In the spirit of functionality, today I'm going to get straight to the point: most of us have too much stuff in our kitchens. Piles of pans, numerous cookie sheets, dinnerware sets for twelve, eight kinds of mustard in the fridge, miscellaneous packets and individual serving packs of god knows what - I understand! Things just accumulate while you're not looking. They multiply in the dark of night. (Okay, that might be a little creepy, but you get the idea.)
Clutter does not make for a happy kitchen. Ever.
Most of us follow the 20/80 rule and don't even know it. Twenty percent of your stuff gets used 80% of the time. The rest only gets pulled out once or twice a year, if at all.
Plan time next week (or even this weekend) to thoroughly clean your kitchen. Grab a garbage bag or a donation box and let go of the things in your kitchen you don't use, don't need or don't like. You're better off with four or five basic, well cared for knives than with a dozen you rarely touch. Cooking for a crowd? Invest in a couple durable sheet or half-sheet pans in place of the six or eight cookie sheets cluttering up your cabinets. It'll save you time and money in the long run.
(Don't believe me? Try this experiment: Put a box in your kitchen. Every time you use and wash something, instead of putting it away drop it in the box. At the end of the month, look at what's still in your cupboards and drawers and ask yourself seriously why you need it if you haven't touched in a month!)
Legitimately seasonal items should be packed away with your seasonal decor and rotated in and out of use.
If you're feeling guilty about getting rid of perfectly useable stuff, give it to someone who actually needs it or offer it up to the crafty people in your life who are always scrounging for awesome finds to recycle into thrifted treasures.
Cutting - and keeping - the clutter out of your kitchen is essential to creating the kind of space that fosters frugal, functional and happy cooking!
What needs to get tossed from your kitchen?