My hope is that this blog is like a visit between friends. I enjoy hearing from you and will try to reply to you in the comment section right after your comment, so stop back by and continue the conversation. - Patty

August 9, 2012

Keeping a Home - An organized kitchen

Warning... this is a long one, folks!

It's done!  My kitchen re-organization and farmhouse update is done. I am not going to lie, it was a lot of work but I am thrilled with how it turned out. 


Before I show you the details of the farmhouse part of it, I want to share the re-organization with you.

Our home was built in 1954.  It is two story, less than 1500 square feet with four bedrooms, two bathrooms, a long narrow living room, a nice size dining room and a 12 x 12 square kitchen.


If you have watched as much HGTV as I have then you know about the all important kitchen triangle.  Well, in 1954 there was no such notion.  You got a stove, a sink and a place for a refrigerator...period.  Where ever they fit, they fit.


With my kitchen being square, everything is pushed against the walls.  The stove is right next to the refrigerator with no counter prep area and the sink is four feet away from the dishwasher because in 1954 the wife was the dishwasher (still is come to think of it, but now she uses a machine to dry the dishes).



When we purchased this house the previous owner was using the empty space in the center of the kitchen as an eat in with a small square table pushed under the window.  I opted for a small island in the middle of kitchen so that I would have some prep area.  This worked okay but I really needed more workspace than the little island provided.


Enter mom...When my mom moved into her smaller home she re-gifted me with a pine island that I had given her many years ago.  After much pushing and pulling I was able to bump both the islands together and create one large preparation/baking area.  (Lest you think the islands were a perfect match in height, they were not.  I was able to add enough fillers to the bottom of one of the islands to match the height pretty closely.)



Now I have plenty of room to keep my butcher block cutting board, Kitchen Aid mixer, mini food processor, assorted spices and my cooking utensils out and still have plenty of open work space.  I moved my dried beans and pasta out of the pantry and into these plastic jars.  They fit perfectly on the shelves of one of the islands.


I tucked a basket for shoes, which seem to always end up in the kitchen, behind the island along with a small step stool.  I also added a small basket to collect sunglasses and badges and clutter that ends up on the kitchen counter.



I purchased the baskets to gather the spices in at Joann's, the spice bottles at IKEA (I wrote the name of the spice with a sharpie) and the oil decanter and adorable pepper mill faucet at Target.



I had already re-organized my pantry areas and have been fairly successful in keeping them up.



The coffee station pretty much stayed the same with the addition of this cute plaque.


I do dishes by hand every day so it makes sense to just leave out my drying rack.  I purchased a black drying pad for underneath just to clean up the look.

I bought an assortment of little plastic bins for the drawers.  Most were very inexpensive but a few, like the ones holding my cooking knives, were a bit pricier because I wanted the safety of the rubber grip on the bottom.


Well, there you have it.  I really thought things through when I put everything back together.  I wanted the kitchen to function well over the long haul.  I figure if the storage makes sense then it should be easy (easier) to keep it organized.  Hopefully, my family will get used to it and stop complaining that they can't find what they are looking for.


There is one drawer that I didn't touch...the junk drawer.  I had to leave in a little touch of reality, right?

Next week you get to see the pretties.  I promise.

xo, Patty

40 comments:

  1. It looks great Patty, and take it from someone whose home was built in about the same era as yours (mine was in the 40's), I feel your pain in the organization and layout of these old kitchens! Your island looks like a really spacious area to work, and I just LOVE your coffee area! So cute! Now about that junk drawer, it looks pretty neat to me, we just throw stuff in ours and close it quick! Lol

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  2. I am now inspired. :) A feel a new project coming on!

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  3. Your kitchen is adorable. My kitchen is our family farm's original log cabin. (my husband is the 7th generation in this house!) I need to reorganize mine...someday!

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  4. Patty,
    What an AMAZING re~organization in your square kitchen!!! Too funny, when you stated, "Where ever they fit, they fit"! I've had a few "Government Housing" kitchens like that!!! I adore how you pushed the two islands together to create a "prep place"! Creative thinking, dear friend! Your containers are perfect for keeping things in their proper places! (When the boys were younger, I placed index cards inside the cabinet doors listing where to put items back!) Your entire family will get use to "finding" and "replacing" things, too. Thank you for sharing your sweet Farmhouse kitchen!It's adorable!!!
    Fondly,
    Pat

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  5. I love it already! It's so nice to be organized.
    Brenda

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  6. Your kitchen looks great Patty. I have a small 1950's kitchen. Will you come and help me organize it!

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  7. Patty, it's wonderful! I love it all: the organization that is so cute and functional and the decor is cozy and perfect for a farmhouse kitchen! You really have maximized the potential here. Kudos on figuring out a prep area solution that's as cute as that!
    Blessings,
    Leslie

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  8. Great countertops! Love the cabinet color! Great accessories! Fabulous organization!

