Brighton-based writer and journalist Alan Cairns takes us through the best ways to develop more room in the kitchen.

It’s not unusual for people to want to de-clutter their home, to create more space and create a light, airy and open feel.

DIY Kitchens on a budget

It’s often in the kitchen that we struggle most to find new storage space. Most people’s kitchens are absolutely crammed with cooking ingredients, kitchen utensils and cutlery. Kitchens are usually well-used rooms serving a variety of activities on a daily basis, so it’s easy for clutter to build up over time. This article details a few ways of creating new storage space in an already-cluttered kitchen.


In most kitchens, drawer and cupboard space are at a minimum. If your kitchen drawers and cupboards are full of kitchen utensils then you may benefit from a pegboard. A framed pegboard can be bought relatively cheaply, painted to match the kitchen décor and attached to the wall. The pegs can hold mugs, cups, pans, sieves, colanders and other kitchen utensils, freeing up draw and cupboard space.

If you have children you might want to consider fitting the pegboard reasonably high on the wall to reduce the likelihood of children running into it, knocking items off their pegs and having an accident.

Door Hangers

Another way to create additional cupboard space is to use hangers on the reverse of cupboard doors. Items such as cloths, sponges, cling film, kitchen foil and towels can all hang from these hangers and be contained in this small space. You could alternatively use these hangers to store cookbooks or cooking recipes. Wire racks can also help to better-organise items within a cupboard or drawer.

Lazy Susan

A Lazy Susan is a rotating platform which helps food to be moved around a table or work surface, but they can also be useful inside cupboards. Lazy Susans are typically constructed from plastic, wood or glass, and are a good way of storing items inside a cupboard. This means that if you need something at the back of the cupboard you don’t need to take all items out to get there; simply spin the Susan and select your weapon.

Magnetic Spice Rack

Herbs and spices are an important part of cooking many meals, but there are so many that this can contribute significantly to the clutter in a kitchen. One way of getting all those spices and herbs out of the way is to use a magnetic spice rack. Small herb and spice tins can be attached to the magnet easily, putting them in a highly visible location in easy reach when needed. Magnetic cutlery racks are also available for those running out of space in the cutlery draw.

If you have children then think carefully before attaching any sharp or dangerous objects to a magnetic rack.

Installing Additional Shelving

Installing additional shelves in the kitchen is an obvious but effective alternative, creating a significant amount of storage space, depending on the shelf. When installing shelves it’s incredibly important to plan properly, selecting the right materials in the right size, with the right brackets. This should be based on the items you are planning to store on the shelf. Using weak materials or small brackets could result in shelves bending or coming away from the wall.

Shelves don’t have to necessarily negatively impact the appearance of a room. While large brackets might ruin décor, floating shelves hide brackets behind the shelf allowing it to blend in perfectly. If the DIY involved in shelf installation is daunting then you could consider investing in free-standing shelving units, which are normally lightweight and easy to move around as they fold flat, occupying the minimum of storage space when not in use.