! Take the measurements, compare them to the product you are looking at, then measure again. You’ll be glad you did. I can’t tell you how annoying it is to get something awesome and realize that it doesn’t fit – it’s either too big or too small. Chances are you’ve experienced this same frustration if you’ve done any kind of DIY home improvement project.

Personally, I did install the Recycle-Trash combo first but realized it was too small for my needs. I remeasured and realized I could fit two big roll out cans side-by-side which is much better for my home.

Make sure you measure, assess your needs, and make your decisions from there.

I love having my trash hidden now, and it really helps me feel like I’m one step closer to the “less is more” lifestyle. 🙂

What is your favorite minimalist hack? Comment below!

3 Steps to Minimalism

Minimalism: A style that is characterized by sparseness and simplicity.

It can take many forms and can be overwhelming to some. But for people who want to have less, maintain less, and spend less, it can be a breath of fresh air. There are mounds of tutorials and how-to’s to accomplish this.

There is one thing I can tell you: It is not an overnight process!

In the the spirit of keeping things simple (see what I did there?) I have listed my 3 Steps to Minimalism.

Photo by Harprit Bola via unsplash.com

#1: Identify  

Whether you write it down on a piece of paper, in a notebook, or in your phone, identify the areas in your home you want more simplicity. I’d recommend starting in the home. Once the physical space begins to find simplicity it will begin to transfer into other areas in your life.

The beauty of minimalism is that it forces you to truly reflect on yourself and your needs. You just have to decide to begin.

Do you want a closet that isn’t overwhelming with shoes and clothes? Do you have kitchen drawers that are overflowing with items long unused? Do you have a room or garage or closet full of things that you are hanging onto, but can’t quite pinpoint why?

Write it all down! Getting on paper is the first step. Once you’ve got it written down then you can begin to prioritize. Which leads us to…

#2: Prioritize 

I would begin by picking your top 3 spaces you want to clarify. For me I chose my closet (clothes and shoes), my kitchen (too many unused items), and my office (I’m not even sure what half of the stuff in there is for anymore).

I picked a day to clean out my closet: I bagged up everything I hadn’t worn in that last year, and put it in the garage. After 2 months I donated those clothes. I repeated this process with my shoes.

Regarding the kitchen items I kept out the utensils, plates, bowls, a week’s worth of glasses and tupperware, two wine glasses, a spatula, my baking dishes, and my big items (mixer, crock pot, blender, coffee maker). What you keep will vary based on your household size and needs. After 3 months anything I brought back in from the boxes stayed, along with what I originally kept out, and the other items were sold or donated.

When it came to my “office,” it really was a matter of keeping the boxes stored under my bed or tossing them. I never used them. I had pulled out the printer, printer paper, envelopes, stamps, scissors, stapler, tape, 3-hole punch, my pencil pouch (which lives in my purse anyway), and a small container with paperclips, extra staples, and rubber bands. Everything else I didn’t touch, so it was brought to school so other teachers could use those materials in their classrooms. This actually eliminated my need for a desk since now everything I needed fit neatly in my night stand and I can work at the kitchen table, which I did most of the time anyway even after getting a desk.

#3: Re-evaluate

Minimalism is a journey. If you’re like me, you’ll find that even after you’ve cleaned out an area that 4-5 months later there are still things you don’t touch, don’t use, or don’t even remember owning.

Ask yourself these questions: How long has it been since I’ve used it? What is the reality of me using it again? Does it hold major sentimental value?

The sentimental value things is tricky. For me the only things I won’t discard for sentimental value are tucked in a 15″x15″x15″ box that fits neatly on a closet shelf. It doesn’t take up a ton of space and I can pull each item out and tell why it holds a valuable place in my heart. Decide what is irreplaceable and find a safe place for it. Then in 6 months to a year pull it out and reflect: do you still remember why it’s important? Does it still hold meaning? If it does, keep it. If it doesn’t, it needs to go.

Recap

Repeat after me: Identify, prioritize, re-evaluate. Identify, prioritize, re-evaluate.

Breaking things down into a simple process will help you achieve your goals of minimalism to whatever level you desire. Just remember: identify, prioritze, re-evaluate!