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  9. So many good ideas and they look nice too! I love the sign over your coffee area - so cute :-)

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  10. Your kitchen is lovely, very very well organised, everything has its place! Excellent! :)

    Jerra xx

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  11. Very organized. Now if I would do this in my kitchen or even the house. I am not organized at all.

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  12. Wow ...there you have it...organization!! :)
    It all looks great Patty!
    I'm sure that took a lot of thought and work and the results are wonderful! Love what you've done here!!!

    Deborah xo

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  13. Well done Patty! I love your kitchen. Your answer to your island is perfect. Sure would love to see the other areas of your home. I love your cottage style!

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  14. Patty, it is perfect! I thought your kitchen was so warm and welcoming when I visited! Mine is similar in a lot of ways. I have a long galley type kitchen though, but with no counter and prep space. So my rolling butcher block cart is a life saver to me!!! I wish I had more room in the center though for a larger piece to work on!
    Love this post!!!
    XO Kris

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  15. Great job organizing! I love everything put away in its place. The black gingham looks precious! Now sit down with the beverage of your choice and enjoy!

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  16. Wow! You obviously put alot of thought into your kitchen and it turned out wonderful.

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  17. Your kitchen is coming together beautifully! I LOVE your red cabinets...so farmhouse!

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  18. I love your island being made out of two different pieces. I like how you have everything in it's own place and labeled so nicely. I too spent a day reorganizing my pantry and labeling everything. I had everything with it's own space and obviously so. Now....well, seems I am the only one that can bother to put things back where they obviously go. I mean lids don't even get put back on the sugar/flour jars sometimes. Hope you have much better luck then me! Nicely done!

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  19. This is truly awesome...and it makes me think what I could do with a smaller space. I am inspired by it all...and the island it great

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  20. Your kitchen is so cute, Patty! I love the open shelving (did you put that up?) and the way you put the two islands together. Everything is so nice and organized, too. Great job!

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  21. Looks great! Nice and light and bright and organized.
    What a great feeling!

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  22. Hi Patty!

    My house too is an old house with a crummy kitchen lay-out. But I love your island! I have thought so much about getting an island and remving the small kitchen table since I have a dining room but have just never followed through with it....BUT I will afterall! :D. Love all of your organization! Looks gorgeous too!

    Xoxo. Carolyn

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  23. Wow, everything looks amazing! Having an organized home is such a good feeling, especially in the kitchen. I'm definitely feeling the need lately to get organized in my own!

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  24. Wow Patty it is awesome but you already know I am your kitchen's biggest fan with those cute red cabinets.

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  25. Love what you're doing. I reorganised my kitchen earlier this year. Doesn't it feel good everytime that you use it?
    Enjoy! Joan

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  26. Patty, love your kitchen! Lots of great ideas there and I love your coffee station and the black drying pad. Can't wait to see the pretties!

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  27. Your kitchen is wonderful! What sun you are going to have as the holidays fast approach! Baking will be a breeze with things so nice and tidy.
    Thank you for sharing your finished project...A job well done, my friend!
    Blessings,
    Carolynn

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  28. Well you have thought this out. It looks really good. The sort of kitchen I like,lots of stuff within easy reach. Great feeling of a real home. x

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  29. Great ideas, Patty! Most of us have older kitchens, I suspect, and have to find a way to make them work for us in 2012. You did a wonderful job.

    xo
    Claudia

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  30. Patty, now that you have it all down pat do you want to come to my place and spin your magic? I can't wait to see it all in one photo. I am loving the colors, they are similar to what I am switching my place over to. I think we have similar taste. Great job, girl.

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  31. Very, very nice! Loving how it looks and all works together!

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  32. You have a way of making functional look pretty. Great sign for the coffee station. You have worked so hard and it shows. It's amazing how much "stuff" we can have if it's organized. Of course we all have to have a junk drawer. Your's looks a lot more organized than mine.

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  33. love the coffee sign....great organization :) I have to do that too soon!

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  34. Your kitchen looks wonderful! Has me inspired to get to work on my own. I love the colors, the new curtains. Cannot wait to see the new yellow fabric put to use. Looking forward to seeing all the pretty's. Great job. Thank you for the inspiration. Relax and enjoy the fruits of your labor!

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  35. Your kitchen is so charming! I love how cozy it is, and I love all the color! Old homes can be a challenge, our's was built in 1940, so I feel your pain!

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  36. What a beautifully organized kitchen! I love your vintage style kitchen with all it's cheerful colors. My home was built in 1933, so I completely understand all your challenges.

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  37. Amazing is all I can say.
    You are a genius!

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  38. For Mom like us, Kitchen organizing is a lot of fun doing. We always want everything is in right place.
    Love the new look.

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  39. Patty, even your junk drawer looks pretty organized to me. You took a lot of time and thought to make your kitchen very special and very functional. Excellent job!!

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