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storage stars

Tight squeeze? 10 kitchen storage items to help you get the most out of a small space

From butcher blocks to dish racks, Emily Westbrooks shares her star buys.

I’M WELL USED to tiny kitchens, and our current home is no exception.

While we have cupboards below the worktop for the first time in our adult lives, we’re limited in what we can put into them thanks to our two small children. They love to open doors and take everything out, sampling along the way – so that means no cleaning products and no spillable, smushable food.

We’re also short on counter space, as many kitchens are, so we try to keep worktops as clear as possible to allow for food prep. As a result, we’ve had to think fairly creatively in terms of storage, and have bought a few items to help us on our small kitchen journey.

While it can be a tricky endeavour to neatly and successfully organise a storage-light kitchen, there are a few items that can help. We’ve utilised hanging pot hooks, wall-mounted knife racks and creatively-placed spice racks to help us corral the kitchen clutter and maximise our storage space.

These ten items will help you do the same, all without putting too much pressure on your budget…

1. BEKVAEM kitchen trolley, €45 from IKEA
If you’re short on counter space and storage space, but have a few square feet of floor to use, a kitchen trolley is your best bet. You’ll be able to set up a chopping station on this butcher block topped trolley, while storing other items down below. A trolley on wheels is a bonus, as you’ll be able to move it around your kitchen as needed.

Untitled design (15) IKEA IKEA

2. Wire rectangular storage basket, €22 from Marks & Spencer
One of my constant battles is finding somewhere to store Tupperware and other plastic containers on our home. Two of these wire trays managed to perfectly corral the lids and containers enough that they don’t jump out of the press every time the door opens.

3. Long metal wall shelf with hooks, €66 from Oliver Bonas
When you can find storage options for your kitchen that pull double duty (and don’t stretch your budget too far), make sure to scoop them up. This long metal wall shelf offers hooks for hanging utensils, mugs, or anything that’s hangable, giving you double the storage power.

4. KUNGSFORS magnetic knife rack, €15 from IKEA
This magnetic knife rack has freed up a load of counter space in our kitchen. It’s incredibly sturdy, and hanging up and away from children’s small hands (though they’d have a hard time wrestling a knife away from it anyway).

KUNGSFORS Magnetic knife rack, stainless steel €15 (2) IKEA IKEA

5. FINTORP Rail and hooks, €7 and €3 from IKEA
If you don’t have a spot to hang a full pot rack, these handy rails and hooks make a great stand-in. They’re small enough to be hung just about anywhere, and the matte black offers a sophisticated finish for a kitchen. 

FINTORP Rail, black57 cm €7 (2) IKEA IKEA

6. Two-tier dish drainer, €28 from Next
I’ll admit, I’m kicking myself for not purchasing a two-tier dish drainer before. If you’re without a dishwasher, this will save you setting wet dishes on the counter to dry off. And if you’re really in a pinch for storage space, you could use the top rack for storing your oft-used tea and coffee mugs.

Untitled design (14) Next Ireland Next Ireland

7. Three-tier floor-standing storage, €53 from Next
If you don’t have quite enough room for a kitchen trolley, this floor standing unit would offer a mini-pantry without taking up much real estate in your space. You’ll just want to make sure that your children don’t consider potatoes to be the perfect balls for throwing about the house…

8. BEKVAEM spice rack, €4 from IKEA
We have two of these tucked behind a wall in our little laundry nook, and while one day I’ll look forward to dedicating a full press to spices and condiments, it really does the trick in a small space. We’ve also used these for kids’ art supplies and for shampoo and soap in the bathroom.

Screenshot 2020-07-27 at 16.46.55 IKEA IKEA

9. Three-step storage rack, €2.99 from HomeStore and More
A common kitchen pet peeve surrounds press shelves that are too deep to function well or too tall to make the most of. Enter these storage racks and shelves (I love this corner-sized shelf too) that can slot into most standard presses, creating more storage space for you. The seasoning rack will allow you to see the spices you have to work with, and the corner shelf will give you more space for more items.

10. Canvas wall tidy, €10 from H&M Home
Stuck for a spot to store your dish towels or reusable shopping bags? This canvas wall tidy would add a cheerful pop of colour to your kitchen, or could even hang neatly behind a door to keep those kitchen items out of the way.

Untitled design (16) H&M H&M

More: 7 homeowners share their all-time best IKEA buys – from a cutlery set to a kitchen island>

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